spinning jenny

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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

And not simply a huge increase in the number of new inventions but a radical transformation in the process of invention itself.14 In June 1770, Hargreaves submitted a patent application, number 962, for a version of the spinning jenny that could spin, draw, and twist sixteen threads simultaneously. The delay between this patent application and his first prototypes meant that others were already using the jenny by the time his patent was granted, making it difficult for him to enforce his patent rights. Even worse, the machine made enemies. Starting in Hargreaves’s native Lancashire, the spinning jenny’s magical multiplication of productivity was initially, as you might expect, little welcomed by the local artisans, whose guilds had controlled production for centuries—they hated it. As yarn prices started to fall and opposition from local spinners grew, one mob came to his house and burned the frames for twenty new machines.

Ironically, this is almost a return to the very earliest days of the First Industrial Revolution. The spinning jenny changed the world not by creating the manufacturing plant, but by creating the cottage industry. And the cottage industry can be a very powerful economic force indeed. What we now know as cottage industries (originally known as “the domestic system” or “outwork system”) began with wooden-framed machines with foot pedals that could make many threads at the same time, essentially acting like many spinning wheels operating simultaneously. They were relatively easy to build or cheap to buy, and could be operated in a table-sized space. In a sense, they were the “desktop manufacturing” of the day. The spinning jenny was used in the home, multiplying the work of one spinner manyfold, and for the first time making indoor work more lucrative than outdoor work for much of the population.

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. Many versions later, he had invented the spinning jenny, a pedal-powered device that could allow a single operator to spin eight threads at the same time (jenny was Lancashire slang for “machine”). The machine amplified the output of a single worker by a factor of eight at the start, and could easily be expanded beyond that. And this was just the beginning. There was nothing new about textile-making machines themselves. The ancient Egyptians had looms, after all, and the Chinese had silk-spinning frames as early as 1000 BCE.


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

In 1675, weavers in Spitalfields attacked engines (not, of course, steam-powered) able to multiply the efforts of a single worker. Not only was Richard Hargreaves’s original spinning jenny destroyed57 in 1767, but so also was his new and improved version in 1769. Nor was the phenomenon exclusively British. Machine breaking in France was at least as frequent, and probably even more consequential, though it can be hard to tease out whether the phenomenon contributed to, or was a symptom of, some of the uglier aspects of the French Revolution. Normandy in particular,58 which was not only close to England but the most “English” region of France, was the site of dozens of incidents in 1789 alone. In July, hundreds of spinning jennys were destroyed, along with a French version of Arkwright’s water frame. In October, an attorney in Rouen applauded the destruction of “the machines used in cotton-spinning59 that have deprived many workers of their jobs.”

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. Nearly fifty years later, the first description of the spinning jenny (“jenny” is a dialect term for “engine” in Lancashire) appeared in the September 1807 issue of The Athenaeum, in which readers learned that the first one was made “almost wholly with a pocket knife.26 It contained eight spindles, and the clasp by which the thread was drawn out was the stalk of a briar split in two.” The result is not just a romantic tale; the jenny immediately delivered an eightfold increase of the amount of yarn that a single spinner could produce.

As would be subsequently revealed, Kay had invented the new spinning machine in much the same way that John Lombe had invented the silk mill. Given the rather fluid attitudes of the day concerning intellectual property, it’s probably too much to say that he stole the design, but he certainly borrowed it, from a Lancashire reed maker and weaver named Thomas Highs, who may even have a claim on the invention of the spinning jenny (Highs’s daughter, Jane,33 always maintained that it was named for her). Whatever his contribution to the jenny, he was clearly responsible for the design of the machine that Kay reproduced—from memory—for Arkwright, since two years before, Highs had hired the clockmaker to turn his wooden model into a working machine made of iron. Fig. 6: This is the diagram that accompanied Arkwright’s patent application, which became the 931st patent awarded by Britain, in July 1769.


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

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. Although the spinning jenny was around seventy times more expensive than a spinning wheel, it was still much cheaper than building an Arkwright mill; it took up little space and did not require a factory setting.13 The fact that it didn’t require much alteration to the production process was probably one reason for its rapid adoption.

As Parisian crowds stormed the Bastille, angry woollen workers from the town of Darnetal broke through the line of royal troops guarding the bridges over the Seine. Arriving in the manufacturing suburb of Saint-Sever, they destroyed the machines that had been installed there. A long series of similar incidents followed, casting a long shadow over the country. At the newly established Calonne and Company, thirty machines were smashed by infuriated rioters. And in the suburbs of Rouen, more than seven hundred spinning jennies were destroyed. Some industrial pioneers, like George Garnett, tried to fight back, but the crowds were too large. And unlike in Britain, there were no troops to help. French industrialists and inventors could not put much faith in the willingness of the government to safeguard their interests, since it also feared that rebelling craftsmen would exacerbate the general state of unrest in the country.56 Such political uncertainty undermined the willingness to invest in machines and industrial pursuits, which stifled economic progress in France.

Although the spinning jenny was around seventy times more expensive than a spinning wheel, it was still much cheaper than building an Arkwright mill; it took up little space and did not require a factory setting.13 The fact that it didn’t require much alteration to the production process was probably one reason for its rapid adoption. Though the spinning jenny did not facilitate the rise of the factory system directly, it did so indirectly. Samuel Crompton, who began spinning with a jenny as a boy, was among those who set out to improve it. The result was the Crompton mule, invented in 1779, which combined the draw bars of Hargreaves’ jenny with the rollers of Arkwright’s water frame. The mule was first adopted in domestic industry, but it was soon applied in a factory setting, where its original wooden rollers were replaced with steel rollers like those used by Arkwright. As spinning machines ousted the spinning wheel, hand spinners were also ousted.


pages: 346 words: 97,330

Ghost Work: How to Stop Silicon Valley From Building a New Global Underclass by Mary L. Gray, Siddharth Suri

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Amazon Mechanical Turk, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, barriers to entry, basic income, big-box store, bitcoin, blue-collar work, business process, business process outsourcing, call centre, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, cloud computing, collaborative consumption, collective bargaining, computer vision, corporate social responsibility, crowdsourcing, data is the new oil, deindustrialization, deskilling, don't be evil, Donald Trump, Elon Musk, employer provided health coverage, en.wikipedia.org, equal pay for equal work, Erik Brynjolfsson, financial independence, Frank Levy and Richard Murnane: The New Division of Labor, future of work, gig economy, glass ceiling, global supply chain, hiring and firing, ImageNet competition, industrial robot, informal economy, information asymmetry, Jeff Bezos, job automation, knowledge economy, low skilled workers, low-wage service sector, market friction, Mars Rover, natural language processing, new economy, passive income, pattern recognition, post-materialism, post-work, race to the bottom, Rana Plaza, recommendation engine, ride hailing / ride sharing, Ronald Coase, Second Machine Age, sentiment analysis, sharing economy, Shoshana Zuboff, side project, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, software as a service, speech recognition, spinning jenny, Stephen Hawking, The Future of Employment, The Nature of the Firm, transaction costs, two-sided market, union organizing, universal basic income, Vilfredo Pareto, women in the workforce, Works Progress Administration, Y Combinator

They dodged the “wooden shacks swarming with chickens and children.”11 Drivers could hear the metallic clatter and whir of foot-powered sewing machines as they drove in from Pittsburgh. Economists and industrial theorists of the day thought that piecework was a technological inefficiency that would fade out as mass manufacturing scaled up. For example, the spinning jenny, invented in 1770, was a single machine, powered by water, with as many as 120 spools hooked to a wooden frame cranking away to spin, draw out, and twist fibers. The machine could replace dozens of human hands working hundreds of hours to create the same amount of cloth for weaving. And Eli Whitney’s cotton gin, invented in 1792, could deseed cotton and prepare it for the spinning jenny 25 times faster than a single person working by hand. Together, these two inventions ramped up production and mainstreamed consumption of cotton in the early stages of the Industrial Revolution. Most analysts tracking the growth of industrial production assumed that, between mechanization and the scientific application of technologies to manage a more skilled workforce, pieceworkers would eventually disappear.

U.S. slave owners needed five times the number of slaves by the start of the Civil War because of the spike in demand for cotton and the desperate need for humans to continue to do what machines could not. Technologies like spinning jennys didn’t eliminate the need for human labor so much as they repurposed and shuffled labor demands to a new set of temporary workers. Children became valuable pieceworkers in textile mills, because their small hands could reach between moving spools to clear lint and other debris that slowed down the machines. But the capacity to work alongside these machines, bridging the gap of automation’s last mile, was written off as “unskilled.” Working the spinning jennys was considered manual labor that required no thinking at all, even though early accounts of children deftly moving from one heavily vibrating machine to the next indicate that the work took both mental and physical finesse.

Yes, the permatemps case became a landmark example for legal and business leaders to illustrate how one should or should not implement temporary workers and independent contractors.But it did nothing to resolve the plight of the millions of people doing jobs that fall outside of the formal definitions of “full-time work.” MURKY WATERS OF EMPLOYMENT CLASSIFICATION As the ebb and flow of teenagers tending spinning jennys, human computers calculating moon shots, and call center operators in India staffing service calls suggest, technological advancement has always depended on expendable, temporary labor pools. Tracing the continuities rather than radical breaks from this past put ghost work in context. As history illustrates, hiring people on the assumption that they will be around only for the duration of a finite project or that the presumed efficiencies of an automated process can replace those workers is not radically new.


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.

This helpful force, so often forgotten about, works in three different ways. The Productivity Effect Perhaps the most obvious way that the complementing force helps human beings is that new technologies, even if they displace some workers, often make other workers more productive at their tasks. Think of the British weavers who were fortunate enough to find themselves operating one of Kay’s flying shuttles in the 1730s, or one of Hargreaves’s spinning jennies in the 1760s. They would have been able to spin far more cotton than their contemporaries who relied on their hands alone. This is the productivity effect.29 We can see this productivity effect at work today, too. Take a taxi driver who uses a sat-nav system to follow unfamiliar roads, an architect who uses computer-assisted design software to craft more complex buildings, or an accountant who uses tax computation software to handle harder, more intractable calculations.

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. A single Google search, for instance, requires as much processing power as the entire Apollo space program that put Neil Armstrong and eleven other astronauts on the moon—not simply the processing power used during the flights themselves, but all that was used during planning and execution for the seventeen launches across eleven years.14 Today’s cutting-edge technologies use far more power still.


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

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.) Hargreaves’ machine, the Spinning Jenny, was a frame on which one spinner could fill eight spools of yarn, boosting their output hugely. Fearful about their jobs and wages, a group of spinners in nearby Blackburn found out where Hargreaves lived, broke into his house and smashed up all his machines. The fear that fewer spinners would be needed per yard of cloth was justified. While early versions of the Jenny had eight spindles, by 1784 the number rose to 80 spindles and around 20,000 of the machines were in use across England.

So far Starship Technologies’ robots have completed 100,000 miles of training as they test drive in Tallinn, London and California, the data from each outing feeding back into a massive shared brain in the Estonian nerve centre. The warning from Estonia’s leading inventors is not to take false comfort. The basic technology underlying AI shows that it is one to take seriously. Robots’ artificial brains are powered by transistors that sit on computer chips and, just as the Spinning Jenny did, chips are improving at an astonishing rate. In 1965 Gordon Moore, then 36, predicted that computer chips would double in power every two years. The forecast, now known as Moore’s Law, was remarkably accurate: between 1971 and 1989 the number of transistors on Intel chips (a company Mr Moore helped found) rose from 2,300 to 1.2 million. Recently, there has been evidence the pace may be slowing a little, but even if power doubles only every three years, say, the chips of 2030 will be 16 times more powerful than those of 2018.

It is 10 a.m. on a weekday morning and many of the cans have already been drained. A NEW BRIDGE IT STARTS WITH THE STATE After 25 years of betting on technology, the Estonian economy shows where the threats and opportunities of digitization show up. A technology pessimist can certainly make a case: the X-Road data-exchange system is now seen as the ‘backbone’ of the country and is like a threshing machine or Spinning Jenny for the modern economy. The digitization of government services means that human-to-human interactions – which involve booking appointments, travel and queuing – have been cut out of life here. Studies suggest that this generated an annual saving of 6,400 working years by 2014, with an ever-upward trend. The fearful interpretation is that this undermines 6,400 jobs, putting more than a quarter of the country’s 25,000 administrative staff at risk.


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. It spread rapidly, and by 1786 there were about twenty thousand in use in Britain.12 As early as 1769, however, spinning was already seeing further improvements thanks to Richard Arkwright’s water frame, a machine that anticipated Greg’s mill by relying on falling water.

Outside the slave plantations of the Americas capitalists for the first time organized, supervised, and dominated the production process.22 Such domination of labor by capital, embrace of technological revolution, and social innovation did not happen elsewhere, including in the heart of the world’s cotton industry, China and India. This was in some ways surprising, since for centuries manufacturing in these parts of the world had defined the cutting edge of global cotton production technology. Way back in 1313, Wang Zhen had written a description of a “machine for spinning hemp thread” that came quite close to Hargreaves’s spinning jenny and Arkwright’s water frame. Developing new spinning machines was certainly within the grasp of Chinese artisans, or, for that matter, their French or Indian counterparts. Moreover, trade in cotton and cotton textiles was the most important facet of an increasing commercialization of the Chinese economy between the fourteenth and nineteenth centuries.23 Despite these promising preconditions, neither China nor India—nor, for that matter, England’s closest European competitor in technical education, Prussia—came close to dominating as many nodes within the global cotton production complex as Britain.

Like the Yucatecan town of Valladolid, it had fallen into the vortex of a globe-spanning capitalist economy linking peasants in the Black Forest and on the Yucatán Peninsula, slaves on the banks of the Mississippi and, as we will see, consumers on the shores of the Río de la Plata.4 Hitched behind a well-matched team of entrepreneurs hungry for profits and rulers lusting for power, the mechanized cotton industry successfully colonized the Wiesental, Valladolid, and an ever-larger swath of the world. In 1771, the spinning jenny came to the French city of Rouen, only six years after it had been introduced in the United Kingdom. In 1783, Johann Gottfried Brügelmann, a putting-out merchant in Ratingen near Düsseldorf, did not have enough yarn for his weavers, a problem that would have been impossible to solve just a few years earlier; now he invested 25,000 reichstaler, gathered about eighty workers, and with the help of a British expert created the first spinning factory in the German-speaking lands.


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.

They destroyed several stocking frames, considering the frames a threat to their jobs as artisans. These so-called Luddites were not the first and certainly not the last group to feel threatened by automation. But all you have to do is look at Arkwright’s Water Frame factory and cottages to figure out that automation creates plenty of new jobs. Still, the yarn from a Water Frame was thick and the thread from the Spinning Jenny was coarse. One can only imagine how itchy clothing was in 1775, not just clothes from wool but cotton as well. Royalty still insisted on silk, it beat scratching and twitching all day. Comfortable clothing was yet another thing that separated the rich from the poor. 32 HOW WE GOT HERE Tailors were interested in a yarn that was strong, smooth and soft, to replace expensive silk. In 1775, an inventor named Samuel Crompton crossed the Jenny and the Water Frame and invented the Spinning Mule.

By 1790, 400 spindles hung off the Spinning Mule, and no man or mule or horse or even running water could keep up with the power needed to run one of these things. Boulton & Watt steam engines to the rescue. The Spinning Mule was a breakout device. It was just what the textile business needed: cheap, smooth material. And of course, it was just what Boulton and Watt needed, something to soak up lots and lots of horsepower. *** The Carding Engine stripped the fibers into cardings. Spinning Jennies created thread. Water Frames created yarn. Spinning Mules turned out smooth yarn and thread. Looms were still run by hand. So, around the time Watt was extending his steam engine patent 25 years to 1800, all but the weaving step of textile manufacturing was under mechanical power that steam engines could run. In 1785, Edmund Cartwright sought to fix this problem by applying mechanical power to hand looms.


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.

