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Jen
12-06-2009, 01:28 PM
I found this article on the NewScientist - 10 scientific objects that changed the world (http://www.newscientist.com/gallery/dn17273-ten-most-historic-science-objects). The Science Museum in London is running a poll on what object made the biggest mark on history.

This made me think; how do you pick one above the rest? The impact it had on saving lives or the ability to destroy? Being able to travel across the country quickly or to the moon and back?

I thought PF1 could do its own mini-poll. What one would you choose?

The 10 scientific objects are:

Apollo 10 capsule (http://www.newscientist.com/gallery/dn17273-ten-most-historic-science-objects)

Thompson’s Atmospheric Engine (http://www.newscientist.com/gallery/dn17273-ten-most-historic-science-objects/2)

The electric telegraph (http://www.newscientist.com/gallery/dn17273-ten-most-historic-science-objects/3)

Model T Ford (http://www.newscientist.com/gallery/dn17273-ten-most-historic-science-objects/4)

Pilot ACE Computer (http://www.newscientist.com/gallery/dn17273-ten-most-historic-science-objects/5)

V2 rocket engine (http://www.newscientist.com/gallery/dn17273-ten-most-historic-science-objects/6)

Penicillin (http://www.newscientist.com/gallery/dn17273-ten-most-historic-science-objects/7)

DNA double helix (http://www.newscientist.com/gallery/dn17273-ten-most-historic-science-objects/8)

X-ray machine (http://www.newscientist.com/gallery/dn17273-ten-most-historic-science-objects/9)

Stephenson's Rocket (http://www.newscientist.com/gallery/dn17273-ten-most-historic-science-objects/10)

pcuser42
12-06-2009, 04:59 PM
The telegraph, being an ancestor of email. :D

Renmoo
12-06-2009, 05:21 PM
Sir Tim Bernes-Lee invention is not even in the list?

pctek
12-06-2009, 05:59 PM
Penicillin (http://www.newscientist.com/gallery/dn17273-ten-most-historic-science-objects/7)



Might have to add
Shortsightness of Humans which made the above Wonder extremely short lived.

GameJunkie
12-06-2009, 06:11 PM
model T ford

gary67
12-06-2009, 06:58 PM
Penicillin

Digby
12-06-2009, 07:10 PM
Gee I had not heard of two of them !

I suppose its the telegraph.

Jen
12-06-2009, 07:13 PM
Sir Tim Bernes-Lee invention is not even in the list?Al Gore bet him to it. ;)

johcar
12-06-2009, 07:30 PM
Penicillin - but it's a two-edged sword.

On the one hand it has saved millions of lives.

On the other hand, it has saved millions of lives.

beeswax34
12-06-2009, 07:59 PM
DNA, for getting to the basis of who we are and the scientific community isn't even close to started with using it to solve diseases etc

mikebartnz
12-06-2009, 08:36 PM
10 scientific objects that changed the world is a hard one but I am going with Henry Ford.
"The Seeds of Change" by Henry Hobhouse is a very interesting book about 6 plants that transformed mankind.

Richard
12-06-2009, 09:45 PM
I am surprised more have not voted for the steam engine! The device which enabled mechanical power to replace animal power was the change that made many of the other inventions possible. Some, such as the Ford changed modes of transport, and eventually made populations more mobile, but contributed nothing to sea transport or even to air transport. Think of the advances in manufacturing using steam power that made so many more developments possible. Wow, it's huge. It wasn't called the Industrial Revolution for nothing!

The steam engine was truly the invention that changed the world...permanently, for ever!!!

C'mon SJ, give me some support here.

Terry Porritt
12-06-2009, 09:56 PM
I wouldn't vote for any of those items, I'd go for Nikola Tesla's invention of the multi-or polyphase generator and induction motor, leading to the widespread distribution of electricity, and without which excepting for the steam engines and telegraph, most other things on the list would not have been possible.

Rob99
13-06-2009, 01:53 AM
I picked the car.

