We humans are amazingly clever with a devised brain which has lead us to create numerous languages, divisions of land into countries and regions, race, cast, creed and at all from the ancient times. Being so ingenious in nature, humans have also started to innovate and devise new ways to make their lives a bit easier to live with the advent of time.
As the famous saying goes, “Necessity is the mother of all inventions” – By Albert Einstein, we humans have practically invented things which were needed to make life easier to live.
In the earlier ages when our ancestors were busy to gather their daily food and started to kill other weaker species in order to survive, the need for weapons carved from stones came into the picture, being one of the initial inventions of mankind. Since then, a lot of things have been invented but only a few among them changed the face of life we live today.
Here, we are going to talk about those innovations without which we, standing at the twenty first century could not have imagined life!
Glancing at the important milestones (read inventions) that humanity has ever seen.
An amazingly important invention at that, I shiver with the thought if wheels were not there at present times! How much could we have walked? How many things could we have transported? Well, but thankfully the cave men (our great ancestors) took it upon themselves to create something as intelligent and useful as the wheel. It was nothing of a mistake when the cave men devised a way by mere observation and use of the common things they found lying around to make something which will help them to move things easily from one place to another. They found tree barks and stones and tried to make something circular to balance things on. This invention actually changed the way humankind works today. Transportation became easy and thus followed everything else!
A small thing, nails were another landmark in human civilization, without which the basic things in life would not have taken place! This invention was made more than 2000 years back in the Ancient Roman era and only became possible after humans could learn and handle the art of casting and shaping metals. Earlier to the times when nails were not invented, houses had to be made with a lot of effort by cutting the wood in shapes which could fit with one another to make the structure a bit secure. However, sooner than the nails were invented, the great Greek scholar and scientist Archimedes came into the picture and gave the world screws, which are much harder than the nails in the third century B.C.
Compass was a great invention due to the fact that it led to mankind taking the advantage of discovering earth in a better manner and that is why we are here today! Before the invention of the compass, travelling was tough as the landmarks had to be marked along with understanding the positions of land and sea using the positions of celestial bodies and stars as well. However, compass got invented somewhere around the 9th and 11th century by the Chinese and the initially was carved out of a naturally magnetized material known as lodestone. Wand Xu is said to be the inventor of compass in the 4th century B.C.
#4. The plow
Well, even if this invention seems to be a misfit here, let me remind you that if our ancestors would not have lived by eating and planting, most probably the electronic and the modern life inventions would not have taken place! Plows, which are a simple tool used to create furrows in the soil to churn up the essential nutrients to get a better plantation, took place long back, but no one really knows the inventor and it is said that it came up individually from various regions. Before the humble plows came into existence, humans had to take up the tedious task to plow the land with their bare hands and to avoid that they used to hunt for food and survive on a daily basis. With this invention, everything changed and the farming practices brought about stability in the human race. Post the invention of plows, it went through a lot of innovation which led to farming becoming a lot more easier and humans could actually produce more food than was required for themselves and thus trading of food started and as they say, the rest is history!!
Indeed one of the inventions lives would have been pretty difficult without; electricity was brought into our lives by Benjamin Franklin who one fine day thought of flying a kite on a stormy day with a metallic key attached to the thread he was holding in his hand. Amazingly, he experienced the first shock of his life when his kite was struck by the electric current from the clouds and just when he touched the key, he felt the current passing through his body and as his feet touched the ground it gave him the feel of Earthing as well! This incident was the epicenter of the discovery of electricity which led to so many other additions to human lives in the coming years.
We have all come across ancient monuments and historic structures where we find inscriptions on the walls depicting people of those times performing various day to day activities. This was done in order to teach the next generation and the future generation the way of live as devised by them due to the fact that they did not have any idea of writing these instructions down and pictures and carvings were the easiest of the way they could think of. Later with the advent of time, humans came up with the use of palm leaves, papyrus and parchments to draw the figures in and as time passed and humans could write languages, they started using these mediums to pass on the instructions to the future generations. However, the supplies of these were limited and expensive too, which led to the invention of paper during the Han Dynasty (206 BC – 220 AD) in ancient China and slowly diversified to the other parts of the world. Papers were initially made of wood and rags which were easy to process and cheap as well and slowly after a lot of innovations came to what we are using at the moment!
Well, to club the important inventions of the telegraph, telephone, radio and television is not worthy enough, but the developments in these fields have been so rapid and functional that I had no other option! Samuel Morse was the man behind the invention of the first electric telegraph in the year 1836. Telephones just made the things a bit easier by making voice communication clearer and better! While the communication industry advanced further with numerous people trying to perfect the art of wireless communication systems and led to the invention of transmission via electromagnetic waves by Nilola Tesla and Guglielmo in the early 20th century. The next to come in the lines of invention was that of the radio and television, which took combination to another level where a single broadcaster was able to send messages to millions of recipients with the use of receivers. In a short span of about 120 years, world communication got extremely easy and the face of technologically sound communications took over humanity!
#8. Stream Engines
Another landmark in the history of mankind came about fast during the Industrial revolution and as a result came the stream engines. The first steam engine was invented by Thomas Newcomen in England in the year 1712. In the year 1769, James Watt was responsible to increase the power and effectively of the engine invented by Thomas and devised the way in which the stream engine would work faster and practically and thus came to be known as the inventor of the actual steam engines in the world. Followed by Watt, another gentleman named Richard Trevithick and some others made a model which was compact and which led to the invention of trains which we commute by right now! With the coming of time, even though steam engines have been taken over, but the idea behind the steam engines are still used in various industries that generate power by burning coal and other natural resources to produce steam to help them work. Amazing!!
Something of a machine which had the capacity to take in information and post manipulation able to offer a new output was that computers were all about in the earlier stages. Well, frankly there is no one person who can be given the credit of making the modern computer maybe I am working on at the moment, but somewhat of a credit can be given to Alan Turing, a British mathematician who was a great influence in the field of computing. Even though some sort of evidence is available for the usage of mechanical computers in the 1800s, but they were pretty rare and the actual electronic computers came into the scene only in 20th century. Well, all said and done, German inventor Konrad Zuse is considered to be the inventor of this useful machine and the first of the computers were considered to have been so big that they filled an entire room with complex arrangements. With the advancement in technology, thankfully, now we have come to an age that we have computers as the size of our palms!! Things have changed fast and for good one has to say.
#10. World Wide Web and Internet
Well, the latest grand inventions of mankind were the invention of internet or the World Wide Web without which I guess many things would not have been possible. Sir Tim Berners-Lee is considered to be the person behind the Web, who is incidentally a computer scientist and a former Cern employee too! He brought about the concept of “WWW” on 12th march 1989, via a proposal he wrote which came be become the World Wide Web we know it today! However, in the year 1970, another man named Arthur C Clarke predicted that at one point all the information of the world will be found in one place with a click of a finger, which actually is true at the present times. Such is the impact and power of innovation, one has to admit!