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I find dark humor in that we've lost such crucial skills. In the US, we've nearly lost the technology to create water heaters, but can definitely make fart apps.

On a lighter note, maybe this will reintroduce some needed humility to American culture. It's easy to forget that each item we touch, everything we use, was put together by another human's hands. Soldering together the proto shield for my Arduino deeply touched me, reminding me that every resistor and LED and processor in my laptop was soldered in by another human.

I may be romanticizing it, or maybe I'm just getting old, but I'm starting to appreciate objects crafted by humans more than those generated by machines.

Actually it's likely that most(all) of the resistors and LEDs are SMDs soldered using reflow or wave soldering.

Your electronics from before the 80s (and often the 90s) was soldered by a human though.

These days just about any surface mount part should be assumed to have been attached by a machine, and for very good reason.

I am capable of assembly with 402 and 603, but I can't even begin to imagine that going well on an assembly line.

(805 is somewhere around the size of small rice, 402 is half that size)

Yeah, I don't mind doing QFP and SMD resistors (actually QFP is pretty quick when you get used to it), but individual resistors take forever.

Also, I forgot to mention most processors are BGA packages AFAIK, so impossible to actually solder manually.

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