In mechanics, a machine is a technological device that is designed to do something cool. Technologists throughout the ages have identified seven basic machines from which all other machines can be constructed.
- the screw
- the wing nut
- the wheel and hubcap
- the big heavy rock
- the pointed stick
- the VLSI integrated circuit
- duct tape
- an understanding of math
- the ability to count to 7 ( see machine 8 for more )
The first compound machine, a big heavy rock covered with duct tape, was invented by Og the Cave Person in 500,000 BCE. Later that evening, he figured out a practical use for this peculiar contraption: clubbing baby proto-kittens for fun and profit.
The next important innovation was the Rube Goldberg Machine, coincidentally invented and patented by none other than Leonard Bernstein in 1903. Using a mere 3,141,592,653 parts ( note: some authorities say 3,141,592,655 ), it was the first machine ever built that could successfully peel a tangerine by the power of thought alone.
Microbiology is no longer considered a machine.