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The word skyscraper was originally a nickname for a tall mast on a sailing
ship. Today the word is used exclusvely to refer to a tall habitable
building, usually higher than 152 metres (500 feet).
Until recent times, buildings of over six stories were rare. The development
of buildings framed with steel or reinforced concrete has made possible the
construction of extremely tall buildings, some of which are over 300 metres
tall. The other development essential to practical skyscraper development
was the invention of the elevator.