is an that can extend an individual's ability to modify features of the surrounding .

Although many use simple , only beings, whose use of   dates back hundreds of millennia, have been observed using to make other .

Early , made of such materials as , , and , were used for preparation of , hunting, manufacture of weapons, and working of materials to clothing and useful artifacts.

The development of made additional types of possible. Harnessing sources such as power, , or , allowed increasingly complex to an even larger range of items, with the  marking an marked inflection point in the use of .

The introduction of automation allowed to operate with minimal supervision, further increasing the productivity of labor.

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