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Offline bonsaikitten

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British vs American Inventors
« on: 05/10/2006 10:19:38 »
I read with interest that British invetors outnumber American ones by more than 6 to 1, with the majority of the latter consigned to the 'Golden Age' of the 19th Century.

Whatever happened to American creativity? Here in Old Blighty we still have bleeding-edge technology emerging regularly - think of the revolutionary Dyson vacuum cleaner (bagless!), and the famous Bayliss clockwork radio.

Perhaps it's time for our American colonist cousins to consider spending a little less time on the couch and a little more in the workshop!


 

Offline rosy

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Re: British vs American Inventors
« Reply #1 on: 26/10/2006 21:01:26 »
Is the Dyson British? I thought it was Scandinavian or something..
 

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« Reply #2 on: 26/10/2006 23:47:32 »
Richard Dyson is a British engineer, although I believe he now has had to move manufacturing to Malasia.

And, ofcourse, don't forget Sir Clive Sinclair.
 

Offline rosalind dna

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« Reply #3 on: 05/01/2008 13:16:08 »
Trevor Bayliss, who invented the wind-up radio which doesn't need batteries and
can be used in the hotter countries, e.g Africa, India and so on.
 

Offline Pumblechook

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« Reply #4 on: 14/01/2008 22:23:33 »
Alec Reeves.. Invented Pulse Code Modulation ...basis of the digital revolution.

British bloke working for an American compnay in Paris... Think it was.

John Hopkinson (Manchester) ..invented 3 phase AC power generation and transmission.  It was NOT Tesla.
 

Offline opus

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« Reply #5 on: 14/01/2008 23:20:49 »
A brit called Mr Shepherd-barron invented the first atm cash machine...
 

another_someone

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« Reply #6 on: 15/01/2008 01:41:28 »
Looking at the opening post in this thread, I think one of the differences is the British have a soft spot for the impoverished lone inventor, whereas the Americans tend to value successful businessmen rather than impoverished inventors.

One indicative example is that everybody associates MS-DOS with Microsoft, and thus with Bill Gates, yet far fewer will recognised that it was bought and commercialised by Bill Gate's company, but was actually developed by Tim Paterson, but the Americans celebrate the commercial success of Bill Gates, in preference to the technical success of Tim Paterson.
 

Offline Pumblechook

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« Reply #7 on: 15/01/2008 14:14:03 »
« Last Edit: 15/01/2008 14:15:43 by Pumblechook »
 

Offline opus

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« Reply #8 on: 15/01/2008 20:45:31 »
is that reg varney the actor from 'on the buses' ?
 

Offline Pumblechook

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« Reply #9 on: 15/01/2008 21:13:26 »
Yes.
 

Offline opus

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« Reply #10 on: 15/01/2008 22:13:29 »
was he demonstrating it...?
 

Offline JimBob

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« Reply #11 on: 16/01/2008 03:53:43 »
I do believe my post of yesterday was lost. (or some Brit deleted it)

It was something to the effect that none of the above mentioned inventions would have been possible were it not for we colonists. Should one recall it was a colonist, Ben Franklin, who actually took electricity from a parlor curiosity to a scientifically usable force and made the first electrical invention: the lightening rod. It was only up hill from there. based on the work of a lowly colonial, the world changed. We are still doing more than others to impact the world. 

The British just can't seem to get it right and make it work. Yes, they have good ideas but we colonials need to actually make them work. Take, for example, the microchip or integrated circuit. Poor old Geoffrey W.A. Dummer, working for the Royal Radar Establishment of the British Ministry of Defence, came up with the idea of modular electronics on a stable surface but it took a colonial (and may I point out a TEXAN), Jack Kirby of Texas Instruments to invent the first microchip.

I do understand the need to glorify the British ideal. It does keep morale up, doesn't it?

I must be tough loosing an Empire.

(I must admit that the British do seem to do a little bit better at banking and insurance.)
 
 

Offline Bored chemist

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« Reply #12 on: 16/01/2008 20:25:38 »
"a scientifically usable force and made the first electrical invention: the lightening rod."
What did the rod lighten?

Don't forget that Franklin was only just American; his dad was a Brit. Presumably that's why he damn near killed himself trying to perfect the ligtning conductor by flying a kite in a storm ;-)
.
 

Offline JimBob

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« Reply #13 on: 17/01/2008 03:08:45 »
"... rod lighten?" - sound like one of my puns. ;D

Picky, picky, picky - in science you take risks. The first atomic bomb explosion was a huge gamble. It was theorized by a good percentage of the scientist on the Manhattan Project that the earth's atmosphere would also go nuclear.

