/>
X

The best Tech inventions of all time 6: Stunning science discoveries

In this series we take a look at everything, large and small, that has changed the way we do things and enhanced our lives in some way. In part six we take a look at science discoveries that have enabled us to create the digital age.
eileen-brown.jpg
By Eileen Brown on
The best Tech inventions of all time 6 Stunning Science discoveries ZDNet
1 of 11 Blickpixel

Electricity

Moving charged particles down a wire delivers a current to an object such as a light bulb, which then glows. Without electricity the world, would cease to function efficiently.

Related: The best Tech inventions of all time 5: Awesome machines

The best Tech inventions of all time 6 Stunning Science discoveries ZDNet
2 of 11 Wikimedia Images

Synthetic dye

Man-made dyes have been produced since 1856 which faithfully reproduce exact tones and shades. We are no longer at the mercy of natural variations and plant based colours.

Related: The best Tech inventions of all time 5: Awesome machines

The best Tech inventions of all time 6 Stunning Science discoveries ZDNet
3 of 11 Public Domain Pictures

Nanotechnology

In nanotechnology, atoms and molecules are manipulated to produce medical and physical products and new materials for energy and consumer products.

Related: The best Tech inventions of all time 5: Awesome machines


The best Tech inventions of all time 6 Stunning Science discoveries ZDNet
4 of 11 The Light

UV sterilising

Short wave ultraviolet light is used to inactivate organisms and bacteria by disrupting their DNA. It is used in food and water purification and to sanitize products. Hot air hand dryers often have blue lights to sanitise your hands as they dry.

Related: The best Tech inventions of all time 5: Awesome machines

The best Tech inventions of all time 6 Stunning Science discoveries ZDNet
5 of 11 Moerschy

Maglev

Magnetic levitation moves objects along a track without touching the ground. It allows objects to travel at very high speeds. The Shanghai Maglev train has a top speed of 270mph, is quiet, not bumpy and very geeky to ride.

Related: The best Tech inventions of all time 5: Awesome machines

The best Tech inventions of all time 6 Stunning Science discoveries ZDNet
6 of 11 Taokinesis

X rays

X rays have shorter wavelengths than UV rays but longer than gamma rays. The electromagnetic radiation penetrates the inside of objects such as soft tissue bodies and items such as hand luggage at security checkpoints.

Related: The best Tech inventions of all time 5: Awesome machines

The best Tech inventions of all time 6 Stunning Science discoveries ZDNet
7 of 11 Public Domain Pictures

Transistor

Transistors amplify or switch electronic signals and are considered the fundamental building block of electronic devices. Invented in 1947, they paved the way for silicon transistors and reduced the need to use vacuum tube valves.

Related: The best Tech inventions of all time 5: Awesome machines


The best Tech inventions of all time 6 Stunning Science discoveries ZDNet
8 of 11 Public Domain Pictures

DNA

The Deoxyribonucleic acid molecule contains the genetic instruction in the living cell, and is carried in all forms of living thing. The double helix protein sequence pattern was discovered in 1953 by Watson and Crick.

Related: The best Tech inventions of all time 5: Awesome machines

The best Tech inventions of all time 6 Stunning Science discoveries ZDNet
9 of 11 Magnascan

Integrated Circuit

Electronic integrated circuits on one small silicon chip of semiconductor material can carry several billion transistors and are printed by photolithography at very low cost. They are used in almost all electronic equipment.

Related: The best Tech inventions of all time 5: Awesome machines

The best Tech inventions of all time 6 Stunning Science discoveries ZDNet
10 of 11 Werbefabrik

Semiconductor

Semiconductors are crystals or other solids that can pass current, show resistance and other electrical properties. Silicon is the most common semiconductor material, but germanium is also used commercially.

Related: The best Tech inventions of all time 5: Awesome machines

fractal-inspirito.png
11 of 11 Eileen Brown/ZDNet

Higgs Boson

Discovered in 2012, the particle was named after Peter Higgs postulated its existence. It is often termed the "God Particle", crucial to the understanding of particle physics but elusive due to its instability. It decays into other particles almost immediately. It has no spin, or electric charge and it does not change colour.

Related: The best Tech inventions of all time 5: Awesome machines

Related Galleries

Hyundai Ioniq 5 and Kia EV6: Electric vehicle extravaganza
img-8825

Related Galleries

Hyundai Ioniq 5 and Kia EV6: Electric vehicle extravaganza

26 Photos
A weekend with Google's Chrome OS Flex
img-9792-2

Related Galleries

A weekend with Google's Chrome OS Flex

22 Photos
Cybersecurity flaws, customer experiences, smartphone losses, and more: ZDNet's research roundup
shutterstock-1024665187.jpg

Related Galleries

Cybersecurity flaws, customer experiences, smartphone losses, and more: ZDNet's research roundup

8 Photos
Inside a fake $20 '16TB external M.2 SSD'
Full of promises!

Related Galleries

Inside a fake $20 '16TB external M.2 SSD'

8 Photos
Hybrid working, touchscreen MacBook hopes, cybersecurity concerns, and more: ZDNet's tech research roundup
Asian woman working at a desk in front of a computer and calculator

Related Galleries

Hybrid working, touchscreen MacBook hopes, cybersecurity concerns, and more: ZDNet's tech research roundup

8 Photos
Developer trends, zero-day risks, 5G speeds, and more: Tech research roundup
Person seated at a booth in a cafe looks at their phone and laptop.

Related Galleries

Developer trends, zero-day risks, 5G speeds, and more: Tech research roundup

10 Photos
Drive Electric Day: A dizzying array of EVs in sunny Florida
ca3b4019-26c5-4ce0-a844-5aac39e2c34b.jpg

Related Galleries

Drive Electric Day: A dizzying array of EVs in sunny Florida

16 Photos