The sixth /dev/fort brought together people, families, and unexpected stories
Once upon a time, there was a man called Joseph Marie Jacquard. Soldier, chancer, not particularly good father, and opportunistic inventor, his dogged persistence in the textile industry finally gave the world the Jacquard loom, the first successful introduction of programming to the textile industry.
Much like the textiles woven on his loom, the stories that sit behind, alongside, and because of Jacquard form a complex fabric, covering automatons, computing, and the power that drove the industrial revolution. With History Mesh, we've tried to capture the excitement we felt while discovering and exploring those interlinked stories, and to inject a little bit of technological whimsy into your life.
The portrait of Jacquard was, in fact, a sheet of woven silk, framed and glazed, but looking so perfectly like an engraving, that it has been mistaken for such by two members of the Royal Academy.
Bringing home just how much the world has changed across the course of these stories, we were able to research all of it in an out-of-the-way location in Scotland. We even managed to get a book delivered to us (Jacquard's Web, by James Essinger), ordered from Amazon using Kindle and Whispernet.
You might also wonder what the next years will bring us. Power, computing, manufacturing and automation together define our modern world, but what of a thousand years from now, or two thousand, or three?