TECHNOVERSE: a Thumbnail History of Technology

by Dimitri Gerakaris

This piece, situated at the entrance of the University of New Hampshire's Technical College at Manchester, traces the history of technology. From the "Big Bang" of creation, the galaxies and planets spill forth to planet Earth, where a lump of meteoric iron is pounded by a stone-age hammer into tools, which make tools, which leads to the technology of today and the future.

In impressionistic style, it touches on the invention of the wheel, classical architecture, hand powered tools, animal powered impliments, water power, the age of steam, industrialization , electrification and the dizzying proliferation of technology we have today and into the unknown of the future.

All the while, it touches on the various disciplines taught at the Technical College and also poses a question: at the early stage is shown a Roman sword partially folded back and welded into a plowshare - at the current stage, next to a computer chip, a rocket is blasting off under a laser beam. Is this a rocket for exploration and discovery or is this a means of destruction? The age-old choice of the plow or the sword remains for the current students of technology to determine how they will apply their newly aquired skills. The answer is implied by the circular piece of the ideal from DaVinci that "Mankind is the measure of all things". Secondarily, they can  also reflect on the fact that this whole complicated assembly was created simply by one person with a hammer and that sophisticated solutions do not always require sophisticated technology - just sophisticated ideas.

TECHNOVERSE: a Thumbnail History of Technology was commissioned by the New Hampshire State Council on the Arts for the Percent for Art Collection and was installed in 1983. It measures 4ft. by 9ft. and was forged of steel.





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LAST UPDATED August, 1999