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January 2013

Reaching the Tipping PointFrom Print to Online Publication

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliations: Department of Ophthalmology, University of California, San Francisco (Dr Jeng); and Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, University of Wisconsin–Madison (Dr Albert).

JAMA Ophthalmol. 2013;131(1):90. doi:10.1001/jamaophthalmol.2013.1188

What do underwear and microprocessors have in common? Underwear made it possible for paper to become an available resource. The development of the hand-loom weaving industry in the 15th century provided Europeans with linen underwear. This, in turn, created the byproduct of linen rags, a material perfect for the newly invented printing press (ie, a material perfect for affordable papermaking).1 Perhaps it is not as sexy a topic to some as underwear, but the invention of the microprocessor in the 1970s took computers out of warehouses and onto the desks of people across the globe.2 The computer evolved and became more compact and more affordable; now, virtually anyone can access the Internet, read a book online, or send an e-mail on electronic “paper” in the form of a smartphone or tablet.

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