Shibh, Ramzi bin al- Shocklee, Hank Shockley, Bill Sholes, Christopher Latham Shore, John Singer, Isaac Six Sigma Sketchpad Slide rules Smallpox vaccine Smith, H. O. SMS mobile communications platform Snow, John Sobrero, Ascanio Solar system, heliocentric theory of Sony Corporation Soubeiran, Eugène Soubra, Zakaria Mustapha Soviet Union space program of Spectroscopes Speed of light Spencer, Percy Spillover, information Spinning jenny Sputnik Stanford University Business School Woods Institute for the Environment Staphylococcus Starling, Ernest Henry Steamboats Steam engines Steam locomotives Steelmaking Stocking frames Stone, Biz Strasburger, Eduard Stratosphere StumbleSafely Subcultures Sunlight Foundation Sunspots Sunstein, Cass Superconductivity Superlinear scaling Supernovas Suspension bridges Sutherland, Ivan Swan, Joseph Switzerland Syntex Szilard, Leo Talking Heads Tangled bank, metaphor of Darwin’s use of Tansley, Arthur Tape recorders Tarnier, Stéphane Tartaglia, Niccolò Taxonomy TBWA/Chiat/Day advertising agency TCP/IP Teisserenc de Bort, Léon Telegraphy Telephone Telescopes Television 10/10 rule Terrestrial globes Tesla, Nikola Textile industry Thatcher, Robert Thermodynamics Thermometers Thomas, Dorothy Thomson, J.


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

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. Once you had noticed this happening with the process of producing yarn, you would also see that it was a natural part of the progress of other industries.


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

Its fibers were easier to work with than those of wool, silk, or flax, and its market was huge. 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.

Edmund Cartwright, a country clergyman and graduate of Oxford, became absorbed with the weaving process after visiting a cotton spinning mill. A year later, in 1785, he patented a power loom that used steam power to operate a regular loom for making cloth. It became the prototype of the modern loom. Although Cartwright built a weaving mill, he went bankrupt. Samuel Crompton invented the spinning mule, which, as the name suggests, combined two inventions, the spinning jenny and the power loom. He had to sell the rights to his mule because he was too poor to pay for the patenting process. Steam power gave the British the competitive edge in textile making, particularly cotton. They could undersell almost all Indian and Chinese producers. The market for cotton was global, and England’s fabrics were so cheap that they were able to break open many of the world’s protected markets.

In the second decade of the nineteenth century, Yorkshire laborers whose families had sheared sheep for generations smashed the shearing frames that were undermining their way of life. They took the name of an earlier resister, Ned Lud. These Luddites declared war on the machines that violated venerable work routines and banished comfort and conviviality from the workplace. Actually woolen clothmakers in the west of England had earlier embarked on a serious effort to thwart clothiers from introducing the spinning jenny. Menacingly, this device could do the work of twenty spinners. These craftsmen had the advantage of a long tradition of regulation in the woolen trade, so they called upon Parliament to enforce laws that had been on the books for generations. After a decade of petitioning, lobbying, and pamphleteering clothmakers finally secured a parliamentary inquiry. These workers were fighting to retain an old and stable way of life; their employers, to enhance profits by saving labor costs.


pages: 250 words: 88,762

The Logic of Life: The Rational Economics of an Irrational World by Tim Harford

activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, affirmative action, Albert Einstein, Andrei Shleifer, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, business cycle, colonial rule, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, double entry bookkeeping, Edward Glaeser, en.wikipedia.org, endowment effect, European colonialism, experimental economics, experimental subject, George Akerlof, income per capita, invention of the telephone, Jane Jacobs, John von Neumann, law of one price, Martin Wolf, mutually assured destruction, New Economic Geography, new economy, plutocrats, Plutocrats, Richard Florida, Richard Thaler, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, spinning jenny, Steve Jobs, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, the market place, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, The Wisdom of Crowds, Thomas Malthus, women in the workforce, zero-sum game

This seems like an unusually straightforward case, but on closer inspection the same turns out to be true of many of the Industrial Revolution’s technological advances. Cotton-spinning machinery, for example, did not require any scientific knowledge, just a careful process of development and experimentation plus a little creativity: Legend has it that the spinning jenny was inspired by a traditional medieval spinning wheel that fell over and kept spinning while lying on the ground. The inventors of spinning machines such as the spinning jenny and the water frame launched serious research programs; they knew exactly what they hoped to achieve, and just needed to solve a series of modest engineering problems. They expended this considerable effort rationally—and those in France or China rationally did not—because the financials added up: Allen’s calculations show that British workers were at that time the most highly paid in the world, whether measured against the price of silver, of food, of energy, or of capital.

They expended this considerable effort rationally—and those in France or China rationally did not—because the financials added up: Allen’s calculations show that British workers were at that time the most highly paid in the world, whether measured against the price of silver, of food, of energy, or of capital. That meant that they were big consumers of imported cotton, but also that a labor-saving device would pay dividends. In Britain, a spinning jenny cost less than five months’ wages, while in low-wage France it cost more than a year’s wages. It was cheap French labor that accounted for the machine’s slow take-up on the continent, not the superior scientific ingenuity or commercial acumen of the British. That was even more true of steam engines. They were, unusually for Industrial Revolution technology, based on an actual scientific advance: Galileo discovered that atmosphere had weight and so could exert pressure. Yet the practical invention took place in Britain, not Galileo’s Italy, and again, the reason was neither genius nor an entrepreneurial culture but the fact that labor was expensive and fuel was incredibly cheap.


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 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. Around 1785, Arkwright was visited by Boulton and became one of the early manufacturers to use Watt’s engine. Make power cheap enough, and someone new will figure out how to use it. The yarn from a Water Frame was thick, and the thread from the spinning jenny was coarse. Common folk wore clothes that were basically like burlap—what they wouldn’t have done for smooth underwear.

., 172 Sloan Foundation, 172 smelting, 52–53 Smith, Adam, 54, 279 Smith, Junius, 93–94 Social Security, 261 software, 118, 120, 196–99 company blowups, 177–78 investment factors, 136, 146, 197 payment for, 137 Soho Manufactory, 55 Sony, 44, 206, 251, 253, 277 Soros, George, 10, 14, 117, 163, 164, 166, 168, 169, 261, 276, 295 Soros Management, 112, 113, 293 Southwest, 292 spinning frame, 65, 66, 125 spinning jenny, 64–65 spinning mule, 65, 125, 272 Sprint, 72 Sputnik I, 101 Sri Lanka, 246 Ssangyong, 3–6, 166, 208, 234, 260 Stac, 97 standard of living, 234–35, 246, 256, 279 Stanford Research Institute, 120, 185, 187 Stanford University, 152, 187, 191 steam engine, 64, 78, 91–95, 183 industrial significance of, 55–56, 58–59, 65–67, 68, 123, 125, 190, 271, 272 microprocessor parallel with, 125 Watt designs, 53–55, 57, 89, 91, 95, 125–26, 190 steam locomotive, 92 steamships, 92, 93–95, 183 Steen-Seligman Happiness Index, 280, 282 Steinhardt, Michael, 10 Stephenson, George, 92 stock market, 10, 180, 208, 256–58, 261, 262, 269 art of stock buying and, 181–82 British, 92–93 bubble, 209–16, 223–27 burst of bubble, 227, 234, 248, 290–93 drop in, 166, 168, 169, 224–25 foreign investors in, 29, 275, 276 function of, 89–90 industrial economists and, 237 intellectual property’s profitability and, 269 international economic role of, 279 on-line trading, 84–85 September 11 attacks and, 288 shorting, 171 software blowups, 177 theory of efficient, 176 stock options, 261 Stockton and Darlington Railway, 92 stress, 280, 282, 287 Suez Canal, 94 Sullivan, Scott, 225 Sun Microsystems, 191, 194, 245 Sure Thing, The (film), 218 Index Taiwan, 68, 204, 251, 252, 281 low manufacturing costs, 130–35, 136, 148, 175, 235, 259 offshore subsidiaries and, 251, 252 U.S. debt and, 257 Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, 130, 131–35, 148, 252, 259 Take Two Interactive, 176–77 tariffs, 272, 277–78 Tartikoff, Brandon, 196 TASS, 169 taxes, 254, 272, 288 T-bill, 254 technology, 16, 42–43, 73, 168, 290 changes from, 67–68, 79 development factors, 79 human relationship with, 246–47 lowered prices from, 187 textile manufacture, 64–65 top market cap companies, 111 See also intellectual property; specific technologies technology stocks, 11, 109, 223–27, 228–29, 293 telecommunications industry, 61–62 Telecosm conference, 183 telegraph, 187 telephone, 183–84, 185–86 teleputer, 193, 194 Telesave, 72–73 television sets, 127, 158, 277 Teligent, 179 Texas Instruments, 11, 101, 126, 128, 154 textile manufacture, 64–68, 78, 89, 272 311 Thailand, 117, 234, 270 13-D filings, 204 Tiger Management, 11, 112, 113, 117, 276, 292–93, 295 yen and, 162–66, 168, 169 TimeWarner, 194, 223, 229 Titanic (ocean liner), 95 Token Ring, 191 Tolkien, J.


pages: 524 words: 155,947

More: The 10,000-Year Rise of the World Economy by Philip Coggan

"Robert Solow", accounting loophole / creative accounting, Ada Lovelace, agricultural Revolution, Airbnb, airline deregulation, Andrei Shleifer, anti-communist, assortative mating, autonomous vehicles, bank run, banking crisis, banks create money, basic income, Berlin Wall, Bob Noyce, Branko Milanovic, Bretton Woods, British Empire, business cycle, call centre, capital controls, carbon footprint, Carmen Reinhart, Celtic Tiger, central bank independence, Charles Lindbergh, clean water, collective bargaining, Columbian Exchange, Columbine, Corn Laws, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, crony capitalism, currency peg, debt deflation, Deng Xiaoping, discovery of the americas, Donald Trump, Erik Brynjolfsson, European colonialism, eurozone crisis, falling living standards, financial innovation, financial intermediation, floating exchange rates, Fractional reserve banking, Frederick Winslow Taylor, full employment, germ theory of disease, German hyperinflation, gig economy, Gini coefficient, global supply chain, global value chain, Gordon Gekko, greed is good, Haber-Bosch Process, Hans Rosling, Hernando de Soto, hydraulic fracturing, Ignaz Semmelweis: hand washing, income inequality, income per capita, indoor plumbing, industrial robot, inflation targeting, Isaac Newton, James Watt: steam engine, job automation, John Snow's cholera map, joint-stock company, joint-stock limited liability company, Kenneth Arrow, Kula ring, labour market flexibility, land reform, land tenure, Lao Tzu, large denomination, liquidity trap, Long Term Capital Management, Louis Blériot, low cost airline, low skilled workers, lump of labour, M-Pesa, Malcom McLean invented shipping containers, manufacturing employment, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Martin Wolf, McJob, means of production, Mikhail Gorbachev, mittelstand, moral hazard, Murano, Venice glass, Myron Scholes, Nelson Mandela, Network effects, Northern Rock, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, Paul Samuelson, popular capitalism, popular electronics, price stability, principal–agent problem, profit maximization, purchasing power parity, quantitative easing, railway mania, Ralph Nader, regulatory arbitrage, road to serfdom, Robert Gordon, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Coase, Ronald Reagan, savings glut, Scramble for Africa, Second Machine Age, secular stagnation, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, South China Sea, South Sea Bubble, special drawing rights, spice trade, spinning jenny, Steven Pinker, TaskRabbit, Thales and the olive presses, Thales of Miletus, The Great Moderation, The inhabitant of London could order by telephone, sipping his morning tea in bed, the various products of the whole earth, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, The Wisdom of Crowds, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, trade route, transaction costs, transatlantic slave trade, transcontinental railway, Triangle Shirtwaist Factory, universal basic income, Unsafe at Any Speed, Upton Sinclair, V2 rocket, Veblen good, War on Poverty, Washington Consensus, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, women in the workforce, Yom Kippur War, zero-sum game

The sudden surge in growth that occurred first in northwest Europe has been dubbed the “Industrial Revolution”, but it was neither sudden nor solely about industry; Deirdre McCloskey’s term “The Great Enrichment” is a better description (see chart).17 The conventional narrative that we learn at school teaches us that this process happened, in Britain, around 1760, and involved a series of gadgets like the spinning jenny and the steam engine. But, like a dog gnawing an old slipper, historians have worried away at this narrative. They have argued that signs of faster economic growth appear much earlier than 1760, while a decisive take-off to a more rapid growth rate was not really visible until the early 19th century. An even bigger debate concerns the causes of the Industrial Revolution, and why it appeared in a small corner of Europe and, in particular, Britain.

— 6 — THE GREAT CHANGE: 1500–1820 Everyone can agree that the global economy changed enormously in the latter half of the second millennium. What is not universally agreed upon is exactly when it did so, or why. Arnold Toynbee, a historian, popularised the term Industrial Revolution in a series of lectures (and a subsequent book) in the 1880s. When this author was at school, the revolution was dated to around 1760, largely based in England, and was linked to a series of inventions including textile machinery like the spinning jenny and the steam engine developed by James Watt. But the picture is a lot more complex and uncertain than the school textbooks suggested. In the mid-18th century, around 70% of humans were still living in “agrarian empires” of one kind or another, whether in China, India, Japan, Russia, or under the Habsburg monarchy.1 The term “revolution” implies a sudden change but that is not what the numbers (such as we have) appear to suggest.

There were many technological advances in mankind’s history before 1500, from control of fire through the wheel to the iron plough, the compass, and even eyeglasses. What has been unprecedented about the modern era has been the sheer number of innovations and the speed with which they have been spread. In part, this has been down to the self-reinforcing nature of these changes. For example, invention of the “flying shuttle” improved the productivity of weavers. That created the demand for more raw material in the form of spun thread. Sure enough, the spinning jenny, the water frame and the mechanical mule all emerged in the 1760s and 1770s, massively improving the productivity of spinners. As the efficiency of textile production improved, the price of finished goods fell and this increased demand for the product. Manufacturers were able to benefit from economies of scale. Steam engines were introduced to pump water. But producers had long used water and wind power for other purposes like grinding grain or treating textiles.


The Great Derangement: Climate Change and the Unthinkable by Amitav Ghosh

Alfred Russel Wallace, Berlin Wall, Bernie Sanders, British Empire, carbon footprint, Donald Trump, double helix, Fellow of the Royal Society, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), invisible hand, James Watt: steam engine, Mahatma Gandhi, market fundamentalism, megacity, Naomi Klein, non-fiction novel, Ronald Reagan, spinning jenny, Upton Sinclair, upwardly mobile, urban planning

In this role as horror-struck simpleton, Asia has also laid bare, through its own silence, the silences that are now ever more plainly evident at the heart of global systems of governance. 4 If it is the case that the climate crisis was precipitated by mainland Asia’s embrace of the dominant mechanisms of the world economy, then the critical question in relation to the history of human-induced climate change is this: Why did the most populous countries of Asia industrialize late in the twentieth century and not before? Strangely this question is almost never explicitly posed in accounts of the history of global warming. Yet these histories do often offer an implicit answer to the question of why the non-Western world was slow to enter the carbon economy: it is simply that the technologies that created this economy (e.g., the spinning jenny and the steam engine) were invented in England and were therefore inaccessible to much of the world. In this view industrialization comes about through a process of technological diffusion that radiates outwards from the West. This narrative is, of course, consistent with the history of global warming over the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, when the carbon-intensive economies of the West pumped greenhouse gases into the atmosphere at ever accelerating rates.

Harris notes, ‘If everyone were to live like Americans, the world would require ten times the energy it is using today.’ See Paul G. Harris, What’s Wrong with Climate Politics and How to Fix It (Cambridge: Polity Press, 2013), 109. 126 to much of the world: Thus, for example, vulcanologist Bill McGuire cites 1769 CE as a key date in the history of the Anthropocene because that was the year when Richard Arkwright invented the spinning jenny, a machine that would serve as a critical link in the transition to carbon-intensive forms of production: ‘Arkwright’s legacy,’ writes McGuire, ‘is nothing less than the industrialization of the world.’ See Bill McGuire, Waking the Giant, Kindle edition, loc. 363. For Timothy Morton, on the other hand, the key moment is April 1784, a date about which, he asserts, ‘we can be uncannily precise’ because that was when James Watt ‘patented the steam engine’.


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

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. The previous costs of producing this mechanical power, no matter the application, were generally higher than the costs of heating water to steam, and thus enormous cost savings were realized and industrial and transportation projects became more feasible.

