Suppose that we evolved on a planet entirely without zinc.
How would our civilization be different if we didn't have access to this metal? What alternatives would we develop? What technologies would become impossible, if any?
Here are some assumptions you may make:
Humans (and, if you want to assume further, the rest of life as we know it) exist magically supported by something that takes zinc's place. If you can address how life would evolve without zinc, that would be cool, but I'm more interested in how our current civilization would be different, which assumes something analogous to humans exist.
Our current scientific theory is not disrupted by this hole in the periodic table. I don't know what the ramifications are for the absence of an element, and I don't really want to think about what "problems" that might cause - you may assume we just don't have any means of obtaining it if that is easier.
I'm happy to add more assumptions if there are more fundamental issues with the absence of zinc. My question seeks to identify what sort of a role zinc plays in our world and what alternatives we would use if it were gone.
This question is shamelessly taken from a sketch The Simpsons did about a world without zinc.