With all this talk about technology and innovation, there’s something essentially comforting about the products we use that are just perfect the way they are. We’ve put together some of the things that are instantly recognizable the world over with few or no changes at all – from riveting casino games like slot machines, to the humble umbrella, and the mason jar.
Of course, on this casino site, we’re partial to all forms of slots, so we’ll start here. Despite the addition of a few bells and whistles, this popular game genre has changed little over the years. Outwardly, it’s put on a new “skin” now and then to keep up with technology, but the fundamentals of gameplay have barely changed.
From its invention in 1887 to the present day, this simple game of chance has enthralled players in almost every country and from vastly different backgrounds. Whether you’re spinning the reels on an arcade-type machine or enjoying the almost limitless variety of online slots on your mobile device, this game has been much-loved for decades!
People have been wrapping precious things and compulsively popping the same-looking plastic bubbles since the late 1950s. The people responsible for this invention were Alfred Fielding and Marc Chavannes, but bubble wrap was originally intended for a different purpose.
These cool dudes set out to create three-dimensional, plastic wallpaper that you could run your fingers over – a type of interactive décor item to line the walls of only the coolest pads. But they ran into problems when they tried to trap and seal in air between two shower curtains. When the idea and early prototypes failed to catch the imagination of investors, it was out with the wallpaper, and in with the “Method of making laminated cushion material,” which Fielding and Chavannes patented. It’s impossible to think how many precious items would have been scratched or broken without this clever invention!
Umbrellas are one of those brilliant inventions out of China that can be traced back thousands of years. We just couldn’t imagine our lives without them. The umbrella is about 4,000 years old and while the materials used to keep us dry have changed over the years, the basic look and structure of this foul-weather item are still the same. It took until the 17th century for the umbrella to catch on in Europe, but it’s been used not only on rainy days the world over, but also – in a parasol form – to protect our complexions from the sun.
The paper clip
The beauty of this humble little piece of curved wire is that it has so many uses – from keeping papers neatly clipped together to picking locks! They’ve even been the subject of a moving documentary called Paper Clips, released in 2004.
While dozens of patents had been filed for various paper clip designs by the end of the 1800s (including pretzels and triangles), today’s oblong or “gem” design was never patented, and nobody really knows who invented it. But there’s nothing else that quite does the same job!
The mason jar
This home-canning staple was the brainchild of 26-year-old John Landis Mason, a tinsmith who lived in the US state of New Jersey. Mason started to look for a solution to the challenges of home canning. Before his invention, corks would be boiled in wax to create a messy, less-than-efficient airtight seal, which meant most people were forced to use methods of smoking, salting, and fermentation to preserve food through the winter. In 1858, Mason patented his threaded screw-top jars that kept air and moisture from spoiling the food inside. Mason also invented the rubber ring under the flat metal lids, but only filed for a patent in 1868. By this time, the jars were being produced by various manufacturers and were common in most homes. He was not granted the patent.
After Mason’s original patent expired in 1880, the five Ball brothers of Indiana opened the Ball Brothers Manufacturing Company and became the largest producer of mason jars in the US. Mason jars are still used to preserve food, also as holders (for anything from flowers, utensils, and pens to breakfast cereals).
Iron objects that are thousands of years old have been found all over the world, which is probably when someone first thought to heat up a metal object and use it to smooth out pesky crinkles in garments. But it wasn’t until 1882 that the first electric flatiron was patented and became an instant household hit. The simple design has hardly changed at all for 150 years (give or take perhaps a touch of steam).
White cotton T-shirt
Who doesn’t own a simple white cotton T-shirt? While your great-grandma wouldn’t know what to make of mobile phones and two-minute noodles, she’d instantly recognise this iconic clothes item! You might be surprised to discover that the white cotton T-shirt started life as underwear in the 19th century, when long johns were cut into two pieces for miners, then distributed by the US Navy to sailors in the Spanish-American War in 1898. It was only after soldiers in the Second World War paired them with their uniform pants that the look took off, soon to become part of everyday civilian life.
Play iconic slots at Spin and Win
At Spin and Win, we know that classic reels will always have a place in our rapidly changing world. That’s why we have a whole section dedicated to online and mobile slots. If you aren’t sure which game to choose, you can always try the free spin, no-deposit option to get a feel for a few before you put your money down. Register with Spin and Win to play online casino games of your choice – because we don’t just offer fantastic slots. There’s much more, including table and card games, roulette, live casino, and scratch and arcade. You’re bound to find something you love playing!
/ 12 August 2021