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Presented in collaboration with Oblong Books and Music and the Scoville Memorial Library.

In his new book bestselling author Simon Winchester traces the development of technology from the Industrial Age to the Digital Age to explore the single component crucial to advancement—precision—in a superb history that is both an homage and a warning for our future.

The rise of manufacturing could not have happened without an attention to precision. At the dawn of the Industrial Revolution in eighteenth-century England, standards of measurement were established, giving way to the development of machine tools—machines that make machines. Eventually, the application of precision tools and methods resulted in the creation and mass production of items from guns and glass to mirrors, lenses, and cameras—and eventually gave way to further breakthroughs, including gene splicing, microchips, and the Hadron Collider.

Simon Winchester is the acclaimed author of many books, including “The Professor and the Madman”, “The Men Who United the States”, “The Map That Changed the World”, “The Man Who Loved China”, “A Crack in the Edge of the World”, and “Krakatoa”, all of which were “New York Times” bestsellers and appeared on numerous best and notable lists. In 2006, Winchester was made an officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) by Her Majesty the Queen. He resides in western Massachusetts.

 

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