27.5.09

Famous Spanish Inventions

I've been trying to get the right healthy & energy foodstuffs in me so my brain makes it through this exam period.
I bought a bunch of oranges that come in one of those strange nets. The label assures me they were Producido en España.
Now, in the run up to the European elections, I was curious about the pre-concieved notions we Europeans have about other Europeans.
You know, Germans are sticklers for rules, Belgians always on holiday, French always on strike,... those kind of things.

Now a word about Spain. Plenty of cultural heritage, an ideal vacationing spot, lovely food.
But what about the other things? Spain's contribution to the world of inventions? They don't actually stand out as, say, Germany or England do in the field of famous inventions. The industrial revolution sort of blew straight by them. There are probably al lot of naval or warfare improvements around which the Spanish can claim were theirs, but I'm thinking commercial, well known stuff here. How many famous Spanish scientists do we retain from history? I'm afraidy wady I don't know a single one by heart.

So in an attempt to be fair I did a bit of a search and this is what I came up with.

Here are Those Famous Spanish Inventions listed in full:
-a machine that can de-seed pomegranates automatically
-the autogyro (think Little Nellie, the James Bond one seater copter)
-tapas
-Spain, of course, goes without saying
-errr
-that's it.

I may be a bit harsh, but the label on the oranges kind of confirmed my pre-conceived notion about the Spanish.
I mean look at it. Take a good look at it. Even someone who isn't even remotely interested in mechanics will have worked this out in a jiffy.

So what do we see? We see a donkey attached to some kind of contraption by means of a fixed rod. What is the animal supposed to be doing? I assume it should go round the pointy thing (looks like some kind of a sombrero) in circles, Samson style.
But what is that big round thing? It's a waterwheel. The flow of the water is supposed to make it turn. The axis of the wheel is connected to the donkey through the sombrero.
Now what is going on here? A few questions leap to mind:
-Is the donkey trying to pull the wheel out of the water?
-Is the donkey powering the wheel and making the river flow?
-Where is the owner of the sombrero? Is he having his siesta underneath the palm tree behind the little house?
-And what has this got to do with the oranges in the net?

The more I look at it the more I am puzzled.
I can only conclude one thing: the Spanish sucko mucho at mechanics, hence no famous Spanish inventors.


Ok, so they may suck at graphic design as well.

5 comments:

DPP said...

Famous modern spanish inventions: Mop and bucket (fregona), submarine (by Isaac Peral in 1888), chupachups (lollipop), etc.

In the ancient times, the falcata or sword that roman used, etc.

An then of course gastronomics: paella, sherry, jamón ..., etc.

john.seabee said...

the spanish didnt in invent the mop and bucket. A spanish officer seen a mop in america and after a few years of thinking he made the round mop ( instead of the flat faced mop in USA) that the europeans use today.

Ivan said...

Some of the Spanish inventions along the History are:

The first graded lenses
The submarine
The lollipop (chupachups)
The Autogyro
The Spanish Libelula (dragonfly)
The mop and backet
The table football
The birth pill
El ajedrecista
The Air-independent propulsion
The laryngoscope
The capstan
The Molotov Coctail
The Talgo

Anonymous said...

Submarine??? I don't think so:

Cornelius Drebbel, was the inventor of the first navigable submarine, while working for the Royal Navy. Using William Bourne's design from 1578, he manufactured a steerable submarine with a leather-covered wooden frame. Between 1620 and 1624 Drebbel successfully built and tested two more submarines, each one bigger than the last.

Ivan said...

In 1867 Narcís Monturiol i Estarriol successfully developed an early form of anaerobic air independent propulsion. In 1908 the Imperial Russian Navy launched the Pochtovy submarine which used a gasoline engine fed with compressed air and exhausted under water.

I don't think you could launch any submarine without the air independent propulsion in the century XVII specially because on that time the strongest navy was the Spanish.