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The Tale of the ScaleAn Odyssey of Invention$
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Solly Angel

Print publication date: 2004

Print ISBN-13: 9780195158687

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195158687.001.0001

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What Is Wrong with the Machine?

What Is Wrong with the Machine?

(p.10) 2 What Is Wrong with the Machine?
The Tale of the Scale

Solly Angel

Oxford University Press

The thin personal scale was only a fantasy. In fact, the author had no knowledge of scales whatsoever, and no clue about the mechanisms that made them work. A spiral-tube prototype was developed and it did not work as a scale because the plastic tubing expanded under pressure, as well as overnight; it did not retain a constant volume, and that affected the water pressure. In addition, the top plate was somehow supported from below, which meant that some of the load did not translate into water pressure. It did not simply float, as it should have. Over the next two months, cross sections and several prototypes were produced in close succession and they all failed again. Solly's knowledge of scales was less than rudimentary, and since there could not be any progress without real load cells, he relinquished the scale quest for a while and concentrated instead on the land and housing markets of Bangkok. It was necessary to get physically closer to the knowledge frontier before he could make more progress on the scale front.

Keywords:   machine, thin personal scale, spiral-tube prototype, plastic tubing, plate, Solly Angel

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