A very, very short history of Roller skates…..

The first roller skates appeared in Holland in the early 1700`s but were not manufactured until after 1760. The year before, an inventive Belgian instrument maker named Joseph Merlin designed a pair of skates, each with two in-line wheels that he hoped would function like ice skates. Trying to make a …

A very, very short history of the Bicycle…..

The first bicycle-like vehicle was the creation of German engineer Baron Karl von Drais. His 1817 draisienne looked much like a modern bicycle, except it had no pedals. The wooden machine was propelled by the rider’s feet. Scottish blacksmith Kirkpatrick Macmillan put pedals to the draisienne in 1839. Driving cranks …

A very short history of the mobile phone….

Wireless portable telephones that can be used nearly anywhere are still referred to as “cell phones,” although “mobile phone” is a more accurate term; cellular phones were the early form of networking for communications providers that consisted of multiple base stations that divided up a region into “cells.” Wireless technology …

A very short history of the piano…..

Devilishly hard to master but unrivalled for learning the elements of music, the piano has now become a standard piece of  furniture. The instrument dates from the early 1700s, but there were several forerunners. The dulcimer, a stringed instrument played with hammers, was probably of ancient Middle Eastern origin. By …

A very short history of Etch-A-Sketch

With its bright-red frame, grey screen, and white plastic knobs, the Etch-a-Sketch toy is a 20th-century toy icon. Millions of kids around the world have manipulated those knobs to draw everything from a single line to complicated portraits. For a plaything so closely identified with American childhood, the Etch-a-Sketch has …

A very short history of the Teddy Bear…..

Cuddly stuffed bears have been a standard child’s toy for more than 100 years. The teddy bear story began on a hunting trip taken by President Theodore Roosevelt in 1902. The President having failed to bag a trophy, his gracious Mississippi hosts caught and tied up a bear for him to …

A very short history of the Frisbee…..

  The ancient Greeks threw the discus as part of the Olympic pentathlon, but the heavy clay disk was only for throwing, not catching. No doubt children over the intervening centuries found any number of round objects they could spin through the air, but the actual Frisbee dates only from …

Heads or Tails?…..

In ancient times, people believed that major life decisions should be made by the gods. And they devised ingenious forms of divination to coax gods to answer important questions with an unequivocal “yes” or “no.” Although coins—ideally suited for yes/no responses—were first minted by the Lydians in the tenth century …

A very short history of tennis…..

Tennis began as an indoor game called jeu de paume (palm game) in medieval France. It was a version of handball and probably first played by priests in cathedral cloisters. The word tennis most likely derives from the French tenez (take), which was shouted before a serve. By 1292 there …

A very short history of nail polish…..

  Ancient Egyptians dyed their fingernails with henna and other natural plant stains, but the first real paint for the nails was developed in China around 3000 B.C. Made of beeswax, egg white, and vegetable dyes, and sometimes gelatin and gum arabic, the lacquer was colour-coded by social rank. At …