The story of humanity is really the story about our ability to use tools to advance our society. From the very first time a human picked up a stick an used it as a weapon through the use of computer guided medical robots we as a society have evolved because of our technology. Without tools and technology we would most likely still be roaming scavengers with very large brain cavities. There is no doubt that technology has played a very important role in our history, but what are the greatest advances? This list is one attempt to answer that question.
Humans are not meant to survive in environments of intense cold While inventing clothing allowed us some degree of warmth what really made us capable of surviving in climates of extreme cold was our ability to heat ourselves with fire. Not only has fire played a role in keeping us warm but it is also behind advances such as cooking, hygiene, and internal combustion engines. Our ability to create and control fire has had an unbelievable effect on our existence.
A lot of people are going to blink that telephones only rank at number nine on this list and that is an understandable reaction. What they may not be considering though is the fact that when it comes to communication the radio was by far a much larger and important advance. The reason the telephone actually shows up on this list at all is because of what it has led to. The fact you are reading this right now on the internet is a direct result of telephones. Satellites, cell phones, GPS locators and more all owe their existence to the invention of the telephone.
8. Internal Combustion Engines
Probably another eye raiser because of its relatively low ranking here, the internal combustion engine is indeed a very important advancement in human history. The internal combustion engine is behind automobiles, planes and military vehicles. This invention has transformed our world in a very short amount of time in the way we transport ourselves and our goods. Without the internal combustion engine we would still be shipping things at a very slow pace and would have nothing close to the global economy we have now.
One of the greatest advantages humankind has had over other animals is our ability to communicate complex ideas to one another with a few words. Because of our ability to communicate with one another so well we can plan with one another and accomplish great things. What radio did was take that ability to communicate and give us a nearly instant way to communicate with each other no matter the distance between us. Radio transformed how we did business, went to war, and even how we entertained ourselves. While today radio plays less an important role than it did, it led to so many of other advances it has to be given due respect.