Structure in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction

That remarkable roof is part of the Smithfield Market in London, constructed in the 1860s. I’m reasonably sure that the green and dark blue elements are wrought iron, riveted together, the gray and red ornament is cast iron, and the light gray roof structure is wood. Whether or not the high-victorian style is to your …

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Standardization, Part the Umpteenth

Is the piece of pipe on the bottom a replacement for the one on the top? The 40ish-year-old plumbing in my apartment sink needed some work and that question occupied a surprisingly large amount of thought. The short answer is yes, with some effort. The long answer is that a lot of standards, maybe most, …

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An Embarrassment of Riches

Building a very large city on several large islands, a bunch of small ones, and a piece of the mainland means that you will build a lot of bridges. New York has bridges, including four former record-holders for the longest main span, one of which may well be the most-photographed bridge in the world. The …

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