17th-Century Smart Lock…COOL…


Think cool technology is only a recent thing? A 340-year old smart lock may change your mind.

As the Verge reports, the device in the collection of the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam is packed with clever tech that would stump any 21st-century thief.

The Victoria and Albert Museum in London also has a so-called “detector lock” in its collection. The device was made way back in 1680, according to the V&A.

Designed by John Wilkes, the lock was used on a door to a room where valuables were kept, according to description of the lock on the Museum’s website. It was made in Birmingham, England of brass and engraved steel, with restorations, and has a cast steel key.


So, how secure and smart was this smart lock forerunner? The security features include:

–By cocking the hat of the soldier (embossed on the lock cover), you could secure the lock quickly

–To unlock, you would turn the knob as the hat is pushed down

–The keyhole is concealed by the soldier’s leg, which operates on a pivot. When a button is pressed, the leg swings forward to reveal the keyhole

–The key turns both bolts and a further turn “shoots” the main bolt

One of the most intriguing features was its “detector lock” technology, which counts each time it is unlocked. “This told the owner if the door had been opened in his absence,” according to a video posted by the museum.

And that’s not all: when the dial reached 100, a tiny button reset the dial.

And the V&A’s lock even has an inscription that implores a would-be thief to think twice:

“If I had ye gift of tongue

I would declare and do no wrong

Who ye are ye come by stealth

To impare my Master’s wealth”

Via: Fox News

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