James Hargreaves

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pages: 420 words: 124,202

The Most Powerful Idea in the World: A Story of Steam, Industry, and Invention by William Rosen

"Robert Solow", Albert Einstein, All science is either physics or stamp collecting, barriers to entry, collective bargaining, computer age, Copley Medal, creative destruction, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, decarbonisation, delayed gratification, Fellow of the Royal Society, Flynn Effect, fudge factor, full employment, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, Islamic Golden Age, iterative process, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, John Harrison: Longitude, Joseph Schumpeter, Joseph-Marie Jacquard, knowledge economy, moral hazard, Network effects, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, Paul Samuelson, Peace of Westphalia, Peter Singer: altruism, QWERTY keyboard, Ralph Waldo Emerson, rent-seeking, Ronald Coase, Simon Kuznets, spinning jenny, the scientific method, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, transaction costs, transcontinental railway, zero-sum game, éminence grise

The following decade, an even larger step was taken. At almost exactly the same time that Matthew Boulton was creating the Soho Manufactory, Henry Cort was building his puddling furnace, Joseph Black was investigating the properties of latent heat, and James Watt was repairing Glasgow University’s broken model of a Newcomen engine, a Lancashire weaver had his own Gestalt moment.* The year of James Hargreaves’s inspiration is a little vague—his daughter dated it to 1766—but not its character. While visiting a friend, Hargreaves observed a spinning wheel that had been knocked down; with the wheel and spindle in a vertical position, rather than their then-traditional horizontal one, they continued to revolve. In a flash, Hargreaves imagined25 a line of spindles, upright and side by side, spinning multiple threads simultaneously.

By placing the burden of proof on Arkwright rather than his accusers, his competitors in the cotton industry, who had invested hundreds of thousands of pounds in machinery that they understandably wanted to be able to use without permission from Arkwright, had stumbled on a powerful weapon. The trial of Rex v. Arkwright, which was heard at Westminster Hall in June 1785, was the result. The original dubiousness of Arkwright’s “invention” now came back to haunt him, as Highs and Kay, and even James Hargreaves’s widow, all appeared as witnesses against him, with Kay going on record as saying “he never would have had the rollers but through me.” Arkwright, during his own testimony, said, “if any man has found out a thing,40 and begun a thing, and does not go forwards … another man has the right to take it up, and get a patent for it.” The final ruling, by Chief Justice Buller, found against Arkwright on three separate grounds: that the 1775 patent was not novel (that it essentially restated the 1769 patent, in an attempt to extend it); that it included elements not invented by Arkwright; and that it was insufficiently specific.

However, it seems that the weight of the evidence still supports it. 22 “This is second only to the printing press” Usher, History of Mechanical Inventions, citing Theodore Beck. 23 The first wheels used to mechanize Ibid. Lynn White, citing ambiguous illustrations in the windows of the cathedral at Chartres and an earlier regulation in the town of Speyer, gives the date of 1280. 24 “put [it] between a pair of rollers” Usher, “The Textile Industry, 1750–1830,” in Kranzberg and Pursell, eds., Technology in Western Civilization. 25 In a flash, Hargreaves imagined “James Hargreaves” in Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. 26 “almost wholly with a pocket knife” Ibid. 27 “came to our house and burnt” Ibid. 28 “much application and many trials” Ibid. 29 “Weavers typically rested and played long” Landes, Wealth and Poverty of Nations. 30 “When in due course, SAINT MONDAY” Douglas A. Reid, “The Decline of Saint Monday 1766–1876,” Past and Present no. 71, 1976. 31 “I was a barber” “Richard Arkwright” in Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. 32 As both men later recalled Ibid. 33 (Highs’s daughter, Jane) Edward Baines, History of the Cotton Manufacture in Great Britain (London: H.


pages: 419 words: 109,241

A World Without Work: Technology, Automation, and How We Should Respond by Daniel Susskind

3D printing, agricultural Revolution, AI winter, Airbnb, Albert Einstein, algorithmic trading, artificial general intelligence, autonomous vehicles, basic income, Bertrand Russell: In Praise of Idleness, blue-collar work, British Empire, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, cloud computing, computer age, computer vision, computerized trading, creative destruction, David Graeber, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, demographic transition, deskilling, disruptive innovation, Donald Trump, Douglas Hofstadter, drone strike, Edward Glaeser, Elon Musk, en.wikipedia.org, Erik Brynjolfsson, financial innovation, future of work, gig economy, Gini coefficient, Google Glasses, Gödel, Escher, Bach, income inequality, income per capita, industrial robot, interchangeable parts, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, Jacques de Vaucanson, James Hargreaves, job automation, John Markoff, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, John von Neumann, Joi Ito, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Arrow, Khan Academy, Kickstarter, low skilled workers, lump of labour, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, means of production, Metcalfe’s law, natural language processing, Network effects, Occupy movement, offshore financial centre, Paul Samuelson, Peter Thiel, pink-collar, precariat, purchasing power parity, Ray Kurzweil, ride hailing / ride sharing, road to serfdom, Robert Gordon, Sam Altman, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, shareholder value, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Snapchat, social intelligence, software is eating the world, sovereign wealth fund, spinning jenny, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, strong AI, telemarketer, The Future of Employment, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, the scientific method, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, Travis Kalanick, Turing test, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, universal basic income, upwardly mobile, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, We are the 99%, wealth creators, working poor, working-age population, Y Combinator

Regarding printed Bibles, they said that only the devil himself could produce so many copies of a book so swiftly.7 But the particular character of the changes that took place during the Industrial Revolution was different from the past. Their intensity, breadth, and persistence gave a fresh severity to the familiar worries. AUTOMATION ANXIETY This anxiety that automation would destroy jobs spilled into protest and dissent. Consider the experience of James Hargreaves, the modest man who invented the spinning jenny. An illiterate cotton weaver, he retreated to a remote village in Lancashire, England, to build his device in peace. This was a machine that would allow thread to be spun from cotton far more swiftly than with human hands alone, a valuable innovation at a time when turning raw cotton into useable thread was a growing business. (In fact, by the middle of the nineteenth century, Britain would be producing half of all the world’s cloth.)8 But when word spread about what Hargreaves was up to, his neighbors broke in, demolished the machine, and, somewhat gratuitously, destroyed his furniture, too.

Google’s assorted Internet services, for instance, require two billion lines of code: if these were to be printed out on paper and stacked up, the tower would be about 2.2 miles high.12 Writing good code requires talented—and expensive—software engineers. The average salary for a developer in San Francisco, for example, is about $120,000 a year, while the best engineers are treated as superstars and receive pay packages to match.13 Today, when we recount economic history, we punctuate it with people like James Hargreaves, the inventor of the spinning jenny. In the future, when people tell the history of our own time, it will be filled with names like Demis Hassabis, of DeepMind, and other software engineers, as yet unknown. As for processing power, many of the new systems require extraordinarily powerful hardware to run effectively. Often, we take for granted quite how demanding even the most basic digital actions we carry out can be.


pages: 790 words: 150,875

Civilization: The West and the Rest by Niall Ferguson

Admiral Zheng, agricultural Revolution, Albert Einstein, Andrei Shleifer, Atahualpa, Ayatollah Khomeini, Berlin Wall, BRICs, British Empire, business cycle, clean water, collective bargaining, colonial rule, conceptual framework, Copley Medal, corporate governance, creative destruction, credit crunch, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, Dean Kamen, delayed gratification, Deng Xiaoping, discovery of the americas, Dissolution of the Soviet Union, European colonialism, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Francisco Pizarro, full employment, Hans Lippershey, haute couture, Hernando de Soto, income inequality, invention of movable type, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, John Harrison: Longitude, joint-stock company, Joseph Schumpeter, Kickstarter, Kitchen Debate, land reform, land tenure, liberal capitalism, Louis Pasteur, Mahatma Gandhi, market bubble, Martin Wolf, mass immigration, means of production, megacity, Mikhail Gorbachev, new economy, Pearl River Delta, Pierre-Simon Laplace, probability theory / Blaise Pascal / Pierre de Fermat, profit maximization, purchasing power parity, quantitative easing, rent-seeking, reserve currency, road to serfdom, Ronald Reagan, savings glut, Scramble for Africa, Silicon Valley, South China Sea, sovereign wealth fund, special economic zone, spice trade, spinning jenny, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, The Great Moderation, the market place, the scientific method, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, total factor productivity, trade route, transaction costs, transatlantic slave trade, undersea cable, upwardly mobile, uranium enrichment, wage slave, Washington Consensus, women in the workforce, World Values Survey

The Industrial Revolution has been characterized as a ‘wave of gadgets’.6 Certainly, it was technological innovation that explained much of the decisive increase in the productivity of land, labour and capital (the so-called factors of production). The second and third of these increased in quantity in the nineteenth century,* but it was the qualitative improvement that really mattered – the fact that total output exceeded the combined increments of workers and mills. In terms of supply, then, the Industrial Revolution was a hunt for efficiency. James Hargreaves’s spinning jenny (1766), Richard Arkwright’s water frame (1769), Samuel Crompton’s mule (1779), Edmund Cartwright’s steam-powered loom (1787) and Richard Roberts’s self-acting mule (1830): these were all ways of making more thread or cloth per man-hour. The spinning jenny, for example, allowed a single worker simultaneously to spin cotton yarn with eight spindles. Thanks to these innovations, the unit price of British cotton manufactures declined by approximately 90 per cent between the mid-1790s and 1830.7 The same applied to the other key breakthroughs in iron production and steam-power generation.

