Today is 82nd birthday of the humble photocopier.
According to smithsonian.com: "The copier created an electrostatic image of a document on a rotating metal drum, and used it to transfer toner—ink in a powdered format—to a piece of paper, which would then be sealed in place by heat. It was fast, cranking out a copy in as little as seven seconds. When the first desk-size machines were rolled out to corporate customers—some of whom had to remove doors to install these behemoths—the era of copying began."
Back then, Xerox thought customers would make about 2,000 copies a month—but it was more like 10,000 a month, and some as many as 100,000. Employees would sneak their own tax returns, party invitations, recipes on the machine and chain letters began demanding participants not only forward the letter, but send out 20 copies—because, hey, now anyone could! And it was something of an illicit office thrill — hiding behind the anonymity of a duplicated document, workers began circulating offensive jokes and cartoons. Politically, secrets were harder to keep, documents easier to leak. The very first popular photocopier, the Xerox 914, had a tendency to overheat and burst into flames after extensive use. Xerox had to give out a free 'scorch suppressor' with each machine. Yes, that's a euphemism for a fire extinguisher.
Kiwi actor's Bird of the Year endorsement
Trying not to get involved in #birdoftheyear 2020, Michelle Langstone tweets that our wonderful seabirds are largely overlooked in these annual popularity contests… "because they're mostly offshore, and they smell, and they haven't got fancy plumage, and many of them are not endangered. But they're so heroic, they really are. Birds like our albatross and gannets mate for life. They're loyal. I would love to see everyone use their 5 votes to cheer exclusively for our seabirds." I once got to see an albatross who had been rescued. I will never forget its eyes. I could see the ocean in them. They were like the soul of the world. The colours on a gannet's head up close make me cry. Penguins are some of the best people I know - community minded, clever."
Property market 2020
If you own a home in New Zealand and don't see house prices as a problem, take a walk in someone else's shoes….."I realise that my entire personality is now "aggrieved first home buyer", but if you'll allow me one more rant," tweets @craigmccullock in Wellington. "House sold for $530k in 2017. RV $550k. No renovations. Bank valued it at $670k. It went for close to $780k. The property market is broken."
Paradox of starting out
You need the experience to get the job, but you need a job to get experience—a true Catch-22 scenario in real life. For this (ridiculous) reason, many young people are doing unpaid internships to gain experience and skills. But it seems awfully unfair to put in a workload for no compensation at all, doesn't it? Luckily, some lawmakers agree and have been calling to ban unpaid internships across the states of the European Union, declaring unpaid internships as "a form of exploitation of young people's work and a violation of their rights."