The content of this blog is my personal opinion only. Although I am an employee - currently of Nvidia, in the past of other companies such as Iagination Technologies, MIPS, Intellectual Ventures, Intel, AMD, Motorola, and Gould - I reveal this only so that the reader may account for any possible bias I may have towards my employer's products. The statements I make here in no way represent my employer's position, nor am I authorized to speak on behalf of my employer. In fact, this posting may not even represent my personal opinion, since occasionally I play devil's advocate.

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Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Thought during in my morning bicycle ride: BO and Date of Urbanization and Transportation

Thought during in my morning bicycle ride:

It is well known that Americans seem to be more sensitive to body odor than many other countries. As I was having my shower after my bicycle ride, I wondered if this might be due to the fact that European countries started commuting into big cities earlier than in the United States. The United States was quite an agrarian nation even up until the first world war. When the United States urbanized, public transportation on buses and streetcars and trains was quite common, and eventually the United States became the automobile civilization. Whereas Europe urbanized earlier, so people were commuting by walking or bicycling etc. which meant that the European worker class, and even the European office bureaucrat class, got to work a little bit smellier, unless they had a shower. Which wasn't common until the end of the 20th century. I think about Andy Grove saying "there will never be showers at Intel", and I wonder if this was perhaps a Czech attitude.

The United States has many more humid areas in the American South than most European countries do.  This might also explain. Especially since being sweaty and hence smelly was indicative of class.