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Thread: What Is Your Favorite Invention Or Discovery In Human History?

  1. #1 What Is Your Favorite Invention Or Discovery In Human History? 
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    What is your favorite invention and/or discovery in human history and why?

    My favorite invention is the personal computer because it allows you to create and run applications using the personal computers operating system.


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    Mine is the transistor (and it's later development into the microchip), without it most if what we now take for granted would have been impossible.


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    Quote Originally Posted by PhDemon View Post
    Mine is the transistor (and it's later development into the microchip), without it most if what we now take for granted would have been impossible.
    Yea, without the transistor my choice for favorite invention would not be possible.
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    Symbolism?

    If you think about all the possible discoveries that can be considered pivotal it is amazing people found time to do anything else.

    Didn't Reagan have some quote about the importance of mundane lives? ( although did he have any quotes that weren't scripted? A bit like an anti -Trump , who can't stay on any message unless he thinks it reflects well on himself personally or serves his own interest)
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    Probably money. Whilst many of us bemoan a lack of it, or at least having insufficient amounts to always be able to have the very latest things we are told we must have or want in this consumer society of ours, it does provide us with an effective and efficient exchange medium for acquiring all the things we really need in a relatively easy way. The world without money would be a very strange place and complicated if everything was being run on a barter system. Perhaps one day in the dim and distant future we may see a more altruistic world where people aren't quite so obsessed with the materialistic and where consumerism isn't the driving force, at this time the abolition of money might not seem so strange but here and now today I would certainly contend that money is indeed still a very important invention.
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    Quote Originally Posted by geordief View Post
    Symbolism?

    If you think about all the possible discoveries that can be considered pivotal it is amazing people found time to do anything else.

    Didn't Reagan have some quote about the importance of mundane lives? ( although did he have any quotes that weren't scripted? A bit like an anti -Trump , who can't stay on any message unless he thinks it reflects well on himself personally or serves his own interest)
    By symbolism do you mean the use of symbols to represent ideas or qualities, the use of symbols to represent quantities, or do you mean the late nineteenth-century art movement called Symbolism?
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    Quote Originally Posted by mmatt9876 View Post

    By symbolism do you mean the use of symbols to represent ideas or qualities, the use of symbols to represent quantities, or do you mean the late nineteenth-century art movement called Symbolism?
    I just meant the use of some sign to represent something else . Language would be an example . Coinage another."The use of symbols" would have been more correct than "symbolism" In fact I was using the word wrongly , I now see.(thanks for picking me up on it)

    I imagine animals may also use symbols (or do they?) and so this would not count as a human discovery as per the OP.
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    Quote Originally Posted by geordief View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by mmatt9876 View Post

    By symbolism do you mean the use of symbols to represent ideas or qualities, the use of symbols to represent quantities, or do you mean the late nineteenth-century art movement called Symbolism?
    I just meant the use of some sign to represent something else . Language would be an example . Coinage another."The use of symbols" would have been more correct than "symbolism" In fact I was using the word wrongly , I now see.(thanks for picking me up on it)

    I imagine animals may also use symbols (or do they?) and so this would not count as a human discovery as per the OP.
    An example of symbol use exclusive to humans is the use of alphabetical symbols to represent spoken human language.
    Last edited by mmatt9876; June 17th, 2017 at 08:52 AM.
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    Genetic engineering. It is already providing additional food to feed hundreds of millions and we're just started to explore its amazing potential from could result in the remarkable possibility to preserve the mass extinction we've started to colonizing space.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    Genetic engineering. It is already providing additional food to feed hundreds of millions and we're just started to explore its amazing potential from could result in the remarkable possibility to preserve the mass extinction we've started to colonizing space.
    A nice thought but all those dying species only exist in a symbiosis with their niches,don't they . We cannot ever restore them (the niches) and can we realistically hope to tap into the knowledge being lost as these species die out?

    I mean there are countless species (correct terminology) being lost continuously without our even knowing they existed which might have held the key to advances in medicine and other areas .