He had a total of twenty-four children by five different women, one of whom brought an action for bigamy against him, forcing him to flee the United States. Like Marx – and like a disproportionate number of nineteenth- and twentieth-century entrepreneurs, especially in the clothing and cosmetics business* – Singer was of Jewish origin. And, like Marx, he changed the world – though, unlike Marx, for the better. I. M. Singer & Company, later the Singer Manufacturing Company, completed the process of mechanizing clothes production that James Hargreaves had begun less than a century before. Now even the sewing together of pieces of cloth could be done by machine. The revolutionary nature of this breakthrough is easily overlooked by a generation that has never sewn on more than a couple of buttons. Singer was evidently a man who loved women; has any man done more for womankind in return? Thanks to Singer, the painstaking hours that had previously been needed to stitch the hem of a skirt became mere minutes – and then seconds.


pages: 462 words: 150,129

The Rational Optimist: How Prosperity Evolves by Matt Ridley

"Robert Solow", 23andMe, agricultural Revolution, air freight, back-to-the-land, banking crisis, barriers to entry, Bernie Madoff, British Empire, call centre, carbon footprint, Cesare Marchetti: Marchetti’s constant, charter city, clean water, cloud computing, cognitive dissonance, collateralized debt obligation, colonial exploitation, colonial rule, Corn Laws, creative destruction, credit crunch, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, decarbonisation, dematerialisation, demographic dividend, demographic transition, double entry bookkeeping, Edward Glaeser, en.wikipedia.org, everywhere but in the productivity statistics, falling living standards, feminist movement, financial innovation, Flynn Effect, food miles, Gordon Gekko, greed is good, Hans Rosling, happiness index / gross national happiness, haute cuisine, hedonic treadmill, Hernando de Soto, income inequality, income per capita, Indoor air pollution, informal economy, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), invention of agriculture, invisible hand, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, Jane Jacobs, John Nash: game theory, joint-stock limited liability company, Joseph Schumpeter, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, knowledge worker, Kula ring, Mark Zuckerberg, meta analysis, meta-analysis, mutually assured destruction, Naomi Klein, Northern Rock, nuclear winter, oil shale / tar sands, out of africa, packet switching, patent troll, Pax Mongolica, Peter Thiel, phenotype, plutocrats, Plutocrats, Ponzi scheme, Productivity paradox, profit motive, purchasing power parity, race to the bottom, Ray Kurzweil, rent-seeking, rising living standards, Silicon Valley, spice trade, spinning jenny, stem cell, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, Stewart Brand, supervolcano, technological singularity, Thales and the olive presses, Thales of Miletus, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, trade route, transaction costs, ultimatum game, upwardly mobile, urban sprawl, Vernor Vinge, Vilfredo Pareto, wage slave, working poor, working-age population, Y2K, Yogi Berra, zero-sum game

But increasing supply was not easy, because even the remotest Pennine valleys and Welsh marches were now thickly settled with the cottages of weavers and spinsters, transport was dear and some of the workers were earning good enough wages to take weekend holidays, occasionally even drinking their pay away till Monday night, preferring consumption to extra income. As the twentieth-century economist Colin Clark put it, ‘Leisure has a real value even to very poor people.’ So, stuck between booming demand and stalling supply, the putters-out and their suppliers were ripe customers for any kind of productivity-enhancing invention, and with such an incentive, the inventors soon obliged. John Kay’s flying shuttle, James Hargreaves’s spinning jenny, Richard Arkwright’s water frame, Samuel Crompton’s mule – these were all just milestones on a continuous road of incrementally improving productivity. The jenny worked up to twenty times as fast as a spinning wheel and produced a more consistent yarn, but it was still operated entirely by human muscle power. Yet by 1800 the jenny was already obsolete, because the frame was several hundred times as fast.

Few of the inventions that made the industrial revolution owed anything to scientific theory. It is, of course, true that England had a scientific revolution in the late 1600s, personified in people like Harvey, Hooke and Halley, not to mention Boyle, Petty and Newton, but their influence on what happened in England’s manufacturing industry in the following century was negligible. Newton had more influence on Voltaire than he did on James Hargreaves. The industry that was transformed first and most, cotton spinning and weaving, was of little interest to scientists and vice versa. The jennies, gins, frames, mules and looms that revolutionised the working of cotton were invented by tinkering businessmen, not thinking boffins: by ‘hard heads and clever fingers’. It has been said that nothing in their designs would have puzzled Archimedes.


pages: 547 words: 172,226

Why Nations Fail: The Origins of Power, Prosperity, and Poverty by Daron Acemoglu, James Robinson

"Robert Solow", Admiral Zheng, agricultural Revolution, Albert Einstein, Andrei Shleifer, Atahualpa, banking crisis, Bartolomé de las Casas, Berlin Wall, blood diamonds, BRICs, British Empire, central bank independence, clean water, collective bargaining, colonial rule, conceptual framework, Corn Laws, creative destruction, crony capitalism, Deng Xiaoping, desegregation, discovery of the americas, en.wikipedia.org, European colonialism, failed state, Fall of the Berlin Wall, falling living standards, financial independence, financial innovation, financial intermediation, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, Francisco Pizarro, full employment, income inequality, income per capita, indoor plumbing, invention of movable type, invisible hand, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, Jeff Bezos, joint-stock company, Joseph Schumpeter, Kickstarter, land reform, mass immigration, Mikhail Gorbachev, minimum wage unemployment, Mohammed Bouazizi, Paul Samuelson, price stability, profit motive, Rosa Parks, Scramble for Africa, Simon Kuznets, spice trade, spinning jenny, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, trade liberalization, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, union organizing, upwardly mobile, Washington Consensus, working poor

Many organized against it, rioting and destroying the machines they saw as responsible for the decline of their livelihood. They were the Luddites, a word that has today become synonymous with resistance to technological change. John Kay, English inventor of the “flying shuttle” in 1733, one of the first significant improvements in the mechanization of weaving, had his house burned down by Luddites in 1753. James Hargreaves, inventor of the “spinning jenny,” a complementary revolutionary improvement in spinning, got similar treatment. In reality, the artisans were much less effective than the landowners and elites in opposing industrialization. The Luddites did not possess the political power—the ability to affect political outcomes against the wishes of other groups—of the landed aristocracy. In England, industrialization marched on, despite the Luddites’ opposition, because aristocratic opposition, though real, was muted.

This invention appeared around 1280 in Europe, probably disseminating from the Middle East. The methods of spinning did not change until the eighteenth century. Significant innovations began in 1738, when Lewis Paul patented a new method of spinning using rollers to replace human hands to draw out the fibers being spun. The machine did not work well, however, and it was the innovations of Richard Arkwright and James Hargreaves that truly revolutionized spinning. In 1769 Arkwright, one of the dominant figures of the Industrial Revolution, patented his “water frame,” which was a huge improvement over Lewis’s machine. He formed a partnership with Jedediah Strutt and Samuel Need, who were hosiery manufacturers. In 1771 they built one of the world’s first factories, at Cromford. The new machines were powered by water, but Arkwright later made the crucial transition to steam power.


pages: 218 words: 63,471

How We Got Here: A Slightly Irreverent History of Technology and Markets by Andy Kessler

Albert Einstein, Andy Kessler, animal electricity, automated trading system, bank run, Big bang: deregulation of the City of London, Bob Noyce, Bretton Woods, British Empire, buttonwood tree, Claude Shannon: information theory, Corn Laws, Douglas Engelbart, Edward Lloyd's coffeehouse, fiat currency, fixed income, floating exchange rates, Fractional reserve banking, full employment, Grace Hopper, invention of the steam engine, invention of the telephone, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, Jacquard loom, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, John von Neumann, joint-stock company, joint-stock limited liability company, Joseph-Marie Jacquard, Kickstarter, Leonard Kleinrock, Marc Andreessen, Maui Hawaii, Menlo Park, Metcalfe's law, Metcalfe’s law, Mitch Kapor, packet switching, price mechanism, probability theory / Blaise Pascal / Pierre de Fermat, profit motive, railway mania, RAND corporation, Robert Metcalfe, Silicon Valley, Small Order Execution System, South Sea Bubble, spice trade, spinning jenny, Steve Jobs, supply-chain management, supply-chain management software, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, tulip mania, Turing machine, Turing test, undersea cable, William Shockley: the traitorous eight

