Climate change forced ancient humans to migrate out of Africa to Egypt, Mesopotamia and Indus Valley. Ancient humans discovered fire before 100,000 years ago [Gowlett 2016], started simple agriculture 10,000 years ago [Gupta 2004], invented wheel 5,500 years ago [Megan 2009] and developed cuneiform and hieroglyphic writing skill 5,000 years ago before alphabets [Goldwasser 2010]. The long journey from mire to wire was focused on food, health, transport and energy sectors.
Greeks and Romans started theoretical research by studying nature and human psychology. Arabs started experimental and Europeans launched industrial revolution in 18th century. America joined the race later but started leading the world on frontiers of science, medicine and technologies. Sun rises half day later in America yet new technologies evolve there years before rest of the world.
Life thrives on life as energy thrives on energy. Research and development activities in energy, technology, optics and electronics reinforce each other. Invention of microscope, x-rays and ultrasound machines helped biologists recognize germ and diagnose heart, chest and brain. Science and technology go hand in hand to supply tools to see the smallest invisible to human eye.
Egyptians were aware of 200 diseases 4600 years ago, Diocles wrote first book on anatomy 2300 years ago, Persian physician Rhazes identified smallpox in 910, Avicenna wrote book “The Canon of Medicine” in 1010, Leonardo da Vinci started dissecting corpses in 1489, Anton van Leeuwenhoek observes bacteria in 1683, Edward Jenner develops the process of vaccination for smallpox in 1796, Rene Laennec invented the stethoscope in 1816, Louis Pasteur identifies germs as cause of disease in 1857, Louis Pasteur developed first vaccine for rabies in 1882, Koch discovered TB bacillus in 1880s, Artificial skin in 1981, Felix Hoffman developed aspirin in 1899, Hans Adolf Eduard Driesch started cloning experiments in 1902 and electrocardiograph invented in 1914 during WW-I [Chris 2019].
Insulin was first used to treat diabetes in 1922, first vaccines for tuberculosis 1927, Sir Alexander Fleming discovers penicillin in 1928, Selman A. Waksman discovers the antibiotic streptomycin in 1943, first influenza vaccine in 1945, John Hopps invented the first cardiac pacemaker in 1950, brain structure in 1957, American biologist James Watson and English physicist Francis Crick discovered DNA in the1950s, first test tube baby in 1978, Martin Evans started stem cell study in 1981, injection for hepatitis B was developed in 1982 and A in 1992,fluorescent molecular probes 1999, first vaccine to target cancer in 2006, environmental effects on DNA in 2010, cardiac hypertrophy reversal in 2013, Zika virus vaccine in 1916, rheumatoid arthritis treatment in 2017, HIV virus patient treated with stem technology in 2019. It is possible to develop GM Humans that is not permitted on ethical grounds [Chris 2019].
Elephants, camels and horses used to be major means of transport in ancient and middle ages. Arabs conquered half of world using swords, Mongols occupied largest contiguous part of land using horses and composite bows and British Empire capture India/China vehicles and rifles. Thomas Newcomen invented steam engine in 1712, George Stephenson invented locomotive in 1814, George Bissell and Edwin L. Drake discovered oil in 1859, Frenchman Étienne Lenoir and German Nikolaus Otto invented internal combustion engine in 1860s, Karl Benz built first gasoline car in 1885, John Boyd Dunlop invented air filled tires in 1888, Rudolf Diesel developed diesel engine 1890s, Wright brothers built first airplane in 1903, Soviet Union and Allies launched the Sputnik space satellite in 1957, bullet train was built in Japan in 1975, First astronaut reached moon in 1969, iRobot Corporation released first robot in 2002 and Elon Musk announced hyperloop in 2013 [Chris 2019].
Thales of Miletus conceived concept of static electricity in 600BC, William Gilbert discovered geomagnetism in1600, Alessandro Volta invented battery in 1800, Humphry Davy invented arc flash lamp in 1807, Michael Faraday invented electric generator in 1825, James Clerk Maxwell theorized electromagnetic theory in 1860s, Alexander Graham Bell patented the telephone in 1876, Thomas Edison built the world's first DC electric system 1880s, Nikola Tesla invented first AC electric system in 1888 and Guglielmo Marconi invented wireless telecom system in 1901 [Chris 2019].
Willis Carrier invented air conditioner in 1906, Alva Fisher invented washing machine in 1907, Philo T. Farnsworth invented TV in 1920s, John Vincent Atanasof and Cliff Berry developed first digital computer in 1937 in Iowa State University, John Bardeen invented transistor in 1947, Theodore Maiman invented first laser in 1960, Martin Cooper invented first mobile phone in 1973, IBM released first PC in 1981, Tim Berners-Lee invented internet in 1989, Electronics companies agree to make Wi-Fi a worldwide standard for wireless Internet in 1997, Amazon launched e-book in 2007, Apple launched iPhone in 2007 and touch screen (iPad) in 2010, modern supercomputer of 2015 is still 25 times slower than human brain, computers operate at PHz and likely to reach EHz speed in 2020s.