See Singapore International Monetary Index Simonide, 24 Singapore International Monetary Index (SIMEX), 170–72 Singleton, Henry, 7 Small Business Act of 1958, 278 Small Business Administration, 275 Index 433 smart-beta funds, 302 Smith, Adam: South Sea Bubble and, 68–69; theories of, 70, 79, 326; The Wealth of Nations, 36, 69 snowball effect, 94 social change, 320–25 Social Security: private investment accounts, 116; private pensions and, 109–10; retirement age and, 59, 107 societas, 50–51 societas maris, 53–54 societas publicanorum, 51, 56, 64 Société Générale, 172–74 Socrates, 18–19, 24 Soros, George, 263 South Sea Bubble, 67–69, 87 sovereign wealth funds (SWFs), 128–31, 145 S&P 500. See Standard & Poor’s 500 speculation: art, stamps, coins, and wine, 283; in derivatives, 221; excesses, 197; impacts of, 232; value and, 4–5 spinning jenny, 71 split-strike conversion, 151–52 sponsor, 286–87 Stabilizing an Unstable Economy (Minsky), 214 Stagecoach Corporate Stock Fund, 284–85 Standard & Poor’s 500 (S&P 500), 187, 228, 285, 305–6, 309 Stanford, Allen, 153–56 Stanford, Leland, 155 Stanford Financial Group, 154 Starbucks, 277 State Street Corporation, 299 State Street Global Advisors, 299 State Street Investment Trust, 141 statistical arbitrage, 267 steam engine, 71 steamships, 90 Stefanadis, Chris, 94 sterling, 65 stock company, 134 stock exchanges: national or international, 94; new, 96; regional, 94–95 stock market: dislocations, 205; in England, 86–87; in Paris, 85 stock ownership: age and, 93–94; direct and indirect, 91, 93; gender and, 93–94; regulations prohibiting too much, 123; study of, 96; in United States, 90–94, 97 stock ticker, 89–90; network, 95 stones (horoi), 27, 60 Strong, Benjamin, 200–203, 206, 226 strong-form efficiency, 249 Studebaker-Packard Corporation, 111 sub hasta (public auction), 50 subprime, 39 subprime-mortgage lending, 223 Suetonius, 59 sugar consumption, in England, 75, 77 Sumerian city-states, 15–16 supply curve, 229 Supreme Court, 108 survivorship bias, 252 swap spread, 266 Swensen, David, 296, 328 SWFs.


pages: 353 words: 91,211

The Shock of the Old: Technology and Global History Since 1900 by David Edgerton

agricultural Revolution, anti-communist, British Empire, Computer Numeric Control, conceptual framework, creative destruction, deglobalization, dematerialisation, desegregation, deskilling, endogenous growth, global village, Haber-Bosch Process, interchangeable parts, knowledge economy, Mahatma Gandhi, manufacturing employment, means of production, megacity, microcredit, new economy, post-industrial society, Productivity paradox, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, spinning jenny, Upton Sinclair, urban planning

They replaced 40,000 tractors.12 The decline of the ‘mule’ spinning machine The twentieth century has seen the decline in use of many industrial machines. A good example is the cotton-spinning machine that dominated the most important cotton industry existing in 1900 – the ‘mule’ spinning machine of the British cotton industry. The ‘mule’, invented in the early nineteenth century, was so-called because it was a hybrid of two different types of spinning machines – it used the stretching motion of the spinning ‘jenny’ and the roller action of the ‘water-frame’. Each twentieth-century mule had around 1,500 spindles, and each pair of mules was operated by the male spinner and his two assistants, called the ‘big piecer’ and the ‘little piecer’. The spinning mule was at the centre of what was a globalised industry. Cotton was processed thousands of miles from where it was grown and was exported from a few industrial centres to the whole world.

.: Small is beautiful 191 science museums 28, 29, 38, 104 science parks 192 scientific revolution 3 scientists government 192–3 nature of xiii scramjet ix Scud missiles 154–5, 156 sea transport, cheap 115 Second World War 1, 34, 34, 127, 142, 155 artillery-intensive 144 battle of France 150 battleships x, 93, 148–9 casualty rates 146 conquest of Malaya 150–51 conventional and atomic bombing 12–18 dispersal of forces in space 147–8 horsepower x, 34, 35–6 motor torpedo boats 68 a physicist’s war 138 R&D 197 repair organisations 99 transfer machines 85 US atomic bomb project 198, 199 service industries 70–74 extension of 53 IKEA 72 shift from industry 52 Seversky, Alexander de 104 sewing, domestic 81 sewing machines 50, 55, 58–60 sexual revolution 22, 24 Shakuntala Express 96 shanty towns xii, 40–43, 49, 207 Sheffield 173 shellac records 7 Shenzhou-5 capsule 137 shipbreaking 207–8, 208 Shippingport nuclear reactor, Pennsylvania 20 ships container 74 cruise 49–50 efficiency 68 inventive activity in 190–91 lascar employment 135–6 maintenance 91–5 ocean-going x, 28 refits 91–2 reserve technologies 11 sailing 91, 95 world merchant fleet 73–4 Siemens 130, 196 significance 1–27 assessing aviation and nuclear energy 11–19 assessing technologies 4–5 malaria 25–7 small technologies and big effects 22–5 spin-off 19–22 technological choice 8–11 use is not enough 5–8 Silicon Valley, California, USA 133, 186, 195–6 Sinclair, Upton: The Jungle 168–9, 173–4 Singapore 91, 150 Singer Sewing Machine Company 57, 58, 59, 71, 130 Sino–Japanese War, second 140, 179 slaughterhouses 168–73, 171, 175 small arms 143–6, 190 smallpox 163 Smith, Kline French 196 Smithsonian Institution, Washington 104 Sobibor extermination camp, Poland 179 society civil 22 seen as slow to adapt to new technology vii, viii transition from industrial to post-industrial society 3 Soho, London 47 Solvay process 190 sound reproduction 7 South Africa national industrial development 118 output per head 207 petrol production 122 South America guerrilla rebellions 152–3 torture in 157 South Vietnamese army 152 Soviet bloc 118, 126, 129, 133, 145 Soviet Union agriculture 79 car production 69 China produces Soviet technology 44 dams and hydro-electric projects 127 economic growth 110, 112, 206, 207 engineers 102 entry into the Second World War 17 family farms 62–4 foreign technology and socialism 126–9 German invasion of 34, 35–6 Great Terror 179 hydrogenation 121 imitation of foreign technologies 112, 136–7 links with China (1949–60) 131 a multi-national state 131 R&D 110, 128, 137 rifles 144–5 soldiers’ deaths in Second World War 144 television 131 space rockets 1, 2 Spain 122 aviation 125, 126 economic growth 109, 112 executions 176 Francoist 118 imitation of foreign technologies 112 nationalistic and autarchic 131 R&D 109, 121–2 spare parts 79, 96 Speer, Albert 14, 18 spermicides 23, 25 spin-off 19–22, 190 Spin-off magazine (NASA) 21 Spindles Board 38 spinning ‘jenny’ 36 spinning mule 36–8, 47, 60 spinning wheels 54, 60, 63, 107 Sputnik 128, 189 SS 182 Stalin, Joseph 104, 125, 152 Stalinets (tracked Caterpillar 60) 126 Stalingrad tractor factory 126 Stalinism 73, 126, 127 ‘Stalin’s falcons’ 104 Standard Oil 121 Stanford University 186 Star Wars programme 155 state and boundaries 117 and engineers 101–2 funding of big, controversial technologies 22 television 131 statistical offices 5 steam engine 3 reciprocating 3, 29 steam power ix, 2, 3, 29, 105 steam turbine 3 steamships xiv, 113 steel ix, 2, 19, 44, 68, 73, 127, 208–9 sterilisation 23 Stopes, Marie 23–4 Suame Magazine, Ghana 83 Suez Canal 134 suicide, and reserve technologies 11 sulphonamides 163 Swift meat packers 171, 172 Switzerland 80 synthetic ammonia 119 System 360 196 T Ta 183 fighter aircraft 125 Tabun nerve gas 153, 164 Taiwan 45, 109, 136, 177, 207–8 Tamil Tigers 153 Tank, Kurt 125 tanks 159 tank warfare 141–2 tape recorders 7 tariffs 117 Taxol 187 Taylorism 72 TB (tuberculosis) 25 tea-making machines 38 techno-globalism 105, 113–17 techno-nationalism 103–8 Asia and 136–7 technological boosterism 4 technological choice 8–11 ‘technological dualism’ 44 technological futurism vii–viii, xiii–xiv technological importance, assessing 4–5 technological nationalism 117 technological retro x technological revolution 74 technological sharing 111 technology museums 28, 29, 38, 104 technology transfer 111, 127 Tefal 20 Teflon (PTFE) 19–21 Tehran, Iran 154 Telefunken 131 telegraphy xiv, 3, 6, 7, 19, 113, 193 telephone xiv, 6, 7, 55, 193, 195 telephony 3 television ix, 3, 7, 31, 32, 55, 59, 103, 111, 130–31 ‘terotechnology’ 77 Texas Instruments 195 textiles ix, 2, 28, 60, 65, 105 Thailand 177 Thermo-King 170 Three Gorges dam, China 128 tide predictors 7 time 28–51 creole technology 43–5 decline of the ‘mule’ spinning-machine 36–8 horses, mules and oxen 32–6 not Alphaville but bidonville: technology and the poor megacity 39–43 remodelling the boat 47–9 retro and reappearance 49–51 times are changing 31–2 transport 45–7 time between overhaul (TBO) 88, 89 Time magazine 170 timelines, technological vii, ix, x, 29, 31, 212 Tirpitz (battleship) 149 Titanic 50 Togliatti, Palmiro 127 Togliattigrad, Soviet Union 127 Tokaev, Colonel Grigory 125 tools disappearance of 29 Ghananian car repairers 83 of household production 56–7 and small trades 60–62 torture 156–7, 212 Trabant car 10, 129 tractors animal power replaces 36 displacement of horses xiii, 62 Fordson 62, 63, 126 maintenance 79 number on US farms 55 oxen replace 36, 207 USA 62 USSR 63, 126–7 trade global 115 interwar years 115 names 57 ‘traditional technology’ 28–9 trains see railways transfer machines 85–6 transistors 195 Treblinka extermination camp, Poland 179 trucks British truck production 69 Jiefang 126 Model AA 126 number on US farms 55 Tu 4 bombers 123 Tunisia 169 Turkish Navy 92 Tutsis 41–2, 182–3 typhus 26, 162, 163 Tyson Foods 175 U Ukraine: Carpathian foothills 48 Umkhonto we Sizwe (Spear of the Nation) 122 Unamuno, Miguel de 133 Unilever 166 Union Cold Storage 172 Union Stockyards, Chicago 168 United Arab Republic (UAR) 125 United Fruit Company 134 United Nations 18, 79, 122, 129 United States agricultural horsepower xiii, 33 attitude to blacks 132–3 aviation 104, 111 car production 111 domination of world production/innovation 112 economic growth 206 energy use levels 209 executions 165, 176, 178, 182 family farms 62 and guerrilla armies 153 horsepower in First World War 35 Korean War 13 mechanised agriculture 34 modification of cars 97–8 the most motorised nation in the world 69 patents 200 post-war atomic programme 18–19 R&D spending 108, 110 railways 5–6 rifles 144 space programme 19, 20 television 131 torture techniques 157 uptake of new technologies 32 wheat and cotton exports 65 universities 185–7, 192 University of Goettingen 186 University of Oxford 186 UNIX operating system 195 uranium bomb 164 urbanisation, new 40, 207 Uruguay 170–71, 171, 172, 173 Uruguay (liner) 124 US Air Force 95 US Army Air Force 12 US Army Corps of Engineers 11–12, 198 US Food and Drug Administration 201 US Navy 68 US Steel Corporation 127 US Strategic Bombing Survey (USSBS) 14–15 USAAF (United States Army Air Forces) 12, 18 use-centred history ix–xii alternatives for technologies x–xi appearance, disappearance and reappearance of technologies x genuinely global ix, xi–xii gives a radically different picture of technology ix involves rethinking of the history of all technology xii the most significant technologies x novel technological worlds xi–xii refutes some conclusions of innovation-centric history xii rethinking of the history of all technology xii V V-2 rocket x, 17–18, 142, 154, 181 V-agents 164 vacuum cleaners xiv, 55 vehicles, electric vs petrol-powered 9–10 Veinticinco de Mayo (aircraft carrier) 94–5 Venerable, HMS 94 Vengeance, HMS 95 Vestey family 172 Vickers 130, 154 video recorders 55 Vietcong 152, 163 Vietnam war 94, 145, 146, 151–2 Vikrant, INS 95 vinyl records 7, 50 Volkswagen Beetle 44, 70 Golf 70 VX agent 164 W Wal-Mart 71–2, 74, 137 Walla Walla County, Washington xiii Walter Rau floating factory 166 Walton, Sam 72 war 138–59, 212 casualty rates 146 civilianisation of 138–9, 145–6 the conventional story 139–42, 140 industrialisation of 138–9 Iraq and the past 153–6 old weapons and killing in war 142–6 paradoxes of lethality 146–8 power and effect – unused and unusable weapons 148–9 technological and economic determinism in war 150–53 torture 156–7 war, technology and the history of the twentieth century 157–9 Warsaw Pact powers 149 washing machines xiv, 4, 32, 55 water ancient dependence on the control of 76 treatment/supply systems 4 wax cylinders 7 Weber, Albert 165 Wehrmacht 35–6 Wellcome 196 Wells, H.


pages: 347 words: 97,721

Only Humans Need Apply: Winners and Losers in the Age of Smart Machines by Thomas H. Davenport, Julia Kirby

AI winter, Andy Kessler, artificial general intelligence, asset allocation, Automated Insights, autonomous vehicles, basic income, Baxter: Rethink Robotics, business intelligence, business process, call centre, carbon-based life, Clayton Christensen, clockwork universe, commoditize, conceptual framework, dark matter, David Brooks, deliberate practice, deskilling, digital map, disruptive innovation, Douglas Engelbart, Edward Lloyd's coffeehouse, Elon Musk, Erik Brynjolfsson, estate planning, fixed income, follow your passion, Frank Levy and Richard Murnane: The New Division of Labor, Freestyle chess, game design, general-purpose programming language, global pandemic, Google Glasses, Hans Lippershey, haute cuisine, income inequality, index fund, industrial robot, information retrieval, intermodal, Internet of things, inventory management, Isaac Newton, job automation, John Markoff, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, Joi Ito, Khan Academy, knowledge worker, labor-force participation, lifelogging, longitudinal study, loss aversion, Mark Zuckerberg, Narrative Science, natural language processing, Norbert Wiener, nuclear winter, pattern recognition, performance metric, Peter Thiel, precariat, quantitative trading / quantitative finance, Ray Kurzweil, Richard Feynman, risk tolerance, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Rodney Brooks, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, six sigma, Skype, social intelligence, speech recognition, spinning jenny, statistical model, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, strong AI, superintelligent machines, supply-chain management, transaction costs, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, Works Progress Administration, Zipcar

In fact, we can easily trace three eras of automation, based on the types of work they have brought machines forth to challenge. First, machines relieved humans of work that was manually exhausting and mentally enervating. This was the story of the late industrial revolution, which, having pulled all those workers off farms and into factories, proceeded to make most of them unnecessary with contraptions like the flying shuttle, the spinning jenny, and the power loom. And it’s a process that continues around the world. Consider Foxconn, the Chinese manufacturing subcontractor to global electronics brands like Apple. Starting in 2011, it started putting robots on the lines to perform welding, polishing, and such tasks—ten thousand of them that first year. In 2013, Chairman Terry Gou noted at Foxconn’s annual meeting that the firm now employed over a million people.

The step-in job of today probably won’t even be very much like the one of tomorrow. The Future of Stepping In Is Bright We think that anyone who’s capable of stepping into automated decision systems should do so. In general, the future for this group is very bright. It’s as if we’re in the early days of the industrial revolution, and there are very few mechanics for the power looms and spinning jennies that inventors have come up with. Those who know how to set up, get running, and maintain these new machines are going to be in huge demand. We certainly haven’t found any people with this focus and set of capabilities that are out of a job today. Perhaps we should include here the obligatory complaint that there aren’t enough STEM graduates, at least in the United States, to fill out the ranks of the stepping-in role in the future.


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

Much later, as markets expanded and demand increased, the need for innovation became ever more urgent. In 1760 the Journal for the Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures, and Commerce offered rewards for ‘a machine for spinning six threads of Wool, Cotton, Flax, or Silk, at one time, and that will require but one person to work and attend it’. They soon got their wish: over the course of a century the Spinning Jenny, the Water Frame and the Power Loom and a host of other inventions exponentially increased the rates of production. Think of the Industrial Revolution and coal and steel will spring to mind, but it would be more accurate were we to picture instead the busy whir of threaded looms and cavernous factories choked with cotton dust. Indeed, even so fundamental an economic principle as division of labour had as a model the making of textiles.

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: 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.

