Thomas Edison

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‘Genius is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent perspiration’, a quote widely believed to be uttered by a famous inventor, Thomas Alva Edison in the early 20th century. As such, his diligence has contributed to the progress of mankind. Before the 19th century and the birth of Thomas Edison, technology was limited and life was not as easy as it is today. Due to the absence of advanced technology, people relied on traditional methods to do work. Consequently, the productivity of the people during that time was low compared to the present. During his lifetime, Thomas Edison, introduced and invented various products that have revolutionized the way we live and is still regarded as one of the world’s greatest inventors of all time. However, there have been claims that it was actually Nikola Tesla and not Thomas Edison, who changed the world and made it a better place (Kleinman, 2013). This essay firstly describes the life of Thomas Alva Edison by focusing on his achievements, then looks at his work conflict with Nikola Tesla, followed by an investigation on an invention that was erroneously credited to Thomas Alva Edison and finally evaluates the reasons why Nikola Tesla deserves the title of ‘The Greatest Inventor’.
On the 11th of February 1847, Thomas Alva Edison was born in Milan, Ohio. As he was claimed to be ‘a failure’ by his teachers, Edison was sent for home-schooling by his mother (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2012, para. 2). According to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (2012), Edison decided to become a full-fledged inventor in 1869 and received his first patent for an electric voting machine. However, the invention did not sell well and he made a promise to never invent a product that might...

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...after his death (Kleinman, 2013). For example, a scientist called Guglielmo Marconi, who actually used Tesla’s technology, claimed that he invented the radio (ibid.). It was only months after Tesla’s death that the U.S. Supreme Court agreed and recognized Tesla as the inventor of the radio (ibid.).
As has been shown, it seems very likely that Thomas Alva Edison is not ‘The Greatest Inventor’. Although research on this subject has been carried out extensively, it has not been possible to cover all the inventors that have worked with Thomas Edison and the inventions that have been wrongly credited to him. It is clear, however, that Nikola Tesla should be regarded as one of the greatest inventors of all time due to his contributions to mankind. Thus, it is important to emphasize that one should not always presume something just because the majority of the society does.
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