Thought Provoking What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?  

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
33.2k votes 2.9k voters 77.2k views 138 items

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
1,134 263
Medicine is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

2
752 263
Computer is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

3
852 175
Electric Lights is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Electric Lights

4
893 95
Written Language is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Written Language

5
807 146
Agriculture is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

6
686 212
Mathmatics is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

7
604 108
Clean Water is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

8
466 182
The Printing Press is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
The Printing Press

9
599 212
Music is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

10
467 59
Tools is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Tools

11
374 129
Engine is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Engine

12
449 151
Telephone is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

13
401 100
Food Preservation is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Food Preservation

14
367 85
Toilet is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
AubriMcHughSimmons added Toilet

15
390 133
World Wide Web is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
sebbzor added

16
324 250
Philosophy is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

17
292 180
Culture is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

18
256 138
Jet Engines is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Amicus73 added

19
339 29
Wheel is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
slaft added

20
340 49
Books is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
DECA_Kerstin added Books

21
297 91
The Compass is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
The Compass

22
372 84
Antibiotics is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Antibiotics

23
214 133
Petrol Engine is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Amicus73 added Petrol Engine

24
180 77
Automobiles is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
ChloeFletcher added Automobiles

25
263 119
Clothing is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

26
197 107
Electric Locomotive is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Amicus73 added Electric Locomotive

27
269 90
The Battery is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
The Battery

28
188 110
Laws is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

29
170 111
Helicopter is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Amicus73 added

30
214 57
Radio is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
looksharp added Radio

31
285 147
Air Conditioning is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

32
251 56
Lens (Optics) is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Lens (Optics)

33
231 95
Television is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Amicus73 added Television

34
209 89
Physics is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

35
252 126
Bike is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Amicus73 added Bike

36
155 100
Diesel Engine is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Amicus73 added Diesel Engine

37
155 53
Trade is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Trade

38
162 168
Currency is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Currency

39
139 127
Tram is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Amicus73 added Tram

40
193 66
Steel is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Steel

41
217 140
Entertainment is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Entertainment

42
173 73
Recorded Music is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
looksharp added Recorded Music

43
137 125
Motorcycle is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Amicus73 added Motorcycle

44
157 107
Airbag is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Amicus73 added Airbag

45
38 27
Bike is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Bike

46
111 103
Dynamo is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Amicus73 added Dynamo

47
167 66
Electron Microscope is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Amicus73 added Electron Microscope

48
94 35
Shipping is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?

49
161 94
Rechargable Battery is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
Rechargable Battery

50
113 51
Toothbrushes is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list What Is Mankind's Greatest Invention?
ChloeFletcher added Toothbrushes