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Tool 1

Tool
For the American rock band, see Tool (band). For other uses, see Tool (disambiguation) and Equipment
(disambiguation).
A tool is any physical item that can be used to
achieve a goal, especially if the item is not
consumed in the process. Informally the word
is also used to describe a procedure or process
with a specific purpose. Tool use by humans
dates back millions of years, and other animals
are also known to employ simple tools.

Tools that are used in particular fields or


activities may have different designations such
as "instrument", "utensil", "implement",
"machine", or "apparatus". The set of tools
needed to achieve a goal is "equipment". The
knowledge of constructing, obtaining and using
tools is technology. A modern toolbox

History
Main article: History of technology
Anthropologists believe that the use of tools was an
important step in the evolution of mankind.[1] Humans
evolved an opposable thumb — useful in holding tools
— and increased dramatically in intelligence, which
aided in the use of tools.[2] Because tools are used
extensively by both humans and wild chimpanzees, it is
widely assumed that the first routine use of tools took
place prior to the divergence between the two
species.[3] These early tools, however, were likely
made of perishable materials such as sticks, or
consisted of unmodified stones that cannot be
Prehistoric stone tools over 10,000 years old, found in Les
distinguished from other stones as tools. The beginning
Combarelles cave, France
of the Stone Age marks the era when hominins first
began manufacturing stone tools, and evidence of these
tools dates back at least 2.6 million years in Ethiopia.[4] One of the earliest distinguishable stone tool forms is the
hand axe.

Up until recently, weapons found in digs were the only tools of “early man” that were studied and given importance.
Now, more tools are recognized as
Tool 2

culturally and historically relevant. As well as hunting,


other activities required tools such as preparing food,
“…nutting, leatherworking, grain harvesting and
woodworking…” Included in this group are “flake stone
tools".
Tools are the most important items that the ancient
humans used to climb to the top of the food chain; by
inventing tools, they were able to accomplish tasks that
human bodies could not, such as using a spear or bow
and arrow to kill prey, since their teeth were not sharp
enough to pierce many animals' skins. “Man the hunter”
as the catalyst for Hominin change has been
questioned. Based on marks on the bones at
Carpentry tools recovered from the wreck of a 16th-century sailing
archaeological sites, it is now more evident that ship, the Mary Rose. From the top, a mallet, brace, plane, handle of a
pre-humans were scavenging off of other predator’s T-auger, handle of a gimlet, handle of a hammer?, rule.
carcasses rather than killing their own food.

The transition from stone to metal tools roughly


coincided with the development of agriculture.
Mechanical devices experienced a major expansion in
their use in Ancient Greece and Ancient Rome with the
systematic employment of new energy
sources.especially waterwheels. Their use expanded
through the Dark Ages with the addition of windmills.

Machine tools occasioned a surge in producing new


Stone and metal knives
tools in the industrial revolution. Advocates of
nanotechnology expect a similar surge as tools become
microscopic in size.[5][6]

Functions
One can classify tools according to their basic
functions:
• Cutting tools, such as the knife, scythe or sickle, are
wedge-shaped implements that produce a shearing
force along a narrow face. Ideally, the edge of the
tool needs to be harder than the material being cut or An upholstery regulator
else the blade will become dulled with repeated use.
But even resilient tools will require periodic sharpening, which is the process of removing deformation wear from
the edge. Other examples of cutting tools include gouges and drill bits.
• Moving tools move large and tiny items. Most are levers which give the user a mechanical advantage. For
example, concentrating-force tools: the hammer moves a nail, the maul moves a stake, or a whip moves flesh on a
horse. These operate by applying physical compression to a surface. In the case of the screwdriver, the force is
rotational and called torque. Writing implements deliver a fluid to a surface via compression to activate the ink
cartridge. Also grabbing and twisting nuts and bolts with pliers, a glove, a wrench, etc. All these tools move items
by some kind of force. Also trucks, rockets and airplanes move larger items and particle accelerators move very
small items.
Tool 3

• Tools that enact chemical changes, including temperature and ignition, such as lighters and blowtorches.
• Guiding, measuring and perception tools include the ruler, glasses, set square, sensors, straightedge, theodolite,
microscope, monitor, clock, phone, printer
• Shaping tools, such as molds, jigs, trowels.
• Fastening tools, such as welders, rivet guns, nail guns, or glue guns.
• Information and data manipulation tools, such as computers, middleware, IDE, spreadsheets
Some tools may be combinations of other tools. An alarm-clock is for example a combination of a measuring tool
(the clock) and a perception tool (the alarm). This enables the alarm-clock to be a tool that falls outside of all the
categories mentioned above.
There is some debate on whether to consider protective gear items as tools, because they do not directly help perform
work, just protect the worker like ordinary clothing. They do meet the general definition of tools and in many cases
are necessary for the completion of the work. Personal protective equipment includes such items as gloves, safety
glasses, ear defenders and biohazard suits.

