Invention: a new, useful process, machine, improvement, etc., that did not exist previously and that is recognized as the product of some unique intuition or genius, as distinguished from ordinary mechanical skill or craftsmanship. *
The world is constantly changing, for better or worse. We live in an era of unprecedented technological advancement. One consequence of this is failing to consider that the world wasn’t always this way.
Throughout time, there have been particular achievements or inventions that have had a significant impact on the future of an ecosystem, society, or human civilization as a whole.*Dictionary.com
The factory is an example of such an achievement.
The factory began surfacing in the 18th century during the Industrial Revolution. Before this time, all products were made by domestic systems such as local farms, homes, and individual shops and workhouses manned by skilled laborers.
With the introduction of the factory, the nature of work changed. With a concentration of a large number of workers in the same place and the invention of the assembly line, mass production was born. This, of course, revolutionized the economy by making available to consumers a larger number and variety of products. This, however, came at a cost.
In factories, production control was paramount while worker conditions were overlooked. As such, an ever-increasing percentage of the work force worked in unsafe conditions for lower pay.
The factory made available the current wide variety of products now available and set in motions many advancements that lead to our modern, privileged, everyday life. At the expense of the health and safety of thousands of men, women, and children.
Would the world before the first factory still be so indebted to and accepting of its advancements to everyday life and global society if it knew the cost?