May 8

Inventions and Technology

You are working hard to create a machine that could bring messages across the world using electricity. You take a metal wire and insert it into a rumbling machine that is connected through the wall into another room. All of a sudden you realize that you can hear things from when your helper clicks into the machine! You just invented the telephone! Who invented the typewriter? Who invented the iPad? I am going to address inventions, jobs, pollution, and more detail about history’s greatest inventions.


Remington Rand Molly Sauter via Compfight

Alexander Graham Bell invented the telephone, with the help of Antonio Meucci, Charles Bourseul, and Elisha Grey. it was designed by using a straight string to carry messages long distances. You’re probably wondering, who invented the tablet? Bill Gates, the leader of Microsoft, developed the tablet a decade before Steve Jobs developed it. Last, the typewriter was invented by Christopher Latham Soles, in 1819. He had the help of John Pratt, Samuel Soule, and Carlos Gladden. It worked by stamping ink onto the keys, and then when you pressed a letter, it pushed down on the paper.

JobsABB IRB RobotCreative Commons License Kitmondo Marketplace via Compfight

Now, as technology evolves machines get more and more sophisticated. Now machines are taking over labor and jobs. Here are a few examples of what they do. If there are many people doing similar jobs, the owner can produce a programmed production line, (PPL) to automate their jobs. That way, the company pays less money to workers. Also, if someone got a letter saying “Urgent. What character do I do for my biography report?” Instead of making another letter that might take weeks to reach them, you could just e-mail them the answer. And, sometimes people have to get together in one location. Instead of doing that, you could just turn on your computer and video conference whoever you need to talk with. Then, if you feel like you don’t have enough friends, or aren’t social enough, you could go online and visit a website like Facebook or Twitter. Last but not least, teachers are using technology to educate students. A Promethean board in your classroom is a good example. Now, technology is looking for more ways to stop pollution.


Respire Paul Cherblanc via Compfight

Now technology has its good side, but it also has its bad side. As we create electricity, the power plants let out all the exhaust that was created. This is creating too much pollution. If you look at the big picture, of how many power plants and other pollution makers there are in the world, you MIGHT start to see the bad side. Also, when companies dump their waste into the river, it not only causes water pollution, it wastes drinking water. Just imagine what you swim in when you go to the beach! A few example of smog disasters is the Great Stink, in London, and the Great Smog. Did you know the most polluted place in the world is Chelyabinsk, Russia?

Now you see, technology is making people lose jobs. We have to teach the people whose job was eliminated to do other jobs.

March 20

Supersonic Transit System

Not long ago, billionaire Elon Musk had a vision of the future. He dreamed of a supersonic transit system. Soon after, he released a 57-page document on a concept called Hyperloop. Hyperloop is a huge supersonic transit system that travels in between cities filled with traffic. The sponsor of Tesla motors and SpaceX dreamed of a friction-less, low-pressure, vacuum-sealed pod. Powered with energy from solar panels, it should be able to withstand major natural disasters. Elon believed this pod would shorten travel times drastically. For example, the distance from San Francisco to Los Angeles takes 6 hours. This pod could get there in 35 minutes.

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January 29

NASA Makes Pumpkins

Photo Credit: NASA/JPL (via Flickr)

I read a great article on Dogo News about how NASA scientists carved pumpkins. That was the challenge posed to the excellent scientists at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab in Pasadena, CA in 2010 during Halloween. This interesting competition has turned into an annual tradition with partners trying to outdo each other with sky-high hi-tech carvings.

Photo Credit: NASA JPL (via Flickr)

This year’s entries included a Pac-Man pumpkin, a replica of Darth Vader’s meditation chamber, a carousel, a Ninja Starshade, and even a sink hole pumpkin. While the creations are certainly quite strange, what is even more so, is that the engineers-turned-artists had just an hour to complete their masterpieces!

And now, watch this epic video. Continue reading