Manchester in 1789 was the Silicon Valley of its time, and Owen found himself at the innovative center of the Industrial Revolution. Not surprisingly, he wanted to play a part in the exhilarating technological and business changes going on around him. By the time he was eighteen, he was junior partner in a firm that manufactured the latest technologies of the era—such as Arkwright’s water frame, Hargreaves’s spinning jenny, Crompton’s mule, and Edmund Cartwright’s power loom—all used in the production of high-quality cotton cloth. He soon went off on his own and established himself as a successful self-employed businessman. But he was ambitious, and when he read a notice soliciting applicants for the post of factory manager at a large mill, he applied. He went in person to meet the mill’s owner, a wealthy merchant and manufacturer named Drinkwater.

., 430 Taylorism, 81, 106–7 Tesla Motors, 460 Texas Instruments (TI), 257 textile mills Britain’s exports of cloth and, 4–5 child labor, 5 child labor in, 4–5 closing of British, 1806, 14 creation of wealth and, 4 Defoe’s description, 4 “immiseration” of mill workers, 5 J&J’s cotton mill, 148 Johnson advocates minimum wage, 151 living conditions of workers, 5 Owen’s reforms at New Lanark mills, 6–30 power loom, 9 spinning jenny, 4, 9 spinning mule, 4, 9 water frame, 4, 9 Thatcher, Margaret, 435–36 Theory Y, 431 Thigpen, Peter, 191, 192 Santone factory closing and, 198–99 Thompson, J. Walter, 146 Time magazine, on Bradshaw, 305 Tindell, Kip, 455 Tinker, Grant, 311 Tisch, Laurence, 311–12 Tocqueville, Alexis de, 395–96 Tom’s of Maine, 360–75, 432 Colgate-Palmolive Company buys controlling interest in, 371–75, 392, 395 community relations, 362, 365, 366, 370, 371, 374 company credo, 363, 365 company ownership and, 365, 368, 369–70 company’s mission, 362–64 “corporate tithing,” 364–65, 366, 372 education on values and priorities, 363 employees, 365, 366, 372 environmental practices, 360, 367, 368 expansion and growth, 361, 364–67 future of, 374–75 hiring women and minorities, 364 need for capital, 369–70, 374 participative management, 367 product recall, 364, 369 products, 367 recycling and, 367 size of, late 1980s, 364 Townsend, Claire, 285, 286 Townsend, Joan Tours, 280, 285 Townsend, Robert “Bob,” 264, 279–87, 427, 428, 436, 477 American Express and, 280, 282 as Avis head, 281, 282, 283–84 background and personal life, 280 Bennis on, 286–87 business philosophy at Avis, 281 commercial slogan for Avis, 279 death of, 286 ethics and, 285 fighting unionization, 284 humanistic philosophy of management, 284 influence of, 286–87 intellectual influences on, 430 ITT acquires Avis, 284–85 life after Avis, 285–87 long-term thinking and, 281–82 “management by adultery,” 286 “Operation Mars,” 280 organizational “guerrilla warfare” and, 282–85 Radica and, 285–86 Up the Organization, 279–80, 283, 285, 286 “Trees” (Kilmer), 148 Trillin, Calvin, 382 Trollope, Anthony, 282 Truman, Harry, xvi Trump, Donald, 278, 467, 489n TRW, 424 “Try Reality” (Johnson), 150–51 “Two and a Half Cheers for Conscious Capitalism” (O’Toole and Vogel), 454, 455–56 Uber, 473, 474, 475 UN Global Compact, 451 Unilever.


pages: 1,205 words: 308,891

Bourgeois Dignity: Why Economics Can't Explain the Modern World by Deirdre N. McCloskey

Airbnb, Akira Okazaki, big-box store, Black Swan, book scanning, British Empire, business cycle, buy low sell high, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, clean water, Columbian Exchange, conceptual framework, correlation does not imply causation, Costa Concordia, creative destruction, crony capitalism, dark matter, Dava Sobel, David Graeber, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deindustrialization, demographic transition, Deng Xiaoping, Donald Trump, double entry bookkeeping, en.wikipedia.org, epigenetics, Erik Brynjolfsson, experimental economics, Ferguson, Missouri, fundamental attribution error, Georg Cantor, George Akerlof, George Gilder, germ theory of disease, Gini coefficient, God and Mammon, greed is good, Gunnar Myrdal, Hans Rosling, Henry Ford's grandson gave labor union leader Walter Reuther a tour of the company’s new, automated factory…, Hernando de Soto, immigration reform, income inequality, interchangeable parts, invention of agriculture, invention of writing, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, Islamic Golden Age, James Watt: steam engine, Jane Jacobs, John Harrison: Longitude, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Arrow, knowledge economy, labor-force participation, lake wobegon effect, land reform, liberation theology, lone genius, Lyft, Mahatma Gandhi, Mark Zuckerberg, market fundamentalism, means of production, Naomi Klein, new economy, North Sea oil, Occupy movement, open economy, out of africa, Pareto efficiency, Paul Samuelson, Pax Mongolica, Peace of Westphalia, peak oil, Peter Singer: altruism, Philip Mirowski, pink-collar, plutocrats, Plutocrats, positional goods, profit maximization, profit motive, purchasing power parity, race to the bottom, refrigerator car, rent control, rent-seeking, Republic of Letters, road to serfdom, Robert Gordon, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Coase, Scientific racism, Scramble for Africa, Second Machine Age, secular stagnation, Simon Kuznets, Social Responsibility of Business Is to Increase Its Profits, spinning jenny, stakhanovite, Steve Jobs, The Chicago School, The Market for Lemons, the rule of 72, The Spirit Level, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, total factor productivity, Toyota Production System, transaction costs, transatlantic slave trade, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, uber lyft, union organizing, very high income, wage slave, Washington Consensus, working poor, Yogi Berra

The left’s trickle-up economics is as illogical as is the right’s trickle-down version. Neither focuses on what actually increases real income, which is bettered production. The robots themselves are made by people who buy cars. Compared with horses, cars themselves are “robots.” Yet the advent of cars did not produce mass unemployment because of insufficient demand for the output of blacksmiths and horse traders. Fundamentally, all tools—a blast furnace and a spinning jenny, or for that matter an Acheulean hand ax or a Mycenaean chariot wheel—are “robots,” that is, contrivances that make labor more productive. Reich listed in 2014 the usual lineup of villains allegedly driving down American wages: “Automation, followed by computers, software, robotics, computer-controlled machine tools and widespread digitization, further eroded jobs and wages.”7 No they didn’t.

Property laws are necessary but they are nothing like sufficient for the startling betterment that begins in the Industrial Revolution and eventuated in the still more startling Great Enrichment of the past 150 years—all of which, embarrassingly for the North-Acemoglu orthodoxy in economic history and development, happened a century or more after the allegedly sharp improvement of property rights out of 1688. A society can be individualistic in a thoroughgoing way but still honor only noblemen, not letting ordinary people have a go at spinning jennies and desktop computers. Roman sculpture (as a conventional if not obviously sound line in art history claims) was “individualistic” in a way that Greek sculpture, which is said to have dealt in ideal figures, was not. Yet at Rome, as in Shakespeare’s England, rank told above all. * Aristocratic England before its embourgeoisement was, on the whole and in its theory of itself, hostile toward betterment tested in trade.

The ethical and rhetorical change that around 1700 began to break the ancient restraints on betterment, whether from the old knights or the new monopolists, was liberating and it was enlightened and it was liberal in the Scottish sense of putting first an equal liberty, not an equal outcome. And it was successful. As one of its more charming conservative enemies put it: Locke sank into a swoon; The Garden died; God took the spinning-jenny Out of his side.21 43 Ideas Made for a Bourgeois Revaluation It is merely a materialist-economistic prejudice, I say yet again, to insist that such a rhetorical change from aristocratic-religious values to bourgeois values must have had economic or biological roots. John Mueller, the political scientist and historian at Ohio State whose thoughts on “pretty good” democracy and capitalism I have used, argues in another book that war, like slavery or the subordination of women, has become slowly less respectable in the past few centuries.1 Important habits of the heart and of the lip change.


pages: 148 words: 45,249

Losing Earth: A Recent History by Nathaniel Rich

Dissolution of the Soviet Union, energy security, ice-free Arctic, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), James Watt: steam engine, mass immigration, Mikhail Gorbachev, oil shale / tar sands, planetary scale, Ronald Reagan, spinning jenny, the scientific method

They asked instead whether human beings, when presented with this particular existential crisis, were willing to prevent it. It was not so simple a question as it appeared. In the middle of the eighteenth century, when fossils were first burned to generate energy on an industrial scale, an unprecedented disjunction occurred in the course of civilization. Humanity lost control of its technology. The new, world-moving inventions—the spinning jenny, the coke-fueled furnace, the coal-fed steam engine—invited dangers that their creators had not anticipated and, increasingly, could not avoid. The black smoke erasing daylight from London and Yorkshire offered an early example of unintended consequences; the Dust Bowl revealed that the short-term benefits of mechanization could lead to the frivolous discounting of ancient wisdom; and the wide adoption of gasoline-powered automobiles showed the power of technological advancement to breed mass delusion, as in 1943, when residents of Los Angeles, swimming in smog, believed the city to be under chemical attack from the Japanese.


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. It is too often assumed that workers like these left little mark on the historical record and must for ever remain voiceless.

Yet whatever its shortcomings, there can be no disputing its immense influence. Here is Toynbee describing the advent of industrialisation: We now approach a darker period – a period as disastrous and as terrible as any through which a nation ever passed; disastrous and terrible because side by side with a great increase of wealth was seen an enormous increase of pauperism [and] the degradation of a large body of producers . . . The steam-­engine, the spinning-­jenny, the power-­loom had torn up the population by the roots . . . The effects of the Industrial Revolution prove that free competition may produce wealth without producing well-­being.40 Toynbee ushered the expression ‘industrial revolution’ into the English language, and his social interpretation of that newly named event continued to inform opinion through much of the twentieth century. Toynbee’s ideas passed first to the Webbs, and from them to the Hammonds, the pioneer social historians whose trilogy, The Village Labourer (1911), The Town Labourer (1917) and The Skilled Labourer (1919), unpacked the consequences of the industrial revolution for different sections of the labouring poor.


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 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.


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.

., 182 South, 101, 373, 375 cotton trade in, 85–86, 89–90, 97 economy of, 94–96 slavery and identity of, 87–88 tariff debate and, 96–97, 292–93 see also Civil War, U.S. South Carolina, 62, 82–83, 85–86 nullification crisis and, 97 South Carolina colony, 24 Soviet Union, 361, 362, 375–76, 391, 403, 413 collapse of, 414–15 space race, 403–4 Spain, xv, 8–11, 15, 22, 23, 63–64 spinning jenny, 88 Sputnik, 403–4, 410 stagflation, 383 Staggers Act, 392 Stalin, Joseph, 354, 377 Standard Oil, 255–59, 263 standard time, 235–36 steamboats, 135–40, 162 monopolies in, 137, 142–45 steam engine, 132–34, 140, 141, 409 steam turbine, 305–6 Stedman, E. C., 213 steel industry, 240–49, 324, 371 Carnegie and, 242–43, 247–48 consolidation and mergers in, 262 expansion of, 259 Homestead strike and, 253–54 vertical integration in, 246–47 Steiger, William, 394–95 Stephenson, George, 147, 150 Stevens, John, 147 Stevens, Robert Livingston, 147 Stewart, A.


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

1401 First Lollard Martyr 1403 Percy’s Revolt; Henry Percy killed at Shrewsbury 1406 James I of Scots 1409 Owen Glyndŵr 1411 Foundation of Guildhall in London 1413 Henry V 1415 Agincourt 1420 Treaty of Troyes; Paston Letters 1422 Henry VI 1429 Joan of Arc at Orléans 1437 James II of Scots 1450 Cade’s Rebellion 1453 End of Hundred Years War; Gutenberg Bible 1455 Wars of the Roses begin 1460 James III of Scots 1461 Edward IV c.1474 Caxton prints first book in English 1483 Richard III 1485 Henry VII; founding of the Yeomen of the Guard 1488 James IV of Scots 1492 Christopher Columbus reaches America 1509 Henry VIII marries Catherine of Aragon 1513 James V of Scots 1519 Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor 1527 Henry VIII fails in attempt to divorce Catherine of Aragon 1533 Henry VIII marries Anne Boleyn; Cranmer, Archbishop of Canterbury 1536 Henry VIII marries Jane Seymour; Wales annexed to England 1540 Henry VIII marries and divorces Anne of Cleves; marries Catherine Howard 1540 Henry VIII, King of Ireland 1542 Mary, Queen of Scots 1547 Edward VI 1549 First Book of Common Prayer 1553 Mary I 1556 Cranmer executed 1558 Elizabeth I 1561 Mary, Queen of Scots returns to Scotland from France 1562 British slave trade starts 1567 James VI, King of Scotland 1571 First anti-Catholic Penal Law 1580 Drake’s circumnavigation 1587 Mary, Queen of Scots executed 1596 Robert Cecil, Secretary of State 1600 British East India Company incorporated 1601 Essex executed 1603 James I 1603 Ralegh treason trial and imprisonment 1611 Authorized Version of the Bible 1616 Death of William Shakespeare 1618 Ralegh executed; Thirty Years War starts 1625 Charles I 1632 Lord Baltimore granted patent for the settlement of Maryland 1641 The Grand Remonstrance issued 1642 Civil War starts; Battle of Edgehill 1643 Battle of Newbury 1644 Battle of Marston Moor 1645 New Model Army established 1649 Charles I executed; massacres at Wexford and Drogheda 1651 Charles II crowned at Scone; Hobbes’ Leviathan published 1655 Jamaica captured 1658 Cromwell dies 1660 Charles II; Declaration of Breda; Pepys begins his diary 1662 The Royal Society; Boyle’s Law 1666 Fire of London 1670 Hudson’s Bay Company 1673 Test Act 1678 Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress 1685 James II 1689 William III and Mary II 1690 Battle of the Boyne 1692 Massacre of Glencoe 1694 Bank of England 1695 Bank of Scotland 1702 Queen Anne 1704 Battle of Blenheim; capture of Gibraltar 1707 Union with Scotland 1714 George I 1719 Daniel Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe 1722 Walpole, first Prime Minister 1727 George II 1740 War of Austrian Succession; Arne composes ‘Rule Britannia’ 1742 Handel’s Messiah 1746 Battle of Culloden 1751 Clive captures Arcot 1755 Dr Johnson’s Dictionary 1756 Seven Years War 1759 General Wolfe dies at Battle of Quebec 1760 George III 1765 Stamp Act; Hargreaves’ spinning jenny 1767 Revd Laurence Stone’s Tristram Shandy 1768 Royal Academy of Arts founded 1772 Warren Hastings, first Governor General of Bengal 1773 Boston Tea Party 1774 Priestley isolates oxygen 1775 American Revolution – Lexington and Concord 1776 American Declaration of Independence 1779 Captain Cook killed in Hawaii 1780 Gordon Riots; Epsom Derby 1781 Battle of Yorktown 1783 Pitt the Younger PM 1788 Regency Crisis 1789 French Revolution 1792 Tom Paine’s The Rights of Man 1799 Napoleon 1801 Union with Ireland 1805 Trafalgar 1807 Abolition of Slave Trade Act 1815 Waterloo 1820 George IV 1828 University of London founded 1829 Catholic Emancipation Act 1830 William IV 1832 First Reform Act 1833 Abolition of slavery in British colonies Act 1834 Houses of Parliament burned down 1836 Births, Marriages & Deaths Act 1837 Queen Victoria 1838 Public Records Office founded 1839 Bed Chamber Crisis; Opium War 1840 Prince Albert; Treaty of Waitangi 1843 Joule’s First Law 1844 Rochdale Pioneers; first telegraph line in England 1846 Repeal of Corn Laws 1847 Marks and Engels’ The Communist Manifesto 1849 Punjab conquered 1850 Public libraries; Tennyson, Poet Laureate 1854 Crimean War; British Medical Association founded 1855 Daily Telegraph founded; Palmerston PM 1857 Sepoy Rebellion (Indian Mutiny); Trollope’s Barchester Towers 1858 Canning, first Viceroy of India 1859 Darwin’s On the Origin of Species 1861 Prince Albert dies; American Civil War 1865 Abraham Lincoln assassinated 1867 Second Reform Act; first bicycle 1868 TUC 1869 Suez Canal opened; Cutty Sark launched 1870 Death of Dickens 1876 Victoria made Empress of India 1880 Gladstone PM 1881 First Boer War 1884 Third Reform Act 1885 Gordon dies at Khartoum 1887 Queen Victoria’s Golden Jubilee 1891 Elementary school fees abolished 1895 Salisbury PM 1896 Daily Mail founded 1898 Omdurman 1899 Second Boer War 1900 Elgar’s Dream of Gerontius 1901 Edward VII 1903 Suffragettes 1904 Entente Cordiale 1908 Borstal opened 1909 Old Age Pensions 1910 George V 1914 Irish Home Rule; First World War 1916 Lloyd George PM 1918 RAF formed from Royal Flying Corps; Marie Stopes 1919 John Maynard Keynes’ Economic Consequences of the Peace 1920 Black and Tans; Anglican Church in Wales disestablished 1921 Irish Free State 1922 Bonar Law PM 1923 Baldwin PM 1924 First Labour Government (MacDonald PM); Baldwin PM; Lenin dies 1925 Britain joins Gold standard 1926 General Strike 1928 Women over twenty-one given vote 1929 The Depression; MacDonald PM 1931 National Government; Statute of Westminster 1932 British Union of Fascists 1933 Hitler 1935 Baldwin PM 1936 Edward VIII; George VI; Spanish Civil War 1937 Chamberlain PM 1938 Austria annexed by Germany; Air Raid Precautions (ARP) 1939 Second World War 1940 Battle of Britain; Dunkirk; Churchill PM 1942 Beveridge Report; fall of Singapore and Rangoon 1944 Butler Education Act; Normandy allied landings 1945 Attlee PM; Germany and Japan surrender 1946 UN founded; National Insurance Act; National Health Service 1947 India Independence; Pakistan formed 1948 Railways nationalized; Berlin Airlift; Ceylon (Sri Lanka) independence 1949 NATO; Irish Independence; Korean War 1951 Churchill PM 1952 Elizabeth II 1955 Eden PM; Cyprus Emergency 1956 Suez Crisis 1957 Macmillan PM 1958 Life Peerages; EEC 1959 Vietnam War; Fidel Castro 1960 Macmillan’s Wind of Change speech 1963 Douglas-Home PM; De Gaulle veto on UK EEC membership; Kennedy assassination 1964 Wilson PM 1965 Southern Rhodesia UDI 1967 Pound devalued 1969 Open University; Northern Ireland Troubles; Robin Knox-Johnston first solo, non-stop sailing circumnavigation 1970 Heath PM 1971 Decimal currency in UK 1972 Bloody Sunday, Northern Ireland 1973 Britain in EEC; VAT 1974 Wilson PM 1976 Callaghan PM; first Concorde passenger flight 1979 Thatcher PM; Rhodesian Settlement 1982 Falklands War 1985 Mikhail Gorbachev; Global warming – British report hole in ozone layer 1986 Chernobyl; Reagan–Gorbachev Zero missile summit 1987 Wall Street Crash 1988 Lockerbie 1989 Berlin Wall down 1990 John Major PM; Iraq invades Kuwait 1991 Gulf War; Helen Sharman first Briton in space; Tim Berners-Lee first website; collapse of Soviet Communism 1992 Maastricht Treaty 1994 Church of England Ordination of Women; Channel Tunnel opens 1995 British forces to Sarajevo 1996 Dolly the Sheep clone 1997 Blair PM; Diana Princess of Wales dies; Hong Kong returns to China 1998 Rolls-Royce sold to BMW; Good Friday Agreement 1999 Scottish Parliament and Welsh Assembly elections 2001 Terrorist attacks on New York 2002 Elizabeth the Queen Mother dies 2003 Second Gulf War 2004 Asian Tsunami 2005 Freedom of Information Act; Prince of Wales and Camilla Parker-Bowles wed; terrorist attacks on London 2006 Queen’s eightieth birthday 2007 Ministry of Justice created; Brown PM 2008 Northern Rock collapse 2009 Market crash; banks partly nationalized; MPs expenses scandal 2010 Cameron PM.