It kills operators, passengers, innocent bystanders.
It is one of the biggest polluters both in terms of emission and then the scrapping at the end of its life.
It needs roads to drive on, these have scared the landscape forever.

ps. I am looking into driving defensively, converting to water power, and only driving off road...

Greg
13-06-2009, 06:55 AM
and only driving off road... You can do that quite easily by buying a helicopter!

:D

Digby
13-06-2009, 08:12 AM
I am surprised more have not voted for the steam engine!

The steam engine was truly the invention that changed the world...permanently, for ever!!!

Yes I did, but why didn't they list it as the Steam Engine in their poll instead of Thompson's Atmospheric Engine (what the hell is that). (I had always thought James Watt invented the steam engine.) I just looked at Wikepedia and they don't even mention Thompson's !)

Cicero
13-06-2009, 10:14 AM
I picked the car.

It kills operators, passengers, innocent bystanders.
It is one of the biggest polluters both in terms of emission and then the scrapping at the end of its life.
It needs roads to drive on, these have scared the landscape forever.

ps. I am looking into driving defensively, converting to water power, and only driving off road...
I will be round to pick up your evil modes of transport shortly,I am sure you will enjoy walking it.

Seems to me,any of these inventions would be hard to do without and each adds to our existence.

sarel
13-06-2009, 10:32 AM
DNA easily

sarel

plod
13-06-2009, 10:52 AM
The printing press, although not on the list it should be.

Myth
14-06-2009, 08:50 AM
Penicillin - but it's a two-edged sword.

On the one hand it has saved millions of lives.

On the other hand, it has saved millions of lives.And having millions more people is beneficial how?

Telegraph, revolutionised communication, which soon became the telephone, then the net

Trev
14-06-2009, 09:17 AM
What about the wheel.
:)

johcar
14-06-2009, 10:36 AM
Which is my point, Myth. Re-read my post....

Cicero
14-06-2009, 11:05 AM
What about the wheel.
:)

So true,what about ice cream too?

davidmmac
14-06-2009, 11:19 AM
So true,what about ice cream too?

+1

And chocolate :punk

Being realistic now: The Telegraph.

PaulD
14-06-2009, 11:39 AM
Yes I did, but why didn't they list it as the Steam Engine in their poll instead of Thompson's Atmospheric Engine (what the hell is that). (I had always thought James Watt invented the steam engine.) I just looked at Wikepedia and they don't even mention Thompson's !)

Jen probably added "Thompson's" as the original poll just mentions him as the builder of the example shown, the atmospheric (steam) engine was invented by Newcomen and improved by Watt

Richard
14-06-2009, 12:25 PM
Yes, Thompson's was a Newcomen type steam engine. It started a process of development which led to the 747 jet airliner. Beam engine, reciprocating steam engine, triple expansion steam engine, Parsons turbine steam engine (ref Turbinia 1897), triple expansion turbine steam engine, and gas turbine engine which brings us into the modern times. A world changer? You bet! :thumbs:

Jen
14-06-2009, 05:53 PM
Jen probably added "Thompson's" as the original poll just mentions him as the builder of the example shown, the atmospheric (steam) engine was invented by Newcomen and improved by WattNo, I just copied and pasted from the New Scientist website titles. They must have changed the title since then?

I will edit my poll to remove the "Thompson's" part.

Jen
14-06-2009, 06:01 PM
I should add I voted for penicillin. It prevented so many unnecessary deaths at the time, although as pctek has commented, its effectiveness was short lived. Bugs started to fight back and developed resistance.

I was thinking more that it triggered scientists look for other compounds in nature that could be used as antibiotics.

Some of these inventions/discoveries were more noted for what changes cascaded from that point on than the object itself.

bob_doe_nz
14-06-2009, 09:37 PM
I was thinking more that it triggered scientists look for other compounds in nature that could be used as antibiotics.

Garlic.

R2x1
14-06-2009, 10:03 PM
Like plod, I would put the printing press ahead of all those other widgets.