There are thousands of peer reviewed research journals and magazines today, which report the new inventions, discoveries and innovative ideas worldwide. Researchers update their knowledge in their own narrow fields as it is not possible to even scan the whole literature. All countries contribute in research yet America leads in cutting edge research in science, engineering and technology. Capitalistic democratic system provides desired research environment to promote research. Economy, Technology and Military triangle reinforce one another to excel research and discoveries.
Arabs contributed in earlier science in middle ages. Discovery of oil and gas reserves in Arab World have made them addicted to easy life. Summer heat is the only natural disaster for which they have electricity and air conditioners. Europe started science, agriculture and industrial revolutions. Europe had food and winter chill problem that was subjugated long ago. America faces Polar Vortices, Heat Waves, Tornadoes, Twisters and Hurricanes which continue forcing Americans look for innovative solutions.
Research frontiers are becoming invisible to developing countries due too small and too big or too cheap or too expensive reasons. China leads in cheaper goods and America leads in expensive colossal machines. America, Europe and China are spending on fusion, artificial intelligence and artificial photosynthesis technologies to get rid of fossil fuels and climate change crisis. Asian and Middle Eastern countries do not spend much on research as they rely on western countries. They have to spend their resources on research as followers cannot become leaders.
Light comes from east and technology from west as earth spins eastward. Equatorial countries spin at speed of 1674 km/h, Northern/Southern countries at speed of 1000 km/h and north/south poles at zero speed. We feel no turning effects as our body has no absolute speed sensors. We feel only relative speeds that creates impression sunup in east.
Earth revolves around the sun at speed of 107,000 km/h that orbits around the Milky Way at speed of 828,000 km/h which is moving toward great attractor (barycenter) at speed of 2,160,000 km/h. Allama Dr. Muhammad Iqbal had said in his poem “Sabaat Aik Taghayur Ko Hai Zamane Mein” (Stability is only change in time).
A great whirl keeps everything in motion in universe to be stable. Two wind waves of different speeds on land and ocean create whirlpool in air and cyclones on water surface. A whirl in space gathers mass in its eye to make stars and plants. Heat in earth’s core was created in formation process that radiates into space through crust. In case of huge energy and hydrogen nuclear fission starts in stars. Everything has a definite life in nature after which it dies.
The sun rises in the east and sets in the west. However, sun may rise from the west and set in the east after pole switching [Jon 2015]. Scientists believe the magnetic pole reversal (north-south transition) may occur in human life time to ten millennia durations. Geological studies reveal the magnetic reversal has been occurring in past without any bio-effects except magnetic shield against solar flares [Glassmeier, 2010]. However, there is no credible evidence that actual cataclysmic pole shifting have ever occurred in the past. Anybody may associate mass distinctions, earthquakes and tectonic shifts with pole shifting without any proof [Palmer 2003]. Peer reviewed research papers shows polar wander up to maximum 30 happened in last 200 million years [Besse 2002].
Sun provides light and heat energy in our solar system and there are billions of such suns in the cosmos. Sun is the ultimate source of energy on planet and other forms of energies like winds, rivers and biofuels are indirectly driven by solar energy. The sun power life as no food can grow without sunlight. Energy booms on energy as life thrives on life. Fossil fuels have accelerated prosperity and population. End of the hydrocarbon era will be hard without nuclear fusion. US National Ignition Facility (NIF) must work to rescue humankind from never ending energy crisis. “Harnessing the energy of the sun and stars to meet the Earth’s energy needs has been a scientific and engineering challenge for decades” [LLNL 2019]. Let us end with hope the scientists will harness the sun within this or next decade.
Gowlett JAJ, The discovery of fire by humans: a long and convoluted process, Philosophical Transactions Royal Society B, 371: 20150164, 2016.
Gupta, AK, "Origin of agriculture and domestication of plants and animals linked to early Holocene climate amelioration". Current Science. Indian Academy of Sciences. 87 (1): 59, 2004.
Megan G, A Salute to the Wheel, Smithsonian Mag, 17 June 2009, https://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/a-salute-to-the-wheel-31805121/
Goldwasser O,. "How the Alphabet Was Born from Hieroglyphs", Biblical Archaeology Review, Mar/Apr 2010
Chris W, Technology Timeline, 13 January 2019. https://www.explainthatstuff.com/timeline.html
LLNL, National Ignition Facility, https://lasers.llnl.gov/science/energy-for-the-future 6 March 2019
Jon A, Sunrise in the WEST: Scientists warn North could be SOUTH as Earth's magnetic poles SWITCH, Express UK, 12 August 2015. https://www.express.co.uk/news/science/597607/Sunrise-WEST-Scientists-warn-magnetic-poles-SWITCHING-North-become-south
Glassmeier KH, Vogt J,"Magnetic Polarity Transitions and Biospheric Effects". Space Science Reviews. 155 (1–4): 387–410, 2010.
Palmer, Trevor. Perilous planet earth: catastrophes and catastrophism through the ages. Cambridge University Press. pp. 113–114, 2003
Besse, Jean; Courtillot, Vincent (November 2002). "Apparent and true polar wander and the geometry of the geomagnetic field over the last 200 Myr". Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth. 107 (B11): EPM 6–1