This is really going to date me but when I first started in the business we were using profilers for complex shapes. A pattern first had to be made and then it was traced using a hydraulically controlled stylus. Then NC machining came along, NC for numerical control. We used to joke it stood for no cranks. I remember analog systems that had circuit boards immersed in mineral oil to keep the corrosion and temperature in check with paper tape readers. Then CNC came along, computer numerical control. Not content with being an operator I went to college to learn programming. Studied ancient things like cartesian coordinate systems, canned cycles, g-codes and the like to be written to mylar tape using a singer flex-o-writer. 10 years later all that was outdated in favor of CAD-CAM, computer aided design / machining. Now it seems you can simply convey an idea and it is done. Been out of that loop for a while and it still amazes me.
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