Innovation

Do you know how common everyday items, such as mirrors, fireworks or sunglasses work? This collection of Innovation articles explores the workings of objects you may come into contact with on a regular basis.

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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.

By Jonathan Atteberry & Desiree Bowie

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.

By Shanna Freeman

More than two-thirds of U.S. households play video games, according to the Entertainment Software Rating Board. Without the crazy ideas of a few pioneering folks, we might still be stuck playing marathon sessions of charades. So who do we have to thank?

By Jonathan Atteberry

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We take X-rays so much for granted. We get them at the dentist's office and watch them while clearing luggage through security at the airport. But did you know they were discovered by accident?

By Josh Briggs

If you don’t know what tinnovation is, prepare to be amazed. These photos feature neat hacks that turn mere Altoid tins into utility items and art.

Before you hurriedly unwrap a stick of gum and twist the foil around the closest blown fuse, you may want to consider a few things. You could have a fixed fuse -- or a full-blown fire.

By Jessika Toothman

Better than buttons? Maybe. Less time-consuming than laces? Definitely. As far as fastening mechanisms go, the zipper is a work of art. Learn exactly what makes up a zipper and how it all fits together so perfectly.

By Tom Harris

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How do scratch-and-sniff stickers work? What makes them last for years and years?

Researchers are constantly developing fabrics that can help keep you cool, whether you're working out or trying to get a good night's sleep. But how do they work, and which are the best ones?

By Carrie Whitney, Ph.D.

Many items enjoyed by people of all abilities were originally designed to help people with disabilities. Here are some inventions you may use every day that were originally for the disabled community.

By Alia Hoyt

If you had the perfect cure for world hunger, wouldn't you want to share it? A group called the Breatharians claims to have the answer: Stop eating.

By Katie Lambert

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In an age of health-conscious consumers, low-carb diets and bottled water, one snack has stood the test of time. Twinkies are an icon of junk-food snacks and guilty pleasures, nutritionally worthless yet irresistibly yummy.

By Ed Grabianowski

Water and vitamins help keep us alive and healthy. So if you put the vitamins in the water, wouldn't you be even healthier? Check out Glaceau's Vitaminwater and see if it really does what it claims to do.

By John Fuller

Crunchy crust, soft, spongy middle -- there's something about fresh-baked bread. Have you ever thought about bread as a technology? Learn about the biochemical reactions that make bread taste so good!

By Marshall Brain

Who doesn't love a smooth, creamy bar of chocolate? The process to make one is pretty tricky, but sooo worth it.

By Shanna Freeman & Alia Hoyt

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Tired of hearing about things like monounsaturated fats, partially hydrogenated oils and trans fatty acids and not knowing a thing about any of them? Find out what you need to know here.

By Marshall Brain

If you've ever been to an aerial fireworks show, then you know that fireworks have a magic all their own. Ever wonder how they make such incredible colors and designs? Learn all about these pyrotechnics!

By Marshall Brain & Austin Henderson

Because sustenance ensures our survival, food preservation is one of the oldest technologies developed by human beings. Find out what's being done to your food to make it last longer.

By Marshall Brain

Ever wonder what, exactly, you are putting in your body when you eat? Would you like to know the real difference between a "fat" and a "carb"? Learn all about food and how your body uses it!

By Marshall Brain

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Got a few grays? Just want a new look? Well, if you are like 75 percent of women, you're part of a billion dollar industry. Learn all about hair coloring and choosing the best color for you.

By Marshall Brain

Want to keep your dog out of the neighbor's yard but feeling guilty pulling out a leash? You might consider an underground or wireless pet fence. Learn how these fascinating systems work and why this specialized fencing industry is booming.

By Melissa Russell-Ausley

There's a candy called 'Pop Rocks.' When you put it in your mouth it makes a loud popping sound and it feels really weird! How do Pop Rocks work?

Hydrogen peroxide is something that is used to clean cuts. Have you ever wondered why it foams when placed on a cut? Learn about hydrogen peroxide.

By Yara Simón

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Yesterday you talked about hydrogen peroxide, and the day before you talked about Pop Rocks candy. Since we are talking about things that fizz, what about Alka Seltzer? How does it work and why does it fizz?

Comic book character Popeye is synonymous with being strong thanks to all the iron in the spinach he eats. But lately, there's been some talk that spinach is not all that good a source of iron and, in fact, it got the claim by error.

By Laurie L. Dove