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Reckoning with MatterCalculating Machines, Innovation, and Thinking About Thinking from Pascal to Babbage$
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Matthew L. Jones

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780226411460

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226411637.001.0001

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Teething Problems: Charles Stanhope and the Coordination of Technical Knowledge from Geneva to Kent

Teething Problems: Charles Stanhope and the Coordination of Technical Knowledge from Geneva to Kent

Chapter:
(p.162) 5 Teething Problems: Charles Stanhope and the Coordination of Technical Knowledge from Geneva to Kent
Source:
Reckoning with Matter
Author(s):

Matthew L. Jones

Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226411637.003.0010

Using a rich store of documents, this chapter tracks the creation of a series of calculating machines by the English nobleman Charles Stanhope. Stanhope’s materialized design practice emerged from late eighteenth-century ways of forming materials, of coordinating different practitioners, of representing forms and matter—all linked to political economies of innovation devised to encourage the dense intertwining of design and making. A close examination of the collective process of devising and creating these machines illuminates a distinctive late eighteenth-century moment in the coordination among practitioners and ways of designing and implementing. This chapter chronicles the abandonment of a vision of how philosophers and elite artisans might coordinate and collaborate better to make new things and improve older ones.

Keywords:   calculating machines, eighteenth century, Charles Mahon, 3rd Earl Stanhope, artisanal knowledge, tacit knowledge, technology transfer, collective invention, emulation, Geneva

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