who designs the machines in factories that make stuff? are they still designing new machines to make stuff like pencils and plates, or do they just use old ones for a long time? i know they're still using ancient presses to make records nowadays, nobody's made a new one since the 60s iirc

engineers. economically speaking, most of the money and most of the engineering effort in the world goes to commercial markets that you would never otherwise see. the whole thing with consumer markets is manufacturing enormous quantities of things very cheaply, prioritizing cost & function over anything else

commercial engineering, often times, you’re looking at a very limited production run and must favor function, maintainability, and dependability above everything else. cost isn’t so much a concern – the oil company hiring your firm will write whatever you tell them to on the check. just as long as it works, doesn’t kill people, and isn’t a nightmare to maintain

since these kinds of things are usually very limited run due to their scale, there’s not a lot of em laying around. in 2015, fucking nobody wants to rebuild all the shit needed to even build the things that stamp vinyl records due to the cost. there’s probably a lot of those presses lying around and available for rent since nobody really uses them anymore

we figured out how to make pencils and shit perfectly a long time ago, so we really haven’t done much or spent much money to try and eek out better metrics for consumer market goods that have such an incredibly low profit margin to begin with

economics ruins all the fun in the world