Faraday

 

Perhaps no person had a greater impact on the world we live in today than Michael Faraday (1861-1957).  Indeed our digital world of computers and smartphones and NSA spying and drones and lightbulbs and PVRs and HD TVs and microwave ovens and advanced electronics in automobiles and Hubble Telescopes and rovers on Mars could not exist without him. If you think electricity makes life easier for all of us on this planet, you can thank Michael Faraday. He made two of the most significant discoveries in history that changed our lives forever. In 1821, he discovered that when a wire carrying an electric current is placed next to a single magnetic pole, the wire will rotate. This led to the development of the electric motor and subsequently the automobile. Ten years later, he became the first person to produce an electric current by moving a wire through a magnetic field. Faraday’s experiment created the first generator, the forerunner of the huge generators that produce the trillions of electric currents that power our world. Without Faraday and his discoveries we would still be living in a much darker and labour intensive world. And perhaps the most amazing aspect of his life is that he left school at age 12 and was a bookbinder and learned a lot of his science at night reading under gas lamps.