modern world is an electrified world. The light bulb, in particular, profoundly changed human existence by
illuminating the night and making it hospitable to a wide range of human activity.
The electric light, one of the everyday
conveniences that most affects our lives, was invented in 1879 by Thomas
Alva Edison. He was neither the first nor the only person
trying to invent an incandescent light bulb.
In 1928, Walter Diemer was
working as an accountant for the Fleer Chewing Gum Company in Philadelphia;
what he wound up doing in his spare time was playing around with new gum
recipes. But this latest batch was less sticky than regular chewing gum and
it stretched more easily.
His bubble gum was so successful that it sold over $1,500,000 U.S. dollars worth of gum in the first year.
1440, German inventor Johannes Gutenberg invented a printing press
process that, with refinements and increased mechanization, remained the
principal means of printing until the late 20th century. The inventor's
method of printing from movable type, including the use of metal molds
and alloys, a special press, and oil-based inks, allowed for the first
time the mass production of printed books.
Probably no means of communication has
revolutionized the daily lives of ordinary people more than the
The actual history of the telephone is a subject of
complex dispute. The controversy began with the success of the invention
and continues today. Some of the inventors credited with inventing the
telephone include Antonio Meucci, Philip Reis,
Elisha Gray and Alexander
Graham Bell. Bell's
experiments with his assistant Thomas Watson finally proved successful
on March 10, 1876, when the first complete sentence was transmitted:
"Watson, come here; I want you.".
||Carl von Linde, German engineer whose invention of a continuous process
of liquefying gases in large quantities formed a basis for the modern
technology of refrigeration. Refrigeration is
chiefly used to store foodstuffs at low temperatures, thus inhibiting
the destructive action of bacteria, yeast, and mold.
n the summer of 1853, Native American
George Crum was employed as a chef at an elegant resort in Saratoga
Springs, New York. One dinner
guest found Crum's French fries too thick for his liking and rejected
the order. Crum decided to rile the guest by producing fries too thin
and crisp to skewer with a fork. The plan backfired. The guest was
ecstatic over the browned, paper-thin potatoes, and other diners began
requesting Crum's potato chips
||After he was defeated by the Americans in Texas, Mexican General Santa Anna
was exiled to New York. Like many of his countrymen, Santa Anna chewed
chicle. One day he introduced it to inventor Thomas Adams, who began experimenting
with it as a substitute for rubber. Adams tried to make toys, masks, and rain boots
out of chicle, but every experiment failed. Sitting in his workshop
one day,tired and discouraged, he popped a piece of surplus stock into
his mouth. In 1870, he opened the
worlds first chewing gum factory making Adams New York No.
In 1921 the 14-year-old Mormon
had an idea while working on his father's Idaho farm. Mowing hay in
rows, Philo realized an electron beam could scan a picture in horizontal
lines, reproducing the image almost instantaneously. This would prove to
be a critical breakthrough in Philo Farnsworth's invention of the
television in 1927.
||Since its debut
in 1959, an anatomically improbable
molded plastic statuette named Barbie has become an icon. Ruth Handler
undeniably invented an American icon that functions as both a steady
outlet for girls'
dreams and an ever changing reflection of American society. This can be seen in the
history of Barbie's clothes, and even her various "face lifts" to suit the
times; in her professional, political and charitable endeavors; and more recently in the
multi-culturalizing of her product line.
||Police Officer William L. Potts of
Detroit, Michigan, decided to do something about the problem caused
by the ever increasing number of automobiles on the streets. What he
had in mind was figuring out a way to adapt railroad signals for
street use. Potts used red, amber, and green railroad lights and
about thirty-seven dollars worth of wire and electrical controls to
make the world’s first 4-way three color traffic light.
|* Based on
page views at The Great Idea Finder during 2006