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10 Cops Who Were Convicted For Killing In The Line Of Duty

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While killer cops are unfortunately nothing new in modern society, these police officers were not involved in malice, criminal activity, or corruption. Instead, they killed someone in the line of duty and were charged with crimes stemming from the death.

When a death is caused by a police officer, the officer responsible is rarely charged with a crime. Even when they are charged, they are unlikely to be convicted, especially of something like second-degree murder. One reason is that a jury of 12 people needs to agree, beyond reasonable doubt, that the officer used excessive force or did something illegal that caused the death. Also, everyone knows that police work can be fast-paced and highly stressful; people tend to give officers the benefit of the doubt when it comes to those life-and-death moments. Therefore, it is very difficult to convict police officers for killing someone in the line of duty.

10 Jason Blackwelder

Jason Blackwelder

Photo credit: Conroe Police Department via Houston Chronicle

On July 31, 2013, off-duty police officer Jason Blackwelder was going with his wife to Walmart to pick up some school supplies in Conroe, Texas. Once he was there, Blackwelder saw 19-year-old Russell Rios running from the Walmart while being chased by security guards.

Blackwelder joined in the chase and ended up alone with Rios in a forested area. Blackwelder, who was armed with a gun that wasn’t in a holster but in the waist of his pants, claimed that Rios got him in a choke hold and he feared for his life. So Blackwelder fired his gun, and it killed Rios. However, forensic evidence didn’t back up Blackwelder’s story. Rios had a trail of gunpowder going up the middle of his back, and he had been shot in the back of the head.

In June 2014, Blackwelder was charged with killing Rios, who had stolen two iPod cases. Blackwelder was convicted of second-degree manslaughter by a jury, was given five years probation, and lost his job on the police force. Rios’s family is currently in the process of suing Blackwelder and the Conroe Police Department.

9 Randy Trent Harrison

Randy Trent Harrison

Photo credit: Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Department via Huffington Post

Del City, Oklahoma, police Captain Randy Trent Harrison had been investigating drug dealing around Del City High School. One young man on his radar was 18-year-old Dane Scott Jr.; they had run-ins on at least three different occasions. On March 14, 2012, Harrison saw Scott selling marijuana around the high school from a car. Scott sped off and Harrison and another officer followed in their car, leading to a high-speed chase that ended in an accident. Scott fled the scene of the accident, but Harrison tackled him and took a gun away from him. Scott got away again and started running. Scott was wearing baggy pants, and he kept pulling at them to make sure he didn’t trip on them while running. Harrison claims that he thought that Scott had another weapon and was reaching for it. Despite the presence of bystanders and another officer who could have possibly been hurt, he opened fire. The last of Harrison’s four shots struck Scott’s lung and aorta, killing him.

In November 2013, Harrison went to trial, charged with first-degree manslaughter. Prosecutors said that Harrison had deliberately gone after Scott in a personal vendetta. The other officer who was at the scene said that he didn’t feel that Scott was a danger. In fact, he had shot Scott with a Taser at approximately the same time Harrison had shot him. Other witnesses said that Scott had his hands up when he was shot. A jury found Harrison guilty and he was sentenced to four years in prison.

8 Bryan Conroy

Chasing
On March 22, 2003, police raided a warehouse that housed a CD and DVD piracy ring in Manhattan. NYPD officer Bryan Conroy was undercover during the raid and was dressed in a postal worker uniform. While Conroy was guarding a cart full of pirated CDs, 43-year-old art trader Ousmane Zongo, who was working on African artifacts in the warehouse, turned on the lights. Zongo, who didn’t speak much English, was afraid when Conroy pulled a gun, so he ran, and Conroy gave chase. Conroy had Zongo trapped in a dead end corridor and fired five shots, hitting Zongo four times, including two shots to the back.

Zongo wasn’t armed, and he was not involved with the piracy ring, which led to Conroy being charged with second-degree manslaughter. He was accused of not following procedure. For example, Conroy should have showed Zongo his badge instead of pointing his gun at him. A jury was deadlocked at 10-2 in his first trial, and a judge found him guilty of criminally negligent homicide at his second trial.

