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posted by janrinok on Friday May 10, @01:51AM   Printer-friendly

The next Swiss Army Knife won't have a knife:

The Swiss Army Knife has become such a shorthand for multifunctionality that companies producing does-a-lot-of-stuff wares will often say that their goods are the "Swiss Army Knife" of whatever category they're a part of. You can use the tool to cut stuff, snip stuff, uncork stuff, file stuff, in some cases download stuff.

But Victorinox, the company behind the famous gadget, is working on a Swiss Army Knife without the knife part.

"We are in the early stages of developing pocket tools without blades," a spokesperson for the company told CNN. Though it won't be discontinuing its bladed version, the company has been trying to figure out how to serve customers in places — specifically England and some Asian countries — where knives aren't as welcome a pocket sight than in other markets. The British government, for example, is considering new legislation on carrying blades in public.

The Swiss Army Knife has its roots in 1880s Germany. Then the Swiss Karl Elsener took production over the border. Soon a competitor emerged in the company Wenger, and for a while the Swiss government split its orders for the tools between the two of them. Wenger called its version the "genuine" Swiss Army Knife, and Elsener's Victorinox called its version the "original." The two companies ended up merging in 2005.

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  • (Score: 4, Insightful) by Runaway1956 on Friday May 10, @02:27AM (8 children)

    by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Friday May 10, @02:27AM (#1356398) Journal

    The more memorable version of that scene, I think - []

    I just can't imagine carrying around a multi-tool that lacks the tool(s) that I use most often. I don't own a Bowie knife, like old Croc man, but I have knives everywhere. Little fingernail cleaning knives, kitchen knives galore, a machete or three, a genuine M6 bayonet (fits the M14 battle rifle) three or four "survival" knives, and various folding pocket knives. A day doesn't pass that I don't have some use for a knife. I'm not even going to try inventorying all the knives that belong to my kids and grandkids laying around the property.

    So, I'm going to buy a toolbox that fits in my pocket, and leave out the tool I use most often? Geez, Louise, that looks like a stupid move to me.

    ‘Never trust a man whose uncle was eaten by cannibals’
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  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by fliptop on Friday May 10, @04:01AM

    by fliptop (1666) on Friday May 10, @04:01AM (#1356405) Journal

    A day doesn't pass that I don't have some use for a knife

    This. I have a folding blade pocket knife that I always carry w/ me. I also have a swiss army locking blade that has just a knife (I know, right?) that I use for hunting b/c it has a partial serrated edge that's perfect for sawing through cartilage and bone. My favorite knife is my Cold Steel [] that I carry when camping. I've batoned a lot of firewood w/ that.

    Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.
  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by SomeRandomGeek on Friday May 10, @03:54PM (6 children)

    by SomeRandomGeek (856) on Friday May 10, @03:54PM (#1356454)

    Huh. I have just the opposite experience. The only knives I use frequently are kitchen knives. And those get cleaned and stored carefully between uses. The idea of cutting my food with with a knife that's been in my pocket all day and used for all kinds of things is frankly disgusting.
    So, for me, a tool that has scissors, tweezers, screw driver, etc., but no knife blade seems fine.

    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by mhajicek on Friday May 10, @05:05PM (5 children)

      by mhajicek (51) on Friday May 10, @05:05PM (#1356461)

      Do you work with things, or with data? I'm having a hard time imagining a job working with things, that wouldn't require a knife on the regular.

      The spacelike surfaces of time foliations can have a cusp at the surface of discontinuity. - P. Hajicek
      • (Score: 2) by SomeRandomGeek on Friday May 10, @06:53PM (2 children)

        by SomeRandomGeek (856) on Friday May 10, @06:53PM (#1356472)

        I work with data.

      • (Score: 3, Insightful) by sjames on Saturday May 11, @02:50AM

        by sjames (2882) on Saturday May 11, @02:50AM (#1356518) Journal

        I always carry a butterfly knife in the data center. Perfect for one handed opening and closing. Because it's always AFTER you finally get the right cable in hand that you discover someone went zip tie happy.

      • (Score: 3, Funny) by driverless on Monday May 13, @12:22PM

        by driverless (4770) on Monday May 13, @12:22PM (#1356808)

        I work with users. Carrying a knife is a must.

        Alongside bottles of bleach and black plastic rubbish bags.