Wheeled Suitcase Paradox

Weekly I/O#73

It took nearly 6,000 years to progress from inventing the wheel to the creation of the wheeled suitcase. Humans put a man on the moon before adding wheels to luggage.

Book: Antifragile

The first patent of wheeled suitcase was registered in 1970 by Bernard Sadow, meaning Neil Armstrong carried his luggage by hand on his way to the moon.

It took nearly 6,000 years to progress from inventing the wheel to creating the wheeled suitcase. For years, travelers unnecessarily exerted themselves by carrying luggage manually, potentially harming their health. Yet, wheeled luggage came into existence three decades after the moon landing, despite the available technology.

Taleb proposed a practical heuristic: "The simpler and more obvious the discovery, the less equipped we are to figure it out by complicated methods." Simplicity is often overlooked in innovation as the focus is often on complex and newsworthy ideas. Effective solutions are often simple and revealed through practical application rather than complex theories. Therefore, Taleb asks:

"How many of these simple, trivially simple heuristics are currently looking and laughing at us?"

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