Given time and inspiration, what can be accomplished in 100 years?
Just over a century ago, the must-have vehicle was the initial Model T as it rolled forth on rickety spoked wheels for the first time from the Ford assembly line. The traffic signal, invented by Garrett A. Morgan, flashed for the first time 15 years later. (Most likely, although lacking tangible proof, tailgaters, gridlock, and rush hour started when the second automobile hit the streets.)
The radio tuner, allowing listeners to select different stations, transmitted its debut in 1916. Short wave tagged along three years hence. John Logie Baird switched on mechanical televisions, predecessor to modern TVs, in 1925. Frequency modulation (“FM”) first broadcast in 1933 and the earliest color TV flickered to life in 1940. The first cellular phone rang in 1979 (probably in a movie theater).
Medicine marched onward. Sir Frederick Grant Banting invented insulin (1922). Alexander Fleming devised penicillin (1928). Wilson Greatbatch brought life to the internal pacemaker in 1959, followed by Robert Jarvik’s artificial heart in 1978.
Even toys changed. Silly putty bounced and the slinky slinked on to the scene, both in 1943. Mr. Potato Head was appealing in 1952. Cabbage patch kids flew from shelves in 1983.