I have written before about airplane wings and winglets, as one does after spending a day sitting around in airports.
Yesterday, as we were waiting to board our 747 in Miami, Chris pointed out the winglets.
The plane we were waiting to board was a rather elderly British Airways Jumbo – with winglets which looked distinctly different to the modern version, theses could have been straight out of Back to the Future, with the finesse as though someone had sawed of the tips of the wings off and hammered them back on again at a ninety degree angle!
This made me reflect upon how rapidly such things evolve – and how easily we take them for granted. It is only when you consciously register upon something like this that you pause and actually take notice of the fact.
A bit like the session Expert Express at the ISA conference on Tuesday.
The topic was Which innovation or technique will affect the way we work on trees most in the next ten years? I was co-presenting with John Ball, Rex Bastian and Rich Hauer, each of us kicked off the session with a short presentation of their respective vision for the next ten years in their field, illustrated with two slides, to then break up and continue discussing the topic in smaller groups. I was really looking forwards to the session, the ensuing discussion was very interesting. Thanks to everybody who attended, some of the points raised really got me thinking.
Bouncing back and forth through time during the discussion made really drove home how much you forgot and how much creativity, thought and effort have already gone into making our work environment a better, more productive and safer place.
Beginnings are often humble.
The 747’s Heath Robinson-esque winglets or early evolutions of climbing and rigging gear for tree work may seem modest or hopelessly outdated, yet often as not they are the foundation for developments that in turn can have a profound and far-reaching impact.
P.S. Apologies for this probably not being my most coherent post ever, watching films on long-haul flights is a poor substitute for sleep.
Feeling a bit fuzzy.