Look At Me!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Lucky little Devils!

1. One day Pharmacist John Pemberton was mixing up medicinal syrup. He wanted to make a medicine that would cure a number of diseases.  He made the first syrup for the drink in a three legged brass kettle in his backyard. He carried a jug of it to the Jacob's pharmacy, down the street. Here the drink was sampled and declared of 'excellent' taste. His goal was to have a health elixir. Instead he created one of the world’s tastiest Drinks widely consumed as a soft drink.

2. Alex was going on a vacation, to take time off from his job of growing bacterial cultures in little Petri dishes. He was studying the effects of mucus on Staph cultures in a somewhat grungy laboratory in London. He forgot to wash up his last batch before he went off, and when he came back two weeks later, he saw an amazing sight. A mold was all over the dish, but all the bacteria were dead. 
To cut a long story short, Alex, found the mother of all disease fighting drugs which was Blown in by dust on his Staph cultures.

3. Two brothers were experimenting with boiled sheets of wheat. But they had to leave their experiment mid-way and leave. Dr John Harvey and William Keith made a surprising discovery when they returned the next day. The dough, when placed in a press broke into small flaky material instead of coming out as a sheet. Four years later they marketed this product and made a fortune.
This product is considered as the world’s favorite breakfast.

4. An Arabian nomad was traveling across the desert. Back in those days they used pouches made from a sheep’s stomach to carry water. The nomad accidently poured milk into his pouch instead of water and began his journey. Somewhere along his way, when he felt thirsty, he opened the pouch for a refreshing sip, but discovered something else instead! The chemicals from the sheep’s stomach reacted with the heat of the sun and bunched up the milk into this substance. 
Today Pizza cannot be imagined without this substance

5. Charles one fine day accidentally spilled rubber, sulfur and lead together into a hot stove. And he finally, got the results that he was waiting for. Today, his invention is used in everything, from shoes to even hockey pucks.

6. French Chemist Hilaire de Chardonnet spilled collodion, an inflammable substance once used as a surgical dressing. When the substance dried, it formed long, thin filaments. Today this substance also referred to as artificial silk is used worldwide in apparels

      7. Wilson Greatbatch was working on a heart monitor. This invention came about when he pulled out the wrong part from his supply box. When he used this wrong transistor in the monitor he noticed that it emitted a perfect sound. This happy accident led to an invention that is used by 3 million people worldwide today to prompt the heart to beat at a normal rate

       8. It was discovered in the 19th century by several scientists toying with penetrating rays that were emitted when electrons struck a metal target. It wasn't fully workable until 1895 when a German scientist named Wilhelm Röntgen tried sticking different objects in front of the radiation and saw the bones on his hand projected onto the wall behind him.
      9.Walter Hunt was a New Yorker in need of some fast cash. He owed a friend fifteen dollars and decided to come up with the money, by inventing something the world needed. That something, he decided would hold things together. He drew a sketch of it in a mere three hours, and came up with the idea. He also made a model of it and sold the rights of his invention for four hundred dollars. And, that was all the money he made from this million dollar idea! It was originally made by twisting a piece of brass wire about eight inches long which is coiled at the center and shielded at one end.

      10. No one got the idea and then stayed up nights to invent this product.  A man named Spencer Silver was working in the 3M research laboratories in 1970 trying to find a strong adhesive.  Silver developed a new adhesive, but it was even weaker than what 3M already manufactured.  It turned out to be a classic failure. It was super weak instead of super strong.   No one knew what to do with the awful stuff, but Silver didn't discard it.  Today this stuff is used in one of the most popular office products available as reminders and found commonly on refrigerators.

      11.For thousands of years, man has walked through fields of weeds and arrived home with burrs stuck to his clothing. It’s amazing no one took advantage of the problem until 1948. George de Mestral, a Swiss engineer, returned from a walk one day in 1948 and found some cockleburs clinging to his cloth jacket. When George loosened them, he examined one under his microscope. The principle was simple. The cocklebur is a maze of thin strands with burrs (or hooks) on the ends that cling to fabrics or animal fur. By the accident of the cockleburs sticking to his jacket, George de Mestral recognized the potential for a practical new fastener which is strong, easily separated, lightweight, durable, and washable, comes in a variety of colors, and won’t jam. It consists of two strips of nylon fabric. One strip contains thousands of small hooks. The other strip contains small loops. When the two strips are pressed together, they form a strong bond

     12. This magic substance was the brainchild of Roy J. Plunkett. While working on a new refrigerant gas at the DuPont plant in New Jersey, Plunkett managed to come up with a slick substance that became a waxy, polymer coating, perfect for lubricating machinery. Later DuPont patented the polymer, known as PTFE (polytetrafluroethylene), a substance so slippery that practically nothing sticks to it. Where would many modern cooks be without this magical substance? Other than its use in frying pans, there are a host of other useful products available from fabric protector to devices for NASA. Just don't let the pan overheat in your kitchen, because even DuPont issues warnings that if too hot, its fumes might harm a bird if the cage is nearby. 

      13. Percy Spencer, a scientist at Raytheon's laboratories, absent mindedly left a candy bar in his pocket. He was experimenting with a vacuum tube called a "magnetron". He soon found out that the candy bar in his pocket kept melting to his surprise. Later he observed that it was due to the emissions from the magnetron. And this led to a very famous invention. Today most people can’t envision life without one, but they've only been affordable since 1967. It is present in every kitchen for the last thirty years predominantly in US.

       14. Josephine Dickson married a man who worked for a company that manufactured gauze and adhesive tape. We will never know the reason, but it is a fact that Josephine was accident prone. During the first week that she was married to Earle Dickson, she cut her self twice. After that, it just went from bad to worse. It seemed that Josephine was always cutting herself.  One day her husband had an idea. He sat down with some tape and gauze and a pair of scissors and made something for his wife. She could use this quickly and without a lot of fuss. At his company, they heard about these and they started making them to sell on a small scale. Four years later, in 1924, the company installed machines for mass producing the new product.

      Its just not fair that some people have it all. Well I have had accidents too (big ones at that!), like the one time I kept water on stove for boiling, forgot all about it, locked the house and went out for a wonderful movie. And when I return what do I get? No, no miraculous inventions or life saving discoveries. Just a completely charred vessel and loads of screaming from husband. (It was a miracle (OK, make that God's grace) that the house din't burn down!).
      The lucky little devils get all the luck and go on to become rich and famous, while I am still tucked away on the sofa blogging about them!

      Life's just NOT fair! (I think its time to throw away the little clover leaf that I carry in my purse all time!)

    PS: If you know the names of the products/substances discovered/invented above, feel free to leave a comment :)


  1. About the nomad milk, the discovery was cheese. • Olυωatobi • Was here

    1. Yes Oluwatobi, you are absolutely right! Thanks for visiting.

  2. Hi Nina,
    Couldn't leave a note over at blogger as i am too "fresh". Only had a problem with #9. I just can't quite picture it. Could be a toaster or possibly an aerial??? Anyways, enjoyed your photography and suggest you take a look at Stipple.com to add a bit of fun.

  3. Hi Geoff, ha ha I get the feeling - felt like an outcast on the first few days on bloggers :D !
    #9 - heres the clue : commonly used to fasten pieces of fabric or clothing together, remember coiled at the center and shielded at one end?
    ok, on my way to Stipple.com..
    Thank you for visiting!


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