Conroy was given five years of probation and 500 hours of community service, and he was fired from the NYPD. Zongo’s family settled with the NYPD for $3 million.

7 Michael Ferguson

Jail Bars
On October 3, 1999, in Pincher Creek, Alberta, 26-year-old Darren Varley was arrested for being drunk in public. Royal Canadian Mounted Police officer Michael Ferguson took him into a holding cell, where a scuffle ensued. Ferguson claims that Varley lifted his bulletproof vest over his face so he couldn’t see, and then Varley went for his gun. Ferguson claimed that, in self-defense, he shot Varley twice, once in the stomach and once in the head.

The shooting in the cell led to Ferguson being charged with second-degree murder. The prosecutors argued that the first shot to the stomach was self-defense, but the second shot to the head was unnecessary. Also, there was no evidence that Varley went for the gun. Notably, Varley’s fingerprints weren’t found on the weapon.

In his first two trials for second-degree murder, the jury was deadlocked. At his third trial in 2006, the jury found him guilty of manslaughter, and Ferguson was given a four-year sentence. However, he only spent two months in prison before being released on probation. After his third trial, Ferguson agreed he shouldn’t have fired the second shot.

6 Daniel Harmon-Wright

Dainel Harmon-Wright

Photo credit: Culpeper Police Department via Huffington Post

Daniel Harmon-Wright was hired by the Culpeper, Virginia, police department despite objections from superiors in the force. Apparently Harmon-Wright had problems with alcohol, and he had a poor attitude. While on the force, he had been disciplined for forcing his way into someone’s home and for brandishing a weapon, all without cause or a warrant.

On February 9, 2012, Harmon-Wright was responding to a call about a suspicious person sitting in a Jeep Wrangler in a school parking lot. Harmon-Wright found 54-year-old Patricia Ann Cook in the Jeep and started questioning her. According to Harmon-Wright, Cook rolled up the window with his arm still in it. His arm got stuck, and Cook started to drive away, dragging him along with it. He said that she was a danger to the public, and he started firing shots at her.

However, witnesses to the shooting that testified in court said that Harmon-Wright’s version wasn’t accurate. They said that his arm never got stuck and that one hand was on his gun while the other was on the door handle. He told Cook to stop rolling up the window or he’d shoot her. When she didn’t comply with his order, he shot at her twice so she sped off and he fired five more shots. She was struck by two of the bullets as she was driving away.

In May 2013, Harmon-Wright was convicted of voluntary manslaughter. He was looking at 25 years for the conviction, but he was ultimately sentenced to three years in prison.

5 Scott Smith

Handcuffed
On December 28, 1998, 19-year-old Franklyn Reid was traveling through New Milford, Connecticut. The police were on the lookout for him because he was wanted for violation of his probation and harassment. When he saw some police officers, he ditched his car and took off running. A short time later, Officer Scott Smith and a partner spotted him. Reid tried to run again, so Smith chased him down and pinned him.

Smith claimed that Reid was on his knees and was giving him a menacing look. Reid apparently resisted when Smith tried to handcuff him, and he thought that Reid was going for a weapon. However, many witnesses to the incident said that Smith had Reid pinned to the ground with his foot on his back and his gun pressed against his spine. While the accounts differ leading up to the shooting, what is known is that Smith shot Reid once through the back, and he died as a result. A knife was found in Reid’s coat pocket, but he wasn’t wearing the jacket when he was shot; it was found a short distance away.

Smith was charged with murder and was found guilty of first-degree manslaughter. That conviction was overturned, and he pleaded guilty to criminally negligent homicide, which was a misdemeanor, meaning he didn’t have to do any jail time. Reid’s family settled a lawsuit with the police department for $1.7 million.

On May 19, 2013, Smith committed suicide via carbon monoxide poisoning. Reid’s family said they didn’t feel any guilt about the suicide, and they wondered why it took him so long to kill himself.

