Thursday, March 20, 2014
Talking with a student last week reminded me of how Australians are seen by other nations. When most people think of a typical Australian they probably imagine a beer drinking, barbeque eating, board surfing, horse riding, farmer. Wile this is true for many Australians, it stood out to me that Australia is not seen as a very intellectual country, well I hope to dispel that myth. Starting with this post, I'll look at some of the important "smart" things Australians have done.
Australia’s unique geography and relative isolation has made it a fertile ground for new ideas.
In 1879, Australians developed a way for ice to be manufactured artificially, allowing us to export meat to Great Britain on refrigerated ships.
In 1906, the surf lifesaving reel was designed so lifesavers could reach distressed swimmers with a rope attached to their vests.
In 1929, Alfred Traeger built a pedal-powered radio as the communications for the Royal Flying Doctor Service.
Australians were also responsible for more everyday inventions such as notepads (1902), aspirin (1915), the pacemaker (1926), penicillin (1940) the Hills Hoist clothesline (1946), the plastic disposable syringe (1949), the wine cask (1965), the bionic ear (1978), dual-flush toilet flush (1980), anti-counterfeiting technology for banknotes (1992) and long-wearing contact lenses (1999).