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American Inventions We Use Every Day #4thOfJuly #AmericanInventions

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Next up in our celebration of the 4th of July is this fun list of American Inventions we use pretty regularly here at Adafruit. We think it’s safe to say that you may have encountered some of these inventions too…


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Modern, commodified Toilet Paper! Josephy Gayetty is credited as being the creator of modern toilet paper, which was introduced in 1857. Seth Wheeler obtained U.S. patents for toilet paper and dispensers in 1883. (read more)


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QWERTY was created Christopher Latham Sholes of Milwaukee, Wisconsin in the 1860s (read more)


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Electronic Color Code was developed by Radio Manufacturers Association (RMA, now part of EIA) in the 1920s. (read more)


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The development of the commercially viable Thermistor in the 1930s is attributed to Samuel Ruben (read more here and here)

Fun Fact: Ruben later went on to found Duracell with Philip Rogers Mallory!


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The point-contact transistor was developed by John Bardeen, Walter Brattain and William Shockley at Bell Labs in 1947. Bardeen, Brattain and Shockley were awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1956 for their effort.

Fun Fact: the term transistor was coined by John R Pierce (read more)


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Bubble Wrap was created in the 1950s by American engineer Alfred W. Fielding and Swiss engineer Marc Chavannes. The two went on to found Sealed Air Corporation. (read more here, here and here)


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The first wireless computer communication network, ALOHAnet, was developed by Norman Abramson in the early 1970s at the University of Hawaii. (read more here and here)


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While working for 3M in 1968, Spencer Silver created a reusable, pressure sensitive adhesive. In 1974 Art Fry, also at 3M, used Silver’s adhesive to attach a bookmark in his book of hymns. And the Post-it was born! (read more, here and here)


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In the early 1960s Douglas Engelbart created the first computer mouse at Standford Research Institute. (read more here and here)


Happy 4th of July!

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