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5 Important Inventions from the 20th Century

Over the course of human history, there have been major inventions that have radically changed our lives. Whether they make our lives easier or allow us to do something previously thought impossible, our progress is consistently intertwined with inventions that push us further. Today we’re going to start our two-part series looking at some of the most important inventions of the 20th century. Are you an aspiring inventor looking to make your mark on the world? Glober Design can help you make your invention a reality, with services assisting you with every piece of inventing and producing a product. From patents to marketing, we’ve got you covered.

-Nuclear Power

Although nuclear power was not necessarily invented, the ability to harness it to provide energy was made a reality in the 1940s. This led to the development of the first nuclear power plant in 1954, where nuclear power was used to generate electricity for a power grid for the first time. At this point in time, scientists were all too familiar with the double-edged nature of nuclear power, after the bombs were dropped on Japan in World War II. Though many involved regret participating in The Manhattan Project, the revolutionary work they did in researching plutonium and uranium had a massive impact on our understanding of nuclear power.
Nuclear power stands as a very cost-efficient source of energy, though it’s hard to say if the potential danger it places people in is worth it. With disasters taking place at the Chernobyl, Three Mile Island, and Fukushima power plants, the damage that can take place is tragic and nearly impossible to control. However, the impact nuclear power has had on our world and the scientific discoveries that have come from it can’t be understated. While it may not be entirely benevolent, nuclear power is without a doubt one of the most important inventions in history.

-Personal Computer

While computers have been around since World War II, they were massive, expensive, and incredibly rudimentary. To many people, the idea of having a computer in their home was insanity, as these machines were as large as an entire room. Decades passed and the computer still seemed like science-fiction to most people. It wasn’t until 1976 when Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak developed the Apple 1, a personal computer that was unlike anything we had ever seen before, that it became a real possibility outside of government buildings.
From that point, owning your own computer became something that was more possible for more people with each passing year. The personal computer revolutionized how the world works in just about every way. From the mundanity of keeping track of finances to the fantastical world of art, literature, movies, and games, the impact of the personal computer continually changes with every year. If you reach into your pocket, you probably have a phone that wouldn’t exist were it not for the evolution of the personal computer. At this point, it’s hard to imagine a time where computers were not easily accessible to everyone.


At the turn of the century, our modes of transportation saw fit to keep the world incredibly separated. If you wanted to travel across the ocean, you would have to hop on a boat and endure a daunting and long journey. To get to the other side of the country, you had to rely on the train or dangerous wagon travel. That all changed in 1903, with the Wright Brothers invention of the airplane. One of the most enduring dreams of humans has been the desire to fly like the birds we see every day. Little did we know that two struggling bicycle manufacturers from Ohio would put that dream within reach that day in Kitty Hawk, NC.
With the advent of the airplane, a whole new world of possibilities opened up. Not only did it change the way we travel, it allowed for a new level of exploration previously unheard of. It revolutionized trade and the way the world imports and exports goods, further bringing countries that are oceans apart closer together.


While it was initially in development at the end of the 19th century, it wasn’t until 1908 that the automobile became the widely available mode of transportation we know it as today. Initially, it was impractical, expensive, and unreliable, with many people shunting it off as a passing fad. But when Ford released their Model T, it solved those issues by providing an affordable and reliable option to the average person. This gave people a whole new level of freedom to explore, created entirely new career paths, and changed the way the world operates on the whole.

-Assembly Line

The rise of the affordable automobile wouldn’t have been possible without the invention of the assembly line by Henry Ford. This allowed for increased efficiency when manufacturing their automobiles, allowing them to lower costs and make it more easily accessible to average people. From there, the assembly line was implemented into a wide range of factories to revolutionize the manufacturing world in the biggest way since the Industrial Revolution. Though assembly lines were used in years prior to the 20th century, they were quite basic and did not achieve the same level of success. It was the addition of mechanisms to move the parts down the line in 1913 that truly changed the game. This development was able to increase productivity while it decreased manhours, reducing what used to take 12.5 hours down to just over an hour and a half.

That brings us to the end of the first part of our series taking a look at some of the most important inventions and innovations of the 20th century. We’ll be concluding this series in the near future, so keep an eye on this blog for the follow-up in the coming weeks. For now, we hope these examples serve as motivation to get your inventing gears turning. You never know what you might think of that could entirely change the way our society operates for the better. You don’t have to go it alone in working on your invention. If you would like assistance in making your idea a reality, call Glober Design today!