The relic of the paperweight

At one point in time, there wasn’t modern air conditioning, however, there was fans.

People who wanted relief from terribly hot weather may have had many fans moving air in a cramped building or house to remove the excess heat, and create airflow that along with a little sweat cooled people. This created air movement indoors that may blow papers around, so we create the paperweight. A small decoration to keep things grounded.

Then comes air conditioning. Much less air movement, but actual cold air mixed into the existing hot air. Now, fans aren’t needed, yet the relic of the paperweight persists for a long time to come.

Businesses, culture, ideas, and inventions often persist long past their expiration. The world shifts and we forget all the related items that cascaded from the previous systems. Many items take decades for the average person to notice it no longer matters anymore. Paying attention and actively reflecting on the past can make sure you don’t make decisions that are based on past assumptions that are no longer true. We’re in an era full of those.