Famous Inventors & Discoverers – Biographies, Timelines, Trivia & Life History – 2022 Update

Famous inventors throughout history have changed the world through their inventions. Here is a list of some of the most famous inventors and discoverers.

Famous Inventors & Discoverers - Biographies, Timelines, Trivia & Life History - 2022 Update cover

There have been many famous inventors and discoverers throughout history. Some of their inventions and discoveries have changed the world as we know it, while others have made our lives a little easier. Here is a list of some of the most famous inventors and discoverers, along with a few interesting facts about them.

What Makes an Invention Great?

Inventions have helped shape the world we live in today. But what makes an invention great? Is it the inventor? Or is it the usefulness of the creation? Or perhaps, the impact it has on society?

Here are a few factors that can make an invention great:

  • The inventor is a pioneer in their field. They are the first to come up with an idea, and it sets the stage for others to improve upon it.
  • It is useful. Therefore, it solves a problem or fills a need that people have.
  • It is innovative. The invention differs from anything before and changes how people do things.
  • It is influential and significantly impacts society, either directly or indirectly.
famous inventors having a concept
Photographer: Kvalifik

Modern Day Famous Inventors

Inventors are not just from the past. Many notable inventors are making a difference today. Here are just a few of them:

Starkey Livio AI

Livio AI is the world's first "Healthable" hearing aid that address the problems of people who are hearing impaired. It enables users to take a proactive approach to their hearing and wellness with brain and body activity tracking. The Starkey Livio AI is the first hearing aid that tracks daily steps, measures movement, and monitors vigorous physical activity.

Achin Bhowmik, chief technology officer at Starkey Hearing Technologies, invented Livio AI. Bhowmik has been with Starkey since 2004 and is responsible for developing the company's hearing technology.

Impossible Burger 2.0

The Impossible Burger 2.0, a vegetarian’s delight, is a plant-based burger that looks and tastes like natural beef. Patrick Brown has made the Impossible Burger 2.0 from soy protein, coconut oil, potato protein, and heme (a molecule found in plants and animals that gives blood its red color).

Patrick Brown, a biochemist, and former Stanford professor, invented the Impossible Burger. He is the founder and CEO of Impossible Foods, which makes plant-based meat and dairy products.

impossible burger 2.0
Photographer: Ilya Mashkov

Oral-B Genius X

Marco Gobbetti, the CEO of Oral-B, invented the Oral-B Genius X. The Oral-B Genius X is an electric toothbrush that uses artificial intelligence to track your brushing habits and give personalized feedback. It also has a built-in camera that users can use to take before-and-after photos of their teeth. In addition, this highly advanced brush features a dentist-inspired round head that surrounds and cups each tooth with dynamic oscillating, rotating, and pulsating movements to remove up to 100% more plaque than a regular manual toothbrush.

Theranica Nerivio

The Theranica Nerivio is a wearable device that uses electrical stimulation to relieve pain. FDA-cleared and therapeutic, people can wear Nerivio on the upper arm for 45 minutes. It utilizes Remote Electrical Neuromodulation to activate the brain's native Conditioned Pain Modulation mechanism to treat pain and associated migraine symptoms.

Dr. Ami Kaplan, a pain management specialist, invented Theranica Nerivio. Dr. Kaplan is the CEO of Theranica Bio-Electronics, a company that develops wearable medical device technologies.

Sanku Dosifier

The Sanku Dosifier is a simple, hand-operated machine that people use to measure and dispense small amounts of powder. Ranganathan designed it for use in developing countries with limited access to clean water and electricity.

Malini Ranganathan, a former engineer with NASA, invented The Sanku Dosifier. Ranganathan is the founder and CEO of Sanku, a social enterprise that provides access to clean water and sanitation in developing countries.

These are just a few fantastic, famous inventors making a difference today. There are many others out there who are working on new and innovative products that will make our lives better. Who knows what they will come up with next?

Apple’s Invention Making a Difference

World Wide Web or WWW

The World Wide Web, commonly known as the WWW or simply the Web, is an information system. Uniform Resource Locators identify documents and other web resources (URLs) interlinked by hypertext links. Users can access the WWW via the Internet. The term "World Wide Web" was first coined by Tim Berners-Lee in 1989.

