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ucme's avatar

What would you say were some of the greatest achievments of the 20th century?

Asked by ucme (46855points) September 21st, 2010

Yeah I know where do you start right? If you could cherry pick any from an awe inspiring almost limitless list i’d be grateful not to say impressed. I thank you, you may begin.

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56 Answers

troubleinharlem's avatar

Airplanes! Well, anything technology related, really.
Internet, computers, automobiles, nuclear things, radio, television, air conditioning (that’s a big one), refrigeration…

CMaz's avatar

The Slurpee.

CyanoticWasp's avatar

That we managed to live through it.
Playboy magazine and 4-color printing

Ivan's avatar

The moon landing.

lloydbird's avatar

You asked me this question through it.

picante's avatar

The Internet (more innovation than invention—but hey!)

AmWiser's avatar

America elected an African American to be president.

liminal's avatar

Electron Microscope, Penicillin

BoBo1946's avatar

Ummm… Heart transplant, nuclear energy, airplane, moon landing, and internet.

jaytkay's avatar

Yeah, the moon landing and space exploration are astounding.

There were no airplanes when my grandparents were born and they lived to see men on the moon, the Viking Mars landers and the Voyagers reaching Jupiter and Saturn.

Ivan's avatar


Just to be picky, that was the 21st century.

Cruiser's avatar

Silly Putty, Pop Rocks and the Kazoo!

Hawaii_Jake's avatar

The Holocaust because it shows the absolute worst of mankind.

The founding of A.A. because it shows the absolute best of mankind, taking the dross of society and accepting it and loving it back to health.

Coloma's avatar

Computers…the web….able to link lives across the world in a single bound (ing) blur of electronic projection. lol

MeinTeil's avatar

Razor wire.

jrpowell's avatar

It doesn’t hurt when I go to the dentist. So modern dentistry.

iamthemob's avatar

The United Nations.

thekoukoureport's avatar

Refrigeration and electricity are by far the greatest inventions of the 20th century!

Aster's avatar

Krispy Kremes.

Coloma's avatar

“Special brownies with wholesome natural goodness. lol

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@Coloma Does that mean what I think it means?:)

Austinlad's avatar

Far too many great achievements to select one, but I have to agree with @Ivan… the moon landing. An utterly amazing achievement, especially when you consider the onboard computer had about the same power as a Nintendo.

And imagine, we accomplished it because President Kennedy vowed we would.

Coloma's avatar


I imagine it does. haha

Christian95's avatar

Quantum Mechanics and The Theory of relativity

Nullo's avatar

Getting out of the 20th century in one piece.

Austinlad's avatar

The semiconductor.

ucme's avatar

@Austinlad Never asked for one I asked for “some.” Still, a fine example as @Ivan said.

mowens's avatar

I am mad at everyone. I WAS BORN IN THE 20th CENTURY YOU JERKS!!!!!!

I am the greatest accomplishment of the 20th Century.

Austinlad's avatar

Pardon me all to heck, @ucme. I just heard the earth shake on its axis.

ucme's avatar

Well now that’s just fine. Just so long as I know you’re sincere @Austinlad

crazyivan's avatar


Oh crap, somebody already took my answer!

harple's avatar

@mowens & @crazyivan no offense, guys, but you were both a little late with that one…

crazyivan's avatar

@harple why, did you already say mowens?

harple's avatar

@crazyivan ah beg pardon – I misunderstood yours. I take it back!

nebule's avatar

soda stream…and pop tarts…made me warm and fuzzy inside for a while! :-)

FireMadeFlesh's avatar

Easy – the transistor.

tranquilsea's avatar

Penicillin and the Internet.

Coloma's avatar

Neutering cats.

Seriously…what was it like to be surrounded by unaltered cats all those centuries?
The horror.

josie's avatar

Discovery of quanta

crazyivan's avatar

Oh, we’re being serious. Cool. I’d have to say the assembly line (or the modern iteration thereof).

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

Feminine sanitary products. For those of you too young to know, women used rags before their invention, and would wash them out. And surely there are countries where women still do. okay, not the greatest achievement, but one that is noteworthy.

Cruiser's avatar

Saran Wrap, Velcro and Scrubbing Bubbles.

Coloma's avatar


I salute that!

Wow..yes, feminine ‘protection’.....jesus, okay, I’ve just revised my contributions.

CyanoticWasp's avatar

Raising scientists who can make any kind of meat you want.


Coloma's avatar


Blech….baaaaad meat. lol

Brian1946's avatar

Polio vaccine, voting rights for US women and minorities, and rock & roll!

FireMadeFlesh's avatar

@josie You got me there. Quanta led to the transistor, which the led to computers etc. GA!

mowens's avatar

@harple I know, I was typing it when the question first popped up, I got busy and came back to finish it. It was already typed so I submitted it anyway…. I wasnt going to let the work go to waste.

harple's avatar

@mowens absolutely! Hear hear ;-)

MeinTeil's avatar

Harnessing the power of magnetism

MeinTeil's avatar

Birth control.

MeinTeil's avatar

The roller chain.

MeinTeil's avatar

Lighter than air solids.

CyanoticWasp's avatar

Having lived without it for three hours one evening last week, I’m going to amend my vote and say “electricity”. I know that we can live without it, and did for tens of thousands of years as a species. But I hate living without it for more than an hour or two when I’m at home. “Camping” and “roughing it” are fine things to do when you’ve planned and prepared for it. But when I come home in the evening most of the things I want to do involve electricity. (And no, I’m not talking about battery-operated devices, but come to think of it, they count, too.)

nebule's avatar

female vote

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