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Containerization: The Most Influential Invention That You've Never Heard Of

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The intermodal container changed our world. We would never have the interconnected and global economy of today without Malcolm McLean and his system of containerization. Email: wendoverproductions@gmail.com Twitter: @WendoverPro Please consider subscribing for more great videos about our world! Attributions: Northeast passage photo by Collin Knopp-Schwyn and Turkish Flame "Faster Does It" song by Kevin MacLeod Additional footage provided by VideoBlocks Licenses available upon request
Category: Education
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Text Comments (469)
Riley (2 days ago)
The Northwest passage is in Nunavut, not Russia and Scandinavia...
Canadian Crafter (4 days ago)
or the same unit of measurement...
Chris Musix (11 days ago)
The insanity of our modern economy: that shipping products half way around the world would be viable because of the inequality suffered by Asian workers. Thanks bro - you made Communism shiny!
Tymon Smith (14 days ago)
5:27 "Pipping is the behind the scenes process....."
GS4444 (17 days ago)
And here I was thinking this was about the recent mass adoption of containerization with docker. /facepalm
Budi Darmawan (29 days ago)
Isn't container ISO standard?
Twistr (1 month ago)
Morpheus network
Διογένης (1 month ago)
Actually, container carriers have a much much higher speed of 22-24 knots rather than the one you mentioned. The average speed you mentioned is that of bulk carriers and traditional crude oil tankers (More like 12 knots to be more accurate). I worked on board an LNG carrier and our average speed was 16-17 knots (Which is slow for LNG carriers, usually it is 18-19). I know that stuff first hand. I've been on watch for many many hours on that navigation bridge so my source is my experience. I think you are a little bit inaccurate right there.
Friendofspiders (1 month ago)
Those logistics videos are so interesting, to understand the processes behind our industrialization
aholguin618 (1 month ago)
Hate to beat a dead horse but the "no need for logistics" comment was just cringeworthy. The biggest vessels these days carry in excess of 12,000 TEUs, those boxes don't just get there by themselve. A lot of planning goes into every shipment.
Junk Mail (1 month ago)
Belated, but thanks for making this video. I actually didn't realize.
Rafael Vilorio (1 month ago)
4:14 what do you mean profitable🤔
AviationGeek007 (1 month ago)
Clint Golub (2 months ago)
“Global Warming may destroy some island nations and cities, but at least we can now cut down shipping routes by a few days”
Clint Golub (2 months ago)
The podcast #99percentinvisible covered this too! https://99percentinvisible.org/episode/containers-ships-tugs-port/
jus random shi (2 months ago)
I only use made in China things. Because I'm in China
L MUS (2 months ago)
I find it funny that the guy´s last name is McLean, because what he created has made the whole process more lean
WIFIGHOST CRUISER (3 months ago)
I've heard of it, I used to spend everyday of little containers with a forklift and by hand. A lot of containers still have to be loaded and unloaded by hand at the warehouse or factory.
The UnReaL Graffiti (3 months ago)
Nice when he pronounces “shipping” as “dipping”
Thekukills (3 months ago)
Did you just state that Kansas exports goods to Russia? Sure.
SteveTheFazeman (3 months ago)
The statement that Malcolm McLean sold everything was another inane comment.
Михайло Сєльський (3 months ago)
What really bothers me about shipping is this oxymoron: "shipped by plane".
Gabrulo (3 months ago)
is funny how the global warming is helping to decrease the emission of co2
Krpajda (4 months ago)
This is like the vaporwave of Wendover videos. It's slow, with ugly visuals; calming, yet weird and out of place somehow.
Doug Mcdonell (4 months ago)
For the worlds longshoremen this was the end. No more helping yourself to cargo.
Bris Vegas (4 months ago)
These ships run off dirty fuel that pollutes the atmosphere on a grand scale as they burn sulphur and other chemicals.... just so people can consume mindlessly, buying 10 pairs of sneakers, plastic t-shirts and gummy bears. What's the end game? How many more decades can this last for?
SHERMAN YOUNG (4 months ago)
Great video, but you show shipping containers from the US going to other places in the world, when truth is that most of the world's shipping containers are coming here to the United States 😂😂this country is the largest consumer of goods on EARTH... unbelievable 😮😮😮 the most we ship is bulk agriculture goods like,corn ,wheat,soy,beef,and pork, but not very much manufacturer goods.... Americans are greedy MONEY hungry Consumers 😮😮😮😮🤐
Jack Traveller (4 months ago)
Why can't container ships be engineered to be faster?
