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digitalbusker

technology
[OB] Bottlecaps

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When the Lopen is visiting the wounded soldier in Chapter 121, he shows him how to open a bottle of beer one handed.

Quote

Lopen rolled up his trouser leg with one hand. He pressed the bottle—top first—to his leg and then, with a quick flick, twisted off the cap. He raised the bottle toward the man.

I didn't think twice about this the first time though, but on my reread: why would Roshar have metal bottlecaps? How long has that been a thing for us?

Edited by digitalbusker
Removed Kindle copypasta chrome
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Best I can come up with with is a patent from 1892 according to Wikipedia, so take with a grain of salt.

Technology in Brandon's worlds doesn't seem to progress at the same rate as technology in our own world. For instance, Mistborn had canned food during the first era, while most other technology was repressed.

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That's very interesting. I know in WoK they have beer and liquor bottles with corks, which I can imagine are also difficult to open one handed. But the quote specifically says cap. I wonder if it's either a mistake, or an invention the Thaylen acquired through trade. It somehow seems out of place, especially in Roshar, a world where most technological progress is being made with fabrials, and not with machinery like on Scadrial and on earth.

 

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Considering Lopen is capable of surgebinding in that scene, I don't think it matters if the bottle is corked or capped, but the text does say cap. It doesn't seem that outlandish considering the existence of soulcasters, though why soulcasters would spend time making bottlecaps I don't know. Maybe it's similar to the scrap metal that Vstim sells to the Shin.

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A cork does not twist off and the no brainer way to do this one handed is to use your teeth (like a pirate open a bottle of rum) so this is for sure a cap and he specifically says twist off which does seem a little out of place given the level of technology on Roshar. There are pretty simple hand tools to cap bottles home brewers use them but you also have to stamp the metal cap. Not only that but you would have to have a threaded bottle for a twist off cap which is a much later invention in our world in the 1960s. Weird though and good catch I didn't think twice about this either time I read it. 

@Draigon tLR was purposefully suppressing technology except where it was a means to his goal which canning is a perfect example of for his TEOTWAWKI bunkers. 

Edited by StormingTexan
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Typically Brandon's technology does progress in a remarkably similar manner to real life, unless somehow augmented by technology. 

Mistborn spoilers. 

Spoiler

Tech in Scadrial was far more advanced than in TFE before TLR suppressed things to create his unchanging empire. 

Quote

Tyran Amiros

How technologically advanced was the society before the Final Empire? You reference gunpowder, and certainly the current day seems to have technologies like canning and clocks, so how much did Rashek destroy?

Brandon Sanderson

They had steam technology, and were just about to hit the railroad era. Something near early 1800s in our world.

source

 

We do know that there is some minor trade between worlds, so while it is definitely out of place, this does take place just a few years before era two, so it's possible that the bottle is from Scadrial. 

Nice catch. 

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