Beer would have to be way up there too.

rob_on_guitar
15-06-2009, 03:23 AM
Beer, Mute button,Jim Marshall,Bread, Bacon, Chop Suey and Mad magazine.

Roscoe
15-06-2009, 09:05 PM
The plough.

The plough is the instrument of surplus. Without the plough we would not have civilisation as we know it today. It altered the face of continental Europe and the condition of the inhabitants. The forests began to disappear as assarting cut deeper into the woods.

Because the plough is the instrument of surplus it means that the farmer - for the first time - could produce more than he needed so he was able to sell his surplus. That freed other people - doctors, carpenters, etc - from growing existence crops. They could now buy their produce with the money they made pursuing their trade.

Because people no longer had to move around to gather food, they settled in villages that eventually became cities.

The plough has been around much longer than any of the scientific objects mentioned above - the earliest illustrations comes from a book of psalms written in England in the fourteenth century - but whether or not you would call it a scientific object may be debatable. Certainly it was a breakthrough in the fourteenth century - an object still very much in use today.

Cicero
15-06-2009, 09:30 PM
The fact is we can all think of tip top inventions,but like mankind,all are dependant on the other,we might like to think one is better than another,but try moving ahead with just one.

R2x1
15-06-2009, 10:35 PM
The plough.

The plough is the instrument of surplus. . . . Certainly it was a breakthrough in the fourteenth century - an object still very much in use today.
Sorry, not an invention, just a horse accessory - without the horse the plough was too hard for the farmer's wife to push. ;)

user
16-06-2009, 10:13 AM
The fact is we can all think of tip top inventions,but like mankind,all are dependant on the other,we might like to think one is better than another,but try moving ahead with just one.

Quite true. There was once a TV series called 'Connections' by James Burke which followed the links between small discoveries and inventions and how they led onto larger inventions. Many of the inventions listed are the result of many other key discoveries or inventions fitting together to make a larger impact.

prefect
16-06-2009, 11:01 AM
Instant coffee and sliced bread are way up there to.

Richard
16-06-2009, 11:14 AM
With reference to Roscoe's nomination of the plough as a great invention, it was the development of the horse collar, as replacement for the girth surcingle used in earlier times which made efficient farming practices possible. It enabled draught horses to replace oxen as they were much faster. The collar meant that the animal could in effect, push the load, rather than drag it.

Weight pulling studies

The French cavalry officer Lefebvre des Noëttes experimented with the ancient throat-and-girth harness in comparison the later trace breast-harness and the finally the matured form of the medieval collar harness. In his experiment of 1910, he found that two horses (aided by effective traction) using the throat-and-girth harness were limited to pulling about 1100 lbs. (˝ ton).[7] However, a single horse with a more efficient collar harness could draw a weight of about 1˝ tons.[7] (Wikipedia)

SurferJoe46
16-06-2009, 03:37 PM
I am surprised more have not voted for the steam engine! The device which enabled mechanical power to replace animal power was the change that made many of the other inventions possible. Some, such as the Ford changed modes of transport, and eventually made populations more mobile, but contributed nothing to sea transport or even to air transport. Think of the advances in manufacturing using steam power that made so many more developments possible. Wow, it's huge. It wasn't called the Industrial Revolution for nothing!

The steam engine was truly the invention that changed the world...permanently, for ever!!!

C'mon SJ, give me some support here.

I too have often thought that this huge brain of mine was not designed to view the back end of a mule.

Unfortunately, I only see all the inventions - so they are called - as extensions of things that already existed in a simpler and even a gentler form.

Steam engine? Feet
Telegraph? Voice
see?

And REFRIGERATION was not even mentioned.

R2x1
16-06-2009, 06:38 PM
Gravity was a pretty neat trick.

kenj
16-06-2009, 07:00 PM
Woman

Ken

R2x1
17-06-2009, 11:37 PM
Woman

Ken
Nope, beer is better. You can keep the second beer handy while you enjoy the first, and no problems at all. With your gadget, delightful as they may be, . . .

Rob99
18-06-2009, 12:54 AM
Woman

Ken

Barbie and Ken