Inventions

Inventions can change the world in an instant. Inventions are thought of every minute but very few of them actually make it to market. In this section we'll examine amazing inventions from all throughout history.


British DIY engineer Colin Furze recreates the pyrotechnics seen in heavy-metal shows and Mad Max: Fury Road.

The Hybrid Sports Bike, still in its prototype stage, is a three-in-one: a pedal-powered bicycle souped-up with both a gas engine and an electric motor. But how could a gas-powered bike be environmentally friendly?

People have been making (and drinking) wine for 8,000 years -- which means lots of innovations both now and in the past, from creating Champagne to quirky wine labels.

Smartphones, tablets and other devices are not just useful; they can improve your social life. We'll look at some of the newest ways to integrate social media into whatever you're doing.

Five metallic balls on slender threads sit side by side. As one on the end hits the rest, the one on the opposite end rises and falls. Why don't the balls in the middle move? It's complicated.

You're sure you have it in you to think of an invention, but you're not sure how to do it. Get some tips here on how to think of an invention.

Everyone knows what a sandwich is. Most may even know how the snack got its name. But did you know who invented it? That's a tougher question to answer.

Primitive batteries date back a lot longer than you might guess. But when were scientists finally able to produce and store electricity and then use it to create a continuous, controllable current?

We've all seen TV ads for products that were just completely silly, but then became overnight sensations. Which ones made our list?

The men and women of NASA are an ingenious bunch, and they're not just inventing amazing things for space. Which inventions have changed our lives here on Earth?

At one time, sharing files between computers meant carrying a box of punch cards from one machine to another. The Internet changed all that, but who's responsible for creating this network of networks?

Despite all the Slinkies, Band-Aids and BIC pens out there, many patented inventions that push the boundaries of innovation will likely never see widespread use, like this car that’s grown organically and emits pure oxygen.

We'll give you two hints: This person of diverse interests also invented the cowcatcher device for trains, and he held a distinguished mathematics professorship at the University of Cambridge. Any guesses?

It seems like virtually everyone has a cell phone. In fact, you probably have one in your pocket right now. Many had the idea for the device, but only one could successfully introduce the gadget. Who was it?

During the Industrial Revolution, both innovation and the capabilities of large factories combined to thrust people from a predominantly agricultural existence into a more urban lifestyle. So what were the period's top inventions?

Though the 1980s might remind you of the days of MTV and leg warmers, there was a lot going on in technology. In fact, quite a few of the technologies we rely on today were making their debut.

Google's headquarters is located in Mountain View, Calif., but it might as well be Mount Olympus given the company's wild success. Who is the man or woman behind the mountain?

Many people consider Guglielmo Marconi the inventor of the radio. After all, he did get the Nobel Prize for it. But others credit Nikola Tesla because the Supreme Court upheld his patent for the invention of radio. So who should get the recognition?

People are always thinking up strange stuff that makes us chuckle, like, say, wafflemakers that churn out waffles in the shape of a keyboard. But these 10 inventions aren't just funny; we interact with them all the time.

There may be no greater tribute to a society's ingenuity and vision than the Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt. What other cool stuff did the ancient Egyptians invent?

The grocery bag you're carrying breaks, and the eggs inside splat across your driveway. Yep, unloading groceries can be tedious, but that's nothing compared to the days before refrigeration, so grab a cold beverage and learn who you have to thank.

Edison, Bell, the Wright Brothers -- sure, their inventions changed the world, but they didn't tend to think up much for the kids. But that doesn't mean there haven't been some good ones over the years. So pick up your pogo stick and hop along to find out five of our favorites.

Like so many other modern conveniences that we take for granted, the history of the elevator is more complicated than it may seem at first glance. Believe it or not, there's some controversy over who invented this commonplace contraption.

If asked to name a famous African-American inventor, most people immediately think of George Washington Carver. But Carver, credited for his work with crop rotation and the peanut, is just one of many black inventors. Here, a look at 10 notable inventions credited to African-Americans innovators.