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. This era was the beginning of what is now called the Industrial Revolution. And inventiveness was not confined to the industrial drawing board: musicians, writers, painters and diarists were prolific, and to be found at every coffee house, salon and studio.

John ref 1, ref 2, ref 3 Smith, William ref 1 Smith-Stanley, Edward ref 1 Smollett, Tobias ref 1, ref 2 Smuts, Jan ref 1 Smythe, Thomas ref 1, ref 2, ref 3, ref 4 Solway Moss, Battle of ref 1 Somers, George ref 1, ref 2 Sophia of Hanover ref 1 Soult, Marshal Nicholas ref 1 South Africa ref 1, ref 2, ref 3, ref 4, ref 5, ref 6 South America ref 1, ref 2 South Sea Company ref 1, ref 2, ref 3 Spain ref 1, ref 2, ref 3, ref 4, ref 5, ref 6, ref 7, ref 8, ref 9, ref 10 and Bermuda ref 1 Britain’s wars with ref 1, ref 2, ref 3, ref 4, ref 5, ref 6, ref 7, ref 8, ref 9, ref 10 and Convention of Prado ref 1 Empire of ref 1 and Huguenots ref 1 James I/VI’s peace with ref 1 in Napoleonic Wars, see main entry and Treaty of Vienna ref 1 Spanish Armada ref 1, ref 2, ref 3, ref 4 Spanish Succession, War of ref 1, ref 2, ref 3, ref 4 spinning-jenny ref 1 Spurs, Battle of ref 1 Stainmore, Battle of ref 1 Stalin, Iosif ref 1, ref 2, ref 3 Stamp Act ref 1, ref 2, ref 3 Stamp Tax ref 1 Statute of Marlborough ref 1 Stephen, King ref 1, ref 2, ref 3 Stephen, William fitz ref 1, ref 2 Stephens, James ref 1 Sterne, Laurence ref 1 Stigand, Archbishop ref 1, ref 2 Stirling Bridge, Battle of ref 1 Stockmar, Baron ref 1 Strabo ref 1 Strachey, William ref 1 Stuart, Charles Edward (Bonnie Prince Charlie) ref 1 Stuart, James Edward (Old Pretender) ref 1, ref 2, ref 3, ref 4, ref 5; see also Jacobites Stukeley, Thomas ref 1 Sudan ref 1, ref 2 Sudetendland ref 1 Suetonius ref 1 Suez Canal ref 1, ref 2, ref 3 Sunday Schools ref 1 Sunderland, Earl of ref 1, ref 2 Sutton Hoo ref 1 Sweden ref 1, ref 2 Sweyn I (Forkbeard) ref 1, ref 2 Swift, Jonathan ref 1 Switzerland ref 1 Symeon of Durham ref 1 Tacitus ref 1, ref 2 Tahiti ref 1 Tasmania ref 1 taxation ref 1, ref 2, ref 3, ref 4, ref 5, ref 6, ref 7, ref 8, ref 9, ref 10, ref 11, ref 12, ref 13; see also Britain: income tax in Taylor, Jeremy ref 1 tenant farming ref 1 Territorial Army ref 1 Test Acts ref 1, ref 2 Tewdwr, Rhys ap ref 1 textile industry ref 1 Textus Roffensis ref 1 Thackeray, William ref 1 Thatcher, Margaret ref 1, ref 2, ref 3 Theobald, Archbishop ref 1 Thirty Years War ref 1 Thirty-Nine Articles ref 1 Thistlewood, Arthur ref 1 Thomas, Earl of Lancaster of ref 1, ref 2, ref 3 Thomas of Woodstock, Duke of Gloucester ref 1, ref 2 Times, first edition of ref 1 Tinchebrai, Battle of ref 1 Tirel, Walter ref 1 tobacco ref 1 Tobago ref 1, ref 2, ref 3 Togodumnus ref 1 Tokig of Walligford ref 1 Toleration Acts ref 1 toll roads ref 1 Tolpuddle Martyrs ref 1, ref 2 Tone, Wolfe ref 1, ref 2, ref 3, ref 4 Tories ref 1, ref 2, ref 3, ref 4, ref 5, ref 6, ref 7, ref 8, ref 9, ref 10 associations of ref 1 beginnings of ref 1 and Corn Laws ref 1 and Emancipation ref 1, ref 2 thought of as Conservatives ref 1 Torrington, Lord ref 1 Tostig ref 1 Townshend, Charles ref 1, ref 2, ref 3, ref 4 Towton, Battle of ref 1 trade unionism ref 1, ref 2, ref 3, ref 4 Trafalgar, Battle of ref 1, ref 2 Transvaal ref 1, ref 2 Treaty of Versailles/Paris (1783) ref 1, ref 2, ref 3 Treaty of Versailles (1919) ref 1, ref 2 Trevelyan, Charles ref 1 Trinidad ref 1 Troy, Thomas ref 1 Trueman, Harry ref 1 Tudor, Margaret ref 1 Tull, Jethro ref 1 Turkey ref 1, ref 2, ref 3, ref 4 Tyler, Wat ref 1, ref 2 Tyrell, James ref 1 Tyrwhitt, Thomas ref 1 Ulster ref 1, ref 2 see also Ireland; Northern Ireland Ulster experiment ref 1 United Irishmen ref 1, ref 2, ref 3, ref 4, ref 5, ref 6 United States of America: Declaration of Independence of ref 1 first president of ref 1 Irish migration to ref 1 and Monroe Doctrine ref 1 New Deal of ref 1 and War of 1812 ref 1 and World Wars, see First World War; Second World War see also North America USSR ref 1 Utrecht, Treaties of ref 1, ref 2, ref 3, ref 4 Valentinian ref 1 Vaughan, Henry ref 1 Vere, Robert de ref 1 Vesey-FitzGerald, William ref 1 Vetch, Col.


Rough Guide Directions Bruges & Ghent by Phil Lee

British Empire, Kickstarter, place-making, spinning jenny, the market place

Lieven Bauwensplein and the van Eyck monument Just south of the Duivelsteen is Lieven Bauwensplein, a square that takes its name from – and has a statue of – the local entrepreneur who founded the city’s machine-manufactured textile industry. Born in 1769, the son of a tanner, Bauwens was an intrepid soul, who posed 12/20/07 1:11:14 PM 123 Shops Aleppo Oudburg 70 T 04 77 33 98 56, Mon noon–5.30pm, Tues–Sat noon–6.30pm. ALEPPO as an ordinary textile worker in England to learn how its (much more technologically advanced) machinery worked. In the 1790s, he managed to smuggle a spinning jenny over to the continent and soon opened cotton mills in Ghent. It didn’t, however, do Bauwens much good: he over-borrowed and when there was a downturn in demand, his factories went bust and he died in poverty. North of the square, on Limburgstraat, stands a monument to the Eyck brothers, Hubert and Jan, the painter(s) of the Adoration of the Mystic Lamb. The monument is a somewhat stodgy affair, knocked up for the Great Exhibition of 1913, but it’s an interesting piece of art propaganda, proclaiming Hubert as co-painter of the altarpiece, when this is very speculative (see p.111).


pages: 205 words: 58,054

Private Government: How Employers Rule Our Lives (And Why We Don't Talk About It) by Elizabeth S. Anderson

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, barriers to entry, call centre, collective bargaining, corporate governance, correlation does not imply causation, declining real wages, deskilling, feminist movement, Frederick Winslow Taylor, full employment, invisible hand, manufacturing employment, means of production, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, principal–agent problem, profit motive, Ronald Coase, shareholder value, Socratic dialogue, spinning jenny, The Nature of the Firm, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, trickle-down economics

With many entrants into the open market, rates of profit would fall. When profits are low, few great fortunes can be accumulated, so nearly all capital owners will have to work for a living.57 No wonder Smith’s pin factory, his model of an enterprise with an efficient division of labor, employed only ten workers.58 The Wealth of Nations was published in 1776. Smith was writing only at the threshold of the Industrial Revolution. The spinning jenny had been invented in 1764, kept secret until it was patented in 1770, and was only beginning to be used in a few factories by 1776. No one could have anticipated the rise of Blake’s “dark, satanic mills” on the basis of such slender evidence. Smith reasonably believed that economies of scale were negligible for the production of most goods. Thus we see that Smith’s economic vision of a free market society aligns with the Levellers’ vision more than a century earlier.


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.

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. By 1774 his firm employed six hundred workers, and he expanded aggressively, eventually setting up factories in Manchester, Matlock, Bath, and New Lanark in Scotland. Arkwright’s innovations were complemented by Hargreaves’s invention in 1764 of the spinning jenny, which was further developed by Samuel Crompton in 1779 into the “mule,” and later by Richard Roberts into the “self-acting mule.” The effects of these innovations were truly revolutionary: earlier in the century, it took 50,000 hours for hand spinners to spin one hundred pounds of cotton. Arkwright’s water frame could do it in 300 hours, and the self-acting mule in 135. Along with the mechanization of spinning came the mechanization of weaving.


pages: 274 words: 66,721

Double Entry: How the Merchants of Venice Shaped the Modern World - and How Their Invention Could Make or Break the Planet by Jane Gleeson-White

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Bernie Madoff, Black Swan, British Empire, business cycle, carbon footprint, corporate governance, credit crunch, double entry bookkeeping, full employment, Gordon Gekko, income inequality, invention of movable type, invention of writing, Islamic Golden Age, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Johannes Kepler, joint-stock company, joint-stock limited liability company, Joseph Schumpeter, means of production, Naomi Klein, Nelson Mandela, Ponzi scheme, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, source of truth, spice trade, spinning jenny, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, trade route, traveling salesman, upwardly mobile

But in fact his system was no more than a cumbersome, complex version of Pacioli’s and has been summarised as follows: instead of two columns in the ledger, make ten; and then in all essential points proceed as directed by Pacioli. Jones and his claims for the labour-saving virtues of his system were so persuasive they almost undid his book’s potential success: in an era of rioting provoked by the introduction of labour-replacing machinery such as the power loom and the spinning jenny, the public worried that the purported efficiency of Jones’s system—‘the most extensively useful invention which had ever made its appearance’—would put bookkeepers out of work. Once Jones had reassured them that no such thing would happen, that no jobs would be lost through the adoption of his system, his book, ‘by unblushing impudence’, went on to find phenomenal success. Jones’ English System became the first English work on accounting to achieve international fame.


pages: 231 words: 72,656

A History of the World in 6 Glasses by Tom Standage

Berlin Wall, British Empire, Colonization of Mars, Copley Medal, Edmond Halley, Edward Lloyd's coffeehouse, Eratosthenes, European colonialism, interchangeable parts, invention of agriculture, Isaac Newton, joint-stock company, Kickstarter, laissez-faire capitalism, Lao Tzu, multiplanetary species, out of africa, South Sea Bubble, spice trade, spinning jenny, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, trade route, transatlantic slave trade

Arkwright, the youngest of thirteen children, had first displayed his entrepreneurial talent when he began collecting human hair, dyeing it using his own secret formula, and then fashioning it into wigs. The success of this business provided him with the means to embark on a more ambitious venture, and in 1767 he began developing a "spinning frame." This was a machine for spinning thread in preparation for weaving; but unlike the spinning jenny, a hand-operated device that required a skilled operator, the spinning frame was to be a powered machine that anyone could operate. With the help of a clockmaker, John Kay, from whom he gleaned details of an earlier design, Arkwright built a working prototype and established his first spinning mill, powered by horses, in 1768. This mill so impressed two wealthy businessmen that they gave Arkwright the funds to build a far larger one on a river at Cromford, where the spinning frames would be powered by a waterwheel.


