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Air Conditioning

Sunday Matinee

The local movie theater used to be the best place to be on a hot day. Why? The air conditioning, of course. The local department store ran a close second. Retailers discovered soon after the introduction of air conditioning that a little cool air was very good for business.

­In the middle of a summer heat wave, it's great to have air conditioning. Before Willis Carrier invented his method of cooling indoor air, it was a challenge to stay comfortable in hot weather. A nice, cold drink was helpful, and some homes were designed to make the most of a light breeze, such as the traditional shotgun style homes. Even a nice, big tree for shade was great, but the promise of a temperature controlled home was still very appealing.

In 1902, Carrier's first air conditioner was built to cool a printing plant and remove some of the humidity created by the printing process. After taking out a patent for his design in 1906, Carrier started selling his air conditioning units for commercial applications. And in 1928, he released the Weathermaker, his first home air conditioner [source: Time].

Now that we've got our homes cool, let's get our food hot with the microwave.

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