Tool substitution
Often, by design or coincidence, a tool may share key functional attributes with one or more other tools. In this case,
some tools can substitute for other tools, either as a makeshift solution or as a matter of practical efficiency. "One
tool does it all" is a motto of some importance for workers who cannot practically carry every specialized tool to the
location of every work task; such as a carpenter who does not necessarily work in a shop all day and needs to do jobs
in a customer's house. Tool substitution may be divided broadly into two classes: substitution "by-design", or
"multi-purpose" use, and substitution as makeshift. Substitution "by-design" would be tools that are designed
specifically to accomplish multiple tasks using only that one tool.
Substitution as makeshift is when human ingenuity comes into play and a tool is used for its unintended purpose
such as a mechanic using a long screw driver to separate a cars control arm from a ball joint instead of using a tuning
fork. In many cases, the designed secondary functions of tools are not widely known. As an example of the former,
many wood-cutting hand saws integrate a carpenter's square by incorporating a specially shaped handle that allows
90° and 45° angles to be marked by aligning the appropriate part of the handle with an edge and scribing along the
back edge of the saw. The latter is illustrated by the saying "All tools can be used as hammers." Nearly all tools can
be used to function as a hammer, even though very few tools are intentionally designed for it and even fewer work as
well as the original.
Tools are also often used to substitute for many mechanical apparatuses, especially in older mechanical devices. In
many cases a cheap tool could be used to occupy the place of a missing mechanical part. A window roller in a car
could easily be replaced with a pair of vise-grips or regular pliers. A transmission shifter or ignition switch would be
able to be replaced with a screw-driver. Again, these would be considered tools that are being used for their
unintended purposes, substitution as makeshift. Tools such as a rotary tool would be considered the substitution
"by-design", or "multi-purpose". This class of tools allows the use of one tool that has at least two different
capabilities. "Multi-purpose" tools are basically multiple tools in one device/tool. Tools such as this are often power
tools that come with many different attachments like a rotary tool does, so you could say that a power drill is a
"multi-purpose" tool because you can do more than just one thing with a power drill.
Tool 4

Multi-use tools
A Multi-tool is a hand tool that incorporates several
tools into a single, portable device; the Swiss army
knife represents one of the earliest examples. Other
tools have a primary purpose but also incorporate other
functionality - for example, lineman's pliers incorporate
a gripper and cutter, and are often used as a hammer;
and some hand saws incorporate a carpenter's square in
the right-angle between the blade's dull edge and the
saw's handle. This would also be the category in which
the "multi-purpose" tools since they are also multiple
tools in one (multi-use and multi-purpose can be used
interchangeably). These types of tools were specifically
made to catch the eye of many different craftsman who Bicycle multi-tool

traveled to do their work. To these workers these types


of tools were revolutionary because they were one tool or one device that could do several different things. With this
new revolution of tools the traveling craftsman would not have to carry so many tools with them to job sites, being
that their space would be limited to the vehicle they were driving. The problem of having to deal with so many
different tools was solved with the overtaking of multi-use tools.

Use by animals
Main article: Tool use by animals
Observation has confirmed that a number of species
can use tools including monkeys, apes, elephants,
several birds, and sea otters. Philosophers originally
thought that only humans had the ability to make tools,
until zoologists observed birds[7] and monkeys making
tools. Now the unique relationship of humans with
tools is considered to be that we are the only species
that uses tools to make other tools.