Not surprisingly, in 1755, a mob broke into John Kay’s house and destroyed one of his looms, but fortunately, he had a few spare. Making thread or yarn, on the other hand, remained old fashioned. Shear a sheep, and then wind the wool on a spinning wheel. Invented who knows how many centuries before, as quaint as could be. But as weavers demanded more yarn of higher quality, they substituted cotton from the New World for expensive wool. Along came the Spinning Jenny. Invented in 1764 by James Hargreaves, it combined eight and eventually 80 spindles of wool into a thread strong enough to sew with. Hargreaves got the idea (or at least according to legend) when his daughter Jenny knocked over the family spinning wheel and had to chase it through the house. When local spinners heard of the invention, they broke into his home in Lancashire and busted the Jenny up, the wooden one. He moved to Nottingham.


pages: 238 words: 73,824

Makers by Chris Anderson

3D printing, Airbnb, Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, Apple II, autonomous vehicles, barriers to entry, Buckminster Fuller, Build a better mousetrap, business process, commoditize, Computer Numeric Control, crowdsourcing, dark matter, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, death of newspapers, dematerialisation, Elon Musk, factory automation, Firefox, future of work, global supply chain, global village, IKEA effect, industrial robot, interchangeable parts, Internet of things, inventory management, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, Jeff Bezos, job automation, Joseph Schumpeter, Kickstarter, Lean Startup, manufacturing employment, Mark Zuckerberg, means of production, Menlo Park, Network effects, private space industry, profit maximization, QR code, race to the bottom, Richard Feynman, Ronald Coase, Rubik’s Cube, self-driving car, side project, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, slashdot, South of Market, San Francisco, spinning jenny, Startup school, stem cell, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, supply-chain management, The Nature of the Firm, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, transaction costs, trickle-down economics, Whole Earth Catalog, X Prize, Y Combinator

Rather than top-down innovation by some of the biggest companies in the world, we’re seeing bottom-up innovation by countless individuals, including amateurs, entrepreneurs, and professionals. We’ve already seen it work before in bits, from the original PC hobbyists to the Web’s citizen army. Now the conditions have arrived for it to work again, at even greater, broader scale, in atoms. Chapter 3 The History of the Future What happened in Manchester and the cottage industries of England changed the world. It could happen again. In 1766, James Hargreaves, a weaver in Lancashire, was visiting a friend when he saw a spinning wheel fall on its side. For some reason it kept spinning, and something about the contraption still working in the unfamiliar orientation triggered a vision in Hargreaves’s mind: a line of spindles, side by side, spinning multiple threads of cotton from flax simultaneously. When he returned home, he started whittling up just such a machine from spare wood, with the spindles connected by a series of belts and pulleys.


pages: 298 words: 81,200

Where Good Ideas Come from: The Natural History of Innovation by Steven Johnson

Ada Lovelace, Albert Einstein, Alfred Russel Wallace, carbon-based life, Cass Sunstein, cleantech, complexity theory, conceptual framework, cosmic microwave background, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, data acquisition, digital Maoism, digital map, discovery of DNA, Dmitri Mendeleev, double entry bookkeeping, double helix, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart, Drosophila, Edmond Halley, Edward Lloyd's coffeehouse, Ernest Rutherford, Geoffrey West, Santa Fe Institute, greed is good, Hans Lippershey, Henri Poincaré, hive mind, Howard Rheingold, hypertext link, invention of air conditioning, invention of movable type, invention of the printing press, invention of the telephone, Isaac Newton, Islamic Golden Age, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, Jane Jacobs, Jaron Lanier, Johannes Kepler, John Snow's cholera map, Joseph Schumpeter, Joseph-Marie Jacquard, Kevin Kelly, lone genius, Louis Daguerre, Louis Pasteur, Mason jar, mass immigration, Mercator projection, On the Revolutions of the Heavenly Spheres, online collectivism, packet switching, PageRank, patent troll, pattern recognition, price mechanism, profit motive, Ray Oldenburg, Richard Florida, Richard Thaler, Ronald Reagan, side project, Silicon Valley, silicon-based life, six sigma, Solar eclipse in 1919, spinning jenny, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Stewart Brand, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, The Great Good Place, The Wisdom of Crowds, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, transaction costs, urban planning

The chronometer allowed navigators at sea to determine longitude and latitude by providing an accurate representation of time at a particular location. LIGHTNING ROD (1750) Ben Franklin first proposed the idea of a lightning rod in a letter written in 1750, and his descriptions were ultimately translated into French. The first test of Franklin’s theoretical design was actually implemented in France in 1752. SPINNING JENNY (1764) A longstanding debate questions whether James Hargreaves was the true inventor of the spinning jenny, a machine that greatly improved the efficiency of the cotton industry. Some evidence suggests that Hargreaves was merely improving the design of an artisan named Thomas Highs. What is clear is that the Hargreaves design was greatly improved upon in the years following the production of his first model by weavers throughout Northern England. CARBONATED WATER (1767) Clergyman Joseph Priestley discovered that by charging water artificially with carbon dioxide, he could create an effervescent beverage, known today as seltzer.


pages: 296 words: 82,501

Stuffocation by James Wallman

3D printing, Airbnb, back-to-the-land, Berlin Wall, big-box store, Black Swan, BRICs, carbon footprint, Cass Sunstein, clean water, collaborative consumption, commoditize, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, David Brooks, Fall of the Berlin Wall, happiness index / gross national happiness, hedonic treadmill, high net worth, income inequality, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), James Hargreaves, Joseph Schumpeter, Kitchen Debate, Martin Wolf, mass immigration, McMansion, means of production, Nate Silver, Occupy movement, Paul Samuelson, post-industrial society, post-materialism, Richard Florida, Richard Thaler, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, Skype, spinning jenny, The Signal and the Noise by Nate Silver, Thorstein Veblen, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, World Values Survey, Zipcar

In it, Darwin proved that all animals had evolved through a process of natural selection, where only the fittest survived, and those that did not adapt did not. If you were a man of letters or industry in the 19th century, Darwin’s theory was both interesting and inspiring. If you thought about this idea for a moment, it sounded an awful lot like the industrial revolutions of recent years. When James Hargreaves had invented the spinning jenny in Lancashire in the 1760s, for instance, the spinner could now spin yarn twenty times more efficiently than if she had been using her old spinning wheel. That new spinning jenny not only revolutionized how quickly a spinner could produce yarn. It also meant the spinning wheel would now only be useful for burning. It had become, in a word, obsolete. And as Hargreaves’s jenny had replaced the wheel and made it useful only as firewood, so, a few years later, the spinning jenny became obsolete – as the new spinning frame made much stronger yarn.


pages: 354 words: 93,882

How to Be Idle by Tom Hodgkinson

Albert Einstein, Alexander Shulgin, Bertrand Russell: In Praise of Idleness, call centre, David Attenborough, David Brooks, deskilling, financial independence, full employment, Gordon Gekko, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, Lao Tzu, liberal capitalism, moral panic, New Urbanism, PIHKAL and TIHKAL, spinning jenny, Torches of Freedom, trade route, wage slave

Before the advent of steam-powered machines and factories in the mid eighteenth century, work was a much more haphazard and less structured affair. People worked, yes, they did 'jobs ' , but the idea of being yoked to one particular employer to the exclusion of all other money-making activity was unknown. And the average man enjoyed a much greater degree of independence than today. Take the weavers. Before the invention in 1 764 of the spinning jenny by the weaver and carpenter James Hargreaves, and of the steam engine in the same year by James Watt, weavers were generally self-employed and worked as and when they chose. The young Friedrich Engels noted that they had control over their own time: ' So it was that the weaver was usually in a position to lay by something, and rent a little piece of land, that he cultivated in his leisure hours, of which he had as many as he chose to take, since he could weave whenever and as long as he pleased, ' he wrote in his 1845 study The Condition of the Working Class in England. ' They did not need to overwork; they did no more than they chose to do, and yet earned what they needed. ' In addition to this autonomous and leisure-filled life, the weavers were also in control of the whole manufacturing process: they produced the cloth and sold it to a travelling merchant.


pages: 294 words: 96,661

The Fourth Age: Smart Robots, Conscious Computers, and the Future of Humanity by Byron Reese

agricultural Revolution, AI winter, artificial general intelligence, basic income, Buckminster Fuller, business cycle, business process, Claude Shannon: information theory, clean water, cognitive bias, computer age, crowdsourcing, dark matter, Elon Musk, Eratosthenes, estate planning, financial independence, first square of the chessboard, first square of the chessboard / second half of the chessboard, full employment, Hans Rosling, income inequality, invention of agriculture, invention of movable type, invention of the printing press, invention of writing, Isaac Newton, Islamic Golden Age, James Hargreaves, job automation, Johannes Kepler, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, John von Neumann, Kevin Kelly, lateral thinking, life extension, Louis Pasteur, low skilled workers, manufacturing employment, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, Mary Lou Jepsen, Moravec's paradox, On the Revolutions of the Heavenly Spheres, pattern recognition, profit motive, Ray Kurzweil, recommendation engine, Rodney Brooks, Sam Altman, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Skype, spinning jenny, Stephen Hawking, Steve Wozniak, Steven Pinker, strong AI, technological singularity, telepresence, telepresence robot, The Future of Employment, the scientific method, Turing machine, Turing test, universal basic income, Von Neumann architecture, Wall-E, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, women in the workforce, working poor, Works Progress Administration, Y Combinator