    Antibiotics spring to mind ....
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ascended View Post
    Probably money. Whilst many of us bemoan a lack of it, or at least having insufficient amounts to always be able to have the very latest things we are told we must have or want in this consumer society of ours, it does provide us with an effective and efficient exchange medium for acquiring all the things we really need in a relatively easy way. The world without money would be a very strange place and complicated if everything was being run on a barter system. Perhaps one day in the dim and distant future we may see a more altruistic world where people aren't quite so obsessed with the materialistic and where consumerism isn't the driving force, at this time the abolition of money might not seem so strange but here and now today I would certainly contend that money is indeed still a very important invention.
    Yea, purchasing goods with money when there is a set price is a lot less complicated than valuing one item towards another and trading them through bartering.
    Last edited by mmatt9876; June 17th, 2017 at 05:43 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    Genetic engineering. It is already providing additional food to feed hundreds of millions and we're just started to explore its amazing potential from could result in the remarkable possibility to preserve the mass extinction we've started to colonizing space.
    Some of the benefits genetic engineering has brought to farming are longer shelf life, better disease resistance, and faster more frequent crop cycles, right?
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    Quote Originally Posted by mmatt9876 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Ascended View Post
    Probably money. Whilst many of us bemoan a lack of it, or at least having insufficient amounts to always be able to have the very latest things we are told we must have or want in this consumer society of ours, it does provide us with an effective and efficient exchange medium for acquiring all the things we really need in a relatively easy way. The world without money would be a very strange place and complicated if everything was being run on a barter system. Perhaps one day in the dim and distant future we may see a more altruistic world where people aren't quite so obsessed with the materialistic and where consumerism isn't the driving force, at this time the abolition of money might not seem so strange but here and now today I would certainly contend that money is indeed still a very important invention.
    Yea, purchasing goods with money when there is a set price is a lot less complicated than valuing one item towards another and trading them through bartering.
    I'm watching the cryptocurrencies to see what kind of impact they might have, it seems to have been a steadily growing market, was a mini-crash a few days ago but moving back up again now. There appears to be nearly 900 with a total market capitalisation of over $100 billion. It will be very interesting to see if any of them can really replace or supercede one of the more established physical national currencies. If so, this could be a real evolutionary step fowards for the entire concept of money, rather than just another techy fad.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ascended View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by mmatt9876 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Ascended View Post
    Probably money. Whilst many of us bemoan a lack of it, or at least having insufficient amounts to always be able to have the very latest things we are told we must have or want in this consumer society of ours, it does provide us with an effective and efficient exchange medium for acquiring all the things we really need in a relatively easy way. The world without money would be a very strange place and complicated if everything was being run on a barter system. Perhaps one day in the dim and distant future we may see a more altruistic world where people aren't quite so obsessed with the materialistic and where consumerism isn't the driving force, at this time the abolition of money might not seem so strange but here and now today I would certainly contend that money is indeed still a very important invention.
    Yea, purchasing goods with money when there is a set price is a lot less complicated than valuing one item towards another and trading them through bartering.
    I'm watching the cryptocurrencies to see what kind of impact they might have, it seems to have been a steadily growing market, was a mini-crash a few days ago but moving back up again now. There appears to be nearly 900 with a total market capitalisation of over $100 billion. It will be very interesting to see if any of them can really replace or supercede one of the more established physical national currencies. If so, this could be a real evolutionary step fowards for the entire concept of money, rather than just another techy fad.
    What exactly are cryptocurrencies? I know they are a digital currency in which encryption techniques are used to regulate the generation of units of currency and verify the transfer of funds independent of a central bank.
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    You've just answered your own question
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhDemon View Post
    You've just answered your own question
    I thought so. I was not sure if there was more to it than I thought.
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    cell phone that are Smart....they serve to keep us connected to business, and those we love.
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    I definitely agree with Lynx about genetic engineering, but to add something different to this conversation I will say indoor plumbing. Hot water and cold water on tap and a proper sewage disposal system are things I would hate to live without. Just think about how nasty things were back in the days of dumping chamber pots in the streets.
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    Quote Originally Posted by babe View Post
    cell phone that are Smart....they serve to keep us connected to business, and those we love.
    Cell phones are defiantly useful and cool because they keep one up to date. You can also listen to music, play videos, and play games on some smartphones.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Falconer360 View Post
    I definitely agree with Lynx about genetic engineering, but to add something different to this conversation I will say indoor plumbing. Hot water and cold water on tap and a proper sewage disposal system are things I would hate to live without. Just think about how nasty things were back in the days of dumping chamber pots in the streets.
    A clean town is a happy and healthy town. I believe plumbing goes back to the ancient Romans but I think the science of plumbing was lost for a while during the Early Middle Ages in Europe.
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    Quote Originally Posted by mmatt9876 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Falconer360 View Post
    I definitely agree with Lynx about genetic engineering, but to add something different to this conversation I will say indoor plumbing. Hot water and cold water on tap and a proper sewage disposal system are things I would hate to live without. Just think about how nasty things were back in the days of dumping chamber pots in the streets.
    A clean town is a happy and healthy town. I believe plumbing goes back to the ancient Romans but I think the science of plumbing was lost for a while during the Early Middle Ages in Europe.
    I think I heard on a TV documentary that it predated the Romans and that the Cretan civilization used sewerage systems.

    This seems to back up my memory on this

    "The Minoans were the first civilization to use underground clay pipes for sanitation and water supply. The Romans would develop these sophisticated comforts - but not for 1500 years."