4 Joseph Mantelli

Police Chase
In the early morning of February 14, 1998, officer Joseph Mantelli and Sergeant Steve Marquez were sitting in a marked police car in Las Vegas, New Mexico. They spotted a white Toyota truck that Marquez had chased earlier in the day for going the wrong way on a one-way street. The truck was able to get away because Marquez’s car became disabled. The officers turned on their police lights and followed the truck. The driver of the white truck sped up and ran a number of stop signs in an attempt to evade them.

A short distance later, the driver of the truck, 18-year-old Abelino Montoya, came to a dead end and slammed on his brakes to make sure the truck didn’t crash into a brick wall. He also started to back up in order to turn down a road and continue his evasion. This is where the versions of the story start to differ. According to Mantelli and Marquez, they were rammed twice, and Mantelli said he feared for his life. He fired twice, both shots striking Montoya. The passenger in the truck said that Montoya was only trying to escape, and the truck only hit their car once when they were reversing to get away. They didn’t intentionally ram the police car. After that collision, Mantelli got out of the car with his gun drawn and broke the driver’s side window with two strikes from the butt of his gun. The truck took off, and Mantelli fired two deadly shots.

The physical evidence and the testimony of Mantelli’s roommate (who said that Mantelli had claimed that he shot at the truck so it wouldn’t get away) backed up the passenger’s story. In 1999, Mantelli was convicted of voluntary manslaughter and was given 12.5 years in prison. Sergeant Marquez testified at the trial and had the charges against him dropped because of an immunity deal he had made with the district attorney.

3 Damien Ralph

Taser
It was the afternoon of St. Patrick’s Day 2012 in Sydney, Australia, and 21-year-old Roberto Laudisio Curti, who was from Brazil, was doing LSD with two friends. Curti, under the influence of the drugs, removed some of his clothes. He then jumped over the counter of a convenience store and stole some biscuits. Someone dialed 0–0–0 (Australia’s emergency number), and the operator, quite incorrectly, told officers that it had been an armed robbery. The report of a half-naked armed robber running around had officers combing the area, and around a dozen police officers chased him, but Curti managed to elude capture twice.

Finally, he was brought down with a Taser, and he was Tasered 13 more times, including seven times in 51 seconds and once while he was handcuffed. One officer, Damien Ralph, used three bottles of pepper spray on Curti. Eight minutes after the last Taser shock, they discovered that Curti no longer had a pulse.

It was unclear what exactly killed Curti, but the coroner’s report said that it was clear that the police had been reckless and used extreme force. Four officers who were at the scene were charged with assault in the death of the 21-year-old. The three police officers that used the Tasers were acquitted, but the police officer that used the pepper spray, Damien Ralph, was found guilty of assault. However, since Ralph had suffered psychologically from the death, the judge agreed not to give him a criminal conviction, meaning he won’t spend any time in prison.

2 Johannes Mehserle


In the early hours of New Year’s Day 2009, Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) police responded to a call about a fight on a train heading to the Fruitvale Station in Oakland, California. When they arrived, they pulled 22-year-old Oscar Grant III and his friends off the train.

Leading up to the shooting, which was filmed by a number of people, Grant appeared to be complying with the officers’ requests. He was sitting up against a wall with his hands in the air, and then two officers forced him to lie on his stomach. When he was forced to lie down, Grant started struggling as BART officer Johannes Mehserle and another officer tried to hold him down. Then Mehserle rose up, pulled out his gun, and shot Grant point-blank in the back with his pistol. Grant died the next morning in the hospital.

In court, Mehserle said that it was an accident; he thought that Grant was going for a weapon (he was unarmed), and he meant to grab his Taser but grabbed his gun by accident. In November 2010, Mehserle was convicted of involuntary manslaughter and was looking at a maximum sentence of 14 years. Instead, he was given a two-year sentence. The sentencing led to riots and 150 people were arrested. In the end, Mehserle only did 11 months. Grant’s mother reached a $2.8 million settlement with BART.

Grant’s tragic death was adapted into the award-winning film Fruitvale Station in 2013.

