Who Invented the Machine Gun?

Who Invented the Machine Gun?...

The development and history of the machine is complex, but the fact is that Hiram Maxim was the first one to invent and use a machine gun that was self powered. The American inventor showed off his work to the British Army in 1885. He had invented it a year earlier in 1884. The Early Years of the Machine Gun Prior to Maxim’s invention, inventors had begun experimenting with the idea of a continuous rapid fire gun. In 1718, James Puckle came up with the Defence Gun. It consisted of a revolver mounted on a cylinder base. It could fire 60 shots in seven minutes, but the cylinder had to be adjusted manually. Other early designs included the Wilson Agar’s Coffee Mill gun and the Billinghurst–Requa. Both were widely used during the Civil War. These firearms were important in the early history of the machine gun as it gave inventors an idea of what the design had to be like. The Maxim Machine Gun and Others This rapid fire weapon was invented by the American Richard Gatling in 1861. It was first used by the US Army in 1865 and it would also become popular with European armies. Tests by the British Army showed it could fire 600 shots in two minutes. Maxim’s invention (the Maxim Machine Gun) became popular because of its efficiency. It was able to fire 500 rounds every minute. The key was using the recoil to remove the used cartridge and set the new one in place. The history of the machine gun reveals the Maxim gun was bought by the British in 1889. A year later, the Germans, Italians and Russians started ordering Maxim’s machine guns. The success of Hiram Maxim’s weapon inspired others...
Who Invented the DVD Player?

Who Invented the DVD Player?...

The history of the DVD player and format is complex. But in simple terms, it emerged because the companies realized that a repeat of the Betamax / VHS rivalry would affect them financially. The first DVD players came out in November 1996 in Japan, developed by Philips. This invention can’t be attributed to one man. There is no clear data that say who exactly invented this device. Therefore, we can only say that Philips created the first DVD player. Other big companies started making their own players shortly after the Philips’ DVD player showed up. The first DVD player in the US was the Sony DVP S7000. It came out in March 1997. How the DVD Format Emerged In 1993, two formats were being touted to replace the CD. One was called the MultiMedia Compact Disc (MMCD). It was supported by Philips and Sony. The other format was the Super Density or SD. This format was backed by Toshiba, Pioneer, JVC and Time Warner. The SD group approached IBM and asked them to use the format for computer data storage. The MMCD group did the same thing. IBM decided to form the Technical Working Group (TWG) to resolve the situation. The group was composed of people from Microsoft, Apple and other major computer companies. In what would prove pivotal in the history of the DVD player, the working group managed to persuade the companies to use a single format. The MMCD and the SD were dropped; the DVD was adopted instead. As work on the DVD began, the companies decided to use technologies from both SD and MMCD formats. One of the technologies applied was EFMPlus, which made the disc more resistant to scratches and smearing. It also allowed...
Who Invented the Boom Box?

Who Invented the Boom Box?...

No one can say for certain who invented the boom box (also known as ghetto blaster). During the mid 1970s, the idea of a portable stereo became popular. A look at the history of the boom box reveals that Sanyo, Panasonic and Marantz were the pioneers. Cultural Impact The concept behind the boom box was that anyone could own a portable stereo system. While the idea first appeared in the 1970s, it really caught fire in the 1980s and early 1990s. During this period, young people could be seen carrying around boom boxes. Frequently one would see teenagers hanging around together with a boom box and dancing. This scenario would become even more widespread when breakdancing became popular. The emerging hip hp culture also contributed to the popularity of the boom box. There came a point when the boom box became a fashion statement as well. It wasn’t just the sound that mattered; it was the look, the buttons etc. But as an appraisal of the history of the boom box makes plain, the player would fade away in the 1990s. Technological innovations allowed for the invention of smaller audio players. The arrival of CD and mp3 players has greatly reduced the boom box’s popularity. Basic Features The boom box began its life as an extension for the radio cassette player. In the 1970s the cassette recorder became popular, but companies wanted to add AM/FM radio to it. Intense competition would lead to numerous innovations. The most basic features were a couple of speakers and an amplifier with radio tuner. The cassette player was also included. As the history of the boom box unfolded, the cassette player would be complemented (and replaced) by the CD component. The casing was...
Who Invented the Light Bulb?

