The day when the first wooden boxes filled with snow or ice were used to cool provisions is considered the birth of mechanical cooling. Cooling is nothing more than the energetic transformation of heat into cold. Without this knowledge Carl von Linde could not have realized his idea of the first cooling machine in 1873 and there would not be - for example - any top-fermented beer today. A terrible notion particularly for a Rhinelander: A summer without Alt, Kölsch or Weizenbier. Not to mention all the other things of everyday life which we would have to renounce without automatic cooling.
Just think of the butcher around your corner, the restaurants, supermarkets, gas stations, etc. Today the whole food industry - and consequently all of us - depends to a great extent on a seamlessly functioning cooling chain. And it is not just a matter of a fresh, cool beer after work but of considerably more essential things.