The Ages of Globalization by Jeffrey D. Sachs

Admiral Zheng, British Empire, Cape to Cairo, colonial rule, Columbian Exchange, Commentariolus, coronavirus, COVID-19, Covid-19, cuban missile crisis, decarbonisation, demographic transition, Deng Xiaoping, domestication of the camel, Donald Trump, en.wikipedia.org, endogenous growth, European colonialism, global supply chain, greed is good, income per capita, invention of agriculture, invention of gunpowder, invention of movable type, invention of the steam engine, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, James Watt: steam engine, job automation, John von Neumann, joint-stock company, Louis Pasteur, low skilled workers, mass immigration, Nikolai Kondratiev, out of africa, packet switching, Pax Mongolica, precision agriculture, profit maximization, profit motive, purchasing power parity, South China Sea, spinning jenny, The inhabitant of London could order by telephone, sipping his morning tea in bed, the various products of the whole earth, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, Turing machine, Turing test, urban planning, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, wikimedia commons

And now we have the added environmental challenges that are complex, global in scale, and without precedent for our species. We are endangering the planet in ways we have never done before, without a guidebook on how to move forward. The Challenge of Inequality Technological advances contain within them the seeds of rising inequality, as new technologies create winners and losers in the marketplace. The advent of the spinning jenny and power loom displaced and impoverished multitudes of spinners and weavers in India. The mechanization of agriculture impoverished countless smallholder farmers around the world who desperately fled to the cities to find a livelihood. The introduction of robots on the assembly lines of automobile plants have created unemployment and falling wages for workers laid off from those factories.


pages: 389 words: 87,758

No Ordinary Disruption: The Four Global Forces Breaking All the Trends by Richard Dobbs, James Manyika

2013 Report for America's Infrastructure - American Society of Civil Engineers - 19 March 2013, access to a mobile phone, additive manufacturing, Airbnb, Amazon Mechanical Turk, American Society of Civil Engineers: Report Card, autonomous vehicles, Bakken shale, barriers to entry, business cycle, business intelligence, Carmen Reinhart, central bank independence, cloud computing, corporate governance, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, demographic dividend, deskilling, disintermediation, disruptive innovation, distributed generation, Erik Brynjolfsson, financial innovation, first square of the chessboard, first square of the chessboard / second half of the chessboard, Gini coefficient, global supply chain, global village, hydraulic fracturing, illegal immigration, income inequality, index fund, industrial robot, intangible asset, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Internet of things, inventory management, job automation, Just-in-time delivery, Kenneth Rogoff, Kickstarter, knowledge worker, labor-force participation, low skilled workers, Lyft, M-Pesa, mass immigration, megacity, mobile money, Mohammed Bouazizi, Network effects, new economy, New Urbanism, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, old age dependency ratio, openstreetmap, peer-to-peer lending, pension reform, private sector deleveraging, purchasing power parity, quantitative easing, recommendation engine, Report Card for America’s Infrastructure, RFID, ride hailing / ride sharing, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, smart cities, Snapchat, sovereign wealth fund, spinning jenny, stem cell, Steve Jobs, supply-chain management, TaskRabbit, The Great Moderation, trade route, transaction costs, Travis Kalanick, uber lyft, urban sprawl, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, working-age population, Zipcar

But today is different because, as noted in the introduction, we are in the second half of the chessboard. In a process that is both gratifying and terrifying, the period between historic breakthroughs has been decreasing by orders of magnitude. More than five hundred years passed between Gutenberg’s printing press and the first computer printer. It then took only another thirty years for the 3-D printer to be invented. Two hundred years separated the spinning jenny, the yarn-producing machine invented in 1764, from GM’s Unimate, the world’s first industrial robot.13 It took only a quarter of that time for Shaft, the world’s most advanced humanoid robot, to be invented. As W. Brian Arthur, a former Stanford economist, who pioneered the study of positive feedback and wrote The Nature of Technology, noted, “With the coming of the Industrial Revolution—roughly from the 1760s, when Watt’s steam engine appeared, through around 1850 and beyond—the economy developed a muscular system in the form of machine power.


pages: 346 words: 89,180

Capitalism Without Capital: The Rise of the Intangible Economy by Jonathan Haskel, Stian Westlake

"Robert Solow", 23andMe, activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, Airbnb, Albert Einstein, Andrei Shleifer, bank run, banking crisis, Bernie Sanders, business climate, business process, buy and hold, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, cloud computing, cognitive bias, computer age, corporate governance, corporate raider, correlation does not imply causation, creative destruction, dark matter, Diane Coyle, Donald Trump, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart, Edward Glaeser, Elon Musk, endogenous growth, Erik Brynjolfsson, everywhere but in the productivity statistics, Fellow of the Royal Society, financial innovation, full employment, fundamental attribution error, future of work, Gini coefficient, Hernando de Soto, hiring and firing, income inequality, index card, indoor plumbing, intangible asset, Internet of things, Jane Jacobs, Jaron Lanier, job automation, Kenneth Arrow, Kickstarter, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, laissez-faire capitalism, liquidity trap, low skilled workers, Marc Andreessen, Mother of all demos, Network effects, new economy, open economy, patent troll, paypal mafia, Peter Thiel, pets.com, place-making, post-industrial society, Productivity paradox, quantitative hedge fund, rent-seeking, revision control, Richard Florida, ride hailing / ride sharing, Robert Gordon, Ronald Coase, Sand Hill Road, Second Machine Age, secular stagnation, self-driving car, shareholder value, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, six sigma, Skype, software patent, sovereign wealth fund, spinning jenny, Steve Jobs, survivorship bias, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Tim Cook: Apple, total factor productivity, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, urban planning, Vanguard fund, walkable city, X Prize, zero-sum game

Remember that TFP measures how well firms are using their inputs (that is, output per unit of all their inputs). If they can scale them or, better yet, benefit from inputs of other firms, then TFP rises. 5. See, for example, http://stumblingandmumbling.typepad.com/stumbling_and_mumbling/2016/03/barriers-to-productivity-growth.html. Chapter 6: Intangibles and the Rise of Inequality 1. They are called mules because they were a hybrid of two earlier inventions, the water frame and the spinning jenny, a nice demonstration that the synergies between intangible investments—in this case, different types of R&D—are not a recent discovery. 2. Louis Anslow, https://timeline.com/robots-have-been-about-to-take-all-the-jobs-for-more-than-200-years-5c9c08a2f41d#.wh363gjar. See also Bakhshi, Frey, and Osborne 2015. 3. See, for example, his post: http://stumblingandmumbling.typepad.com/stumbling_and_mumbling/2011/10/the-bosses-pay-con-trick.html. 4.


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. Taking as its namesake Ned Ludd, a youth who is said to have smashed two stocking looms, it attracted hundreds of proponents who roamed the countryside burning factories and, in some places, killing the owners of the machinery.


pages: 322 words: 88,197

Wonderland: How Play Made the Modern World by Steven Johnson

Ada Lovelace, Alfred Russel Wallace, Antoine Gombaud: Chevalier de Méré, Berlin Wall, bitcoin, Book of Ingenious Devices, Buckminster Fuller, Claude Shannon: information theory, Clayton Christensen, colonial exploitation, computer age, conceptual framework, crowdsourcing, cuban missile crisis, Drosophila, Edward Thorp, Fellow of the Royal Society, game design, global village, Hedy Lamarr / George Antheil, HyperCard, invention of air conditioning, invention of the printing press, invention of the telegraph, Islamic Golden Age, Jacquard loom, Jacques de Vaucanson, James Watt: steam engine, Jane Jacobs, John von Neumann, joint-stock company, Joseph-Marie Jacquard, land value tax, Landlord’s Game, lone genius, mass immigration, megacity, Minecraft, moral panic, Murano, Venice glass, music of the spheres, Necker cube, New Urbanism, Oculus Rift, On the Economy of Machinery and Manufactures, pattern recognition, peer-to-peer, pets.com, placebo effect, probability theory / Blaise Pascal / Pierre de Fermat, profit motive, QWERTY keyboard, Ray Oldenburg, spice trade, spinning jenny, statistical model, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, Stewart Brand, supply-chain management, talking drums, the built environment, The Great Good Place, the scientific method, The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere, trade route, Turing machine, Turing test, Upton Sinclair, urban planning, Victor Gruen, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, white flight, white picket fence, Whole Earth Catalog, working poor, Wunderkammern

Shears, sewing needles, and scrapers for converting animal skins into protective coverings for the body are among the oldest tools recovered from the Paleolithic age. To be sure, much of that innovation was utilitarian in nature. Ascots and hoop skirts aside, most clothing has some functional value, and certainly our ancestors fifty thousand years ago were making clothes with the explicit aim of keeping warm and dry and protected from potential threats. The fact that so much technological innovation—from the first knitting needles to hand looms to the spinning jenny—has emerged out of textile production can seem, at first glance, more a matter of necessity’s invention. And yet the archeological record is replete with early examples of purely decorative toolmaking: a shell necklace discovered in the Sikul Cave in Israel was crafted more than a hundred thousand years ago. As soon as humans became toolmakers, they were making jewelry. Whatever mix of playfulness and practicality drove early human garment design, the invention of Tyrian purple announced a fundamental shift toward delight and surprise—a shift, in a sense, from function to fashion.


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.


words: 49,604

The Weightless World: Strategies for Managing the Digital Economy by Diane Coyle

"Robert Solow", barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, Big bang: deregulation of the City of London, blue-collar work, Bretton Woods, business cycle, clean water, computer age, Corn Laws, creative destruction, cross-subsidies, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, dematerialisation, Diane Coyle, Edward Glaeser, everywhere but in the productivity statistics, financial deregulation, full employment, George Santayana, global village, hiring and firing, Howard Rheingold, income inequality, informal economy, invention of the sewing machine, invisible hand, Jane Jacobs, Joseph Schumpeter, Kickstarter, knowledge economy, labour market flexibility, laissez-faire capitalism, lump of labour, Marshall McLuhan, mass immigration, McJob, microcredit, moral panic, Network effects, new economy, Nick Leeson, night-watchman state, North Sea oil, offshore financial centre, pension reform, pensions crisis, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, spinning jenny, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, the market place, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, Tobin tax, two tier labour market, very high income, War on Poverty, winner-take-all economy, working-age population

According to eyewitness reports one of the crowd ran towards the armed soldiers, shouting: ‘I would rather be killed here than go home to starve’. His wish was granted. The troops prevented that march from reaching the bigger industrial centres of Rochdale and Manchester, where it might have inflamed a serious insurrection. According to some estimates investment in the Manchester cotton mills had reached £20 million as early as 1816. The owners of capital had a lot at stake. The Lancashire inventors of the mule, Samuel Crompton, the spinning jenny, Richard Hargreaves, and the flying shuttle, John Kay, found themselves under personal attack. Kay had to flee the mob, Crompton was burnt out of his home. Jeremy Rifkin has launched no physical assaults on today’s equivalents of the cotton barons, men such as Microsoft’s Bill Gates, but he makes it clear that he thinks computers are to blame for depriving people of work. In his book, one of the most dangerous and misleading economic tracts published in the past quarter century, he predicts that 90 million jobs out of a US labour force of 124 million are vulnerable to replacement by robots and computers.


pages: 336 words: 97,204

The Mystery of Charles Dickens by A. N. Wilson

British Empire, Columbine, Corn Laws, Etonian, Fellow of the Royal Society, George Santayana, Honoré de Balzac, James Watt: steam engine, Jarndyce and Jarndyce, Jarndyce and Jarndyce, Ralph Waldo Emerson, sexual politics, spinning jenny, Thomas Malthus

Having discovered the chemical property of water, it was almost no time before it became possible to see the technological power of steam. The magnetic property of iron was no longer a mystery – it was something that could be demonstrated and explained in terms of chemistry and physics. From H2O to steam engines was a short step: within decades of the chemists’ theoretical studies there were mechanized factories; the Luddites were trying to put back the clock and destroy the spinning jenny and the powered loom; and railroads were steaming across the fields and plains of Europe and America. A new world had dawned. Mesmer believed it was possible to explain and categorize the human psyche in rather the way that it was possible to classify the inanimate universe. His ‘discovery’ of animal magnetism led to two propositions. First, there is a magnetic ‘fluid’ in the universe. Mechanical laws, working in an alternate ebb and flow, control ‘a mutual influence between the Heavenly Bodies and the Earth’.11 Animate Bodies partake of this fluid.


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: 385 words: 111,807

A Pelican Introduction Economics: A User's Guide by Ha-Joon Chang

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Albert Einstein, Asian financial crisis, asset-backed security, bank run, banking crisis, banks create money, Berlin Wall, bilateral investment treaty, borderless world, Bretton Woods, British Empire, call centre, capital controls, central bank independence, collateralized debt obligation, colonial rule, Corn Laws, corporate governance, corporate raider, creative destruction, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deindustrialization, discovery of the americas, Eugene Fama: efficient market hypothesis, eurozone crisis, experimental economics, Fall of the Berlin Wall, falling living standards, financial deregulation, financial innovation, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, Frederick Winslow Taylor, full employment, George Akerlof, Gini coefficient, global value chain, Goldman Sachs: Vampire Squid, Gordon Gekko, greed is good, Gunnar Myrdal, Haber-Bosch Process, happiness index / gross national happiness, high net worth, income inequality, income per capita, information asymmetry, intangible asset, interchangeable parts, interest rate swap, inventory management, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, James Watt: steam engine, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, joint-stock company, joint-stock limited liability company, Joseph Schumpeter, knowledge economy, laissez-faire capitalism, land reform, liberation theology, manufacturing employment, Mark Zuckerberg, market clearing, market fundamentalism, Martin Wolf, means of production, Mexican peso crisis / tequila crisis, Nelson Mandela, Northern Rock, obamacare, offshore financial centre, oil shock, open borders, Pareto efficiency, Paul Samuelson, post-industrial society, precariat, principal–agent problem, profit maximization, profit motive, purchasing power parity, quantitative easing, road to serfdom, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Coase, Ronald Reagan, savings glut, Scramble for Africa, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, sovereign wealth fund, spinning jenny, structural adjustment programs, The Great Moderation, The Market for Lemons, The Spirit Level, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, trade liberalization, transaction costs, transfer pricing, trickle-down economics, Vilfredo Pareto, Washington Consensus, working-age population, World Values Survey

In the poorest ones, child labour is still prevalent, while a lot of people are still tenants of semi-feudal landlords. Anything between 30 per cent and 90 per cent of the workforce in these countries may be self-employed, many of whom are engaged in subsistence farming. * Yes, that’s the scientist, who also doubled as an alchemist and a stock market speculator. * These included the flying shuttle (1733) and spinning jenny (1764) in the textile industry, coke-smelting (1709) in steel-making and various processes for large-scale sulphuric-acid manufacture (the 1730s and the 1740s) in the chemical industry. * To simplify the story, the 1932 famine happened because too much food was shipped out of the rural areas, following the 1928 agricultural collectivization. The rapidly rising urban population had to be fed, and grains had to be exported to earn foreign exchanges with which to import advanced machinery that the Soviet Union needed for industrialization


pages: 374 words: 111,284

The AI Economy: Work, Wealth and Welfare in the Robot Age by Roger Bootle

"Robert Solow", 3D printing, agricultural Revolution, AI winter, Albert Einstein, anti-work, autonomous vehicles, basic income, Ben Bernanke: helicopter money, Bernie Sanders, blockchain, call centre, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Chris Urmson, computer age, conceptual framework, corporate governance, correlation does not imply causation, creative destruction, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deindustrialization, deskilling, Elon Musk, en.wikipedia.org, Erik Brynjolfsson, everywhere but in the productivity statistics, facts on the ground, financial intermediation, full employment, future of work, income inequality, income per capita, industrial robot, Internet of things, invention of the wheel, Isaac Newton, James Watt: steam engine, Jeff Bezos, job automation, job satisfaction, John Markoff, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, John von Neumann, Joseph Schumpeter, Kevin Kelly, license plate recognition, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, market bubble, mega-rich, natural language processing, Network effects, new economy, Nicholas Carr, Paul Samuelson, Peter Thiel, positional goods, quantitative easing, RAND corporation, Ray Kurzweil, Richard Florida, ride hailing / ride sharing, rising living standards, road to serfdom, Robert Gordon, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Second Machine Age, secular stagnation, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, Skype, social intelligence, spinning jenny, Stanislav Petrov, Stephen Hawking, Steven Pinker, technological singularity, The Future of Employment, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, trade route, universal basic income, US Airways Flight 1549, Vernor Vinge, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, We wanted flying cars, instead we got 140 characters, wealth creators, winner-take-all economy, Y2K, Yogi Berra

Accordingly, during this period of “progress,” large numbers of people underwent immense suffering. Technology and the engine of growth Before we leave the Industrial Revolution and move on to more recent times, we need to get technological change into perspective. Economic history is full of inventions. And economic history books about the Industrial Revolution are fuller still. All steam engines and “spinning jennies.” This isn’t wrong, but it is partial, and it can be misleading. It is true that productivity is the key to economic growth – certainly to the growth of output per capita, which is the ultimate determinant of living standards. But there is more to productivity growth than inventions and technology. A society can enjoy increased living standards over time if it devotes a proportion of its output to real investment, over and above the amount that is necessary to replace the stuff that has been worn out by age, continued use, or wartime destruction.


pages: 401 words: 109,892

The Great Reversal: How America Gave Up on Free Markets by Thomas Philippon

airline deregulation, Amazon Mechanical Turk, Amazon Web Services, Andrei Shleifer, barriers to entry, bitcoin, blockchain, business cycle, business process, buy and hold, Carmen Reinhart, carried interest, central bank independence, commoditize, crack epidemic, cross-subsidies, disruptive innovation, Donald Trump, Erik Brynjolfsson, eurozone crisis, financial deregulation, financial innovation, financial intermediation, gig economy, income inequality, income per capita, index fund, intangible asset, inventory management, Jean Tirole, Jeff Bezos, Kenneth Rogoff, labor-force participation, law of one price, liquidity trap, low cost airline, manufacturing employment, Mark Zuckerberg, market bubble, minimum wage unemployment, money market fund, moral hazard, natural language processing, Network effects, new economy, offshore financial centre, Pareto efficiency, patent troll, Paul Samuelson, price discrimination, profit maximization, purchasing power parity, QWERTY keyboard, rent-seeking, ride hailing / ride sharing, risk-adjusted returns, Robert Bork, Robert Gordon, Ronald Reagan, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Snapchat, spinning jenny, statistical model, Steve Jobs, supply-chain management, Telecommunications Act of 1996, The Chicago School, the payments system, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, too big to fail, total factor productivity, transaction costs, Travis Kalanick, Vilfredo Pareto, zero-sum game

Growth An economy can grow in exactly two ways: its labor force can expand, or its output per worker can increase. From the Roman Empire to the Industrial Revolution, population growth was slow and productivity growth was nil. The Industrial Revolution earned its name by unleashing unprecedented productivity growth. The First Industrial Revolution began in Britain in the eighteenth century and moved the economy from agriculture toward manufacturing. It involved new machines (the spinning jenny), new energy sources (coal, steam), and a new division of labor in large plants. As countries became richer and agriculture became more productive, populations also grew. Thus, after 1700, population growth and productivity growth both contributed to overall economic growth. Which rate of growth should we consider: overall, or per capita? There is no simple answer; it depends on the issue at hand.