Who Invented the Light Bulb?...

When asked who invented the light bulb there are those who quickly answer that it was Thomas Edison. Unfortunately it was not Edison who invented the light bulb since there are at least 22 others who have invented something that resembles something like it. There were actually others who had come up with the idea to generate light from electricity. Comparing Edison Thomas Edison’s invention may not be the first but it is one that far exceeds many of the earlier inventions. It is noted that Edison did not just create a new type of light bulb he also created an integrated lighting system. Origin As early as the 1800’s there have been inventors who have tried to convert electricity and produce light. Sir Humphry Davy was one who was a bit successful. He was an English physician who was able to pass an electric current through strips of platinum. The only drawback with his experiments was that the platinum strips dissipated rather quickly and he was unable to create light. He then created the Arc lamp in 1809. He was able to make an electrical connection among a couple of charcoal rods that were connected to a battery. The light was quite bright however it was small as well. Though we can not credit Sir Humphry Davy as the one who invented the light bulb he did add to its development. Further Developments The next 50 years after Davy’s success will bring up others who would strive to lengthen the life of the light produced from electricity. A notable inventor is Warren de la Rue who was able to make a more efficient design. He used a platinum coil in a vacuum tube that produced light a lot...
Who Invented Genetic Engineering?

Who Invented Genetic Engineering?...

The history of genetic engineering began in the early 1900s with the works of the Austrian monk and scientist Gregor Mendel. Mendel’s work led to the establishment of genetics as a scientific field. From this genetic engineering would appear through the works of other scientists. The 1940s to 1950s Of course, plant breeders long ago learned how to alter the seeds. But in 1944, Oswald Avery Colin McLeod and Maclyn McCarty discovered that DNA was the carrier of genetic information. This discovery led to intense studies on DNA and its properties. The breakthrough came in 1953 when Watson and Crick decoded the structure of the DNA, vital to the history of genetic engineering. During the 1960s, Ian Wilmut started developing the techniques for cloning animals using cells of other mammals. It was in 1968 that the Swiss microbiologist Werner Arber discovered restriction enzyme. The following year type II restriction enzymes were uncovered by American biologist Hamilton Smith. This discovery, along with the works of Daniel Nathan, broke new ground in DNA research. The 1970s The 1970s saw an increase in research into genetic engineering. Most of the experiments were on bacteria and other microorganisms. The research was focused on the plasmids, DNA rings discovered in bacteria. It was during this decade that gene isolation and alteration techniques were developed in the US. These discoveries were vital in the history of genetic engineering. It allowed scientists to insert genes into other plants or cells. This could also be done on animals. In effect this changed the heredity of the organism. Further research showed that type I and II enzymes were pivotal in genetic research. In 1973, Herbert Boyer and Stanley Cohen invented a process for slicing DNA and joining it...
Who Invented Electricity?

Who Invented Electricity?...

A study of the history of electricity makes it clear that no single scientist or inventor is responsible for its invention. No single person learned how to use it. Rather it was the culmination of the works of various researchers spanning several years. Earliest Mention of Electrical Use Historical records show that static electricity was already known to the ancient Greeks. In the 6th century BC a Greek named Thales of Miletus discovered that rubbing a fur would make a couple of objects attract one another. According to the legend he experimented with various objects. It was with amber that he was able to produce electrical sparks. Discoveries in the 15th Century The next important chapter in the history of electricity took place at the onset of the Renaissance. The Italian physicist Girolamo Cardano discovered fundamental aspects of electrical power and magnetism. His associate William Gilbert expounded on Cardano’s theories. In 1660 Otto von Guericke invented an electrostatic generator. This was the beginning of a new scientific field of study. This device, along with others that followed, revealed a number of things. The first is that electricity can move across a vacuum. The second is that materials can be divided between insulators and conductors. Finally, it was learned that electricity can be either in positive or negative forms. The 17th to 19th Centuries This period was crucial in the history of electricity. First of all, the capacitor was invented. Just as important was the discovery that static electricity could be changed into a current. It was also around this time that Benjamin Franklin performed his famous experiment with a kite. His experiments about lightning and electricity has been subject to debate, but his contribution to electricity theory cannot be...
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