The lack of restraint imposed on Franklin in the colonies was the deciding fact, as any AMERICAN can tell you.
« Last Edit: 17/01/2008 03:13:35 by JimBob »
 

Offline Bored chemist

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« Reply #14 on: 17/01/2008 19:30:59 »
Fair enough.
Why have you picked out the word AMERICAN in the colours of the French flag?

"It was theorized by a good percentage of the scientist on the Manhattan Project that the earth's atmosphere would also go nuclear."
And, according to at least one version of the story Fermi was told about this "theory". He looked a bit woried, got out his slide rule, made some calculations and relaxed saying it wouldn't happen.
Do you really think they would have taken the risk? I agree scientists are often a bit cavaleir with their own lives but they don't generally want to destroy the world. That's the politicians' job.
 

Offline JimBob

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« Reply #15 on: 18/01/2008 02:43:53 »
You might well ask why the colors of the Union Jack? It is all a big love fest. Franklin couldn't have done it without Otto von Guericke, Robert Boyle, Stephen Gray and C. F. du Fay. (not "auto de fe" - sinkers about the Inquisition joke.)

It is all and interlinked process and is becoming more and more one as the sharing of information becomes more and more possible. There are also walls being built to inhibit this sharing - it cost $5-$12 to get journal articles off the internet if the library at the university here doesn't have them - these are usually foreign journals. They just are not free. And then there are the Elsevier Journals - Pure Commerce, I tell you, Pure Commerce!

But invention is an interlocking network not confined to one discipline alone. We should thank each other, not boast about who has done what.


 

Offline time-cop

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« Reply #16 on: 10/10/2008 00:19:41 »
Erm James Dyson, ball barrow and a brilliant hand dryer called the blade !

Hey, is he trying to share our inventors, get outta here !  [O8)]
 

Offline rosalind dna

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« Reply #17 on: 10/10/2008 11:51:43 »
James Dyson is English and was born in Norfolk, now resides in
Gloucestershire.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_Dyson

Charles Babbage is the forerunner of the great man Alan Turing,
both brillaint Mathematicians and british too.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Babbage_Charles

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alan_Turing

Not forgetting the Scottish inventor of the TV - John Logie Baird  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Logie_Baird
 
The inventor of the Phone was a Scot - Alexander Graham Bell good
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alexander_Graham_Bell

« Last Edit: 10/10/2008 13:41:01 by rosalind dna »
 

blakestyger

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British vs American Inventors
« Reply #18 on: 10/10/2008 18:44:01 »

James Dyson is English and was born in Norfolk, now resides in
Gloucestershire.

...and builds his machines in China. [:(!]
 

Offline rosalind dna

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« Reply #19 on: 10/10/2008 19:05:56 »

James Dyson is English and was born in Norfolk, now resides in
Gloucestershire.

...and builds his machines in China. [:(!]

But he was born in England as is the inventor of the Web
Tim Berners-Lee a bri Kind of apt too.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tim_Berners-Lee
 

Offline time-cop

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« Reply #20 on: 16/10/2008 10:53:40 »
And of course Tommy Flowers, the man who built "collossus " at Bletchley !
 

Offline Don_1

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« Reply #21 on: 17/10/2008 16:33:47 »
Carl C. Magee, of Oklahoma City

Inventor of:--------

THE PARKING METER.
 

Offline ukmicky

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« Reply #22 on: 18/10/2008 15:47:49 »
Good old Joe the Plumber  Public .  The inventors of the English langauge
 

Offline rosalind dna

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« Reply #23 on: 19/10/2008 12:28:26 »
And of course Tommy Flowers, the man who built "collossus " at Bletchley !

Alan Turing was the main person in Bletchley, who actually did all of the mathematic equations for the Colossus.
It's the VERY first ever electronic working computer, which has been rebuilt so it's working again.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alan_Turing

 

Offline rosalind dna

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« Reply #24 on: 19/10/2008 12:38:25 »
Good old Joe the Plumber  Public .  The inventors of the English langauge

Micky that's a very good point,, I fully agree with you.

What about this guy, John Howard who had given the names to the clouds that we all know about now:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Luke_Howard

Abraham Darby 1, who invented Coke smelting and was responsible for Coalbrookdale's iron bridge.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abraham_Darby_I
 

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« Reply #24 on: 19/10/2008 12:38:25 »

 

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