In England, participants in the Swing Riots resisted automatic threshing machines by smashing them. Boatmen destroyed the first attempts at a steam engine, which they felt would put them out of work. So overwhelming was the protest against ribbon looms in Germany that they were ordered burned by the government. When the fly shuttle was invented to make weaving easier, its creator, John Kay, was attacked by a crowd. James Hargreaves, who created another breakthrough in textiles called the spinning jenny, saw his creation burned by yet another mob in England. John Heathcoat, who created technology to make the creation of lace more efficient, saw his entire factory and its equipment torched in broad daylight. In 1811, this hostility toward automation coalesced into the Luddite movement, which consisted of a group of people violently opposed to technology that replaced skilled laborers.


pages: 323 words: 92,135

Running Money by Andy Kessler

Andy Kessler, Apple II, bioinformatics, Bob Noyce, British Empire, business intelligence, buy and hold, buy low sell high, call centre, Corn Laws, Douglas Engelbart, family office, full employment, George Gilder, happiness index / gross national happiness, interest rate swap, invisible hand, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, joint-stock company, joint-stock limited liability company, knowledge worker, Leonard Kleinrock, Long Term Capital Management, mail merge, Marc Andreessen, margin call, market bubble, Maui Hawaii, Menlo Park, Metcalfe’s law, Mitch Kapor, Network effects, packet switching, pattern recognition, pets.com, railway mania, risk tolerance, Robert Metcalfe, Sand Hill Road, Silicon Valley, South China Sea, spinning jenny, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Toyota Production System, zero-sum game

In 1733, John Kay patented a wonderful device called the flying shuttle, and loom productivity popped. So much so that in 1755, a mob broke into John Kay’s house and destroyed one of his flying shuttle looms. While weaving got faster, making thread or yarn was still old-fashioned. Now weavers demanded more yarn of higher quality. Cheap cotton from the New World began to make inroads against itchy wool and even comfortable but expensive silk. In 1764, James Hargreaves invented the Spinning Jenny, which Pressure Drop 65 wound strands of cotton into thread. Around the same time, Richard Arkwright invented and patented a device named the Spinning Frame to wind thread into bundles of yarn. Although the Spinning Frame was originally designed to be hand cranked, Arkwright ended up needing horses to operate it, and even they proved not to be powerful enough, so he moved the whole thing riverside, changing the machine’s name to a Water Frame.


pages: 293 words: 91,412

World Economy Since the Wars: A Personal View by John Kenneth Galbraith

business cycle, central bank independence, full employment, income inequality, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, joint-stock company, means of production, price discrimination, price stability, road to serfdom, Ronald Reagan, spinning jenny, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, union organizing, War on Poverty

Most important, in all the earlier stages of development there was no close and predictable correlation between the supply of educated men and the nature of their training and the rate of technological innovation. Inventions were more often the result of brilliant flashes of insight than the product of long prepared training and development. The Industrial Revolution in England was ushered in by the invention of the flying shuttle by John Kay, the spinning jenny by James Hargreaves, the spinning frame by (presumptively) Richard Arkwright and, of course, by James Watt's steam engine. These represented vast improvements in the capital which was being put to industrial use. But only in the case of Watt could the innovation be related to previous education and preparation. Kay and Hargreaves were simple weavers with a mechanical turn of mind. Arkwright had been apprenticed as a boy as a barber and a wigmaker and was barely literate.


pages: 364 words: 103,162

The English by Jeremy Paxman

back-to-the-land, British Empire, colonial rule, Corn Laws, Etonian, game design, George Santayana, global village, Isaac Newton, James Hargreaves, Khartoum Gordon, mass immigration, Neil Kinnock, Own Your Own Home, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Right to Buy, sensible shoes, urban sprawl, women in the workforce

Any self-respecting York-shireman knows precisely which towns are inside his county and which have the misfortune to lie in outer darkness. Yet the inhabitants of the north did not become more than paradigms of themselves – Yorkshire Tykes, Tyneside Geordies or Liverpudlian Scousers. The wealth of modern England was built on the Industrial Revolution, so how did towns like Preston, Bolton and Blackburn, which produced three cotton-spinning geniuses in Richard Arkwright, Samuel Crompton and James Hargreaves, somehow manage to be exiled from the country the English imagined they were living in? Some of the reasons are practical. Firstly, they suffer from the significant disadvantage of being a long way from London, where fashions are set. Secondly, no coherent ‘north country’ has been invented in its own right: it exists mainly in contrast to southern England, which is seen as fat, affected and, above all, ‘soft’.


pages: 361 words: 105,938

The Map That Changed the World by Simon Winchester

British Empire, Isaac Newton, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, mortgage debt, spinning jenny, the market place, the scientific method, Thomas Malthus, trade route, traveling salesman

This might suggest that aspects of the religious climate into which William Smith was born—and that he was to help start changing—are now starting to return. * Smith was to feel somewhat embarrassed in later years about his forebears’ determined ordinariness, and he tried long and hard to prove that through his mother he was a descendant of Sir Walter Raleigh. He convinced no one and eventually abandoned the quest. * James Hargreaves, whose mechanical spinning jenny was destroyed by fearful proto-Luddites, and Samuel Crompton, whose spinning mule was a hybrid of its two predecessors, came only a little later. * William Smith was born during the administration of the sixth and least distinguished, the duke of Grafton, who acted as caretaker between the administrations of William Pitt the Elder and Lord North. † The radical politician in whose memory the famous actor Junius Brutus Booth named the son who would assassinate Abraham Lincoln in April 1865


pages: 480 words: 112,463

The Golden Thread: How Fabric Changed History by Kassia St Clair

barriers to entry, bitcoin, blockchain, butterfly effect, Dmitri Mendeleev, Elon Musk, Francisco Pizarro, gender pay gap, ghettoisation, gravity well, Jacquard loom, James Hargreaves, Joseph-Marie Jacquard, Kickstarter, out of africa, Rana Plaza, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, spinning jenny, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, Works Progress Administration

This was a small, aerodynamic piece of wood that could be quickly propelled from one side of the loom – through the serried ranks of the warp – to the other, dragging the weft threads with it as it went. This increased the speed of weavers so dramatically, that afterwards it took four spinners to supply just one weaver. To correct this imbalance, inventors focused on improving the speed of spinners. In 1764 James Hargreaves created the spinning jenny; five years later came Richard Arkwright’s water frame; and a decade after that, the steam-powered mule was set in motion by Samuel Crompton. All exponentially improved the quantity of spun yarn. In 1785, Edmund Cartwright’s power loom became the first steam-powered weaving machine. So much labour- and time-saving mechanisation meant that, for the first time in history, cloth-making was being taken from hands and homes and transferred to machines and factories.27 For industrialists and merchants, of course, this made financial sense.


pages: 561 words: 114,843

Startup CEO: A Field Guide to Scaling Up Your Business, + Website by Matt Blumberg

activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, airport security, Albert Einstein, bank run, Ben Horowitz, Broken windows theory, crowdsourcing, deskilling, fear of failure, high batting average, high net worth, hiring and firing, Inbox Zero, James Hargreaves, Jeff Bezos, job satisfaction, Kickstarter, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, Lean Startup, Mark Zuckerberg, minimum viable product, pattern recognition, performance metric, pets.com, rolodex, Rubik’s Cube, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Skype

After Steve Jobs died, Malcolm Gladwell wrote an article claiming that he’d built the world’s largest company by doing exactly that: tweaking other people’s ideas, from the graphical user interface (from Xerox PARC) to the digital music player (do you remember the Diamond Rio?). This might not seem all too glamorous, but, Gladwell points out, it is essential to real growth: In 1779, Samuel Crompton, a retiring genius from Lancashire, invented the spinning mule, which made possible the mechanization of cotton manufacture. Yet England’s real advantage was that it had Henry Stones, of Horwich, who added metal rollers to the mule; and James Hargreaves, of Tottington, who figured out how to smooth the acceleration and deceleration of the spinning wheel; and William Kelly, of Glasgow, who worked out how to add water power to the draw stroke; and John Kennedy, of Manchester, who adapted the wheel to turn out fine counts; and, finally, Richard Roberts, also of Manchester, a master of precision machine tooling—and the tweaker’s tweaker. He created the “automatic” spinning mule: an exacting, high-speed, reliable rethinking of Crompton’s original creation.


pages: 410 words: 114,005

Black Box Thinking: Why Most People Never Learn From Their Mistakes--But Some Do by Matthew Syed