The WWW is a distributed system of information that people can access from anywhere in the world. It is made up of millions of documents, called web pages, that are linked together. These pages are stored on computers, called servers, worldwide. When you use a web browser, such as Microsoft Edge, Google Chrome, or Mozilla Firefox, to view a web page, your computer sends a request to the server where the page is stored. The server then sends the page back to your browser, which displays it on your screen.

The WWW is constantly evolving. Inventors develop new technologies to make finding information accessible and pages more engaging and interactive. The WWW is an essential part of our lives today, and it is hard to imagine a world without it. And we have Tim Berners-Lee to thank for this.

Apple Inc.

Steve Jobs founded Apple Inc., an American multinational technology company headquartered in Cupertino, California, that designs, develops, and sells consumer electronics, computer software, and online services. With Steve Jobs' vision and leadership, the company developed hardware products, including the iPhone smartphone, the iPad tablet computer, the Mac personal computer, the iPod portable media player, the Apple Watch smartwatch, the Apple TV digital media player, and the HomePod smart speaker. Its online services include the iTunes Store, the iOS App Store, Mac App Store, Apple Music, and iCloud.

Apple Inc's inventions
Photographer: Xiong Yan

Classic Famous Inventors

Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519)

Leonardo da Vinci is a role model in applying the scientific method to every aspect of life, including art and music. Although we know him best for his dramatic and expressive artwork, Leonardo also conducted dozens of carefully thought-out experiments and created groundbreaking futuristic inventions.

Popularly known as Da Vinci, people know him as the original Renaissance king. As an engineer, Leonardo conceived ideas vastly ahead of his own time. For example, he conceptualized and invented the parachute, the helicopter, an armored fighting vehicle, the use of concentrated solar power, the ratio machine, a rudimentary theory of plate tectonics, and the double hull.

famous inventor da vinci's vitruvian man
Photographer: Nidhi Bhat

George Washington Carver (1864-1943)

History has known George Washington Carver to develop hundreds of uses for peanuts, soybeans, and sweet potatoes. He also created over 100 products from these plants, including flour, coffee, dyes, plastics, and gasoline. Carver's work helped to save the southern agricultural industry after the Civil War.

Alexander Graham Bell (1877-1922)

Alexander Graham Bell is best known for his invention of the telephone. But he also created several other devices, including the first phonograph and a metal detector. He also founded the American Telephone and Telegraph Company (AT&T).

Nikola Tesla (1856-1943)

Serbian-American engineer and physicist Nikola Tesla (1856-1943) made dozens of breakthroughs in the production, transmission, and application of electric power. He invented the first alternating current (AC) motor and developed AC generation and transmission technology. He also created the Tesla coil, the Tesla induction motor, and fluorescent lighting.

The Tesla coil is a device used in radio and television technology. Tesla also founded the Tesla Electric Company in 1887 and sold it to George Westinghouse.

Tesla was born in Croatia but moved to the United States when he was 28. He eventually settled in New York City, where he worked for Thomas Edison.

famous inventors of tesla
Photographer: Bram Van Oost

Madame Curie (1867-1934)

Marie Curie was a Polish-born French physicist and chemist who conducted pioneering research on radioactivity. She was the first woman to win a Nobel Prize and the only person to have won two Nobel Prizes in different sciences.

Curie was born in Warsaw but moved to Paris when she was 24. She met her husband, Pierre Curie, while working at the Sorbonne. The two went on to conduct groundbreaking research on radioactivity.

After her husband's death, Curie continued her work and eventually discovered the elements radium and polonium. She won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1903 and the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1911.

Sir James Dyson (1947- )

Sir James Dyson is a British engineer and inventor best known for developing the cyclonic vacuum cleaner and the microchip or integrated circuit. He has also created other devices, including the Air Multiplier, a bladeless fan.

Dyson, born in Norfolk, England, studied at the Royal College of Art before founding the Dyson Company. His company has become one of the leading manufacturers of vacuum cleaners and other household appliances.

