The History of the Dial Caliper
"Instead of using a vernier mechanism, which requires some practice to use, the dial caliper reads the final fraction of a millimeter or inch on a simple dial.
In this instrument, a small, precise rack and pinion drives a pointer on a circular dial, allowing direct reading without the need to read a vernier scale. Typically, the pointer rotates once every inch, tenth of an inch, or 1 millimeter. This measurement must be added to the coarse whole inches or centimeters read from the slide. The dial is usually arranged to be rotatable beneath the pointer, allowing for "differential" measurements (the measuring of the difference in size between two objects, or the setting of the dial using a master object and subsequently being able to read directly the plus-or-minus variance in size of subsequent objects relative to the master object).
The History of the Micrometer
"The word micrometer is a neoclassical coinage from Greek micros, meaning 'small', and metron, meaning 'measure'. The Merriam-Webster Collegiate Dictionary says that English got it from French and that its first known appearance in English writing was in 1670. Neither the metre nor the micrometre (μm) nor the micrometer (device) as we know them today existed at that time. However, the people of that time did have much need for, and interest in, the ability to measure small things and small differences. The word was no doubt coined in reference to this endeavor, even if it did not refer specifically to its present-day senses.
The first ever micrometric screw was invented by William Gascoigne in the 17th century, as an enhancement of the vernier; it was used in a telescope to measure angular distances between stars and the relative sizes of celestial objects."