Airbus A320, Alfred Russel Wallace, Arthur Eddington, Atul Gawande, Black Swan, British Empire, call centre, Captain Sullenberger Hudson, Checklist Manifesto, cognitive bias, cognitive dissonance, conceptual framework, corporate governance, creative destruction, credit crunch, crew resource management, deliberate practice, double helix, epigenetics, fear of failure, fundamental attribution error, Henri Poincaré, hindsight bias, Isaac Newton, iterative process, James Dyson, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, Johannes Kepler, Joseph Schumpeter, Kickstarter, Lean Startup, mandatory minimum, meta analysis, meta-analysis, minimum viable product, publication bias, quantitative easing, randomized controlled trial, selection bias, Shai Danziger, Silicon Valley, six sigma, spinning jenny, Steve Jobs, the scientific method, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, too big to fail, Toyota Production System, US Airways Flight 1549, Wall-E, Yom Kippur War

But there is a problem with the linear model: in most areas of human development, it severely underestimates the role of bottom-up testing and learning of the kind adopted by the Unilever biologists. In his book The Economic Laws of Scientific Research, Terence Kealey, a practicing scientist, debunks the conventional narrative surrounding the Industrial Revolution: In 1733, John Kay invented the flying shuttle, which mechanized weaving, and in 1770 James Hargreaves invented the spinning jenny, which as its name implies, mechanized spinning. These major developments in textile technology, as well as those of Wyatt and Paul (spinning frame, 1758), Arkwright (water frame, 1769), presaged the Industrial Revolution, yet they owed nothing to science; they were empirical developments based on the trial, error and experimentation of skilled craftsmen who were trying to improve the productivity, and so the profits, of their factories.5 Note the final sentence: these world-changing machines were developed, like Unilever’s nozzle, through trial and error.


pages: 463 words: 115,103

Head, Hand, Heart: Why Intelligence Is Over-Rewarded, Manual Workers Matter, and Caregivers Deserve More Respect by David Goodhart

active measures, Airbnb, Albert Einstein, assortative mating, basic income, Berlin Wall, Bernie Sanders, big-box store, Boris Johnson, Branko Milanovic, British Empire, call centre, Cass Sunstein, central bank independence, centre right, computer age, corporate social responsibility, COVID-19, Covid-19, David Attenborough, David Brooks, deglobalization, deindustrialization, delayed gratification, desegregation, deskilling, different worldview, Donald Trump, Elon Musk, Etonian, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Flynn Effect, Frederick Winslow Taylor, future of work, gender pay gap, gig economy, glass ceiling, illegal immigration, income inequality, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, Jeff Bezos, job automation, job satisfaction, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, labour market flexibility, longitudinal study, low skilled workers, Mark Zuckerberg, mass immigration, new economy, Nicholas Carr, oil shock, pattern recognition, Peter Thiel, pink-collar, post-industrial society, post-materialism, postindustrial economy, precariat, reshoring, Richard Florida, Scientific racism, Skype, social intelligence, spinning jenny, Steven Pinker, superintelligent machines, The Bell Curve by Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, Thorstein Veblen, twin studies, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, universal basic income, upwardly mobile, wages for housework, winner-take-all economy, women in the workforce, young professional

In most countries touched by industrial takeoff, the universities initially had little to do with the training of the new scientific and technical class, and this was especially true of England, where Oxford (established in 1096) and Cambridge (established 1209) remained the only universities for more than six hundred years, well into the nineteenth century. Most of the innovations associated with the first industrial revolution in Britain—from the formation of the Royal Society in 1660 to key inventions such as James Hargreaves’s spinning jenny (1764) and James Watt’s steam engine (1775)—had nothing to do with England’s fossilized “Oxbridge duopoly.” Learned societies like the Lunar Society of Birmingham were far more intellectually significant. And although the philosopher John Locke graduated from Oxford in the mid-seventeenth century after having studied medicine, natural philosophy, and philosophy, the Enlightenment, too, had only a limited impact on the two institutions, which remained dominated by the Anglican church and the teaching of theology and the classics (with some mathematics and natural sciences) until the latter part of the nineteenth century.


pages: 456 words: 123,534

The Dawn of Innovation: The First American Industrial Revolution by Charles R. Morris

air freight, American ideology, British Empire, business process, California gold rush, clean water, colonial exploitation, computer age, Dava Sobel, en.wikipedia.org, glass ceiling, hiring and firing, if you build it, they will come, interchangeable parts, Isaac Newton, Jacquard loom, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, John Harrison: Longitude, joint-stock company, lone genius, manufacturing employment, new economy, New Urbanism, old age dependency ratio, On the Economy of Machinery and Manufactures, purchasing power parity, QWERTY keyboard, refrigerator car, Robert Gordon, spinning jenny, Stephen Hawking, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, trade route, transcontinental railway, traveling salesman, undersea cable

To use in cloth, they first must be cleaned and straightened; then a “spinster,” using the traditional spinning wheel, would repeatedly draw the fibers out under finger pressure while twisting them for strength. Drawing up machinery to replicate hand-spinning was relatively straightforward, but actually building machines that could manipulate the threads more or less as humans did, and without breaking them, took years of trial-and-error experiment. The first successful spinning machine was the jenny, built in 1767 and driven by a hand crank. James Hargreaves, a weaver, worked out a method of holding the rough cotton, or roving, with pins, while a bar stretched out and twisted the fibers. It worked well enough that an early demonstration provoked a riot by the local hand-spinners. But by the 1780s, many cottage hand-spinners were using twelve-and twenty-four-spindle jennies. A twelve-spindle jenny cost about seventy times as much as a spinning wheel, so the productivity pickup must have been very high.


pages: 412 words: 128,042

Extreme Economies: Survival, Failure, Future – Lessons From the World’s Limits by Richard Davies

agricultural Revolution, air freight, Anton Chekhov, artificial general intelligence, autonomous vehicles, barriers to entry, big-box store, cashless society, clean water, complexity theory, deindustrialization, eurozone crisis, failed state, financial innovation, illegal immigration, income inequality, informal economy, James Hargreaves, job automation, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, joint-stock company, large denomination, Livingstone, I presume, Malacca Straits, mandatory minimum, manufacturing employment, means of production, megacity, meta analysis, meta-analysis, new economy, off grid, oil shale / tar sands, pension reform, profit motive, randomized controlled trial, school choice, school vouchers, Scramble for Africa, side project, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, Skype, spinning jenny, The Chicago School, the payments system, trade route, Travis Kalanick, uranium enrichment, urban planning, wealth creators, white picket fence, working-age population, Y Combinator, young professional

From the threshing machine to the tractor (1896), the combine harvester (1911), automation in slaughter houses (1960s) and milking machines (1970), to the Smart Farm (2015), promoted by an Estonian start-up, the advance of agricultural technology never really stopped. Fears over the impact of technology on jobs morphed into anger at inventors and violence against machines in the Industrial Revolution too. Take the case of Lancashire-born James Hargreaves. In the early 1700s spinning – twisting natural fibres together to create the yarn used in weaving – was the bottleneck in cloth production: weaving was so much faster that five spinners were needed to supply each weaver. Clothing was labour-intensive and costly to make: a shirt took around 580 hours, 500 of which was spent spinning. (If a shirt were made in the US at today’s minimum wage using the technology of the eighteenth century it would cost more than $4,000 to produce.)


Liberty's Dawn: A People's History of the Industrial Revolution by Emma Griffin

agricultural Revolution, Corn Laws, deskilling, equal pay for equal work, full employment, informal economy, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, labour mobility, spinning jenny, Thomas Malthus, trickle-down economics, University of East Anglia, urban sprawl, women in the workforce, working poor

And it is one of enduring relevance in our own times as other parts of the globe industrialise at a galloping pace. 4017.indd 4 25/01/13 8:21 PM introduction: ‘a simple naritive’ 5 As the moment when one small European nation left behind its agrarian past and entered decisively on the path to modernity, the industrial revolution has quite rightly attracted the attention of generation after generation of historians. But most of this work has focused on the great men and machines that turned Britain into the workshop of the world: James Hargreaves, Richard Arkwright, James Watt, George Stevenson, Isambard Kingdom Brunel; the spinning jenny, the water frame, the steam engine, the locomotive engine, the railways. These individuals and their achievements transformed Britain into an industrial nation and fully deserve the attention they have received. But so too do the ordinary men, women and children who worked the machines, hewed coal for the steam engines, and built and drove the trains.


pages: 742 words: 137,937

The Future of the Professions: How Technology Will Transform the Work of Human Experts by Richard Susskind, Daniel Susskind

