Necessity Is the Mother of Invention
Since the beginning of human life, enormous changes around us have taken us to a path of scientific progress, which in turn has benefited mankind in a number of ways. In every era, man has innovated a lot of things in order to cater to his rising needs. Imagine life in the Stone Age! The primitive ways of living just comprised man’s activities revolving around the search for food and shelter. They hunted animals for food and used caves as shelters, and animal skin and leaves to cover their bodies.Fire was discovered accidentally when two pieces of rock rubbed against each other, but since then people started using it for their protection and heating and cooking purposes. Undoubtedly, these seem meaningless to us today, but consider life without these discoveries and inventions.
Would you be able to enjoy the same quality of life without them? But the fact is that the emergence of necessities led man to explore further.
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As time passed, man realized other needs arising around him.After catering to his fundamental needs of food and shelter, man felt the need for acquiring goods, which he himself could not produce. This led to the idea of the barter system under which goods were exchanged without the use of money, but a constraint to this mechanism was his limited movement. How far could a man travel, loaded with tons of wheat just for the sake of some kilos of meat? Then man came up with the idea of the wheel. The wheel is undoubtedly one of the earliest and most important mechanical inventions.The invention of wheel served as a milestone in the history of science because it was a prerequisite for many other inventions.
It introduced the idea of transportation network without which economy could never have developed. Without it there would be no movement, no cars, no trains, and no aeroplanes. It shrunk distances and provided man with an opportunity to explore the world. The Chinese invented the wheelbarrow, which made use of lever action. The first non-transport utilization of the wheel came in the Bronze Age with the invention of the Potters’ wheel, first used in Mesopotamia in 3500BC.Pottery began to be shaped on a slow wheel in ancient Egypt in approximately 3000BC and on a fast wheel several centuries later. However, as communication was channelized, rising horizons of the world led to the imperative need to express oneself.
As the need arose, man seized the use of pictures and paintings for self-expression, which later developed the concept of writing. Initially, the ancient Romans and Egyptians used different signs and marks to symbolize different meanings. Later the Phoenicians invented the Alphabet in 1600BC and then numerals were invented in India in 300BC.Now people were able to communicate which one another when they moved from one place to another. But now the way of expression needed a medium to transfer. Verbal communications led to the creation of Languages. With the need for writing evolved the need for a substance to write on.
Rocks, parchments and leaves were initially used but they were not satisfactory. With the passage of time paper was first invented in China and later mushroomed in the rest of the world. Man man oeuvres and hence his advancements continued. His necessities were growing rapidly in respect of such innovations.The wheel of time changed weeks into months and months into years. Now man was able to produce in massive quantities. As he entered the 17th century the massive inventions and innovations directed his entire life to a different way.
First the emergence of the steam engine provided a landmark in the Industrial Revolution of Europe. The first steam engine was built by an engineer, Thomas Newcomen in 1705 to improve the pumping equipment used to eliminate seepage in tin and copper mines. He put steam in the cylinder and then condensed it with a spray of cold water.The vacuum created allowed atmospheric pressure to push the piston down. Later the same idea was developed even further to advance the operations of the steam engine. But now the search was for cheap transmission of energy because how far could man rely on manual conducts. It was not until 1831 when Michael Faraday demonstrated how electricity could be produced and that in 1873 led to the development of a dynamo capable of prolonged operation.
Electricity was a major factor in the phenomenally rapid industrialization of the world in the 18th and 19th century.Thus the Industrial Revolution was attributed to the emergence of a number of simultaneous factors, which included steam engine, electricity and cheap steel, which further accelerated the process of progress. It was a propitious time to introduce novel ideas. The fundamental principle used in the steam engine and electricity paved the way for proceedings in scientific block. To bolster communication, the telephone was invented by Alexander Graham Bell in 1876. In 1886 a German, Gotlieb Diameter built the first-petrol driven vehicle which eased man’s movement in the form of less time and more comfort.The first TV broadcast appeared on the world horizon at the Alexander Palace, London, in 1936 which further accelerated the process of exchanging thoughts and ideas.
The above great scientific inventions were worth mentioning not just to make you acquainted with such innovations but also to interpret the fact that how man moulded himself in accordance with his needs. As the need arose, man came up with new ideas, new thoughts and forcefully pushed his mind to run on that particular line of action. Even in the modern era, man has been found to observe the same behavioral patterns.Some years ago TB and cancer were regarded as incurable diseases, man conducted massive research on them and finally came up with effective solutions. Until the World Wars I and II, the world never experienced any threats to its peace and harmony. However after these two events, the less developed countries were endangered by the more technologically advanced countries regarding their defence. This led to the emergence of United Nations Organization, which was developed to promote stabilized political, economical and social conditions conducive to peace.
Similarly, the computer was required to handle process and programmed the data collected in different forms. The invention of the Internet was eventually an outcome of the need to shrink distances and increase rapid connectivity. Today most countries are facing the dilemma of energy crisis. Historically fossil fuels have been the main source of energy supply and have served human energy needs for thousands of years. But now their depletion has stressed man to use some alternative means to meet growing energy demands.The use of hydrogen has been regarded as the optimum future fuel as it is the simplest and most abundant element in the universe. Whether it is the old age or modern era, man has been found too efficient to satisfy his needs and has set numerous examples of it.
No matter whether it was a political issue, scientific concern or even day-to-day chores of life man has reacted in a flexible mood to create a way for himself whenever he realized his needs. Unsurprisingly he has been successful in achieving an alternative source for his need each time as wherever there is a will there is a way.