Best invention of the 20th century

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Best invention of the 20th century!!!

I noticed that there is a thread for most pointless invention, how about one for the Best?

I will start by saying the transistor, i would like to hear some other views; it's your opinion so you can't be wrong!!!!
I will do a poll at the end so even if its the same as someone else's feel free to comment it again or agree!!! THE MORE THE BETTER
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2


The roller blind - because otherwise it would curtains for everybody !
 
  • #3
Evo
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The roller blind - because otherwise it would curtains for everybody !
LOL

The electric refrigerator for the home.
 
  • #4


The electric refrigerator for the home.
There is a good arguement that this and the (clothes) washing machine is what really liberated women.
It's fine for Emily Pankhurst to get the vote - she had a bunch of servants to do the day-day work - it's the fridge and washer become common that allowed women to have jobs outside the home.
 
  • #5
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The TCP/IP protocol was the best invention. It revolutionized the way computers communicate with each other, and so, it naturally led to the rapid growth of the internet.
 
  • #6
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Good question. So many amazing inventions.

Right now, I'll go with contemporary birth control. I shudder to think of a world without them. I think it's pretty hard to overrate the importance of reproductive freedom for women.
 
  • #7
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The TCP/IP protocol was the best invention. It revolutionized the way computers communicate with each other, and so, it naturally led to the rapid growth of the internet.
Nice, this is an interesting one, is this basically the invention of the ‘wireless’ internet? Before this did they have to use wires for the internet, or was there just no internet? does it also help with communications in mobile phones?
 
  • #8


Nice, this is an interesting one, is this basically the invention of the ‘wireless’ internet?
No it's the system of routing messages so you don't have to directly dial a specific computer to talk to PF - you just send a message to the nearest computer which sends it to another and so on until it arrives at PF. It's this packet-switching / routing that is the clever part of the internet. TCPIP is the particular standard that is used.

does it also help with communications in mobile phones?
Not TCPIP specifically but routed packet switched networks yes
 
  • #9
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if the infomation is going to every computer woudnt you be able to just re-configure your own computer to steal infomation?...i know the security would be MASSIVE but is it possible
...sory for going off track, continue posting ideas, thx!!
 
  • #10
Evo
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if the infomation is going to every computer woudnt you be able to just re-configure your own computer to steal infomation?...i know the security would be MASSIVE but is it possible
The information doesn't go to every computer, it travels through the routers within a provider's network.
 
  • #11


if the infomation is going to every computer woudnt you be able to just re-configure your own computer to steal infomation
It only goes through the computers in the shortest path from your machine to the PF server.
In practice those machines are all likely to be owned by internet service providers / cable + telecoms companies so are totally untrustworthy

That's why when you go to your bank or a amazon checkout you see a little padlock and it says https - that means it's encrypted
 
  • #12
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Perhaps not the best, but the mobile phone has to be highly ranked.

I'd say the ability to be contacted 24/7 pretty much anywhere has revolutionised business and personal lives. Especially now with the smart phones.
 
  • #13
Evo
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When you do a traceroute, it shows you the path the data takes. Maybe that helps you envision it.
 
  • #14
DaveC426913
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You guys seem to be thinking only of the second half (or even quarter) of the 20th century.

What about:
- television
- powered flight
 
  • #15
Evo
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You guys seem to be thinking only of the second half (or even quarter) of the 20th century.

What about:
- television
- powered flight
I see you noticed the mistake. :smile:
 
  • #16
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[STRIKE]heat engines. both external combustion (steam), then its internal combustion cousins (gas,diesel). these things changed our lives, starting industrial revolutions and conquering continents with railways. you could even drive a heat pump with one before electricity. and most of the electrons delivering this message to you were put in motion by heat engines (steam turbine) driven by coal in an electric powerplant.[/STRIKE]

derp. me no can read. will think of something else.
 
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  • #17


heat engines. both external combustion (steam), then its internal combustion cousins (gas,diesel). .
All C18-C19 inventions though
 
  • #19
Mech_Engineer
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  1. Penicillin (1928)
  2. Electric Air Conditioner (1902)
  3. Nuclear Reactor (1942), Nuclear Weapons (1945)
 
  • #20
Mech_Engineer
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heat engines. both external combustion (steam),
... invented 1690

then its internal combustion cousins (gas,diesel).
...invented early-1800's
 
  • #22
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We had a lot of little things invented that we normally wouldn't think of that made life a bit more tolerable Disposable Diapers for one.
 
  • #23
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One most of us use most every day is the common bar code.
 
  • #24
DaveC426913
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One most of us use most every day is the common bar code.
Have our lives really been radically transformed because of this though?

Certainly transistors are the winners in the last half century. The entire modern world pretty much runs on them.

Just not sure if they beat out television. TV was pretty big in terms of mass media - but it's really just a riff on radio.
 
  • #25
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Have our lives really been radically transformed because of this though?
Depends, how long would it take to check out 100 plus items in a super market without it?

How would the postal services (at least in the UK) track parcels so efficiently?
 

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