Which country made best science/technology contribution?

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Jul 2013
10,485
San Antonio, Tx
America is rightly hailed as one of the world's great scientific nations, but in terms of sheer contribution to the sciences, it trails a fair distance behind Great Britain, and Germany, too. Great Britain's contribution is quite simply terrifying. Birthplace of the Industrial Revolution (by far the most important event of the last five-thousand years), Britain's contribution to the sciences, in particular physics, is almost rude in its profundity. At the risk of becoming loquacious, I shall list several eminent British figures who helped change the course of human history.

Isaac Newton -- a nasty, awful piece of work, but quite clearly the greatest scientific genius who ever lived. A colossus among geniuses, his Principia is simply the most important book ever written. The genius to whom other geniuses pay reverence.

James Clerk Maxwell -- underrated genius second only to Newton in terms of brainpower and overall scientific contribution to the world. His work on electrodynamics led to a great many inventions that are now indispensable to our modern world. It truly astonishes me that his name is so unfamiliar to the general public. Idolised by Einstein.

Michael Faraday -- a personal hero of mine, commonly hailed as the greatest scientific experimentalist the world has ever known. Fought against the class prejudice of Victorian England to become the pre-eminent scientist of his day, and laid the foundations for Maxwell's famous equations. If you rely on electricity, then you owe a huge debt of gratitude to Faraday.

James Watt -- invented the separate condenser, which in terms of ingenious inventions, ranks just behind the wheel. One of the most influential men to ever exist, he provided the Industrial Revolution with the raw power it needed to take over the world.

Alan Turing -- the father of computer science, his face will appear on dollar bills and pound notes in the not too distant future. Died under tragic circumstances, having been treated despicably by the British government.

Edward Jenner --the father of immunisation, famous for inoculating his gardener's young son with smallpox. It is commonly said that Jenner is responsible for having saved more lives than any other person in history.

And a few others: Charles Darwin (enough said), James Hutton (father of geology), Alexander Fleming (antibiotics), George Cayley (immensely important in aerodynamics), John Hooke (Newton's contemporary and rival, almost written out of the history books by Newton), Adam Smith (father of modern economics), Robert Boyle (founder of modern chemistry), John Dalton (founder of atomic theory) Francis Bacon (one of the great geniuses of all-time, a polymath who is credited as the creator of empiricism and the scientific method), Henry Cavendish (secretive genius with enormous contribution to the sciences), etc…etc…etc…if you want me to list more just say, as I've only just touched the tip of the iceberg.

To conclude, no other nation on Earth comes close to matching Britain in terms of scientific contribution to the world. Sorry, went off on one there.
Yes. The modern world owes its existence very much to the British.
 
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