Notmade ofPeople (4 months ago)
I was not aware of the fact that I have never heard of shipping containers.
Klaa2 (4 months ago)
Question is, when are we going to standardize and supply chain ALL containers ? The enormous amount of waste and pollution from a one use container disposal system is such an obvious problem that needs to be solved immediately. It is literally destroying the world and escalating the cost of everything.
Womb Raider (4 months ago)
Global warming is a huge scam
Sean Cauffiel (5 months ago)
Containerization saved China from destitute poverty. Say thank you, third worlders. ::crickets::
This Isn't Even My Final Form (5 months ago)
1000 years later, your phone will be made in Mars.
Joe Blow (5 months ago)
Interesting, but could have done without the global warming crap.
Mahin (5 months ago)
Thanks for mentioning my country Bangladesh. :)
Pierzing.glint1sh7 (5 months ago)
Mahin USA shit is coz of Afghanistan tho...that would have happened regardless...and it wouldn’t affect the hypothetical east pak anyway coz India’s in between. So the taliban and everything that goes with it wouldn’t really affect you. I’ll tell you what India would try to do in that situation is to orchestrate false flag attacks and blame them on west Pakistan in order to make us divide if we hadn’t done in 1971. You’ve lost almost all political influence since without us you’re nothing but an Indian client state. You’re getting better economically but India surrounds you politically and literally on the map. Our nuclear weapons would also be yours, and atleast we’re still a thorn in India’s side but if we were together India literally couldn’t do anything without asking us first. We could not have made significant investment into east Pakistan at the time due to the fact that we were poor ourselves and we didn’t have the resources. On top of that add two wars with India 1948 and 1965, you should not have expected a lot of investment into the east. And finally Bangladesh is not doing well now due to independence. A lot of things which used to be made in Pakistan up until the war on terror are now made in Bangladesh. This is of US origin, and you were still exceedingly poor for decades even after independence.
Mahin (5 months ago)
Mmmm your right on the part India has a big influence on us. And they helped us win. But the topic that started this is that Bangladesh was mentioned here. And for what reason is that you ask? We are the biggest producers of cloths today cause we are independent. If we were to stuck with the west that would have been impossible. The west never made any developments in the east (which is one of the reason for the war) which led onto asking for our own language at leas but the government kills a lot of people instead, people were furious and it led to the war. The conclusion is if the west made significant development on the east not steal from it instead. The east and west would have never gone for that election, the west would have never lost on east and they could have still be together. ""And then you can say We could have India by the balls"" To also mention about your so called "Right Path". If we were together today the east would have been the poorest country with slavery and with a lot of USA shit going on here(i don't deny USA shit is not happening here now, but it is on a completely different level then yours.). I hope you Reply I'm having a blast here. :) :D
Pierzing.glint1sh7 (5 months ago)
Mahin You guys were stupid for demanding independence imagine we were still together we wud have India by the balls but noooooo you’re India’s puppet and always will be. Without their intervention you would be on the right path, with us!
Mahin (5 months ago)
Pierzing.glint1sh7 well if your talking about our independence. Then I clearly remember that we fought for it. ☺️
Pierzing.glint1sh7 (5 months ago)
Mahin you damn bungies get happy at anything. We should never have let you leave
Olive Anderstein (5 months ago)
2:15 so damn true. Stupid plugs.
Rob Mckennie (5 months ago)
Automization? Automation.
Luminescent Lion (5 months ago)
WSJ copied like 99% of what you said in this
Leo N (5 months ago)
Everything is made on our planet Earth, and that's good enough for me.