Samuel Morse (1792-1872)

Samuel Morse was an American painter and inventor who developed the Morse code. It is a system of dots and dashes used to send messages over long distances via telegraph. People first used the Morse code in 1844, quickly becoming the standard for long-distance communication. It remained in use until the 1960s, when more modern communications systems replaced it.

Morse was born in Massachusetts and studied at Yale University. He later moved to New York City, where he worked as an artist. In 1832, Samuel Morse developed the first electric telegraph. Seven years later, he developed the Morse code.

morse code
Photographer: Chris Curry

Grace Hopper (1906-1992)

Admiral Grace Hopper was an American computer scientist who developed the first computer languages for a programming language and invented the term "debugging." She also helped develop COBOL, a programming language still in use today. In addition to her work in computer science, Hopper also served in the United States Navy during World War II and the Korean War.

Hopper was born in New York City and studied mathematics at Vassar College. She later enrolled at Yale University, earning her Ph.D. in 1934. In 1941, she joined the Navy Reserve and served the country. After the war, she continued to serve in the Navy Reserve and eventually attained the rank of admiral.

Henry Ford (1863-1947)

Henry Ford was an American industrialist who founded the Ford Motor Company and developed the assembly line technique of mass production. In addition to his work in the automotive industry, Ford also held political views that were controversial for his time.

Ford was born on a farm in Michigan. He worked as an engineer for the Edison Illuminating Company. Then, in 1903, he founded the Ford Motor Company. Ten years later, he introduced the Model T, the first mass-produced car, and in 1913, he developed the assembly line technique of mass production.

Wilbur (1867-1912) and Orville Wright (1871-1947)

The Wright brothers, Wilbur and Orville, were American inventors credited with inventing and building the first powered aircraft. They made the first powered flight in 1903 when the Wright Flyer I took off from Kitty Hawk and flew for 12 seconds. This creation laid the foundation for the modern aviation industry.

The Wright brothers were born in Ohio and raised in a family of seven children. They were self-taught in the fields of mechanics and electricity. In 1899, they began experimenting with flying machines called gliders. Four years later, they made the first powered flight.

famous inventors the wright brothers
Photographer: History in HD

Auguste (1862-1954) and Louis Lumière (1864-1948)

The Lumière brothers, Auguste and Louis, were French inventors who developed the first motion-picture camera. They set the first public film screening. The Lumière brothers' work helped to create the film industry.

The Lumière brothers were born in France. In 1885, they developed the first motion-picture camera. In 1895, they held the first public film screening. The Lumière brothers' work was instrumental in developing the film industry.

Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790)

Benjamin Franklin was an American inventor, politician, and diplomat. He is best known for his work as a Founding Father of the United States. However, he also made significant contributions to science and invention. Franklin's work helped to shape the modern world.

Franklin was born in Boston, Massachusetts, and moved to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. In 1751, he invented the Franklin stove, lightning rod, and iron furnace. In 1752, he conducted his famous kite experiment. Franklin also made significant contributions to the fields of diplomacy and politics. He was a delegate to the Second Continental Congress and helped to draft the Declaration of Independence. He also served as an ambassador to France.

Photographer: Adam Nir

Thomas Alva Edison (1847-1931)

Thomas Alva Edison was an American inventor who invented the first electric light bulb. The light bulbs paved the way for the modern electric power industry.

He invented audio devices like the phonograph and the motion-picture camera. Edison's work helped to shape the modern world.

Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826)

Thomas Jefferson was an American Founding Father and the third president of the United States. He was also a notable inventor and architect. Jefferson's work helped to shape the American Republic.

Jefferson was born in Virginia and later studied law at the College of William & Mary. In 1776, he authored the Declaration of Independence. In 1783, he helped to negotiate the Treaty of Paris. Jefferson also made significant contributions to the fields of science and invention. For example, he designed the Monticello estate and the University of Virginia and developed the Jeffersoncypher, a system for encrypting messages.

thomas jefferson
Photographer: Kirk Thornton

Johannes Gutenberg (c. 1400-1468)

Johannes Gutenberg was a German inventor who developed the printing press. In addition, he invented the movable type, a technology that revolutionized the printing industry. Gutenberg's work helped to spread knowledge and information throughout Europe.

