Below is a list of inventions that led
to the world we see today.
A Scramjet is a jet engine with no
moving parts. It works by air entering
the front of the engine, which is large,
then being compressed as it passes
through the engine which gets narrower in
the middle. Fuel is then added to the
compressed air giving propulsion.
Scramjet's only work after they are
traveling at high speeds when air is
being forced through the engine, they
cannot fly from a standstill.
A remote controlled NASA Scramjet
reached 9 times the speed of sound in
2011 before crashing. They are expected
to be able to reach 24 times the speed of
The fastest aircraft before this was
the Lockheed SR-71 "Blackbird" spy plane
that traveled about 3 times the speed of
This type of propulsion has been
attempted from the early 1900s with
little success. A Scramjet aircraft is
expected to cut the flight time between
London and Australia from 21 hours to
under 2 hours.
Optical fibers are now widely used in
fiber-optic communications, aloowing
transmission of data over longer
distances at higher bandwidths than other
forms of communication before, such as
Telephones and the Internet are the
most well known users of this invention.
Although the transmitting of data by
Fibre Optics has been tested for over 100
years, it was not until 1980 that
companies began using Fibre Optics to
link large cities.
Nobody has been credited with
inventing the modern day Fibre Optic
system. Claims have been made the system
was back-engineered from crashed alien
Computers early 1970s/ Internet
born 1987/ first computers that can be
compared to todays 1990s.
Personal computers were developed from
the early 1970s by companies such as
Hewlett Packard, Xerox, Apple, Macintosh,
IBM, Microsoft and Comodore.
In 1984, Apple Computers introduced
the first reliable and affordable mouse
for point and click navigation through
the computer. This allowed the mass
production of user friendly point and
click software, leading to the personal
computers seen today.
This first Apple computer was
extremely limited with only 128 KB of Ram
Memory (Fast Memory). If a computers Ram
is overloaded, it Crashes. By the early
1990s, ram memory began increasing from 2
MB, about 20 times that of the first
Apple. By the early 2000s, computers were
appearing with 128 MB of Ram, that is
still enough for some people today,
although easily overloaded to a crash
using high data programmes.
Ram has steadily ingreased to 20 GB in
2010s, that is the equivilent of 20,480
MB. I GB of Ram can cope easily with
video editing, so it seems Ram reaching
20 GB has been for use in gaming
computers, that seem never to have enough
Silicon Chip/ Micro Chip
An integrated circuit is an electronic
circuit manufactured into a thin form of
semiconductor material, now normaly
Integrated circuits are now used in
virtually every electronic device, making
them more reliable, less expensive, and a
fraction of the size.
Although the integrated circuit was
being pursued from the early 1900s, it
wasn't until the 1960s/1970s that the
invention was mass produced for public
The first hand held calculator was
developed in 1967, and the first Digital
Watch was produced in 1974.
Jack Kilby, who produced the first
hand held calculator, is probably the
most recognized inventor of the
integrated circuit, receiving the Nobel
Prize in Physics in the year 2000.
1923/ first regular broadcasts 1929/
colour TVs US from 1950s, Europe from
The Scottish engineer John Logie Baird
designed the world's first working
television in 1923. His first public
demonstration took place in Selfridges
department store in London in March
The BBC began the world's first
regular television broadcasts in January
1929, using Baird's system.
Mass production of TVs between 1945
and 1956, saw them appear in most
reasonably well off homes.
Colour TVs were sold in the US from
the 1950s, and in the UK and Europe from
the 1960s, although it was the 1970s
before they were commonplace, 28 to 32
inch screens were seen as large then.
The first remote controls emerged in
1956. The first large plasma TVs were
manufactured in 1997 with 42 inch
screens. By 2004, large Liquid-crystal
display (LCD) screens were being sold as
an alternative to plasma TVs. By 2005,
plasma and LCDs had put and end to the
old tube type TVs.
The first consumer videocassette
recorders were launched in 1971.
The first DVD players were sold around
the world from 1996 to 1999.
Aircraft 1903/ first passenger
service 1919/ first direct transatlantic
passenger service 1958.
The first successful, powered, piloted
flight took place in 1903 by the Wright
Brothers. This first flight lasted just
World War One (1914-1919) saw
increased development of aircraft with
speeds being acheived by the end of the
war at over 100 mph, carrying guns and
World War Two (1939-1945) saw aircraft
speed increase to over 400 mph.
Jet engines began appearing in the
last year of the war capaple of reaching
over 500 mph.
Britain and France
introduce one of the first passenger
services in 1919, this being across the
English Channel between London and
The British built De Havilland Comet
became the first jet powered passenger
service flying between London and South
Africa in 1952. The Comet also provided
the first direct transatlantic passenger
service, this between London and New York
The German inventor Rudolph Diesel
unveiled his first efficient Diesel
Engine in 1893.
