This is related to the 2.5 Resources page.

Finding the optimal materials for every particular function is one of the most important tasks of a good designer.       Each material has a multitude of criteria and characteristics to take into account, which makes them perfectly suitable for some uses and not others.

Here we will compile some examples & ideas as we find them ... starting with abundant waste materials, as we know these are normally our first priority to find uses for, and they are also cheap & plentiful.

The History of Metals is a great example 

of how the discovery of new materials 

can change the course of history   >>>

Making History - Making Charcoal

Charcoal was essential for a number of reasons during the ancient and medieval times. This is the process most commonly used to make it.

Making History - Malachite & Copper

Early humans quickly find valuable uses for the first metals. The discovery of copper marks the end of the stone age and entry into more prolific times.

Making History - Bronze

By adding Tin to Copper early humans create the worlds first alloy - Bronze. This metal is much harder and doesn't lose its edge as quickly as copper does which inspires people to mass produce bronze armor and weapons for security and conquest

Making History - Bog Iron

In order to win wars (or to prevent them) a civilization needed iron. Here is one of the sources in England

Building a Celtic iron smelting furnace 

and roasting the bog-ore

Lejre Rapport:

STEEL: From Start to Finish