For a long period of time, the way of life for most people were long, tedious days at work, with not much to show for, hardly any time to spend with family, and being fortunate to come home in a mildly presentable. Thanks to technology, most of these issues have been touched upon and improved. With inventions such as the steam engine, the water frame, the cotton gin, and the spinning jenny, our modern day might not have been so fortunate or plentiful. With the help of these inventions in the industrial revolution, post-revolutionary inventors and entrepreneurs were given the inspiration for their creations that led to the efficient lifestyles we live today. Although these new technologies made life a bit more bearable, there were still problems such as the lack of safety precautions and the amount of hours put into a single workday. With the help of time and new inventors, these problems were fixed, and the initial inventions were improved to better our lifestyles. Even though these primitive machines had very much noise pollution with all the screeching and grinding of their clogs, our modern lifestyle might still reflect those of the period prior to the industrial revolution without these breakthroughs in technology.
One of the many inventions that have had a significant impact on modern day would be the steam engine, perfected by James Watt. The steam engine was used in factories, mills, and mines and was also used for powering pump stations and propelling the railway locomotives and steam ships. This new way to power automobiles and to help increase production rates was touched upon and tinkered with throughout the years. The steam engine, which had a problem with noise pollution, was very primitive at the time. Many people would lose their hearing, or have trouble at work because of the extremely loud noises. This however, was not a problem for time. Throughout the years, the size of the steam engine has managed to become a fraction of the initial size, and the unbearable, screeching and grinding noises from the invention has been able to be reduced to a low hum. Nonetheless, without James Watt’s perfected steam engine, we might still be pushing trolleys and riding carriages through the streets.
Another invention of the industrial revolution that has heavily impacted us today would be the water frame, by Richard Arkwright. The water frame functions through the use of running water, from streams or rivers, to power a water wheel, which then would power a series of spinning frames. The utilization of running water was much more efficient then the spinning frames that were running off of human energy. This invention has been adapted in things you can find in your everyday household. An example of the water frame in modern day would be the filter in a fish tank. Part of the water wheel sits in the water while the other part is above it. There is a faucet-like tube that uses the water from the tank to propel the wheel, which then propels the filter to clean the water in the tank. However, unlike this quiet scaled down version of the water frame, the original invention used during the period of the industrial revolution was often made of wood, and was very dangerous to be around. Much like the steam engine was perfected throughout time, the water frame was also has been altered to fit the needs of our current lifestyle.
A third invention that revolutionized the way people worked was the cotton gin, invented by Eli Whitney. This new technology was very helpful to the lower classes and those that worked in fields. It was a device that helped to quickly and easily separates cotton fibers from their seeds. This invention saved many people from a very painful day at work due to the fact that the cotton plant had thorns and it was very easy for people to prick their fingers on the job. This influenced factories to be built to utilize all the cotton that came from the work-efficiency of the machines. Today, the cotton gin has influenced the way many agricultural matters are handled. On farms, corn, for example, are picked by a harvesters, and are hulled in machines, then are prepared to be shipped off to grocers and supermarkets. The cotton gin was once very heavy and loud, but thanks to post-industrial revolutionary inventors, creations similar, corn harvesters, have been adapted to be mobile, but still man operated.
One more of the industrial revolution’s inventions that has greatly impacted the way we live today would be the spinning jenny, by James Hargreaves. This invention in textile machinery was one of the many that came of the relatively short time period of the industrial revolution. It was a machine that was used for handling the large quantities of harvested cotton and spinning that cotton into yarn. The spinning jenny did well on decreasing the amount of labor used for making yarn from the harvested cotton. Nowadays, machines similar to the spinning jenny are used in factories that spin yarn, and in artisanal areas where people still spin yarn by had. Factories however have adapted this invention, but have managed to make it machine operated, which has increased production rate much more while still managing to keep labor minimal. With some tinkering and tweaking here and there, the original spinning jenny has made its way to the modern time as a quiet spinning machine.
Technology has impacted our modern society in ways that we can be no other than grateful for. If it wasn’t for the steam engine, perfected by James Watt, later inventors and entrepreneurs might not have had the inspiration to make the very motors that our cars run on today. This is just one simple example that shows how technology has impacted our modern day. Another example is the Water Frame by Richard Arkwright. This invention revolutionized the way people worked by utilizing water energy. This new source of energy influenced post-industrial revolutionary inventors to make use of different energy sources.
A few other examples of how technology has left its mark on our current lifestyles are the cotton gin, by Eli Whitney. This invention helped people that work the land by quickly and easily separating cotton fibers from the stems. The spinning jenny, by James Hargreaves was a revolutionary invention in the way that it efficiently spun the harvest cotton into yarn, which went perfectly with the invention of the cotton gin. Without these inventions that came of the period of the industrial revolution, we might not be as efficient, or as technology-inclined in the world as we are today.