While researching siege ladders for the current manuscript in progress (you get no more of a hint than that) I discovered this awesome website: The Smith College Museum of Ancient Inventions.
Which, of course, set me off on the usual tangent. Not a new one, but a good one all the same. It’s the one I call “Reasons the Internet Rocks.”
Those of you who remember the days before Google (or before the ‘web’ was anything but a collection of college geeks sitting around in their basements inventing Al Gore…) probably understand what I’m talking about. Not only can you now search, instantly, for anything from “what’s this growing in my fridge” to, well, “siege ladder” and get not one but thousands of answers (some more reliable than others, but that’s another post).
But in addition, you find easter eggs. Lots and lots of easter eggs, often more interesting than the thing that sent you webward in the first place. Case in point: a search for siege ladders that turned up not only the requested information but also a device for punching holes in the bottom of unsuspecting ships.
A genuine 15th century booby trap. Or, more generally, a little slice of awesome from the Internet. Either way, it was a pleasant surprise.