How the refrigerator destroyed a whole business segment and other similar tales of creative destruction

history-iceland-travelIn the times before the refrigerator, there was a lot of money to be made in Iceland when ships were built to transport ice from the north, to Europe, so that food and drinks could be cool in the summer time. With the invention of the refrigerator, a lot of jobs became obsolete so the refrigerator destroyed a whole business segment. A piece of history right there.

Other tales

• In the nineteenth century, railroads were widely used for transport of people and goods. This brought about many jobs for the Americans as blacksmiths, carriage makers, and harness makers. An estimated 2.1 million Americans earned a living through making railroads. After years of inventing various other modes of transportation, less than 200, 000 people are working for the sector in USA today.

• Before the invention of the television and gadgets made to record movies, the theatre industry was flourishing. Different theatrical artists are needed to bring life to a scene. Nowadays, it only takes a camera and an editing software to create a movie.
The technology has for sure replaced a great number of
actors, actresses, stage designers etc.

• Before the internet was invented, mail was delivered personally by the mailman. But the mailman is not the only one who handles the letters sent, there are also many people who sort the mail and work in the post office. Today, one can receive a letter or a message electronically through an email, replacing the need of a large staff at the post office.

Although different inventions make life a little easier for us, it also has a destructive side. Not many people think about the fact that there are a lot of people who loose their job because of a new invention. But all we can do is to adapt to this new scenario, embrace it and be creative in creating new jobs around the new way of living.

Practice your Icelandic:

Please say that again: Geturðu sagt þetta aftur?
Please speak more slowly: Geturðu talað hægar?
Do you speak English?: Talarðu ensku?

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