This engine works by the piston
pushing up compressing the air at the top
of the chamber making it hot, then Diesel
is injected into the hot air at the top
of the chamber to make the combustion,
this pushing the piston back down. There
are no spark plugs in a Diesel
Diesel can be obtained from crude oil
and vegetable oils.
The first boat powered by a Diesel
engine was in 1903.
The first submarine to use Diesel
engines was in 1904. The Diesel engine
was used on the surface and electric
power when submerged.
The first car produced with a Diesel
engine was a Citroen in 1933.
Most of the worlds largest ships, and
largest trucks, are now powered by
massive Diesel engines.
The first fairly large transatlantic
liner to be powered by Diesel engines was
the 573 feet long SS Gripsholm that
entered service in 1925.
Engine 1887/ large scale
production of cars for the public from
Gottlieb Daimler invented what is
recognized as the prototype of the modern
His first engine had a vertical
cylinder with gasoline injected through a
carburetor. He patented the engine design
Daimler first built a two-wheeled
vehicle named the Reitwagen (Riding
Carriage), then a year later, built the
world's first four-wheeled motor
A petrol engine works with a mixture
of petrol/gasoline and air fed into the
top of a cylinder as a piston is close to
the top, a spark is then sent into the
mixture to create an explosion to push
the piston down.
Petrol engines are normally used in
cars, motor bikes and lawnmowers, as they
give a high performance.
Diesel engines tend to last longer and
get more miles to the gallon, but have
less performance and produce more toxic
The first affordable mass produced
petrol engine cars where the Model T Ford
that went on sale in 1908.
1800/ first light bulbs 1880s/ first
electric sockets 1910s
Although electricity had been known
about for centuries, Alessandro Volta was
the first to make use of it by
manufacturing batteries from 1800.
Light bulbs were invented in the late
1870s, but were not common in homes until
The first electric kettle was seen in
1886, first electric iron in 1881, first
thermostatically controlled electric iron
in the 1920s, first electric hoovers
appeared in the 1930s.
Although electric fridges were being
mass produced from 1927, electric fridges
and washing machines did not become
common in homes until the 1960s, due to
their high cost.
The first florescent lamps were
installed in factories in 1904.
Compact florescent light bulbs (CFLs),
also known as energy-saving light bulbs,
were introduced in the late 1980s.
No more original light bulbs have been
manufactured from 2012.
1698/ passenger steam trains from 1807/
London to Aberdeen line opened in 1850
covering 500 miles.
Although inventors had been
experimenting with steam power for
centuries, it was Thomas Savery who built
the first practical device in 1698 for
pumping water out of coal mines.
In 1765, James Watt patented a new
design of Steam Engine that became the
design used over the following 200 years
The first steamboat entered the water
in 1787 when John Fitch made the first
successful trial of a forty-five-foot
steamboat on the Delaware River in the
USA. The largest Liners of the early
1900s were all powered by steam engines,
piston first, then steam turbines.
The first steam train ran in 1804 near
Merthyr Tydfil in Wales. The first
passenger service began from Swansea in
Wales in 1807. The first steam trains
began running in the US in 1830.
By 1869, steam trains could travel
between the east and west coast of the US
by the transcontinental Central Pacific
The first Diesel powered trains began
entering service in 1912, but took until
the 1950s before they really began taking
over from Steam Trains.
Diesel engines were installed in
fairly large ships from the 1920s.
around 3,500 BC
The first wheeled vehicles seem to
have appeared about 3,500 BC, around the
Mediterranean and in Europe.
The earliest wheels were simple wooden
disks with a hole drilled for the
The first wooden spoked wheels were
manufactured around 2,000 BC, with the
wooden spoked wheel design lasting until
From the 1870s, wire and steel wheels
with pneumatic tires were manufactured
and improved to what can be seen
Animals around 10,200 BC
The domestication of animals is
thought to have began during the
Neolithic Period that started around
10,200 BC. Their primitive agriculture
lead to farming as can be seen today,
with animals reared for food, and also
used for pulling farming appliances.
The first working elephants were used
in India around 3,300 BC.
The domestication of horses is
believed to have began around 2,500
Horses then remained the main working
animal until replaced by motor vehicles
in the early 1900s. Some horses were
still being used in farming and industry
until the 1980s.
Weapons around 5 Million BC
The use of objects as weapons and
tools has been noted among chimpanzees,
this leading to speculation the first
humans, around 5 Million BC, would also
have used weapons.
The earliest tools and weapons were
made of wood and stone, and later, a
combination of wood and stone.
The earliest metal weapons and tools
were made of copper during the Copper Age
around 3,300 BC, followed by the Bronze
Age around 1700BC, and Iron Age 1,300