Lars (6 months ago)
the way he said “Newark” eww
InCaseOfEmergency EatAss (6 months ago)
A shipping container is 8 feet wide × 8.5 feet tall × 20 or 40 feet long
NCKDM (6 months ago)
5:27 pipping 😂😂
Bob Lint (6 months ago)
I wish I could go back in time and invent this sooner
Bob Lint (6 months ago)
Actually I'm taking credit. This one was me
Khong Minh (6 months ago)
Wow, nice observation. Thanks for making this channel.
adamcarrell (6 months ago)
Who's never heard of shipping containers?
wave haven (7 months ago)
Got news for some Real Historians...Malcolm got his proven system from the Pacific Northwest, Truck to Ship to train or your door...1st successful trip was 64 containers by People with Balls of steel - Ocean Van Lines 1952 Seattle to Alaska, Seattle Times Aug 31 1952....Malcolm's trip was 1956 who used the same method, he had money, truck company and tankers and bought the man who knew how to piece it together....he never thanked Ocean Van Lines 1 time to play the hero. True history dont matter when its about fame and $$$. Without Ocean Van Lines Malcolm would of not had copied it for 2nd place. Capt D
Methinks (7 months ago)
10 out of 10!
Tai Theguy (7 months ago)
@2:10 thats the inside of a truck's trailer, Not a shipping container
Rainy (7 months ago)
shipping container homes brought me here...
Andrew Gilbertson (7 months ago)
This is a great video, very well researched and explained. I work for a freight forwarding company, and am currently working on a training program for new recruits. Do you have any objection to my including your video as part of the content?
GOLDY SARASWAT (8 months ago)
thanks a lot for this knowledge full video your video help me in exam thank you so much
Alex Heschong (8 months ago)
Man, your narration skills have improved so much over the years. It's amazing to hear your voice in this video. It's so different than what I'm used to now.
d3u1d4e (8 months ago)
So now is a great time to become a Siberian pirate.
Ali Labeeb Alkoka (8 months ago)
I loved this video!!! It was greatly appreciated and Informational video. I actually learned something that has Global influence on many levels. But is offend or actually never thought about.
zamarco (8 months ago)
No italian subtitle very bad
FaiR (8 months ago)
I hate when videos tell me I've not heard of things I have heard of
Lazlow Rave (8 months ago)
Duden Ive been subscribed for a while and Im back peddling through your videos and this one is likely my favorite. Love your channel.
Andrew Kofink (8 months ago)
I definitely expected a video about Docker. :P
Trygve Evensen (8 months ago)
What about cardboard and plastic?
dlwatib (8 months ago)
Why did you think we might not have heard of containerization? Wherever you go, there they are. Containers are everywhere. People even try to make buildings out of used containers. Oh, and by the way, there is more than one size of container. At 1:05 you can clearly see that there are two distinct sizes of containers and the larger size can fit atop two of the smaller size.
Rezaur Rahman Deepto (8 months ago)
5:23 "Our clothes from Bangladesh." :')
Aaron (8 months ago)
Before watching this I made a bet with this video that I know about the invention. Wendover Productions, you now owe me 5€.
Phil Conti (8 months ago)
Dude, we cant even decide what way toilet paper goes
sam jonas (9 months ago)
At 5:27, does anyone else hear pipping instead of shipping
IntarwebUser (9 months ago)
Heh heh, but those scenes in the movies of sailors loading the goods aboard ship are so classy! I can't say a scene of a container being loaded has the same charm. ;)
DagarCoH (9 months ago)
So, essentially it is standardization... for containers. Standardization in general is a huge economic boost due to more efficiency wherever it is applied.
Guilherme sampaio de oliveira (9 months ago)
Automation of the boats can make it cheaper thought.
Valkor Odinson (10 months ago)
this is the best youtube channel hands down
Pladimir Vutin (10 months ago)
You guys should go watch some Maritime or Merchant Marine channels, they go over all the different types of containers. Some of them are quite brilliant.
JonatasAdoM (10 months ago)
But planes don't carry containers!
Max Crankshaft (10 months ago)
This subject is fascinating, we had to study this in the International Baccalaureate Geography course!!!
Paula Mais (11 months ago)
Unless you're Chinese 🙄
Michael Kun (5 months ago)
I'm part Chinese and I live in a country that isn't China. Yeah, I know, that exists?
Paula Mais (11 months ago)
Unless you're Chinese
Paula Mais (11 months ago)
TheZacman2 (11 months ago)
So the best invention ever is a box? It seems like common sense to me!
Paula Mais (11 months ago)
My dads friend lives near Oakland
Twistr (10 months ago)
Paula Mais awh for real?
