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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: 2, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 10, @03:47AM (9 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 10, @03:47AM (#1356403)

    The British government, for example, is considering new legislation on carrying blades in public.

    So are they thinking of banning them completely?

    https://www.gov.uk/buying-carrying-knives [www.gov.uk]

    The exception to these 2 rules are folding pocketknives that:

    • have a cutting edge no longer than 3 inches
    • are not lock knives (they do not have a button, spring or catch that you have to use to fold the knife)

    Getting stabbed with a pair of scissors or a screw driver is still going to do some damage.

    Does this imply that too many British parents haven't been raising their kids properly?

    Maybe the Government should look into how to provide good science based advice on raising children properly. Yes I know some people who breed don't care; but there are likely many parents who actually want to do a good job, but don't know how to. Or what they do know is worse than could be.

    People are a foundation for civilization. So being able to producing decent people is as important if not more important as being able to produce decent concrete, steel, etc.

    A bridge is not built using just steel and concrete alone, but with people. If you have crap people, even if the steel and concrete are good, the bridge might not ever be built even if a lot is spent on it.

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  • (Score: 2) by looorg on Friday May 10, @09:31AM

    by looorg (578) on Friday May 10, @09:31AM (#1356427)

    he exception to these 2 rules are folding pocketknives that:

            have a cutting edge no longer than 3 inches
            are not lock knives (they do not have a button, spring or catch that you have to use to fold the knife)

    So it shouldn't apply to the Victorinox Swiss army knives then? As I recall it those blades are not very long, or have a long cutting edge nor are they locked, or if they are locked the lock is so weak that its broken by slight force. Bigger models might require more force and such but I wouldn't want to fight anyone or anything with that blade since it will fold over and cut you to if struck in the wrong direction. It's good for cutting small cables and opening containers and such. That is about it. In that regard it might hurt more if you get stabbed with other implements on the tool. Like the tiny screwdrivers, you could probably jam those in with force.

    I have a couple of them. They were all gifts. Still with that said I'm not a big fan. I think I mainly use mine to clean dirt from under my fingernails and cutting my nails. I'm not even sure where I placed one of them. One is in the bathroom and one in the office. But cleaning dirt and opening small boxes that is about it as far as usefulness goes imo. Perhaps that is how it usually is, you find one or two things and then use them for that. All the other things remain in large unused -- so I mainly use the small blade and the tiny scissors. I have not really found a use for the other tiny implementations.

  • (Score: 3, Informative) by turgid on Friday May 10, @10:22AM (6 children)

    by turgid (4318) Subscriber Badge on Friday May 10, @10:22AM (#1356428) Journal

    You can actually be arrested in England for carrying a screwdriver if the police officer suspects you're up to no good.

    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by janrinok on Friday May 10, @11:18AM (1 child)

      by janrinok (52) Subscriber Badge on Friday May 10, @11:18AM (#1356429) Journal

      Yes, but that same law ('Going Equipped to Commit a Crime" (usually "Going Equipped to Steal")) applies to lots of things, Bolt cutters, foil lined bags designed to defeat shopping tags, crow bars, wire cutters (used to remove shopping tags), lock picks etc without a reasonable explanation as to why you are carrying them.

      --
      I am not interested in knowing who people are or where they live. My interest starts and stops at our servers.
    • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 10, @07:14PM (3 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 10, @07:14PM (#1356475)

      You can be arrested and prosecuted in the UK for having a butter knife on, or about your person in a public place.

      https://www.casemine.com/judgement/uk/5a8ff72760d03e7f57ea8c78 [casemine.com]

      The law is a bit more nuanced when it comes to screwdrivers, they're no longer automatically to be considered bladed/pointed articles as far as the Offensive Weapons Act is concerned, but unless you've a good excuse for having them on your person, they'll get you via 'going equipped' or another catchall law.

      • (Score: 3, Interesting) by janrinok on Friday May 10, @07:53PM (2 children)

        by janrinok (52) Subscriber Badge on Friday May 10, @07:53PM (#1356482) Journal

        It sounds like your experiences with your local police forces are very different from mine.

        I have lived in Morayshire (Scotland), Lincolnshire and Kent and had occasion to carry a machete to and from exercise areas. I have never had a problem from the police. I understand that many others will have had different treatment. I was always permitted to travel to and from exercise areas (sometimes several hundred miles away), but I would have had no justification for stopping in a pub en route for a few beers.

        If you are carrying a 'bladed article' on a night out with friends then you are breaking the law.

        --
        I am not interested in knowing who people are or where they live. My interest starts and stops at our servers.
  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by sjames on Saturday May 11, @02:53AM

    by sjames (2882) on Saturday May 11, @02:53AM (#1356519) Journal

    This seems amazing to me (in a bad way). A pocket knife USED to be considered suitable for older pre-teens.