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1. Discuss the most important ideas in the resource titled Printing.There are several main ideas in this resource. The first is how printing has affected the expansion of knowledge. Before the printing press, written information could only be stored through long hand copying processes. This meant that it was very difficult to produce large amount of written material in a short amount of time. But, when Gutenberg invented to printingpress, this was no longer the case. He developed type that could be changed very quickly that could be used to print multiple copies of the same page in a short amount of time. Now for the first time, information could easily be recorded, stored, and passed around. This has helped shape society even today. Another main idea was how the invention of the printing press affected religion. The Protestant church to advantage of the fact that multiple copies of the Bible could be printed quickly and tried to ensure that all families had one in their household. The major result of this was that many more of the common people became literate so they could read their Bibles. Hence, the people in the Protestant church were much more literate that the ones in the Catholic church. Another affect of this invention was the disunification of Europe. Because each country could now produce literature in their own language, there was noneed for everyone to use Latin, causing the countries to because separated from each other. The last idea was how printing has affected the media. The invention enabled government and organization to spread their message to get followers. We can clearly see how this is still the case with our main-stream media outlets.2. Respond to The Machine That Changed Us video. What did you learn? What surprised you?The main thing I learned was that, contrary to my initial belief, Gutenberg spent years on his printing press project. According to the video, the most important invention in the project was his type mold. He would take an iron or steel rod and file out a certain letter into the top. He would then use this created punch to mark the top of a copper block. This block would then be placed in the top of a special mold that allowed each casting to be exactly the same. The press itself was not terribly complicated. It consisted of a simple screw with a heavy plate on the bottom that would press the paper against the type. His first major printing was his Gutenberg Bible. He printed 180 copies that each contained around 1200 unique pages. Then after printing,an illuminator would decorate each page. As a result, Gutenberg Bibles are very rare and valuable. I find it amazing that one man’s dream to create movable type and a press to go with ithas shaped so much of our world. We cannot imagine a way of life without excessive number of books and printed pages. We should be thankful that Gutenberg spent his life’s work on creatingthis amazing machine.3. What characteristics or skills did Gutenberg possess that allowed him to create movable type printing?I think that his main asset that allowed him to great such functional type was his goldsmith experience. Gold is a very soft metal, and it takes a great amount of skill to work it. This detailed oriented skill is also needed to make perfect type. The alloys he used including tin and copper are also soft metals, thus his gold experience was very useful. His groove and pin system to keepthe type aligned during print was also derived from his goldsmith experiences. This is because in order to connect gold to other metals, groove systems were often used. His engineering experience allowed him to figure out the most efficient way of doing type, and his moveabletype system was his answer. Gutenberg managed to create type that had uniform grooves, pins, and letters on hit. It took a long period of time before he finally had solidified his processes of making uniform, functional, moveable type. This amazes me how he was able to accomplish this with the technology of his time. Almost no one currently would be able to produce type in the same way as he did. It a testament to his creativity combined with his engineering and goldsmith

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UNC-Chapel Hill HUM 161 - Journal 3

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