RMAGGR (11 months ago)
Don't tell me what I haven't heard of. You're not my mom.
nico heidenreich (11 months ago)
Why don't they just massively increase the size of ships? What's the biggest possible ship what limits its the strength of steel?
Laurence Fraser (10 months ago)
nico heidenreich if the ship doesn't fit through the panama and/or suez canals, you have to take much longer routs and/or travel through areas with much worse conditions, wiping out any gains and then some, which limits length. The ship must actually fit in the various ports, limiting depth, width, and possibly length. It must be stabal and not tip over, limiting height (based on depth and length), while the longer it is the more trouble it has with turning, also significant. As an added bonus, the world is actually currently significantly overstocked on cargo ship capacity. Significantly more exists than there is any use for. Which discourages new building somewhat.
Melaku Haile (11 months ago)
I had to replay this video. That's how great it was. Keep it up.
Random Guy (1 year ago)
the Plane Fetish continues
Arvindh Mani (1 year ago)
5:27 sounds like he's saying " 'Tipping' is the behind the scenes process that has made our world what it is today." America will agree!
Ktm S (1 year ago)
Not unless you are in China!
avery neal (1 year ago)
You forgot the rise of the containers used in home and office construction
Benjamin Brewer (1 year ago)
The vikings had containerization. There system used large square woven baskets that needed 8 men to lift. There were ships designed to hold these baskets and horse drawn carts to pull them.
spyrmac (1 year ago)
Yes but maybe we should not have phones are made in China and clothing made in Bangladesh driving which people feather to poverty and modern slavery. I feel like people in the Western world like to have fun me included, without thinking the cost that Cheap production of any product has to real people and real lives
Dhruv Gramopadhye (1 year ago)
When you use the iMovie intro for your video
repairdrive (1 year ago)
And Walmart rules the world and American jobs die.
Doug Mcdonell (4 months ago)
Free enterprise is the American way, and it's a way where any country can win the game.
Philos Hahaha (1 year ago)
That's crazy as!
Jay Bee (1 year ago)
I already knew this u lie
David Newman (1 year ago)
Malcolm McLean did not design the containers. He hired an engineer to design them. That engineer was Keith Tantlinger, who designed the corner lock that made containerization possible, among other things.
Aulia Nizar (3 months ago)
Doug Mcdonell building and designing is a different thing
Doug Mcdonell (4 months ago)
No, it was a welder who built the first containers, I forget his name though.
David Newman (1 year ago)
See https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Keith_Tantlinger
Tyler Wardle (1 year ago)
"Bipping is the behind the scenes process"
Ikraznek (1 year ago)
there are no planes in this one!
Gilliam Flebus (1 year ago)
Watched more than half before realizing this isn't a talk on Docker. Still interesting.
Mrchips469 (1 year ago)
Without that box we wouldn't have our phones from China, our toys from China, or our video games from China
Ma Sato (1 year ago)
Why can't go faster than 15 knots???
froggymusicman (10 months ago)
that's naval construction engineering 101 : a ship can only go as fast as his hull shape and design allows it. Once you've reached the engine power required to match that top speed, it's useless to add more as it won't go any faster. Try that with your hand in the water to check that simple fact : The more you try to move fast, the more the water will resist.
fornox2 (1 year ago)
Umm, no. I live in Germany and most stuff I use is made here. Same thing goes for the chinese I guess.
Throwaway1234 (1 day ago)
You'd be surprised
YOLObananensplit (1 year ago)
have heard of it
Romandy (1 year ago)
Only humans can make global warming into a profit.
PabloVestory (1 year ago)
Yeah. But no a single word about how incredibly CONTAMINANT these giant cargo ships are. That is changing our world too.
DeeZanic (1 year ago)
Well we still have to adress the problem of our overconsumption and the extremely low wages and inhumane working conditions in those countries producing for us.
bassmanjr100 (1 year ago)
OMG. Global warming again?! Give it up. You videos are great except for this sick doomsday fascination that has no factual basis. When someone can prove to me that there is actual harm, it is more harm than good, we are proven to be the cause and finally we can do something about it without causing more harm then good then I will care. My mind is and has been totally open for 20 years now. I'm far from convinced.
Klaa2 (4 months ago)
You seem to think it's everybody else's job to educate you. Only you can pull your own head out of your own ass. You're lazy, and CHOOSE to be ignorant.