7 Amazing Scientists Who Changed The World
Every once in a while, a scientific genius is born whose theories and research rewrite the narrative of human history itself.
From physics to chemistry to biology and beyond, these brainiacs dedicated their lives to difficult, often hated ideologies in an attempt to better understand the world that surrounds us.
Here are seven amazing scientists who changed the world.
Leonardo Da Vinci (1452-1519)
The Renaissance man was almost annoyingly talented: a gifted illustrator, thinker, sculptor, botanist, musician, writer, anatomist, engineer and mathematician, it would take less time to list what he was bad at than skilled.
And while his illustrations currently shatter sales records in the art world, his contributions to science are arguably more formidable. From his conceptualization of the helicopter, tanks, calculators and solar panels to his tinkering with a theory of plate tectonics, Da Vinci could do it all.
Without him, who knows where we’d be in civil engineering, anatomy or optics?
Galileo Galilei (1564-1642)
Much more than a fun name to say or a sweet “Bohemian Rhapsody” reference, Galileo very well may be the father of modern science. His improvements to the telescope allowed for incredible astronomical observations that completely reformed how we view the observable universe.
From the discovery of the first objects found to orbit another planet – Jupiter’s four moons (named the Galilean moons after him) – to his championing of Copernicanism, Galileo was constantly pushing boundaries, which ultimately led to an unhappy last few years of his life at the hands of the Holy Inquisition – due to his belief that the earth revolves around the sun.
Nikola Tesla (1856-1943)
Now somewhat of a cult figure, Tesla revolutionized the field of electricity and magnetism at the beginning of the 20th century. We have him to thank for AC power systems, the remote control, computer science and a little thing called the radio. Not too bad for a man who led a difficult life.
If you have any doubt about how much of a scientific rock star Tesla is, consider this: for his 2006 film The Prestige, Christopher Nolan decided the role of Nikola Tesla should be played by David Bowie.
Charles Darwin (1809-1882)
Charles Darwin is basically a piece of legend at this point. An English biologist and naturalist, Darwin repeatedly demonstrated that all of life evolved over time from common ancestors through natural selection.
Much of contemporary scientific understanding and cultural ideology is based upon Darwin’s remarkable discoveries. It’s literally impossible to overstate Darwin’s impact that began with his landmark tome On the Origin of Species.
Albert Einstein (1879-1955)
Like Darwin, Da Vinci and Galileo, it feels almost redundant to point out the greatness of Albert Einstein. He is among history’s most famous figures, and with great reason: the Nobel laureate reformed physics with his theory of relativity.
His accolades and impact are too long to list, which is a reflection of just how important Einstein was. Let’s just say there was a lot of brain behind that famous head of hair.
Marie Curie (1867-1934)
The only Nobel Prize winner in two different categories – one in physics and the other in chemistry – Curie has seen a recent renaissance of adoration. But the impact of her studies in radioactivity can’t be understated.
She discovered two new elements for the periodic table, radium and polonium, and even coined the term “radio-active.” She was a distinguished professor in her life while overcoming inherent sexism within the scientific community.
Without Marie Curie our battle against cancer would be much more remedial than it currently is.
Alan Turing (1912-1954)
There are few scientists in history that can rival Alan Turing’s impact: from the development of the Turing test (the sci-fi staple that indicates whether artificial intelligence can truly think) to cracking the Enigma machine in WW2 (a codebreak that saved hundreds of thousands of lives across the Allied Front), Turing brought diligence and ingenuity to mathematics.
A world without Turing means a world without the contemporary computer – which means you wouldn’t be able to read this article right now.