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De paperclip is het perfecte product


Via Pedro’s de Bruyckere’s blog kwam ik op dit (oude) stuk over de paperclip. Dit jaar is het papierklemmetje 120 jaar oud, en aan het ontwerp is al die jaren niets veranderd. Slate-auteur Sara Goldsmith beschrijft de geschiedenis van de paperclip, die te lezen is als een lofzang. De paperclip is perfect, en valt niet van de troon te stoten:

“Finally, the simplicity of the paper clip has allowed it to become a graphic symbol on the digital desktop. For many a 21st-century office worker, it is more often encountered as the “attachment” icon in an email program than in the physical form of a bent steel wire. As we move further and further toward a paperless society, that loop-the-loop form might become more familiar in two dimensions than in three. But this semiotic doppelganger, like the clip’s colored plastic and novelty-shaped variants, is likely to accompany the original, not replace it. Office life, despite plane flights and email, just isn’t all that different than it was 100 years ago, and it’s likely to be largely similar in another 100 years. And the paper clip—which is just exactly good enough—is likely to be around to see it.”