Major Developments in Physics

  • Apr 1, 1543

    Heliocentric Theory

    Niklaus Copernicus proposes the idea that the sun is the center of the solar system, rather than the Earth. This, of course, creates an uproar among those who are sure that the Earth is the center of the whole universe. Copernicus turns out to be right.
  • Heliocentric Theory, Part II

    Galileo confirms the heliocentric theory, proving that Copernicus was right and everyone else was stupid.
  • Newton Gets Busy

    Sir Isaac Newton publishes Principia Mathematica, in which he details gravitation and laws of motion, without which, the world would be a very different place.
  • Bernouli

    Bernouli studies the behavior of gases, and is so impressed that he puts forth Bernouli's Theorem, which has to do with the behavior of gases, as far as we can tell.
  • The Kite Incident

    Benjamin Franklin performs his famous kite experiment, demonstrating that lightning is a form of electricity, and that exposure to it causes one to spout off words of wisdom every twenty seconds.
  • The Battery

    Alessandro Volta invents the electric battery. It is not included.
  • The Periodic Table

    Mendeleev draws out the Periodic Table of Elements, and even leaves accurate blank spaces for as-yet-undiscovered elements.
  • The Rumble

    Carl Benz and Gottlieb Daimler create the internal combustion engine. This allows for such wonderful things as drive-thru fast food and traffic jams.
  • Roentgen's Good Things

    Roentgen discovers x-rays, which allow doctors to charge patients for another service. He also wins the first Nobel Prize.
  • Quantum Theory

    Max Planck puts forth the quantum theory of matter, which blows everyone's mind.
  • Radio, Radio

    Marconi sends radio waves across the ocean, which will one day allow people to get down with their bad selves worldwide.
  • e=mc^2

    Albert Einstein puts forth the theory of relativity, which is so exciting that it makes his hair stand up all the time. Everyone agrees that it is even more awsome than the quantum theory, and that it will lead to many Gary Larson cartoons.
  • Atomic Model

    Neils Bohr creates an atomic model based on Max Planck's quantum theory. It works, too.
  • Eye to the Sky

    Edward Hubble proves that the universe is expanding, which is exciting, because it backs up the Big Bang theory, despite allegations that Hubble is actually just watching Orson Welles expand.
  • Nuclear Power

    Enrico Fermi builds the first nuclear reactor. This is good, generally.
  • Nuclear War

    The first atomic bomb is dropped. This is bad, generally.
  • Computers

    The first commercial computer is introduced, allowing previously unheard-of computational power to be put to use, and revolutionizes people's ability to look at dirty pictures.
  • Space Race

    Neil Armstrong becomes the first man to walk on the moon. Soviet scientists eat their hearts out.