    Minoan Engineering - Plumbing and Heatiing: HistoryWiz Ancient Greece
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    Quote Originally Posted by mmatt9876 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Falconer360 View Post
    I definitely agree with Lynx about genetic engineering, but to add something different to this conversation I will say indoor plumbing. Hot water and cold water on tap and a proper sewage disposal system are things I would hate to live without. Just think about how nasty things were back in the days of dumping chamber pots in the streets.
    A clean town is a happy and healthy town. I believe plumbing goes back to the ancient Romans but I think the science of plumbing was lost for a while during the Early Middle Ages in Europe.
    Actually plumbing goes back further. The Indus Valley had indoor plumbing to an extent. In the city of Lothal (about c. 2300 BCE) every house had an indoor toilet that was connected to a covered sewer system.
    "For every moment of triumph, for every instance of beauty, many souls must be trampled." Hunter S Thompson

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    And my clarification predates yours ,Falconer360 by a minute
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    Hot water and cold water on tap and a proper sewage disposal system are things I would hate to live without. Just think about how nasty things were back in the days of dumping chamber pots in the streets.
    Reminds me of a scene in Blackadder II (set in Elizabethan times) when Blackadder is selling his house and the purchaser asks about the toilet arrangements:

    Mrs. Pants: But what about the privies?
    Blackadder: Um, well, what we are talking about in privy terms is the latest in front wall fresh air orifices combined with a wide capacity gutter installation below.
    Mrs. Pants: You mean you crap out the window?
    Blackadder: Yes.
    Mrs. Pants: Well in that case we'll definitely take it. I can't stand those dirty indoor things.
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    Quote Originally Posted by geordief View Post
    And my clarification predates yours ,Falconer360 by a minute
    Geordief the ninja has struck again!

    Demon I've only watched one episode of Blackadder, but clearly I need to watch more.
    "For every moment of triumph, for every instance of beauty, many souls must be trampled." Hunter S Thompson

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    Guinness of course!
    And writing - preservation and distribution of knowledge. Without that scientific/ technological development would have been much slower.
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    Did the ancient Minoans, Romans, and peoples of the Indus Valley use water under pressure in their plumbing systems as we do today?
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    Demon I've only watched one episode of Blackadder, but clearly I need to watch more.
    Yes, yes you do It's witty as fuck and if you want to "get" British humour (note spelling ) it's a good starting point.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post
    Guinness of course!
    And writing - preservation and distribution of knowledge. Without that scientific/ technological development would have been much slower.
    Have you ever tried the Chimay Grande Reserve? It has a great texture and taste.

    Writing is defiantly one of the more paramount inventions in Human history for the reasons you stated.
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    With all the profundity of previous suggested favourites my liking for the humble gumboot seems a bit shallow.
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    Quote Originally Posted by mmatt9876 View Post
    Did the ancient Minoans, Romans, and peoples of the Indus Valley use water under pressure in their plumbing systems as we do today?
    How could you have a water flow without pressure? Would it be "slopping out" otherwise?

    I only really know as much as there is in the link I gave you.

    I did also see a documentary on the BBC about how they filmed ,measured and reconstituted virtually a submerged town underwater using submarine drones

    The reconstituted town was then described as being very mod con and one that we would have felt very at home in.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pavlopetri
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    With all the profundity of previous suggested favourites my liking for the humble gumboot seems a bit shallow.
    That depends on your shoe size and how long your legs are!
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    Quote Originally Posted by geordief View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by mmatt9876 View Post
    Did the ancient Minoans, Romans, and peoples of the Indus Valley use water under pressure in their plumbing systems as we do today?
    How could you have a water flow without pressure? Would it be "slopping out" otherwise?

    I only really know as much as there is in the link I gave you.

    I did also see a documentary on the BBC about how they filmed ,measured and reconstituted virtually a submerged town underwater using submarine drones

    The reconstituted town was then described as being very mod con and one that we would have felt very at home in.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pavlopetri
    Sorry about that! It is pretty obvious you need water pressure in order to have water flow through pipes.

    It is interesting that the people from the documentary were able to virtually reconstruct an ancient submerged town using submarine drones and find it had some amenities like our own.
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    Solar!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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    Quote Originally Posted by babe View Post
    Solar!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Do you mean solar energy?
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    Nah, she just suffers from Tourette's Syndrome

    Also, I'm with Pratchett.. Multiple exclamation marks are the sign of a sick mind
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    writing ofc, all the above mentioned wouldn't be possible w/o making notes.
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    Quote Originally Posted by mmatt9876 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by babe View Post
    Solar!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Do you mean solar energy?
    yes!
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhDemon View Post
    Nah, she just suffers from Tourette's Syndrome

    Also, I'm with Pratchett.. Multiple exclamation marks are the sign of a sick mind

    Thank you Sir Demon. I could have said TAMPONS *L*
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    Solar tampons?
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    But surely if they are used as intended they are in a dark place
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    Quote Originally Posted by geordief View Post
    Solar tampons?
    WHACKING YOU AND DEMON

    TAMPONS

    SOLAR?

