Smile Sarasota is a very high-tech dental practice and most of us think all this stuff was just recently developed. Not true. We just wanted to share this because it’s so interesting to read about incredible advances that were made decades ago. We would not be where we are were it not for the brilliant minds who came before us.
Article by By Vaclav Smil
Photos, Clockwise from Top Left: United States Patent and Trademark Office; Chicago Architectural Photographing Company/Wikipedia; LennyWikidata/Wikipedia; Wikipedia; Project Gutenberg/Wikipedia; Infographic: Erik Vrielink
The Miraculous 1880’s! The real tech decade happened rather earlier!
According to the worshipers of the e-world, the late 20th century brought us an unprecedented number of profound inventions. But that is a categorical misunderstanding, as most recent advances have been variations on the microprocessor theme and on the parsing of the electromagnetic spectrum. Perhaps the most inventive time was the 1880s. Have any two sets of primary inventions and epochal discoveries shaped the modern world more than electricity and internal combustion engines? Electricity alone, without microchips, is enough to make a sophisticated and affluent world (we had one in the 1960s). Yet a microchip-governed e-world is utterly dependent on an electricity supply whose fundamental design remains beholden to thermal- and hydro-powered-generation systems, both reaching the commercial market in 1882, which still provide more than 80 percent of the world’s electricity. And we aspire to make it available at least 99.9999 percent of the time, so that it can serve as the cornerstone of everything electronic.
And we think we’re so smart!