The Engines of Ingenuity

Every once in a while, we stumble on an amazing resource that’s not exactly new, but it’s new to us. This is the case, in spades, with The Engines of Our Ingenuity, a radio show that’s been running since 1988!

Each episode covers an invention or engineering marvel, and tells the story of how it came to be, and puts each device into its historical and cultural context. Want to get the lowdown on how we safely bring fire into the kitchen? Or the largest land transport vehicle, NASA’s crawler? And what’s up with lobsters anyway?

Even their logo is historical!
Even their logo is historical!

We haven’t had a chance to work through each of the 3,097 episodes (!) that they’ve produced so far, but now we know where to go when we’re out of ideas for a Retrotechtacular post, or to make sure that we’re not reinventing the wheel.

If we can complain, “The Engines of Our Ingenuity” is a little light on the technical details and heavy on the inspiration, but that’s radio. For deeper engineering insight, we’ve always got The Engineer Guy. On the other hand: 3,097 episodes. Whoah.

Let us know in the comments if you have a favorite episode!

Headline image courtesy Dr. Andrew Boyd, a regular contributor to the series.  Dank u wel [Simon Claessen] for the tip!

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