The clip is hip

In an age of technological miracles, a group of scientists have called the good old paper clip the one invention that we cannot live without in the 21st century. We tell you more about the clip:

>> According to the Early Office Museum, the first patent for a bent wire paper clip was in 1867, originally intended for attaching tickets to fabric, although the patent recognised that it could be used to attach papers together.

>> Another notable paper clip design was also patented in 1877. This clip was advertised at that time for use in fastening newspapers.

>> It has been claimed, though apparently without evidence, that Herbert Spencer, the originator of the term 'survival of the fittest', invented the paper clip. Spencer claimed in his autobiography to have invented a 'binding-pin.' It was designed to hold sheets of paper together. It was approximately 15cm unfolded.

>> A paper clip is a useful accessory in many kinds of mechanical work including computer work: the metal wire can be unfolded with a little force. Both first generation iPhones and the iPhone 3G require a paper clip to eject the SIM card and some Palm PDAs advise the use of a paper clip to reset the device. The track ball can be removed from early Logitech pointing devices using a paper clip as the key to the bezel. A paper clip bent into a 'U' can be used to start an ATX PSU without connecting it to a motherboard. Paper clips have been used (unsafely) to replace fuses.

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