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We did it first

  1. Nov 25, 2005 #1

    wolram

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    http://www.historic-uk.com/CultureUK/BestifBrits.htm

    They say …

    Thomas Alva Edison invented the light bulb. He began his experiments in 1878 and by 21 October 1879 he made a working electric light bulb. Fine, but …

    Brits say …

    Sir Joseph Swan of Newcastle announced that he had made a working light bulb on 18 December 1878 and on 18 January 1879 he gave a public demonstration in Sunderland – 10 months before Edison. The Americans say it was just a working model and not a commercial reality … but then they would say that, wouldn’t they?
     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2005
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 25, 2005 #2
    Yeah, no-one said Eddison invented the commercially viable lightbulb.
     
  4. Nov 25, 2005 #3

    wolram

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    What about this one ?

    They say …

    The first telephone message was made at 5 Exeter Place, Boston, Massachusetts on 10 March 1876. Alexander Graham Bell called to his assistant, “Come here, Watson, I want you.” In June that year it was demonstrated at the Centennial Exhibition in Philadelphia and may have passed unnoticed if the Emperor of Brazil hadn’t caused a sensation by crying out, “My God … it talks!” The rest, is history. But …

    Brits say …

    Alexander Graham Bell was born in 1847 in Edinburgh, Scotland. He moved to Canada when he was 23 and only then migrated to the USA. He was British so Brits can rightly claim the telephone is a British invention.
     
  5. Nov 25, 2005 #4

    wolram

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  6. Nov 25, 2005 #5

    Pengwuino

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    haha you're making the entire country of Britain out to be a ATS.com subsidiary.
     
  7. Nov 25, 2005 #6

    wolram

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    We invented this as well.:biggrin:



    During the French Revolution M. Guillotin invented a machine for slicing off heads quickly and painlessly. It was pretty successful – though not quite so clean-cut as some people imagine. It took a couple of chops to get through fat King Louis’ neck. But the idea was 500 years after a British invention, “The Halifax Gibbet” because.....

    The Guillotine wasn’t a French invention. There was one in Halifax, West Yorkshire, from the 13th to the 17th century. The earliest recorded execution was in 1286. Convicted criminals did have one thing going for them. For hundreds of years the law stated that if a condemned person could withdraw his or her head after the blade was released and before it hit the bottom, then he or she was free. The good old British idea of a “sporting chance”. The one condition: that person could never return.
     
  8. Nov 25, 2005 #7

    Pengwuino

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    Why would you want credit for that :P
     
  9. Nov 25, 2005 #8

    wolram

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  10. Nov 27, 2005 #9

    Ivan Seeking

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    Wow!!! That is interesting. Here is more information about all of this. The dispute was a well known fact in its day.

    http://archive.thisisthenortheast.co.uk/2001/12/10/151967.html

    The rest is quite interesting as well...

    But the really important thing is that we totally kicked your butts at Yorktown. :tongue:

    It turns out that Edison was a pretty nasty guy. He was strongly anti-semitic, for one. He was also a harsh taskmaster who treated his employees like slaves.

    Oh yes, and the Germans really did it first!!!
    http://www.freeglossary.com/Incandescent_light_bulb

    :biggrin:
     
  11. Nov 27, 2005 #10

    Ivan Seeking

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    Sorry, but once someone comes here we get to claim them.

    Its sort of like the time we kicked your butts at Yorktown.
     
  12. Nov 28, 2005 #11
    actually we kicked our own butts at yorktown, the revolutionairies (that word is sooooo long it must be spelt wrong but i cant be bothered to look it up) hadn't acheived independence until after the battle had finished.
     
  13. Nov 28, 2005 #12
    You would never have won that battle if it wasnt for the french. Bet that makes you all feel soo proud. lol.
     
  14. Nov 28, 2005 #13
    Yup. With the help of the French, of course.
     
  15. Nov 28, 2005 #14
    The French used to be able to kick some butt. That was a long time ago though. Now they're proud when people riot and their police just observe and report.
     
  16. Nov 28, 2005 #15
    no, it was 2 canadians from toronto who invented the lightbulb!

    henry woodward, matthew evans patented theirs in 1875:
    http://www.mysteriesofcanada.com/Ontario/first_electric_light_bulb.htm

    lol some things never change.... :frown:
     
  17. Nov 28, 2005 #16

    Ivan Seeking

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    How could we kick British butt and not invite the French? That wouldn't even be civilized!
     
  18. Nov 28, 2005 #17

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Nov 28, 2005
  19. Nov 28, 2005 #18
    As to "Edison was almost certainly a reader of this publication":

    "It was in this situation that Swan had read the enthusiastic, and at times extravagant, claims coming from America. By the end of 1879 he could keep quiet no longer and on 1 January 1880, the day after the exited crowds had been walking the streets of menlo Park, a letter appeared over Swan's name in Nature.

    Fifteen years ago I used charred paper and card in the construction of an electric lamp on the incandescent principle. I used it too in the shape of a horse-shoe precisely as you say Mr. Edison is now using it. I did not then succeed in obtaining the durability which I was in search of, but I have since made many experiments and within the last six months I have, I believe, completely conquored the difficulty which lead to the previous failure, and am now able to produce a perfectly durable electric lamp by means of incandescent carbons.

    "Edison, reading Swan's letter, commented with unjustified skepticism: 'There you have it. No sooner does a fellow succeed in making a good thing than some other fellow pops up and tells you they did it years ago.' "Then, claims Francis Jehl, Edison and Upton spent two days searching for details of Swan's work untill they at last discovered an article about him in the Scientific American of the previous July. To judge by Jehl, Edison had got rather out of touch."
    -Edison, The Man Who Made The Future by Ronald W. Clark pp. 102-103

    Although Swan got the jump on Edison with this version of the bulb, the comment by the person in that Cook interview who says that Edison almost certainly read Scientific American seems to imply Edison was familiar with Swan's work and got his ideas from him. In fact, they invented essentially the same bulb, but completely independently of each other with no knowledge of what the other was doing. This is remarkably common in the history of discovery and invention. I think it was Joseph Henry who discovered electromagnetic induction several years before Faraday, (but there was no way Faraday could have know that since Henry never bothered to publish it.)

    Edison was extremely poor at getting his inventions from the first working models to commercially viable products try as he might. In retrospect his main contribution was as a breaker of psychological barriers about what was possible. There were alot of respected physicists back then, most notably Rutherford, who didn't believe it was possible to produce an incandescent lamp that would last more than a couple hours. Also, his tinny short-lived recordings, unsatisfying as they were, never-the-less proved for the first time that sound could be recorded. It fell to others to figure out how to do it well, but Edison was the first to do it at all.
     
  20. Nov 28, 2005 #19

    Mk

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