For a long time, I have been intrigued by the zipper. It is everywhere: on clothes, backpacks, shoes, sporting goods, suitcases, camping equipment, etc. But look at one closely and try to imagine how it works.
The basic principle is quite simple; two parallel chains of projections (teeth) lock and unlock to form a quick, easy, reliable means of opening and closing things. The chains of teeth are part of a truly ingeniously designed and engineered piece of precision equipment.
Given its ubiquity and generally flawless performance in so many everyday tasks, I believe the zipper truly deserves a place of honor on my list of what I like to call “extraordinary ordinary things.”Continue reading Zipper—Extraordinary Ordinary Things