You Know, for Kids!
Back in 2004, the Quick-Switch Microscope was manufactured in great numbers by the Edu Science Company, in anticipation of great demand for children’s microscopes. Their great expectations were based on research by professor Brendigan and her team at Oxford University. Brendigan postulated a correlation between the level of detail perceived in general, and through microscopes in particular, and the size of the observer. To a person half the height, with eyeballs half the size, observed objects would appear twice as large, hence showing twice the level of detail.
Brendigan carried out numerous experiments, comparing two year olds, about 90 cm in height, with average adult laboratory workers of 180 cm. Her results, which were later confirmed by other studies in Britain as well as the US, proved her theory right. The two year olds could discern twice as much detail.
This had huge ramifications for laboratories all over the world. If they used two year olds, they would do their jobs twice as well. Or they could use cheaper microscopes –like the Edu Science Quick-Switch- and still perform as well as before. Profits could be boosted even further by splitting all laboratory floors in two, since half sized workers would need only half the headroom. Indeed, desks, chairs and many other items could be halved in size. Micro laboratories were the future, Edu Science thought. So they immediately started producing their micro-microscope in large numbers.
Unfortunately, as is so often the case, the theory proved unpractical. The expected boom in micro laboratories never materialised. It turned out that two year olds, in spite of their keen eyes, make horrible laboratory workers. They generally have little to no idea what they’re doing. Most of them would just stick things in their mouth and cry for their mommies all day.
For a while it seemed the problem of the resulting micro microscope surplus might be solved by hiring little people- adults with dwarfism. But these were not at all pleased to be treated like little kids and rightfully demanded Real Microscopes for Grown-Ups. Also, little people do not like to be reminded of their small stature all the time, and surrounding them with micro microscopes does exactly that.
In the end, Edu Science had no choice but to destroy the entire batch of Quick-Switch Microscopes, since there simply wasn’t a market for them. Only four remained, saved from the demolition press by hoarders who’d take anything home. And now there’s only three.