Gutenberg was born in Germany. In 1439, he invented the printing press and completed the first book printed with movable type, the Gutenberg Bible. Gutenberg's work profoundly impacted the spread of knowledge and information.

Robert Fulton (1765-1815)

Robert Fulton was the inventor who developed the steamship. In addition, he invented the first commercially successful steamboat. Fulton's work helped to revolutionize transportation and commerce.

Fulton was born in Pennsylvania. In 1807, he launched the first commercially successful steamboat, the Clermont. In 1814, he received a patent for his steamboat design. Fulton's work helped to shape the modern world.

Question and Answers of Famous Inventors and Inventions

Who are the most famous inventors in the world?

There is no definitive answer to this question. Many famous inventors have contributed to the world, and it is difficult to say who is the most important. However, some of the most influential inventors include Johannes Gutenberg, Thomas Edison, and Henry Ford.

What is the Most Famous Invention of All Time?

The most famous invention of all time is the wheel. The wheel is a simple yet brilliantly effective invention that has changed the world. It is one of the essential inventions, as it enables us to travel and transport goods.

The first wheel was invented by the Sumerians in Mesopotamia around 3500 BCE. It was also believed to be used for pottery and later for carts and chariots. However, the invention of the wheel revolutionized transportation and communication, and it played a vital role in the development of civilization.

Photographer: Mudit Jain

Who invented the cotton gin?

American inventor Eli Whitney invented the cotton gin in 1793. Whitney's invention made separating seeds from cotton fibers easier, leading to a cotton industry boom. The cotton gin revolutionized the textile industry and profoundly impacted the economy of the United States.

Who is the first woman inventor?

There is no definitive answer to this question. However, some famous female inventors include Marie Curie, Martha Coston, and Grace Hopper.

Who created the first mechanical computer?

Charles Babbage created the first mechanical computer in 1822. Babbage's machine, known as the Analytical Engine, was capable of performing basic arithmetic operations.

Who invented the Internet?

A team of researchers led by American computer scientist Leonard Kleinrock invented the Internet in 1965. Kleinrock's team developed a network known as the ARPANET, which was the predecessor of the modern Internet.

Who invented the hot air balloon?

The Montgolfier brothers, Joseph-Michel and Jacques-Etienne, invented the hot air balloon in 1783. The brothers' invention helped to pave the way for modern aviation.

Who created the first nuclear reactor?

Enrico Fermi created the first nuclear reactor in 1942. Fermi's reactor, the Chicago Pile, was the first artificial device to sustain a nuclear chain reaction. The development of nuclear reactors led to the development of atomic power, which has become an essential energy source worldwide.

Who invented the reflecting telescope?

Isaac Newton invented the reflecting telescope in 1668. Newton's telescope used a mirror to reflect and magnify light, allowing a much clearer view of distant objects. The invention of the reflecting telescope led to a greater understanding of the universe and paved the way for modern astronomy.

Who created the atomic bomb?

A team of scientists led by American physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer created the atomic bomb in 1945. The team's work led to the development of the first nuclear weapons, which soldiers used in the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki during World War II.

Photographer: Museums Victoria

Who invented the railroad cars?

George Stephenson invented the first railroad cars in 1814. Stephenson's invention helped to revolutionize transportation and make it faster and easier to move people and goods around. Additionally, the development of the railroad car led to the development of other inventions, like the locomotive and the telegraph.

What are the best-known inventions?

Some of the best-known inventions include the wheel, the cotton gin, the automobile, the airplane, and the computer. These inventions have had a profound impact on human civilization and have changed the world in which we live.

Who started cataract surgery?

Sushruta started it in the 6th century BC. Sushruta is considered the father of surgery. He wrote a treatise on surgery, which included instructions on how to perform cataract surgery. The technique described by Sushruta is still used in modern medicine.

Takeaway

The ease and efficiency of the modern world are the results of centuries of inventions and innovations of great inventors. From the wheel to the computer, these creations have changed the course of history and improved our lives. As we face new challenges, we must remember the power of invention and innovation. With this in mind, we can overcome anything.

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