Hmm, that is interesting! I'll file the steam boiler analogy away for later use.
Alan Kay never misses an opportunity to point out that our field has a terrible track record when it comes to learning from, or even being aware of, our history, let alone that of other related fields. There's a lot of unfortunate "rediscovering" of knowledge in computer science and engineering. (I'm as guilty of it as anyone.) I think it's a good habit to consider Alan's admonishment when we're faced with challenges or seeking solutions to problems, so I guess I'll follow his lead by mentioning it here :)