culture What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?  

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List Rules Most innovative and groundbreaking inventions and discoveries in history

What is mankind's greatest invention? This list includes some of the most innovative, ground breaking inventions ever. Each invention listed here in some way changed history, altering the way we live our lives. Some inventions, like medicine, help to extend our lives and others, like the wheel, changed the way we get around, transport goods and just generally do anything. Which of mankind's inventions do you believe is the most important? Time to vote, and be sure to rerank this list in any order you like.

The most famous inventors in history have made contributions that stand the test of time. From electricity to fire to telephones, mankind's greatest inventions and discoveries help define who we are today. Can any of you argue that the computer is not one of the most notable inventions ever? Certainly not, given that the computer is how many of you are reading this list right now. Of course, everyone at one time or another has an idea for a new invention.

Sometimes inventors with the best of intentions wind up foiled by their own creations. And, in case you think all great inventions were created by men, think again: This list of history's most under-appreciated female inventors will set you straight.
list ordered by

1
708 168
Medicine is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

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2
441 154
Computer is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

3
531 105
Electric Lights is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Electric Lights

4
533 55
Written Language is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Written Language

5
568 111
Agriculture is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

6
485 137
Mathmatics is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

7
369 66
Clean Water is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

8
313 101
The Printing Press is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
The Printing Press

9
410 136
Music is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

10
262 38
Tools is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Tools

11
244 76
Engine is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Engine

12
308 107
Telephone is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

13
255 61
Food Preservation is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Food Preservation

14
226 76
World Wide Web is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
sebbzor added World Wide Web

15
235 175
Philosophy is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

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16
201 117
Culture is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

17
201 48
Toilet is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
AubriMcHughSimmons added Toilet

18
177 84
Jet Engines is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Amicus73 added Jet Engines

19
173 25
Books is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
DECA_Kerstin added Books

20
143 10
Wheel is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
slaft added Wheel

21
188 85
Bike is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Amicus73 added Bike

22
191 60
The Compass is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
The Compass

23
242 58
Antibiotics is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Antibiotics

24
158 78
Petrol Engine is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Amicus73 added Petrol Engine

25
186 51
The Battery is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
The Battery

26
141 61
Electric Locomotive is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Amicus73 added Electric Locomotive

27
96 37
Automobiles is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
ChloeFletcher added Automobiles

28
169 81
Clothing is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

29
144 30
Radio is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
looksharp added Radio

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30
121 72
Helicopter is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Amicus73 added Helicopter

31
108 60
Laws is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

32
159 57
Television is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Amicus73 added Television

33
116 63
Diesel Engine is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Amicus73 added Diesel Engine

34
208 116
Air Conditioning is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

35
132 55
Physics is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

36
162 40
Lens (Optics) is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Lens (Optics)

37
103 83
Tram is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Amicus73 added Tram

38
84 32
Trade is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Trade

39
101 120
Currency is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Currency

40
83 64
Dynamo is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Amicus73 added Dynamo

41
129 49
Steel is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Steel

42
113 72
Airbag is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Amicus73 added Airbag

43
105 76
Motorcycle is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Amicus73 added Motorcycle

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44
114 43
Electron Microscope is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Amicus73 added Electron Microscope

45
111 42
Recorded Music is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
looksharp added Recorded Music

46
161 114
Entertainment is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Entertainment

47
52 15
Shipping is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

48
90 47
Transistors is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Transistors

49
109 75
Rechargable Battery is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Rechargable Battery

50
94 48
The Telegraph is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
The Telegraph