    SHEESH they are in an dark place *L*


    Sorry that was so hilarious I spit my water out!
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    My favorite discovery is the discovery of Earth like exoplanets around other stars because they may harbor alien life or provide a place for interplanetary colonization one day.
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    Every time I get on an airplane, I always think how amazing it's to be able to fly on a machine that weights thousands if pounds but yet can move against the forces of nature in such controlled, perfect, graceful and precise manner. One would have to truly understand all the controls an aircraft has working in harmony all at the same time to really appreciate the invention of the airplane. Think about the Airbus 380 and the millions of operations that happen at the same time to see the marvelous machine flying.
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    and I need a pill to fly it is claustrophobic for me
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    Soap... because sometimes plain water just doesn't cut it.
    There are no paradoxes in relativity, just people's misunderstandings of it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by sdborjas View Post
    Every time I get on an airplane, I always think how amazing it's to be able to fly on a machine that weights thousands if pounds but yet can move against the forces of nature in such controlled, perfect, graceful and precise manner. One would have to truly understand all the controls an aircraft has working in harmony all at the same time to really appreciate the invention of the airplane. Think about the Airbus 380 and the millions of operations that happen at the same time to see the marvelous machine flying.
    After considering all the evolution the airplane went through since the first successful controlled flight of an aircraft by the Wright Brothers back in 1903 to the modern stealth fighters it is hard to believe the airplane has gone from point A to point B in only 114 years.
    Last edited by mmatt9876; July 10th, 2017 at 05:20 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by babe View Post
    and I need a pill to fly it is claustrophobic for me
    Yea, it is such a small space.
    Last edited by mmatt9876; July 10th, 2017 at 05:18 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by KJW View Post
    Soap... because sometimes plain water just doesn't cut it.
    Without soap so many businesses could not function and a lot more people would be sick.
    Last edited by mmatt9876; July 10th, 2017 at 05:19 PM.
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    I think an important historical discovery is A^2+B^2=C^2.
    It can be used to calculate how far the solar tampon has to poke out to generate voltage.
    I was some of the mud that got to sit up and look around.
    Lucky me. Lucky mud.
    -Kurt Vonnegut Jr.-
    Cat's Cradle.
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  52. #51  
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    Vaccines, generally credited to Edward Jenner from Gloucestershire, England has helped save the lives of more people than anything else.

    Penicillin, discovered by Alexander Fleming from Darvel, Scotland has also saved countless lives.

    Painkillers such as Ibuprofen, discovered by Stewart Adams in Nottingham, England.
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  53. #52  
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    Quote Originally Posted by GiantEvil View Post
    I think an important historical discovery is A^2+B^2=C^2.
    It can be used to calculate how far the solar tampon has to poke out to generate voltage.
    In emergencies they have been used by Air Traffic Controllers to pinpoint an aircraft's position.
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  54. #53  
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    Self service supermarket checkouts are great.
    Seldom a queue.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ox View Post
    Vaccines, generally credited to Edward Jenner from Gloucestershire, England has helped save the lives of more people than anything else.

    Penicillin, discovered by Alexander Fleming from Darvel, Scotland has also saved countless lives.

    Painkillers such as Ibuprofen, discovered by Stewart Adams in Nottingham, England.
    The discovery of medicine and the countless inventions and discoveries that followed was very important for humanity.
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  56. #55  
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    Quote Originally Posted by ox View Post
    Self service supermarket checkouts are great.
    Seldom a queue.
    Self service supermarket checkouts are great and save the business, and ultimately the consumer, more money but they can hurt cashier job availability though.
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  57. #56  
    Theatre Whore babe's Avatar
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    Hair spray!
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  58. #57  
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    You've gone from the wrong page to the wrong thread! A two word random interjection should be in Follow On!
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    nope I mean it is the best discovery
    HAIR SPRAY

    and 24 hour LIPSTICK!!

    WHACK!
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  60. #59  
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    Now I think about it, I haven't been mugged in the street for money since debit cards.
    This quiet invention has made walking a lot safer.
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  61. #60  
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    does like work?
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    Quote Originally Posted by babe View Post
    does like work?
    No.Nor is it likely too as things stand.
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    Quote Originally Posted by geordief View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by babe View Post
    does like work?
    No.Nor is it likely too as things stand.
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