Tool metaphors
A Bonobo at the San Diego Zoo "fishing" for termites
A telephone is a communication tool that interfaces
between two people engaged in conversation at one
level. It also interfaces between each user and the communication network at another level. It is in the domain of
media and communications technology that a counter-intuitive aspect of our relationships with our tools first began
to gain popular recognition. Marshall McLuhan famously said "We shape our tools. And then our tools shape us."
McLuhan was referring to the fact that our social practices co-evolve with our use of new tools and the refinements
we make to existing tools.
Tool 5

References
Notes
[1] Sam Lilley, Men, Machines and History: The Story of Tools and Machines in Relation to Social Progress (http:/ / books. google. com/
books?id=Cj0EAAAAMAAJ& q=tools+ history& dq=tools+ history& pgis=1), 1948 Cobbett Press.
[2] Primates and Their Adaptations, 2001 (http:/ / www. emc. maricopa. edu/ faculty/ farabee/ biobk/ BioBookHumEvol. html), M.J. Farabee.
Retrieved on November 6, 2006.
[3] Whiten, A., J. Goodall, W. C. McGrew, T. Nishida, V. Reynolds, Y. Sugiyama, C. E. G. Tutin, R. W. Wrangham, and C. Boesch. 1999.
Cultures in Chimpanzees. Nature 399:682-685. Panger, M. A., A. S. Brooks, B. G. Richmond, and B. Wood. 2002. Older than the Oldowan?
Rethinking the emergence of hominin tool use. Evolutionary Anthropology: Issues, News, and Reviews 11:235-245.
[4] Semaw, S., M. J. Rogers, J. Quade, P. R. Renne, R. F. Butler, M. Domínguez-Rodrigo, D. Stout, W. S. Hart, T. Pickering, and S. W.
Simpson. 2003. 2.6-Million-year-old stone tools and associated bones from OGS-6 and OGS-7, Gona, Afar, Ethiopia. Journal of Human
Evolution 45:169-177.
[5] Nanotechnology: Big Potential In Tiny Particles (http:/ / archive. is/ 20120916092130/ http:/ / www. forbes. com/ 2004/ 01/ 28/
cx_dw_0129pollnanotechmidas04_xyz. html), David Whelan. Retrieved on November 6, 2006
[6] Will this Tiny Science Usher in the Next Industrial Revolution? (http:/ / news. thomasnet. com/ IMT/ archives/ 2004/ 03/ will_this_tiny.
html?t=archive), Katrina C. Arabe. Retrieved on November 6, 2006
[7] Selection of tool diameter by New Caledonian crows Corvus moneduloides (http:/ / www. springerlink. com/ content/ 3330gpu0w5tb7alc/
fulltext. html/ ), Jackie Chappell and Alex Kacelnik November 29, 2003

External links
• The dictionary definition of tool at Wiktionary
• Media related to Tools at Wikimedia Commons
Article Sources and Contributors 6

Article Sources and Contributors


Tool  Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?oldid=614227700  Contributors: 10hvropp, 137.131.4.xxx, 2040hand, 28421u2232nfenfcenc, 2D, 4twenty42o, 5 albert square, 92z34, 95j, A
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edits

Image Sources, Licenses and Contributors


File:20060513 toolbox.jpg  Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=File:20060513_toolbox.jpg  License: Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 2.5  Contributors: Per Erik
Strandberg sv:User:PER9000
File:Prehistoric Tools - Les Combarelles - Les Eyzies de Tayac - MNP.jpg  Source:
http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=File:Prehistoric_Tools_-_Les_Combarelles_-_Les_Eyzies_de_Tayac_-_MNP.jpg  License: Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike  Contributors:
Sémhur
File:MaryRose-carpentry tools1.jpg  Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=File:MaryRose-carpentry_tools1.jpg  License: unknown  Contributors: Peter Crossman of the Mary Rose
Trust
Image:ALM 05 Dolch edit2.jpg  Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=File:ALM_05_Dolch_edit2.jpg  License: Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 3.0  Contributors:
ALM_05_Dolch.jpg: Opodeldok Damascus_Bowie.jpg: Carter Cutlery derivative work: Dhatfield (talk)
File:UpholsteryRegulator.jpg  Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=File:UpholsteryRegulator.jpg  License: GNU Free Documentation License  Contributors: Original uploader was
Brookie at en.wikipedia
File:Bicycle multi-tool.JPG  Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=File:Bicycle_multi-tool.JPG  License: Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 3.0  Contributors:
User:Armchair
File:BonoboFishing05.jpeg  Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=File:BonoboFishing05.jpeg  License: unknown  Contributors: -
file:Wiktionary-logo-en.svg  Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=File:Wiktionary-logo-en.svg  License: Public Domain  Contributors: Vectorized by , based on original logo tossed
together by Brion Vibber
file:Commons-logo.svg  Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=File:Commons-logo.svg  License: logo  Contributors: Anomie
License 7

License
Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0
//creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/