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What is the origin of the word “DIY”?
The Origin of “DIY”
In “The Urban Dictionary”, a user named K. H. writes:
“It doesn’t quite have any scientific meaning; however, people seem to prefer that phrase and use it to refer to a new approach to creating and maintaining a home”.
The term “DIY”, as applied to home building and building methods such as the use of wood, concrete, and other materials were first used by the English in the early 1800’s. It was an allusion to the building of a new house.
This term can be seen in the popular film “It Could Happen to You” where a house is built with wood, bricks, concrete, and other non-natural materials.
The term “DIY” was first coined in the United States in the 1930’s when John W. Davis, an engineer and professor of architecture and planning at Columbia University was working as a research assistant in the architecture department and needed to learn some basic building methods.
Davis’s job involved helping the students of the architecture department to construct a small house at Columbia University. One day in the basement of Professor Davis’s residence he had to use one of the tables, which was covered in cement and had been built with wood.
A colleague had used the same table as a working table to do the design work, which gave him an idea of the possibilities of using a concrete table as a working table.
The professor took this idea to his friend, who worked at an Italian restaurant at the time called Pizza, at the University of Chicago where they had a large Italian restaurant in Chicago.
Davis later became a contractor and began designing and building structures based on concrete table construction such as the Pizza table in addition to working with other friends like Bill Gates, to help popularize the concept of using concrete.
Today people often use the term “DIY” to refer to the design and
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