Men had known something about
electricity for many centuries. Why did they not find some useful
purpose for it sooner?
until little more than a century ago, electricity was a stranger. No
one was really acquainted with it. There was little knowledge of those
rules or laws which electricity obeys.
knowledge came from experiments. An experiment is an exploring trip, an
adventure in the land of science. Thousands of men made countless
experiments - went exploring in unknown electrical territory looking
for new knowledge. They brought back with them telegraph instruments,
telephones, x-ray tubes, electric eyes, and a host of other wonders.
these scientific adventurers won fame, some fortunes; others only the
pleasure of discovery. Many obscure men, whose names we have never
heard, discovered and are still finding scientific nuggets by
experimenting in electricity's goldfields. Others, and from a long list
we might mention Volta, Franklin, Faraday, Ampere, Morse, Bell, Edison,
Kelvin, and Tesla, were electrical adventurers whose experiments made
them world famous.
What is electricity?
amazing fact is that not one of these men, not even Faraday or Edison,
ever saw or felt or heard the wonderful force which helped them master.
of them ever knew what it was.
can we hope to see or feel or hear electricity itself. It is invisible.
It is somewhat like the wind. It is a force - a form of energy. We can
only see the effects of the wind - those things the wind does. We can
hear leaves rustle, feel pressure against our faces, see trees sway,
smoke swirl and waves and ripples sweep over the water, yet we will be
only hearing, feeling and seeing the effects of the wind and not
hearing, feeling, or seeing the wind itself.
journey won't end with this book, as we are constantly discovering new
inventions that will someday even take us to the stars.
Timeline of Electricity
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