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    Designed obsolescence

    Henry Ford, the patron saint of manufacturing efficiency, once commissioned a survey of the car scrap yards of America to find out if there were parts of the Model T Ford which never failed. His inspectors came back with reports of almost every kind of failure: axles, brakes, pistons — all were liable to go wrong. But they drew attention to one notable exception, the kingpins of the scrapped cars invariably had years of life left in them. With ruthless logic Ford concluded that the kingpins on the Model T were too good for their job and ordered that in future they should be made to an inferior specification. Nicholas Humphrey, British psychologist at Cambridge University. “Consciousness Regained: Chapters in the Development of Mind” (1995).

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