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

They had much more privacy at the mill than on the farm, and compared to mill work, farmwork was dirty, brutally hard, and often dangerous. Farm life could also be isolating, and the girls seem to have taken great delight in meeting and living with so many girls of their own age. It’s no surprise that most of them seem to have remembered the mills with fondness. The first Waltham mill started operations in February 1815 with twenty-three yarn-making machines—carders, rovers, and spinning jennies of various kinds—and twenty-one looms, seven wide and fourteen narrow ones. The initial machinery was rapidly added to, replaced, and rebuilt, as operations expanded and Moody piled on his process improvements. One of Nathan Appleton’s firms, a wholesale distributorship, took care of the marketing at a modest 1 percent of sales. It was hardly an auspicious time for a textile venture. If 1812 had been a bad time to embark on a new venture, 1815 may have been the worst possible time to open a new mill.


pages: 448 words: 142,946

Sacred Economics: Money, Gift, and Society in the Age of Transition by Charles Eisenstein

Albert Einstein, back-to-the-land, bank run, Bernie Madoff, big-box store, Bretton Woods, capital controls, clean water, collateralized debt obligation, commoditize, corporate raider, credit crunch, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, debt deflation, deindustrialization, delayed gratification, disintermediation, diversification, fiat currency, financial independence, financial intermediation, fixed income, floating exchange rates, Fractional reserve banking, full employment, global supply chain, God and Mammon, happiness index / gross national happiness, hydraulic fracturing, informal economy, invisible hand, Jane Jacobs, land tenure, land value tax, Lao Tzu, liquidity trap, McMansion, means of production, money: store of value / unit of account / medium of exchange, moral hazard, mortgage debt, new economy, off grid, oil shale / tar sands, Own Your Own Home, Paul Samuelson, peak oil, phenotype, Ponzi scheme, profit motive, quantitative easing, race to the bottom, Scramble for Africa, special drawing rights, spinning jenny, technoutopianism, the built environment, Thomas Malthus, too big to fail

Freed of that pressure, we will turn our gifts toward that which inspires us—for more and more of us, that is the healing of society and the planet from the ravages of Separation. (If you still think that freedom from survival pressure will lead to dissipation and indolence, please go back and reread “The Will to Work” in Chapter 14.) 6. ECONOMIC DEGROWTH Motivation: Over hundreds of years of inventing labor-saving devices, from the spinning jenny to the digital computer, we have at every turn chosen to consume more rather than to work less. This choice, driven by the money system, accompanied an accelerating drawdown of social and natural capital. Today, the option of accelerating consumption is no longer available to us. Absent the driving force of positive risk-free interest, economic growth will no longer be necessary to promote the flow of capital, and a degrowth economy will become feasible.


pages: 502 words: 128,126

Rule Britannia: Brexit and the End of Empire by Danny Dorling, Sally Tomlinson

3D printing, Ada Lovelace, Alfred Russel Wallace, anti-communist, anti-globalists, Big bang: deregulation of the City of London, Boris Johnson, British Empire, centre right, colonial rule, Corn Laws, correlation does not imply causation, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deindustrialization, Dominic Cummings, Donald Trump, Edward Snowden, en.wikipedia.org, epigenetics, Etonian, falling living standards, Flynn Effect, housing crisis, illegal immigration, imperial preference, income inequality, inflation targeting, invisible hand, knowledge economy, market fundamentalism, mass immigration, megacity, New Urbanism, Nick Leeson, North Sea oil, offshore financial centre, out of africa, Right to Buy, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, South China Sea, sovereign wealth fund, spinning jenny, Steven Pinker, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, University of East Anglia, We are the 99%, wealth creators

Instead, the Daily Mail referred to judges it does not agree with as ‘Enemies of the people’.40 If you doubt our words over the intolerance of the British, try wearing a white poppy on Remembrance Day – the poppy worn to remember all the casualties of all wars and to show a commitment to peace.41 Intolerance of the British towards those they suspect of being unpatriotic currently runs at very high levels, further stoked up by Brexit. The British tend to be proud of their industrial revolution, though are usually taught to be this way in school, rather than coming to this conclusion themselves. Spinning jennies, steam pumps and steam engines were not just invented by a Lancastrian (Hargreaves) and two men from Devon (Savery and Newcomen): they were part of a revolution that swept across Europe, with a huge number of similar inventions occurring at much the same time. However, it was the British who engaged in that revolution most voraciously. The change from charcoal (produced from wood) to coke (produced from coal) as fuel in iron ore furnaces led to a dramatic increase in coal mining and also immigration.


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: 517 words: 139,824

The Difference Engine by William Gibson, Bruce Sterling

card file, clockwatching, Fellow of the Royal Society, Isaac Newton, Jacquard loom, plutocrats, Plutocrats, spinning jenny, the scientific method

He knew how far Sybil Gerard had fallen, that she had been an educated girl, with airs and graces, as good as any gentry girl, once. From the days of her father's fame, from her girlhood, Sybil could remember Mick Radley's like. She knew the kind of boy that he had been. Ragged angry factory-boys, penny-a-score, who would crowd her father after his torchlight speeches, and do whatever he commanded. Rip up railroad tracks, kick the boiler-plugs out of spinning jennies, lay policemen's helmets by his feet. She and her father had fled from town to town, often by night, living in cellars, attics, anonymous rooms-to-let, hiding from the Rad police and the daggers of other conspirators. And sometimes, when his own wild speeches had filled him with a burning elation, her father would embrace her and soberly promise her the world. She would live like gentry in a green and quiet England, when King Steam was wrecked.


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.


pages: 522 words: 144,511

Sugar: A Bittersweet History by Elizabeth Abbott

addicted to oil, agricultural Revolution, Bartolomé de las Casas, British Empire, flex fuel, land tenure, liberation theology, Mason jar, Ralph Waldo Emerson, spinning jenny, strikebreaker, trade liberalization, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, women in the workforce, working poor

HIGH TEA AND THE INDUSTRIAL REVOLUTION The second half of the eighteenth century spawned two fundamental social and economic transformations: the Industrial Revolution and the Sugared Tea Revolution that sloshed into being within it. Led by England, the Industrial Revolution recast primarily agricultural Europe into ever-urbanizing industrial societies fueled by capitalism, overseas trade, growing consumption and changing mores. Technological innovations, most notably the cotton gin, the spinning jenny and the steam engine, transformed how English cotton was produced. Historian David Landes provides this eloquent summary: “The abundance and variety of these innovations almost defy compilation, but they may be subsumed under three principles: the substitution of machines—rapid, regular, precise, tireless—for human skill and effort; the substitution of inanimate for animate sources of power, in particular, the introduction of engines for converting heat into work, thereby opening to man a new and almost unlimited supply of energy; the use of new and far more abundant raw materials, in particular, the substitution of mineral for vegetable or animal substances.


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

From the late eighteenth century on, factories, factory villages, and manufacturing cities drew tourists, journalists, and philanthropists from continental Europe and North America as well as Great Britain itself.47 Part of the attraction was their novelty. W. Cooke Taylor, the son of an Irish manufacturer who toured the industrial districts of Lancaster in the early 1840s, wrote that “The steam-engine had no precedent, the spinning-jenny is without ancestry, the mule and the power-loom entered on no prepared heritage: they sprung into sudden existence like Minerva from the brain of Jupiter.”48 The scale and setting of mill buildings, whether in rural river valleys or crowded industrial cities, startled visitors. British poet laureate Robert Southey wrote that the approach to the New Lanark mills reminded him “of the descent upon the baths of Monchique,” built by the Romans in southern Portugal.


pages: 470 words: 148,730

Good Economics for Hard Times: Better Answers to Our Biggest Problems by Abhijit V. Banerjee, Esther Duflo

"Robert Solow", 3D printing, affirmative action, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, basic income, Bernie Sanders, business cycle, call centre, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Cass Sunstein, charter city, correlation does not imply causation, creative destruction, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, decarbonisation, Deng Xiaoping, Donald Trump, Edward Glaeser, en.wikipedia.org, endowment effect, energy transition, Erik Brynjolfsson, experimental economics, experimental subject, facts on the ground, fear of failure, financial innovation, George Akerlof, high net worth, immigration reform, income inequality, Indoor air pollution, industrial cluster, industrial robot, information asymmetry, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Jane Jacobs, Jean Tirole, Jeff Bezos, job automation, Joseph Schumpeter, labor-force participation, land reform, loss aversion, low skilled workers, manufacturing employment, Mark Zuckerberg, mass immigration, Network effects, new economy, New Urbanism, non-tariff barriers, obamacare, offshore financial centre, open economy, Paul Samuelson, place-making, price stability, profit maximization, purchasing power parity, race to the bottom, RAND corporation, randomized controlled trial, Richard Thaler, ride hailing / ride sharing, Robert Gordon, Ronald Reagan, school choice, Second Machine Age, secular stagnation, self-driving car, shareholder value, short selling, Silicon Valley, smart meter, social graph, spinning jenny, Steve Jobs, technology bubble, The Chicago School, The Future of Employment, The Market for Lemons, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, total factor productivity, trade liberalization, transaction costs, trickle-down economics, universal basic income, urban sprawl, very high income, War on Poverty, women in the workforce, working-age population, Y2K

Futurologists talk about a “singularity,” a dramatic acceleration of the rate of productivity growth fueled by infinitely intelligent machines, although most economists are quite skeptical that we are anywhere close to seeing something like that. But it could well be that if Gordon plays spot the robot in a few years, he will have a more exciting time. On the other hand, while this particular wave of automation is just starting, there have been others in the past. Like AI today, the spinning jenny, the steam engine, electricity, computer chips, and computer-assisted-learning machinery all automatized and relieved the need for humans in the past.12 What happened then is very much what one might have expected: by replacing workers with machines on some tasks, automation has a powerful displacement effect. It makes the workers redundant. This is what happened to the skilled artisans spinning and weaving at the dawn of the industrial revolution.


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: 510 words: 163,449

How the Scots Invented the Modern World: The True Story of How Western Europe's Poorest Nation Created Our World and Everything in It by Arthur Herman

British Empire, California gold rush, creative destruction, do-ocracy, financial independence, global village, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, James Watt: steam engine, Joan Didion, joint-stock company, laissez-faire capitalism, land tenure, mass immigration, means of production, new economy, New Urbanism, North Sea oil, oil shale / tar sands, Republic of Letters, Robert Mercer, spinning jenny, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, transcontinental railway, trickle-down economics, urban planning, urban renewal, working poor

In other words, like Scots everywhere, they wanted to be part of progress, not head it off at the pass. This working-class challenge required a middle-class response. It came in two forms. David Dale was a self-taught industrial entrepreneur who rose from weaver’s apprentice to branch manager of the Royal Bank of Glasgow and founding member of Glasgow’s Chamber of Commerce. In 1786 he set up a cotton mill at New Lanark, in partnership with the English inventor of the spinning jenny, Richard Arkwright. Deeply religious and personally scrupulous, Dale wanted the factory to be a model of its kind. His employees put in an “easy” schedule of only eleven hours a day, with a two-hour break for dinner, and had free housing. By 1800, New Lanark employed more hands than any factory in the world, two-thirds of whom were women and children recruited from local orphanages. Dale gave them clothes, including a Sunday suit, schooling, and a wholesome diet of porridge and milk, potatoes and barley bread, with beef and cheese.


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: 182,781

Aerotropolis by John D. Kasarda, Greg Lindsay

3D printing, air freight, airline deregulation, airport security, Akira Okazaki, Asian financial crisis, back-to-the-land, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, big-box store, blood diamonds, borderless world, Boris Johnson, British Empire, business cycle, call centre, carbon footprint, Cesare Marchetti: Marchetti’s constant, Charles Lindbergh, Clayton Christensen, cleantech, cognitive dissonance, commoditize, conceptual framework, credit crunch, David Brooks, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, Deng Xiaoping, deskilling, digital map, disruptive innovation, edge city, Edward Glaeser, failed state, food miles, Ford paid five dollars a day, Frank Gehry, fudge factor, full employment, future of work, Geoffrey West, Santa Fe Institute, George Gilder, global supply chain, global village, gravity well, Haber-Bosch Process, Hernando de Soto, hive mind, if you build it, they will come, illegal immigration, inflight wifi, intangible asset, interchangeable parts, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), intermodal, invention of the telephone, inventory management, invisible hand, Jane Jacobs, Jeff Bezos, Joan Didion, Kangaroo Route, Kickstarter, knowledge worker, kremlinology, low cost airline, Marchetti’s constant, Marshall McLuhan, Masdar, mass immigration, McMansion, megacity, Menlo Park, microcredit, Network effects, New Economic Geography, new economy, New Urbanism, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, peak oil, Pearl River Delta, Peter Calthorpe, Peter Thiel, pets.com, pink-collar, pre–internet, RFID, Richard Florida, Ronald Coase, Ronald Reagan, Rubik’s Cube, savings glut, Seaside, Florida, Shenzhen was a fishing village, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, smart cities, smart grid, South China Sea, South Sea Bubble, sovereign wealth fund, special economic zone, spice trade, spinning jenny, starchitect, stem cell, Steve Jobs, supply-chain management, sustainable-tourism, telepresence, the built environment, The Chicago School, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, The Nature of the Firm, thinkpad, Thomas L Friedman, Thomas Malthus, Tony Hsieh, trade route, transcontinental railway, transit-oriented development, traveling salesman, trickle-down economics, upwardly mobile, urban planning, urban renewal, urban sprawl, walkable city, white flight, white picket fence, Yogi Berra, zero-sum game

The urban fabric of modern Hong Kong was knit following the end of China’s civil war in 1949, which sent two million refugees streaming across its border with little more than the shirts on their backs— appropriate, considering Shanghai’s fleeing capitalists underwrote its first textile factories. Textiles are the bottom rung of industrial economies. Britain’s woolen mills were the first to be mechanized in the eighteenth century by the flying shuttle and spinning jenny, and the first to be copied on cut-rate American looms. Hong Kong followed in their foot-steps until Deng’s Reform and Opening in 1978, when its reservoir of cheap labor was undercut by the bottomless one pooling in Shenzhen. The Delta was built with Hong Kong’s jobs and Hong Kong’s dollars. By the early 1990s, the territory’s budding industrialists had spent $40 billion in China, two-thirds of its total foreign investment.


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.


pages: 859 words: 204,092

When China Rules the World: The End of the Western World and the Rise of the Middle Kingdom by Martin Jacques

Admiral Zheng, Asian financial crisis, Berlin Wall, Bob Geldof, Bretton Woods, BRICs, British Empire, credit crunch, Dava Sobel, deindustrialization, Deng Xiaoping, deskilling, discovery of the americas, Doha Development Round, energy security, European colonialism, failed state, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, global reserve currency, global supply chain, illegal immigration, income per capita, invention of gunpowder, James Watt: steam engine, joint-stock company, Kenneth Rogoff, land reform, land tenure, lateral thinking, Malacca Straits, Martin Wolf, Naomi Klein, Nelson Mandela, new economy, New Urbanism, one-China policy, open economy, Pearl River Delta, pension reform, price stability, purchasing power parity, reserve currency, rising living standards, Ronald Reagan, Scramble for Africa, Silicon Valley, South China Sea, sovereign wealth fund, special drawing rights, special economic zone, spinning jenny, Spread Networks laid a new fibre optics cable between New York and Chicago, the scientific method, Thomas L Friedman, trade liberalization, urban planning, Washington Consensus, Westphalian system, Xiaogang Anhui farmers, zero-sum game

Nor did Western Europe enjoy a decisive advantage over China and Japan before 1800 in terms of capital stock or economic institutions, with plenty of Chinese companies being organized along joint-stock lines. Even in technology, there appears to have been little to choose between Europe and China, and in some fields, like irrigation, textile weaving and dyeing, medicine and porcelain manufacture, the Europeans were behind. China had long used textile machines that differed in only one key detail from the spinning jenny and the flying shuttle which were to power Britain’s textile-led Industrial Revolution. China had long been familiar with the steam engine and had developed various versions of it; compared with James Watt’s subsequent invention, the piston needed to turn the wheel rather than the other way round.6 What is certainly true, however, is that once Britain embarked on its Industrial Revolution, investment in capital- and energy-intensive processes rapidly raised productivity levels and created a virtuous circle of technology, innovation and growth that was able to draw on an ever-growing body of science in which Britain enjoyed a significant lead over China.7 For China, in contrast, its ‘industrious revolution’ did not prove the prelude to an industrial revolution.