23andMe, 3D printing, additive manufacturing, AI winter, Albert Einstein, Amazon Mechanical Turk, Amazon Web Services, Andrew Keen, Atul Gawande, Automated Insights, autonomous vehicles, Big bang: deregulation of the City of London, big data - Walmart - Pop Tarts, Bill Joy: nanobots, business process, business process outsourcing, Cass Sunstein, Checklist Manifesto, Clapham omnibus, Clayton Christensen, clean water, cloud computing, commoditize, computer age, Computer Numeric Control, computer vision, conceptual framework, corporate governance, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, death of newspapers, disintermediation, Douglas Hofstadter, en.wikipedia.org, Erik Brynjolfsson, Filter Bubble, full employment, future of work, Google Glasses, Google X / Alphabet X, Hacker Ethic, industrial robot, informal economy, information retrieval, interchangeable parts, Internet of things, Isaac Newton, James Hargreaves, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, Joseph Schumpeter, Khan Academy, knowledge economy, lifelogging, lump of labour, Marshall McLuhan, Metcalfe’s law, Narrative Science, natural language processing, Network effects, optical character recognition, Paul Samuelson, personalized medicine, pre–internet, Ray Kurzweil, Richard Feynman, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, semantic web, Shoshana Zuboff, Skype, social web, speech recognition, spinning jenny, strong AI, supply-chain management, telepresence, The Future of Employment, the market place, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, The Wisdom of Crowds, transaction costs, Turing test, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, WikiLeaks, young professional

That model builds on the ‘Ricardian model of the labor market’, set out in Daron Acemoglu and David Autor, ‘Skills, Tasks and Technologies: Implications for Employment and Earnings’, in Handbook of Labor Economics, Volume 4, Part B, ed. David Card and Orley Ashenfelter (2011), 1043–171. 28 The spirit of their anxieties is shared with the original nineteenth-century ‘Luddities’ (whose name derives from their declared support for Ned Ludd, an East Midlands weaver who smashed a set of framing machines in anger and in fear in the early tremors of the Industrial Revolution). The Luddites viewed James Hargreaves’s spinning jenny in the nineteenth century with the same anxious suspicion that today’s pessimists view Tim Berners-Lee’s World Wide Web in the twenty-first century. See Eric Hobsbawm and George Rudé, Captain Swing (2001). 29 David Autor, ‘Polanyi’s Paradox and the Shape of Employment Growth’, NBER Working Paper 20485, National Bureau of Economic Research (2014). 30 Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee, The Second Machine Age: Work, Progress, and Prosperity in a Time of Brilliant Technologies (2014).


pages: 538 words: 145,243

Behemoth: A History of the Factory and the Making of the Modern World by Joshua B. Freeman

anti-communist, British Empire, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, clean water, collective bargaining, Corn Laws, corporate raider, deindustrialization, Deng Xiaoping, disruptive innovation, en.wikipedia.org, factory automation, Ford paid five dollars a day, Frederick Winslow Taylor, global supply chain, indoor plumbing, interchangeable parts, invisible hand, James Hargreaves, joint-stock company, knowledge worker, mass immigration, means of production, mittelstand, Naomi Klein, new economy, On the Economy of Machinery and Manufactures, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, Pearl River Delta, post-industrial society, Ralph Waldo Emerson, rising living standards, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, special economic zone, spinning jenny, Steve Jobs, strikebreaker, technoutopianism, the built environment, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, Tim Cook: Apple, transaction costs, union organizing, Upton Sinclair, urban planning, Vanguard fund, women in the workforce, working poor, Works Progress Administration, zero-sum game

Though the banking system in the textile districts had limited financial and technical capacity, manufacturers, merchants, and landed gentry had capital resources to back new enterprises. A large, underemployed agricultural workforce constituted a potential labor pool for large-scale industry.17 In the last decades of the eighteenth century, English inventors, artisans, and merchant manufacturers developed a series of machines to boost the quality and quantity of locally produced cotton yarn. James Hargreaves developed the first mechanical spinning device in 1764, the jenny. It proved of limited use, since it could only produce weft and required a skilled worker to operate. Richard Arkwright was more successful. A tinkerer, who had had his ups and downs as a barber, wig maker, and public house owner, Arkwright applied for a patent on a spinning machine in 1768 and seven years later for carding equipment.


Investment: A History by Norton Reamer, Jesse Downing

activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, Albert Einstein, algorithmic trading, asset allocation, backtesting, banking crisis, Berlin Wall, Bernie Madoff, break the buck, Brownian motion, business cycle, buttonwood tree, buy and hold, California gold rush, capital asset pricing model, Carmen Reinhart, carried interest, colonial rule, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, debt deflation, discounted cash flows, diversified portfolio, dogs of the Dow, equity premium, estate planning, Eugene Fama: efficient market hypothesis, Fall of the Berlin Wall, family office, Fellow of the Royal Society, financial innovation, fixed income, Gordon Gekko, Henri Poincaré, high net worth, index fund, information asymmetry, interest rate swap, invention of the telegraph, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, joint-stock company, Kenneth Rogoff, labor-force participation, land tenure, London Interbank Offered Rate, Long Term Capital Management, loss aversion, Louis Bachelier, margin call, means of production, Menlo Park, merger arbitrage, money market fund, moral hazard, mortgage debt, Myron Scholes, negative equity, Network effects, new economy, Nick Leeson, Own Your Own Home, Paul Samuelson, pension reform, Ponzi scheme, price mechanism, principal–agent problem, profit maximization, quantitative easing, RAND corporation, random walk, Renaissance Technologies, Richard Thaler, risk tolerance, risk-adjusted returns, risk/return, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Sand Hill Road, Sharpe ratio, short selling, Silicon Valley, South Sea Bubble, sovereign wealth fund, spinning jenny, statistical arbitrage, survivorship bias, technology bubble, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, time value of money, too big to fail, transaction costs, underbanked, Vanguard fund, working poor, yield curve

Coupled with this was the availability of resources, a willingness to innovate, and technological advances that together helped enable this transformation in industry. For instance, Johannes Gutenberg’s revolutionary printing press of the fifteenth century clearly facilitated the diffusion of knowledge that made the Industrial Revolution—and its necessary technological innovations and inventions—possible in the first place. Among the other facilitating technologies of the Industrial Revolution was James Hargreaves’s spinning jenny, a spinning frame with multiple spindles that vastly increased production volume in the textile industry. Combined with the flying shuttle, the spinning jenny took the textile industry into the next competitive era. James Watt’s late eighteenth-century steam engine changed most industries using mechanical power, especially transportation and agriculture, quite significantly.


pages: 519 words: 148,131

An Empire of Wealth: Rise of American Economy Power 1607-2000 by John Steele Gordon

accounting loophole / creative accounting, bank run, banking crisis, Bretton Woods, British Empire, business cycle, buttonwood tree, California gold rush, clean water, collective bargaining, Corn Laws, corporate governance, cuban missile crisis, disintermediation, double entry bookkeeping, failed state, financial independence, Frederick Winslow Taylor, full employment, global village, imperial preference, informal economy, interchangeable parts, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, Jacquard loom, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, joint-stock company, joint-stock limited liability company, lone genius, Louis Pasteur, margin call, Marshall McLuhan, means of production, Menlo Park, Mikhail Gorbachev, money market fund, money: store of value / unit of account / medium of exchange, moral hazard, new economy, New Urbanism, postindustrial economy, price mechanism, Ralph Waldo Emerson, RAND corporation, rent control, rent-seeking, reserve currency, rolodex, Ronald Reagan, spinning jenny, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, trade route, transaction costs, transcontinental railway, undersea cable, Yom Kippur War

This spinning was done at home under the putting-out system. An entrepreneur would give workers the necessary materials and then pay them by the piece for completed work. It took, on average, four spinners to supply one loom. But John Kay’s invention of the flying shuttle in 1733 upset the balance because it made weaving much faster. Either more spinners or a faster way of doing the spinning was needed. In 1764 James Hargreaves introduced the spinning jenny, which could spin eight threads at a time, and five years later James Arkwright improved on it with the water frame, so called because it was powered by a waterwheel. This mechanization made thread abundant, and, now to speed up the weaving, the Reverend Edmund Cartwright developed the power loom in 1785. The new machinery required a shift from home production by the putting-out method to factory production by labor paid hourly wages.


pages: 540 words: 168,921

The Relentless Revolution: A History of Capitalism by Joyce Appleby

1919 Motor Transport Corps convoy, agricultural Revolution, anti-communist, Asian financial crisis, asset-backed security, Bartolomé de las Casas, Bernie Madoff, Bretton Woods, BRICs, British Empire, call centre, Charles Lindbergh, collateralized debt obligation, collective bargaining, Columbian Exchange, commoditize, corporate governance, creative destruction, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deindustrialization, Deng Xiaoping, deskilling, Doha Development Round, double entry bookkeeping, epigenetics, equal pay for equal work, European colonialism, facts on the ground, failed state, Firefox, fixed income, Ford paid five dollars a day, Francisco Pizarro, Frederick Winslow Taylor, full employment, Gordon Gekko, Henry Ford's grandson gave labor union leader Walter Reuther a tour of the company’s new, automated factory…, Hernando de Soto, hiring and firing, illegal immigration, informal economy, interchangeable parts, interest rate swap, invention of movable type, invention of the printing press, invention of the steam engine, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, Jeff Bezos, joint-stock company, Joseph Schumpeter, knowledge economy, land reform, Livingstone, I presume, Long Term Capital Management, Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Wolf, moral hazard, Parag Khanna, Ponzi scheme, profit maximization, profit motive, race to the bottom, Ralph Nader, refrigerator car, Ronald Reagan, Scramble for Africa, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, South China Sea, South Sea Bubble, special economic zone, spice trade, spinning jenny, strikebreaker, the built environment, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas L Friedman, Thorstein Veblen, total factor productivity, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, transcontinental railway, union organizing, Unsafe at Any Speed, Upton Sinclair, urban renewal, War on Poverty, working poor, Works Progress Administration, Yogi Berra, Yom Kippur War

