Google doodle pays tribute to 'Hole Puncher' on 131st anniversary

WASHINGTON: It's unlikely you've spend a lot of time thinking about the hole puncher - beyond it being a requisite of any office stationary cupboard.

But despite the modern workplace bearing almost no resemblance to the office of the late 19th century, the hole puncher has remained largely unchanged over the past century.

Now, on its 131st anniversary, Google is paying tribute to the humble office tool with one of its special doodles.

The doodle, which will appear on the search engine's homepage today, shows the Google logo made up of colourful paper circles - all except the second "g" which is replaced by a blue sheet of paper.

A hole puncher is seen punching two holes in the top of the sheet; the holes form eyes, and the paper performs a little jig as the confetti falls to the ground.

Who invented the hole puncher?

The hole punch was invented by German entrepreneur and inventor Friedrich Soennecken, who founded the office supplies company Soennecken in 1875.

Originally known for developing a style of calligraphy known as "round writing". and the pen nib associated with it, Soenneckenn filed a patent for his Papierlocher für Sammelmappen on 14 November 1886.

Since then, the hole punch has become a office staple, allowing workers to create holes in sheets of paper so that they can be filed in a ring binder - another of Soennecken's inventions.

How does it work?

Using a lever and spring system, the hole puncher allows the user to line up cylindrical blades and punch holes through stacked sheets of paper with very little effort.

While modern double-hole punchers now adhere to a standard international measurement, known as ISO 838, single hole punchers are also commonly used for validating tickets and marking used playing cards.

Since then, the hole punch has become a office staple, allowing workers to create holes in sheets of paper so that they can be filed in a ring binder - another of Soennecken's inventions.

What does Google have to say?

"It's a familiar scene with a familiar tool: the gentle rat-tat-tat on the table as you square up a dangerously thick stack of papers, still warm from the printer," Google wrote in a blog post.

"The quiet anticipation and heady uncertainty as you ask yourself the ultimate question: can it cut through all this?

"The satisfying, dull "click!" of the blade as it punches through the sheets.

The design has also been scaled up to large machines that can punch through hundreds of sheets at a time, for use in the printing industry.

Over the years, versions of the hole puncher have been developed to work on leather, cloth, thin plastic and even sheet metal.

What does Google have to say?

"It's a familiar scene with a familiar tool: the gentle rat-tat-tat on the table as you square up a dangerously thick stack of papers, still warm from the printer," Google wrote in a blog post.

"The quiet anticipation and heady uncertainty as you ask yourself the ultimate question: can it cut through all this?

"The satisfying, dull "click!" of the blade as it punches through the sheets.

"The series of crisp, identical holes it produces, creating a calming sense of unity among an otherwise unbound pile of loose leaf.

"And finally, the delightful surprise of the colorful confetti byproduct - an accidental collection of colorful, circular leftovers.

"Today we celebrate 131 years of the hole puncher, an understated - but essential - artifact of German engineering.

"As modern workplaces trek further into the digital frontier, this centuries-old tool remains largely, wonderfully, the same."

 

 

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