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: 843 words: 223,858

The Rise of the Network Society by Manuel Castells

"Robert Solow", Apple II, Asian financial crisis, barriers to entry, Big bang: deregulation of the City of London, Bob Noyce, borderless world, British Empire, business cycle, capital controls, complexity theory, computer age, computerized trading, creative destruction, Credit Default Swap, declining real wages, deindustrialization, delayed gratification, dematerialisation, deskilling, disintermediation, double helix, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart, edge city, experimental subject, financial deregulation, financial independence, floating exchange rates, future of work, global village, Gunnar Myrdal, Hacker Ethic, hiring and firing, Howard Rheingold, illegal immigration, income inequality, Induced demand, industrial robot, informal economy, information retrieval, intermodal, invention of the steam engine, invention of the telephone, inventory management, James Watt: steam engine, job automation, job-hopping, John Markoff, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, labor-force participation, laissez-faire capitalism, Leonard Kleinrock, longitudinal study, low skilled workers, manufacturing employment, Marc Andreessen, Marshall McLuhan, means of production, megacity, Menlo Park, moral panic, new economy, New Urbanism, offshore financial centre, oil shock, open economy, packet switching, Pearl River Delta, peer-to-peer, planetary scale, popular capitalism, popular electronics, post-industrial society, postindustrial economy, prediction markets, Productivity paradox, profit maximization, purchasing power parity, RAND corporation, Robert Gordon, Robert Metcalfe, Shoshana Zuboff, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, social software, South China Sea, South of Market, San Francisco, special economic zone, spinning jenny, statistical model, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Ted Nelson, the built environment, the medium is the message, the new new thing, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, total factor productivity, trade liberalization, transaction costs, urban renewal, urban sprawl, zero-sum game

Since our experience of the new is shaped by our recent past, I think the answers to these basic questions could be helped by a brief reminder of the historical record of the industrial revolution, still present in our institutions, and therefore in our mind-set. Lessons from the Industrial Revolution Historians have shown that there were at least two industrial revolutions: the first started in the last third of the eighteenth century, characterized by new technologies such as the steam engine, the spinning jenny, the Cort’s process in metallurgy, and, more broadly, by the replacement of hand-tools by machines; the second one, about 100 years later, featured the development of electricity, the internal combustion engine, science-based chemicals, efficient steel casting, and the beginning of communication technologies, with the diffusion of the telegraph and the invention of the telephone. Between the two there are fundamental continuities, as well as some critical differences, the main one being the decisive importance of scientific knowledge in sustaining and guiding technological development after 1850.22 It is precisely because of their differences that features common to both may offer precious insights in understanding the logic of technological revolutions.


pages: 927 words: 216,549

Empire of Guns by Priya Satia

banking crisis, British Empire, business intelligence, Corn Laws, deindustrialization, delayed gratification, European colonialism, Fellow of the Royal Society, hiring and firing, interchangeable parts, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, James Watt: steam engine, joint-stock company, Khyber Pass, Menlo Park, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, rent-seeking, Scramble for Africa, Silicon Valley, spinning jenny, the scientific method, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, transatlantic slave trade, zero-sum game

During the American war, a tartan-manufacturing firm in Bannockburn sold cloth to the army far exceeding the value of its nonmilitary orders, which it turned away. The American war paid “rich dividends” to textile manufacturers in Yorkshire, Lancashire, and the West Country. War eased transformation in the cotton industry, too, quite apart from the Wyatt and Paul spinning machine. High employment rates during the Seven Years’ War dampened resentment of the introduction of the flying shuttle, which transformed weaving. The spinning jenny followed as output increased during the war. Farming benefited, too. The Navy Victualling Office was one of the nation’s largest purchasers of agricultural produce, structuring and integrating markets significantly with its bulk-goods transport system. Treasury Board contractors were involved in this work. In 1760, the Navy Board purchased 481,000 pounds of hops, 3,819,200 pounds of flour, 4,636,800 pounds of biscuits, 10,830,400 pounds of beef, 3,628,800 pounds of pork, 2,486,400 pounds of cheese, and 1,064,000 pounds of butter.


pages: 809 words: 237,921

The Narrow Corridor: States, Societies, and the Fate of Liberty by Daron Acemoglu, James A. Robinson

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, agricultural Revolution, AltaVista, Andrei Shleifer, bank run, Berlin Wall, British Empire, California gold rush, central bank independence, centre right, collateralized debt obligation, collective bargaining, colonial rule, Computer Numeric Control, conceptual framework, Corn Laws, corporate governance, creative destruction, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, crony capitalism, Dava Sobel, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, Deng Xiaoping, discovery of the americas, double entry bookkeeping, Edward Snowden, en.wikipedia.org, equal pay for equal work, European colonialism, Ferguson, Missouri, financial deregulation, financial innovation, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, full employment, income inequality, income per capita, industrial robot, information asymmetry, interest rate swap, invention of movable type, Isaac Newton, James Watt: steam engine, John Harrison: Longitude, joint-stock company, Kula ring, labor-force participation, land reform, Mahatma Gandhi, manufacturing employment, mass incarceration, Maui Hawaii, means of production, megacity, Mikhail Gorbachev, Nelson Mandela, obamacare, openstreetmap, out of africa, PageRank, pattern recognition, road to serfdom, Ronald Reagan, Skype, spinning jenny, Steven Pinker, the market place, transcontinental railway, War on Poverty, WikiLeaks

The Industrial Revolution, which got under way in the middle of the eighteenth century in Britain, was its economic offshoot because, just as in the Italian communes we saw in the previous chapter, it was produced by the liberty, opportunities, and incentives that the Shackled Leviathan made possible. In the course of a few decades, technology and the organization of production were transformed in a number of key industries. Leading the way were textiles, where a series of innovative breakthroughs in spinning, such as the water frame, the spinning jenny, and the mule revolutionized productivity. Similar innovations occurred in weaving, with the introduction of the flying shuttle and various types of power looms. Equally transformative were the novel forms of inanimate power starting with Thomas Newcomen’s atmospheric engine and then James Watt’s steam engine. The steam engine not only made mining much more productive by enabling the pumping of water out of mines, but also changed transportation and metallurgy.


pages: 1,014 words: 237,531

Escape From Rome: The Failure of Empire and the Road to Prosperity by Walter Scheidel

agricultural Revolution, barriers to entry, British Empire, colonial rule, conceptual framework, creative destruction, currency manipulation / currency intervention, dark matter, disruptive innovation, Eratosthenes, European colonialism, financial innovation, financial intermediation, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), invisible hand, Isaac Newton, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Johannes Kepler, joint-stock company, Joseph Schumpeter, knowledge economy, mandelbrot fractal, means of production, Network effects, out of africa, Peace of Westphalia, peer-to-peer lending, plutocrats, Plutocrats, principal–agent problem, purchasing power parity, rent-seeking, Republic of Letters, secular stagnation, South China Sea, spinning jenny, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, trade route, transaction costs, zero-sum game

These aggressive interventions limited the supply of cotton in Britain in the face of strong demand, not only at home but also in West Africa, where slaves were traded for cotton cloth. This prompted a search among domestic manufacturers for ways of producing more and cheaper cotton cloth that was suitable for printing. In response, a series of innovations greatly increased productivity in spinning and weaving, first by raising output per worker and then, crucially, by introducing water-powered machinery. Between the 1730s and the 1770s, the flying shuttle and the spinning jenny were followed by the water frame and the spinning mule, which was perfected into a fully automated device in the 1820s. But it was earlier with Samuel Crompton’s invention of the mule that the Lancashire muslin industry took off from the 1780s onward.115 Interstate competition and interventionism also affected the British coal industry. Export duties on coal rose in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries to keep down prices for domestic users.


pages: 1,197 words: 304,245

The Invention of Science: A New History of the Scientific Revolution by David Wootton

agricultural Revolution, Albert Einstein, British Empire, clockwork universe, Commentariolus, commoditize, conceptual framework, Dava Sobel, double entry bookkeeping, double helix, en.wikipedia.org, Ernest Rutherford, Fellow of the Royal Society, fudge factor, germ theory of disease, Google X / Alphabet X, Hans Lippershey, interchangeable parts, invention of gunpowder, invention of the steam engine, invention of the telescope, Isaac Newton, Jacques de Vaucanson, James Watt: steam engine, Johannes Kepler, John Harrison: Longitude, knowledge economy, lateral thinking, lone genius, Mercator projection, On the Revolutions of the Heavenly Spheres, Philip Mirowski, placebo effect, QWERTY keyboard, Republic of Letters, social intelligence, spice trade, spinning jenny, the scientific method, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions

Friedrich von Knauss (1724–89) invented a mechanical hand that wrote on a piece of paper just like a living hand; he also constructed the first typewriter.38 The Industrial Revolution would depend on the skills of such men, skills that would have been familiar to the craftsmen who built the first Strasbourg Cathedral clock. The Scientific Revolution started as a revolution of the mathematicians; it would eventually turn into a revolution of the mechanics. There is a direct line of descent from the Strasbourg clock to the spinning jenny. This brings us back to the problem with which we began. The Strasbourg clock was built in the middle of the fourteenth century – but the mechanical philosophy was invented three centuries later. Machines did not change much in the meantime, but philosophers did. Once Lucretius was available (he was rediscovered in 1417), his concept of the machina mundi could be turned into a quite new idea, the idea of a clockwork universe.


pages: 1,477 words: 311,310

The Rise and Fall of the Great Powers: Economic Change and Military Conflict From 1500 to 2000 by Paul Kennedy

agricultural Revolution, airline deregulation, anti-communist, banking crisis, Berlin Wall, Bretton Woods, British Empire, cuban missile crisis, deindustrialization, Deng Xiaoping, European colonialism, floating exchange rates, full employment, German hyperinflation, imperial preference, industrial robot, joint-stock company, laissez-faire capitalism, long peace, means of production, Monroe Doctrine, mutually assured destruction, night-watchman state, North Sea oil, nuclear winter, oil shock, open economy, Peace of Westphalia, Potemkin village, price mechanism, price stability, RAND corporation, reserve currency, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, South China Sea, South Sea Bubble, spice trade, spinning jenny, stakhanovite, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, trade route, University of East Anglia, upwardly mobile, zero-sum game

In Bernard Porter’s words, she was the first frogspawn egg to grow legs, the first tadpole to change into a frog, the first frog to hop out of the pond. She was economically different from the others, but that was only because she was so far ahead of them.32 Given these auspicious circumstances, fears of strategical weakness appeared groundless; and most mid-Victorians preferred, like Kingsley as he cried tears of pride during the Great Exhibition at the Crystal Palace in 1851, to believe that a cosmic destiny was at work: The spinning jenny and the railroad, Cunard’s liners and the electric telegraph, are to me … signs that we are, on some points at least, in harmony with the universe; that there is a mighty spirit working among us … the Ordering and Creating God.33 Like all other civilizations at the top of the wheel of fortune, therefore, the British could believe that their position was both “natural” and destined to continue.


pages: 1,194 words: 371,889

The scramble for Africa, 1876-1912 by Thomas Pakenham

active measures, British Empire, Cape to Cairo, centre right, clean water, colonial rule, Etonian, European colonialism, God and Mammon, imperial preference, Khartoum Gordon, land reform, out of africa, Scramble for Africa, spice trade, spinning jenny, trade route, transatlantic slave trade

Let word of that reach the coast and he would challenge England and all Europe to come and rescue them. What could the white men do to him? How could they come into his country unless they flew in the air? When the storm had blown itself out, Mackay and Ashe returned to their daily tasks of translating the Gospel of St Matthew into Luganda, printing copies on their press, making a loom and a kind of spinning jenny, and baptizing their lads in secret. Such was the fear of persecution that none of the Baganda dared come to the chapel except at midnight. But the missionaries tried to act as though things were normal. One day Ashe went up to the palace and had an interview with Pokino, the senior minister and formerly a diligent ‘reader’ at the mission. Ashe boldly warned him that it was vain to profess to fear God and yet carry out robbery and murder.


Frommer's England 2011: With Wales by Darwin Porter, Danforth Prince

airport security, British Empire, carbon footprint, centre right, Columbine, congestion charging, double helix, Edmond Halley, George Santayana, haute couture, Isaac Newton, James Watt: steam engine, Murano, Venice glass, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Ronald Reagan, Skype, Sloane Ranger, spinning jenny, Stephen Hawking, sustainable-tourism, the market place, University of East Anglia, urban planning, urban renewal, urban sprawl, young professional

Followers of William the Conqueror arrived in 1068 to erect 573 19_615386-ch16.indd 57319_615386-ch16.indd 573 8/24/10 2:14 PM8/24/10 2:14 PM Nottinghamshire: Robin Hood Country 16 a fort here. In a later reincarnation, the fort saw supporters of Prince John surrender to Richard the Lion-Hearted in 1194. Many other exploits occurred here—notably Edward III’s capture of Roger Mortimer and Queen Isabella, the assassins of Edward II. From Nottingham, Richard III marched out with his men to face defeat and his own death at Bosworth Field in 1485. With the arrival of the spinning jenny in 1768, Nottingham was launched into the forefront of the Industrial Revolution. It’s still a center of industry and home base to many well-known British firms, turning out such products as John Player cigarettes, Boots pharmaceuticals, and Raleigh cycles. Nottingham doesn’t have many attractions, but it’s a young and vital city, and is very student-oriented thanks to its two large universities.


Wealth and Poverty of Nations by David S. Landes

"Robert Solow", Admiral Zheng, affirmative action, agricultural Revolution, Atahualpa, Ayatollah Khomeini, Bartolomé de las Casas, British Empire, business cycle, Cape to Cairo, clean water, colonial rule, Columbian Exchange, computer age, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deindustrialization, deskilling, European colonialism, Fellow of the Royal Society, financial intermediation, Francisco Pizarro, germ theory of disease, glass ceiling, illegal immigration, income inequality, Index librorum prohibitorum, interchangeable parts, invention of agriculture, invention of movable type, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, James Watt: steam engine, John Harrison: Longitude, joint-stock company, Just-in-time delivery, Kenneth Arrow, land tenure, lateral thinking, mass immigration, Mexican peso crisis / tequila crisis, MITM: man-in-the-middle, Monroe Doctrine, Murano, Venice glass, new economy, New Urbanism, North Sea oil, out of africa, passive investing, Paul Erdős, Paul Samuelson, Philip Mirowski, rent-seeking, Right to Buy, Scramble for Africa, Simon Kuznets, South China Sea, spice trade, spinning jenny, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, trade route, transaction costs, transatlantic slave trade, Vilfredo Pareto, zero-sum game

The world had slipped its moorings. 7 Can one put dates to this revolution? N o t easily, because of the decades of experiment that precede a given innovation and the long run of im­ provement that follows. Where is beginning and where end? The core of the larger process—mechanization of industry and the adoption of the factory—lies, however, in the story of the textile manufacture.* Rapid change there began with the spinning jenny of James Harg­ reaves (c. 1 7 6 6 ) , followed by Thomas Arkwright's water frame (1769) and Samuel Crompton's mule ( 1 7 7 9 ) , so called because it was a cross between the jenny and the water frame. With the mule, one could spin fine counts as well as coarse, better and cheaper than any hand spinner. * C o r e o f t h e p r o c e s s : J o h n H i c k s , A Theory of Economic History, p . 1 4 7 , a n d C a r l o C i p o l l a , Before the Industrial Revolution, p . 2 9 1 , w o u l d n o t a g r e e .


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

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]. Steam-power and machines, however, could not be put into widespread use unless coal—the most efficient fuel for raising steam—could be mined on a much expanded scale.