Technology in the 1950's

  • Credit Card

    Credit Card
    Frank McNamara came up with the idea of the credit card when he went out to supper with a dinner partner.
    His partner forgot his wallet, and that gave McNamara the idea for the credit card. His idea was that you would have a card that would be accessible at all times with money on it.
  • Telvision

    Television was not invented in the 1950's, but it became very popular early in the decade. Everything that happened after that was affected by television. Space races, speeches, now almost every major event could be internationally viewed,.
  • First Video Recorder

    First Video Recorder
    In the early days, film was the only medium available for recording television programs. Charles Ginsburg led the team that developed a new machine that could run the tape at a much slower rate because the recording heads rotated at high speed. This allowed the high-frequency responsethat was needed.
  • Passenger Jets

    Passenger Jets
    in the 1950's, passenger jets entered the service. American airlines ordered the pioneering Comet, but Canadian, British and European airlines could not ignore the better operating economics of the Boeing 707. Boeing became the most successful of the early manufacturers.
  • Passenger Jets

    Passenger Jets
    in the 1950's, passenger jets entered the service. American airlines ordered the pioneering Comet, but Canadian, British and European airlines could not ignore the better operating economics of the Boeing 707. Boeing became the most successful of the early manufacturers.
  • Chevy Corevette

    Chevy Corevette
    The first generation ws introduced in the late 1953 model year and ended in 1962. Polo white convertibles were introduced in the 1953 model. It was often referred to as the "solid-axle".
  • Transistor Radio

    Transistor Radio
    The transistor radio was useful because it was pocket sized, and you could listen to music anywhere. In 1954 they became the most popular electronic communication devices in history. But in the 1970s, they were replaced by boomboxes and cassette players.
  • Black Box

    Black Box
    The "black box" was a flight recorder. It was designed to record the flight crew's conversation. The purpose was to help identify the reason if a plane crashed or caught on fire.
  • Solar Battery

    Solar Battery
    In the early 1950's R.S. Ohl discovered that sunlight striking a wafer of silicon could produce large numbers of free electrons. In 1954 three scientists created an array of several strips of silicon placed them in sunlight, captured the free electrons and turned them into electrical current. This was the first solar battery.
  • Polypropylene

    Polypropylene is a thermo plastic wire used in a variety of applications. It is in thermal under wear, ropes, packaging, and more. It is also used in insulating wire.
  • Solar Cell

    Solar Cell
    In 1954, three American researchers named Gerald Pearson, Calvin Fuller, and Daryl Chapin designed a silicon solar cell. A solar cell is any device that directly converts the energy in light into electrical energy through the sun.
  • Optic Fiber

    Optic Fiber
    In 1854, John Tyndall demonstrated to the Royal Society that light could be conducted through a curved stream of water. This proved that a light signal could be bent. In 1880, Alexander Graham Bell invented his 'Photophone', which transmitted a voice signal on a beam of light.
  • First Computer Hardisk

    First Computer Hardisk
    In 1956, the first computer hard disk was used. The drive held 5MB of data at $10,000 a megabyte. The system was as big as two refrigerators and used 50 24-inch platters.
  • Hovercraft

    The theory behind one of the most sucesseful inventions of the 20th century was the hovercraft. It was originally tested in 1955 using an empty KiteKat food tin inside a coffee tin,an industrail airblower, and a pair of kitchen scales. Sir Christopher
    Cockerell developed the first practical hovercraft designs.
  • 3-D

    3-D is a motion picture that enhances the illusion of depth perception. A regular image is recorded from two different angles, and then placed together. Then the viewer wears special goggles to provide the illusion while watching.
  • Satellite

    The satellite Sputnik was the first artificial satellite successfully placed in orbit around the Earth from the USA. This was during the space race between the US and the Soviets. Sputnik was visible from the ground at night.
  • Computer Modem

    Computer Modem
    Digital modems developed from the need to transmit data for North American air defense during the 1950s. Modems were used to communicate data over the public switched telephone network. A modem sends and recieves data between two computers.
  • First Laser

    First Laser
    The name LASER is an acronym for Light Amplification by the Stimulated Emission of Radiation. In 1917 Albert Einstein theorized about the process which makes lasers possible called "Stimulated Emission". In 1954, two scientists invented the maser, which was a similar invention but did not use a visible light.
  • Integrated Circuit

    Integrated Circuit
    Two separate inventors, unaware of each other's activities, invented almost identical integrated circuits or ICs at nearly the same time. The integrated circuit placed the previously separated transistors, resistors, capacitors and all the connecting wiring onto a single crystal. In 1961 the first commercially available integrated circuits came from the Fairchild Semiconductor Corporation.
  • First Copy Machine

    First Copy Machine
    A photocopier is a machine that makes paper copies of documents and other visual images quickly and cheaply. Most current photocopiers use a technology called xerography, a dry process using heat. Photocopying is widely used in business, education, and government.
  • Microchip

    The microchip is also known as the intefrated circuit. The invention of the integrated circuit stands historically as one of the most important innovations of mankind. Almost all modern products use chip technology.
  • First Heart Pacemaker

    First Heart Pacemaker
    John Hopps invented the first cardiac pacemaker. If a heart stopped beating due to cooling, it could be started again by artificial stimulation using mechanical or electric means. However, this was too big to be implanted into the human body. So Wilson Greatbach made a smaller one.