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I love technological innovations. In my view, we are so lucky to live today rather than 200 years ago.

One area that has seen enormous innovation recently, though much of it seems to be underappreciated, is needles. I base this only on my own limited experience as a pin cushion, but I think it is true more generally. For example, I just went in for a flu shot. Honestly, if I hadn’t seen the needle go into my arm, I would not have known I’d gotten the shot.

Apparently, they have figured out how to make needles thinner and sharper, so they slide in and out with minimal pain. At least, that’s what the nurse who gave me the shot told me. Nonetheless, my kids still cry when they get shots — at least, they do when it’s my wife’s turn to bring them to the doctor. When I’m there, I promise them a box of Nerds if they don’t cry. Lo and behold, there are never any tears. They are amazed to hear that Nerds (the candy version, that is) didn’t exist when I was a kid. Yet another example of the miracles of technology.