Inventions that have Enhanced my life

I have always been intrigued with how long items have been around.

The kaleidoscope was invented by Sir David Brewster and patented in 1817. David named his invention after the Greek words, kalos or beautiful, eidos or form, and scopos or watcher. So kaleidoscope means the beautiful form watcher.  Brewster’s kaleidoscope was a tube containing loose pieces of coloured glass and other pretty objects, reflected by mirrors or glass lenses set at angles that created patterns when viewed through the end of the tube.  The kaleidoscope creates reflections of reflections of a direct view of the objects at the end. The image will be symmetrical if the mirror angle is an even divider of 360 degrees. A mirror set at 60 degrees will generate a pattern of six regular sectors. A mirror angle at 45 degrees will make eight equal sectors, and an angle of 30 degrees will make twelve. The lines and colors of simple shapes are multiplied by the mirrors into a visually stimulating view.  I have always been intrigued by the beautiful patterns that can be viewed through a kaleidoscope.  This book is a kaleidoscope of my memories to be enjoyed.

As I was growing up, there were many simple things to amuse us.  A doll whose eyes would open and close was a great fascination to me as a young girl.  The Barbie doll was available from 1959, but I don’t remember my sister Shirley and I having one.  Perhaps our friends had one.

From dolls with eyes that open and close to teddy bears, from ice skating to roller blading, from card games to crayons and colouring, from the ferris wheel and carousel to cracker jacks, from the sewing machine to the zipper, from candy and ice cream to candy floss, from refrigeration to air conditioning, from early cameras to digital cameras, from washing machines to dishwashers, from a sweeping machine to a bagless vacuum cleaner, from typewriters to computers, from quill pens to gel pens, from cloth diapers to disposable diapers, from paper drinking straws to plastic straws, from horse-drawn vehicles to gasoline-driven cars, from chocolates to life savers, there are so many things that have changed our lives.  Each invention begins with an idea, often based on a desire for something better.  Even a simple band-aid has an interesting history.