The goal was to mechanize the movements made by the hands and arms of the spinners and weavers. Four men, working independently, transformed textile making with their inventions of the spinning jenny, the spinning mule, and the power loom, all designed to speed up the process of turning wool into thread and thread into cloth. Their differing success epitomizes the mixed fate of inventors. Both James Hargreaves and Thomas Arkwright came up with the spinning jenny, a simple device that multiplied the spindles of yarn spun by one wheel. Once it was in operation, the number of additional spindles went quickly from eight to eighty. Hargreaves was a weaver, but Arkwright had better connections to backers and was able to set up a factory where he successfully brought six hundred workers, many of them women and children, under one roof.


pages: 565 words: 164,405

A Splendid Exchange: How Trade Shaped the World by William J. Bernstein

Admiral Zheng, asset allocation, bank run, Benoit Mandelbrot, British Empire, call centre, clean water, Columbian Exchange, Corn Laws, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deindustrialization, Doha Development Round, domestication of the camel, double entry bookkeeping, Eratosthenes, financial innovation, Gini coefficient, God and Mammon, ice-free Arctic, imperial preference, income inequality, intermodal, James Hargreaves, John Harrison: Longitude, Khyber Pass, low skilled workers, non-tariff barriers, Paul Samuelson, placebo effect, Port of Oakland, refrigerator car, Silicon Valley, South China Sea, South Sea Bubble, spice trade, spinning jenny, Steven Pinker, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas L Friedman, Thomas Malthus, trade liberalization, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, transcontinental railway, upwardly mobile, working poor, zero-sum game

Just a dozen years after the passage of the act of 1721, John Kay perfected the flying shuttle, which doubled weavers' productivity. This served to increase the demand for thread, whose spinning was more difficult to mechanize. In 1738, Lewis Paul and John Wyatt patented the first mechanical spinning machine, but no commercially feasible device became available until the mid-1760s, when such machines were invented by James Hargreaves, Richard Arkwright, and Samuel Crompton. (These were, respectively, the spinning jenny, the water frame, and the mule, the latter so-called because it was a hybrid of the first two.)55 As the economic historian Eric Hobsbawm famously said, "Whoever says Industrial Revolution says cotton." The new machines that were the heart of the great transformation made redundant untold thousands of spinners and weavers, who engaged in spasms of "machine breaking" in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries before finally disappearing into the new mills.56 (The term "Luddite" derives from the probably fictional leader of the machine-breaking riots in the 1810s, Ned Ludd.)


pages: 626 words: 167,836

The Technology Trap: Capital, Labor, and Power in the Age of Automation by Carl Benedikt Frey

"Robert Solow", 3D printing, autonomous vehicles, basic income, Bernie Sanders, Branko Milanovic, British Empire, business cycle, business process, call centre, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Clayton Christensen, collective bargaining, computer age, computer vision, Corn Laws, creative destruction, David Graeber, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deindustrialization, demographic transition, desegregation, deskilling, Donald Trump, easy for humans, difficult for computers, Edward Glaeser, Elon Musk, Erik Brynjolfsson, everywhere but in the productivity statistics, factory automation, falling living standards, first square of the chessboard / second half of the chessboard, Ford paid five dollars a day, Frank Levy and Richard Murnane: The New Division of Labor, full employment, future of work, game design, Gini coefficient, Hyperloop, income inequality, income per capita, industrial cluster, industrial robot, intangible asset, interchangeable parts, Internet of things, invention of agriculture, invention of movable type, invention of the steam engine, invention of the wheel, Isaac Newton, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, job automation, job satisfaction, job-hopping, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, Joseph Schumpeter, Kickstarter, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, labor-force participation, labour mobility, Loebner Prize, low skilled workers, Malcom McLean invented shipping containers, manufacturing employment, mass immigration, means of production, Menlo Park, minimum wage unemployment, natural language processing, new economy, New Urbanism, Norbert Wiener, oil shock, On the Economy of Machinery and Manufactures, Pareto efficiency, pattern recognition, pink-collar, Productivity paradox, profit maximization, Renaissance Technologies, rent-seeking, rising living standards, Robert Gordon, robot derives from the Czech word robota Czech, meaning slave, Second Machine Age, secular stagnation, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, social intelligence, speech recognition, spinning jenny, Stephen Hawking, The Future of Employment, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, total factor productivity, trade route, Triangle Shirtwaist Factory, Turing test, union organizing, universal basic income, washing machines reduced drudgery, wealth creators, women in the workforce, working poor, zero-sum game

Arkwright’s water frame, which put roller spinning into practice, is estimated to have cut the cost of labor for spinning by two-thirds and overall costs of coarse cotton production by 20 percent. The economics of Arkwright’s second invention, the carding machine, were similar. And like the water frame it was not an invention of staggering novelty. Indeed, the novelty of his invention was called into question, as his patent was challenged.12 The other key invention was James Hargreaves’s spinning jenny. Hargreaves is said to have conceived it when he watched a spinning wheel fall to the floor and, while revolving, seem to do the spinning by itself. What is certain is that the machine was very simple. It was a rectangular frame on four legs with a row of vertical spindles on one end. Like the water frame, it was an invention that required no scientific breakthroughs. Its great advantage over the spinning wheel it replaced was that it allowed a single worker to spin several threads simultaneously.


pages: 651 words: 180,162

Antifragile: Things That Gain From Disorder by Nassim Nicholas Taleb

Air France Flight 447, Andrei Shleifer, banking crisis, Benoit Mandelbrot, Berlin Wall, Black Swan, business cycle, Chuck Templeton: OpenTable:, commoditize, creative destruction, credit crunch, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, discrete time, double entry bookkeeping, Emanuel Derman, epigenetics, financial independence, Flash crash, Gary Taubes, George Santayana, Gini coefficient, Henri Poincaré, high net worth, hygiene hypothesis, Ignaz Semmelweis: hand washing, informal economy, invention of the wheel, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, James Hargreaves, Jane Jacobs, joint-stock company, joint-stock limited liability company, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Arrow, knowledge economy, Lao Tzu, Long Term Capital Management, loss aversion, Louis Pasteur, mandelbrot fractal, Marc Andreessen, meta analysis, meta-analysis, microbiome, money market fund, moral hazard, mouse model, Myron Scholes, Norbert Wiener, pattern recognition, Paul Samuelson, placebo effect, Ponzi scheme, principal–agent problem, purchasing power parity, quantitative trading / quantitative finance, Ralph Nader, random walk, Ray Kurzweil, rent control, Republic of Letters, Ronald Reagan, Rory Sutherland, selection bias, Silicon Valley, six sigma, spinning jenny, statistical model, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, Stewart Brand, stochastic process, stochastic volatility, Thales and the olive presses, Thales of Miletus, The Great Moderation, the new new thing, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Bayes, Thomas Malthus, too big to fail, transaction costs, urban planning, Vilfredo Pareto, Yogi Berra, Zipf's Law

Kealey presents a convincing—very convincing—argument that the steam engine emerged from preexisting technology and was created by uneducated, often isolated men who applied practical common sense and intuition to address the mechanical problems that beset them, and whose solutions would yield obvious economic reward. Now, second, consider textile technologies. Again, the main technologies that led to the jump into the modern world owe, according to Kealey, nothing to science. “In 1733,” he writes, “John Kay invented the flying shuttle, which mechanized weaving, and in 1770 James Hargreaves invented the spinning jenny, which as its name implies, mechanized spinning. These major developments in textile technology, as well as those of Wyatt and Paul (spinning frame, 1758), Arkwright (water frame, 1769), presaged the Industrial Revolution, yet they owed nothing to science; they were empirical developments based on the trial, error, and experimentation of skilled craftsmen who were trying to improve the productivity, and so the profits, of their factories.”


pages: 603 words: 182,826

Owning the Earth: The Transforming History of Land Ownership by Andro Linklater

agricultural Revolution, anti-communist, Anton Chekhov, Ayatollah Khomeini, Big bang: deregulation of the City of London, British Empire, business cycle, colonial rule, Corn Laws, corporate governance, creative destruction, Credit Default Swap, crony capitalism, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, facts on the ground, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, full employment, Gini coefficient, Google Earth, income inequality, invisible hand, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, joint-stock company, joint-stock limited liability company, Joseph Schumpeter, Kibera, Kickstarter, land reform, land tenure, light touch regulation, market clearing, means of production, megacity, Mikhail Gorbachev, Mohammed Bouazizi, Monkeys Reject Unequal Pay, mortgage debt, Northern Rock, Peace of Westphalia, Pearl River Delta, plutocrats, Plutocrats, Ponzi scheme, profit motive, quantitative easing, Ralph Waldo Emerson, refrigerator car, Right to Buy, road to serfdom, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, spinning jenny, The Chicago School, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, too big to fail, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, transcontinental railway, ultimatum game, wage slave, WikiLeaks, wikimedia commons, working poor

Fighting their way through the battleground of competing claims to ownership of a technical innovation, ordinary common law judges increasingly made it plain that they no longer regarded the specification of the invention to be a contribution to the public good, but as the very boundary that surrounded the inventor’s property. The law’s only role was to adjudicate between rival assertions of ownership. This interpretation made it as imperative for an eighteenth-century inventor to register his claim to possession as it was for a sixteenth-century encloser. No one with a significant idea, such as James Hargreaves with his bank of mechanically operated spinning-wheels, his “spinning jenny,” could afford not to seek a patent. However fragile its protection, it provided legal evidence of a natural right to what both Boulton and Watt routinely called “our property.” Without a patent, that natural right might pass to anyone who claimed it. With it, the property might become more profitable than land, and allow its owner, as Watt would show, to extend its brief life much longer than fourteen years.


