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Here are the scientific breakthroughs that really changed the game. Without these, we’re halfway to Yabba-Dabba-Doo! Or worse. It’s a good thing we’ve got ’em!
Sure, it hurts. But it’s a lot better than the old days, when a newborn child was as likely to die before 3 years of age as not.
Faraday’s Electric Motor began the harnessing of electricity that, in turn, made the modern world. A tip of the hat to Michael Faraday!
A realistic accounting of what is going on inside the human body made the medical revolution possible. Thanks to Igor for getting all those cadavers!
Sir Alexander Fleming’s accidental discovery was but the greatest of a series of pharmaceuticals that have radically cut the human death rate.
No wheel, no anything. It made so much possible, especially in trade, public planning and warfare. Go, Speed Racer!
Hard to believe it’s only been a bit more than a single century since the Wright Bros.’ historic flight. A whole new dimension opened up to us – not just the air, but ultimately the rest of the universe.
Moon Is Spotted
Before Galileo turned his telescope to the Moon, we had thought that it, and all heavenly bodies, were geometrically perfect, smooth, and orbiting in geometrically perfect circles. Then Galileo saw valleys, mountains, impact craters. It became clear that there wasn’t anything ‘heavenly’ about space. It became a place, not an idea.
Carl Wilhelm discovered oxygen in 1772. Without its being isolated, we’d be a world without motors. Think about that for a moment.
This Chinese invention marked the beginning of the modern world. It was the end of fortified, walled cities, knights in shining armor, and a world full of a hundred thousand local governments, each run by its little local aristocrat.
Writing made communication revolutionary. It made non-local civilizations, stratified social classes, even the very idea of exact thinking, possible. No writing, no telegraph, and no computers. Thank a 4000 year-old Mesopotamian next time you see one.
Once upon a time, human beings hunted and gathered their food. That certainly kept our numbers at a level commensurate with every other primate. Then, starting around 15,000 BC, we began cultivating livestock and plants. This set the stage for civilization itself, and to humans becoming the top of the food chain.
Fire is the most crucial invention. It’s the thing that made humankind something different from the animals. It allowed cooking, materials science, light at night, and so much more that is indispensable to humans today. Also, a funky hit song by the Ohio Players…