Ellul, Jacques-The Technological Society-Vintage Books (1964) by Unknown

Bretton Woods, conceptual framework, do-ocracy, double entry bookkeeping, Frederick Winslow Taylor, full employment, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, liberal capitalism, means of production, Norbert Wiener, price mechanism, profit motive, rising living standards, road to serfdom, spinning jenny, Thorstein Veblen, urban planning, Vilfredo Pareto

The technical state of mind was first manifested in the application of the principles of science. We already know how this necessity arose ( it is emphasized in all textbooks). The flying shuttle of 1733 made a greater pro- 111) THE CHARACTEROLOCY OF TECHNIQUE duction of yarn necessary. But production was impossible without a suitable machine. The response to this dilemma was the invention of the spinning jenny by James Hargreaves. But then yarn was product*! in much greater quantities than could possibly be used by the weavers. To solve this new problem, Cartwright manu­ factured his celebrated loom. In this series of events we see in its simplest form the interaction that accelerates the development of machines. Each new machine disturbs the equilibrium of pro­ duction; the restoration of equilibrium entails the creation of one or more additional machines in other areas of operation.


pages: 716 words: 192,143

The Enlightened Capitalists by James O'Toole

activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, anti-communist, Ayatollah Khomeini, Bernie Madoff, British Empire, business cycle, business process, California gold rush, carbon footprint, City Beautiful movement, collective bargaining, corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, Credit Default Swap, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, desegregation, Donald Trump, double entry bookkeeping, end world poverty, equal pay for equal work, Frederick Winslow Taylor, full employment, garden city movement, germ theory of disease, glass ceiling, God and Mammon, greed is good, hiring and firing, income inequality, indoor plumbing, inventory management, invisible hand, James Hargreaves, job satisfaction, joint-stock company, Kickstarter, knowledge worker, Lao Tzu, longitudinal study, Louis Pasteur, Lyft, means of production, Menlo Park, North Sea oil, passive investing, Ponzi scheme, profit maximization, profit motive, Ralph Waldo Emerson, rolodex, Ronald Reagan, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Social Responsibility of Business Is to Increase Its Profits, Socratic dialogue, sovereign wealth fund, spinning jenny, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, stocks for the long run, stocks for the long term, The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Tim Cook: Apple, traveling salesman, Uber and Lyft, uber lyft, union organizing, Vanguard fund, white flight, women in the workforce, young professional

In distinction, his lifelong rival, humanist Thomas Jefferson, saw such children as potentially virtuous, self-sufficient citizens in need of an education to prepare them for democratic participation in their communities. By and large, Hamilton’s view would prevail in America and Britain over the subsequent century. Britain, circa 1800 The mid-eighteenth-century introduction of such laborsaving devices as James Hargreaves’s spinning jenny, Richard Arkwright’s water frame, and Samuel Crompton’s spinning mule greatly reduced the time it took to spin thread from cotton and to make it into cloth, functions previously performed at home by women using distaffs and spindles and, later, spinning wheels. By 1800, cotton cloth would be more efficiently mass-produced in gigantic mills far larger even than the one Defoe had described six decades earlier.


pages: 796 words: 242,660

This Sceptred Isle by Christopher Lee

agricultural Revolution, Berlin Wall, British Empire, colonial rule, Corn Laws, cuban missile crisis, Edward Lloyd's coffeehouse, failed state, financial independence, glass ceiling, half of the world's population has never made a phone call, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, Johannes Kepler, Khartoum Gordon, Khyber Pass, mass immigration, Mikhail Gorbachev, Monroe Doctrine, Nelson Mandela, new economy, Northern Rock, Ronald Reagan, sceptred isle, spice trade, spinning jenny, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, trade route, urban decay

Jonas Hanway wanted an Act of Parliament that would make London parishes and poor children under the age of six in the country to be nursed. Hanway was not much interested in the Englishness of the infants, only that 47 per cent died before the age of two. While social pleading depended on debate and Parliament’s whim, the industrial upheaval brought added miseries. Take, for example, the plight of hand spinners. In 1765 James Hargreaves, a carpenter and weaver, produced his most famous invention and named it after his wife. It was to be called the spinning-jenny. By using eight spindles driven by a great wheel, Hargreaves revolutionized the methods of the textile industry. And just like those who, 200 years on, viewed automation with dismay, the spinners understood perfectly that their livelihoods would never be the same again.


pages: 1,000 words: 247,974

Empire of Cotton: A Global History by Sven Beckert

agricultural Revolution, Bartolomé de las Casas, British Empire, colonial exploitation, colonial rule, Corn Laws, creative destruction, crony capitalism, deindustrialization, European colonialism, Francisco Pizarro, imperial preference, industrial cluster, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, joint-stock company, laissez-faire capitalism, land tenure, Mahatma Gandhi, market fundamentalism, race to the bottom, Silicon Valley, spice trade, spinning jenny, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, transaction costs, transatlantic slave trade, union organizing, women in the workforce

The spread of more productive weaving techniques put huge pressure on spinning, as ever more spinners were needed to supply one weaver with sufficient yarn to keep the looms working. Despite more women in ever more households working longer hours on the spinning wheel, the supply was insufficient. After Kay’s invention it took four spinners to supply one weaver. Many artisans tried to find ways to circumvent this bottleneck, and by the 1760s productivity increases became possible with James Hargreaves’s invention of the spinning jenny. The jenny consisted of a hand-operated wheel that would rotate a number of spindles within a frame, while the spinner would use her other hand to move a bar back and forth to extend the thread and then to wind it on the spindles themselves. This machine was at first able to spin eight separate threads, later sixteen or more, and as early as 1767 it had tripled a spinner’s speed.


Europe: A History by Norman Davies

agricultural Revolution, Albert Einstein, anti-communist, Berlin Wall, Bretton Woods, British Empire, business climate, centre right, charter city, clean water, Columbian Exchange, conceptual framework, continuation of politics by other means, Corn Laws, cuban missile crisis, Defenestration of Prague, discovery of DNA, double entry bookkeeping, Edmond Halley, Edward Lloyd's coffeehouse, equal pay for equal work, Eratosthenes, Etonian, European colonialism, experimental economics, financial independence, finite state, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, Francisco Pizarro, full employment, global village, Honoré de Balzac, Index librorum prohibitorum, interchangeable parts, invention of agriculture, invention of movable type, Isaac Newton, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Johannes Kepler, John Harrison: Longitude, joint-stock company, Joseph-Marie Jacquard, land reform, liberation theology, long peace, Louis Blériot, Louis Daguerre, Mahatma Gandhi, mass immigration, Mikhail Gorbachev, Monroe Doctrine, Murano, Venice glass, music of the spheres, New Urbanism, North Sea oil, offshore financial centre, Peace of Westphalia, popular capitalism, Potemkin village, purchasing power parity, Ralph Waldo Emerson, road to serfdom, sceptred isle, Scramble for Africa, spinning jenny, Thales of Miletus, the scientific method, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, Transnistria, urban planning, urban sprawl

From then on, the different sorts of machinery to which the motive power of steam could be applied seemed limitless. Machinery had been used ever since the water-mill and the printing-press. In the hands of the eighteenth-century clock-makers it had reached a high level of precision. But the prospect of a power source far more forceful than hand, water, or spring inspired a rash of inventions, all initially in the realm of textiles. Three Lancashire men, James Hargreaves (1720–78) of Blackburn, Richard Arkwright (1732–92) of Preston, and Samuel Crompton (1753–1827) of Hall’ith’ Wood, Bolton, built respectively the spinning jenny (1767), the spinning frame (1768), and the spinning mule (1779). The jenny was suitable only for hand use in cottages; the frame and mule proved suitable for steam traction in factories. A new level of sophistication was reached in France with the silk loom (1804) of [JACQUARD].