1 James Bonard Fowler

Civil Rights Movement

Photo via Wikipedia

One of the most significant murders of the Civil Rights Movement was that of 26-year-old Jimmie Lee Jackson, who was killed while marching in a civil rights protest in Marion, Alabama, on February 18, 1965. Even though it was a peaceful protest and Jackson was unarmed, Alabama State Troopers beat him, and State Trooper James Bonard Fowler shot him. Jackson died eight days later in the hospital. His death was incredibly influential in motivating the marches from Selma to Montgomery that happened in March 1965. These protests also led to violence, but helped tremendously in the civil rights movement, and in August 1965, the Voting Rights Act was passed, which was a huge landmark in the Civil Rights Movement.

However, the killing of Jackson remained unsolved. Two grand juries looked at the murder in the 1960s but didn’t pursue any charges. In 2004, Fowler was talking to a reporter, and he said that he shot Jackson but claimed it was in self-defense. This led to investigators reopening the case, and in November 2010, 45 years after the killing, Fowler, who was then 77, confessed to shooting Jackson in 1965; he said he was sorry for doing it. He pleaded guilty to misdemeanor manslaughter and was given six months of probation.

Meet Australias New Firefighting Robot That Is Better Than Any Human Firefighter

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We are thrilled to see technology being incorporated like this and would like to know what you think of it. Do let us know in the comments below.

North Korea Just Successfully Tested A Hydrogen Bomb

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The UN Security Council is going to conduct an emergency meeting today to talk about the latest nuclear test from North Korea and chances are that this meeting would be a closed meeting. It would seem that North Korea is moving closer to building a warhead that is small enough to be mounted on a missile and capable of making its way to mainland Americas shores.

10 Ways Technology Rewires Our Brains

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We all use technology every day, but we rarely stop to think about how it affects our brains. We wouldn’t have gotten where we are if we weren’t built to adapt, though. As civilization advances at an ever-quickening pace, these adaptations take less and less time. For better or worse, technology does change us.

10Phonographs Changed Our Idea Of Ideal Song Length

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Most modern songs are approximately four minutes long. In fact, most people tune out or quickly get bored if subjected to a song that is much longer. It’s easy to blame the short attention spans of the Internet age for this phenomenon, but it actually goes back to the 19th century, when Thomas Edison invented his first phonograph. Early recording devices could only hold about four minutes’ worth of music, so all songs had to fit within that constraint.

Another side effect of the storage limitations of phonograph recording was the destruction of classical music as a popular art form. These longer pieces were incompatible with the new medium, so they started to fall out of fashion. As shorter song lengths became the norm, many people expressed boredom with anything longer, resulting in a much smaller audience for the classical genre.

9Listening To Radio Messes With Our Critical Thinking

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Just like any new medium, radio was criticized, praised, and studied every way possible for strengths and flaws that could be exploited. When psychologists studied the effects of radio, they found something that made advertisers of the day fall to their knees and praise Satan: It makes us way more suggestible.

The research demonstrated that when people hear a disembodied voice, they assign it far more credibility than a voice with a body attached. That’s because a disembodied voice is presumed to have no agenda or other corporeal flaws. The removal of so much information that needs to be processed means that the message is not analyzed nearly as critically as a message that is written or told to someone in person. Listening to the radio was also shown to lower cognitive abilities in general for the duration of the activity.

8Old Televisions Made People Dream In Black And White

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Many people think television has made us dumber, and while scientists are continuously studying that possible effect, other researchers have found something far more fascinating. A few years ago, a psychologist from Dundee University named Eva Muryzn looked at old data from dream studies and compared them to some of her own. She found that the advent of television had caused people to dream in black and white for a brief period of time. As television transitioned to color, more color was introduced back into our dreams until they were full Technicolor productions once again.

Modern subjects over the age of 55, who watched television exclusively in black and white in their youth, still dreamed in black and white approximately 25 percent of the time. That’s because children’s brains are far more impressionable than those of adults. If you watched black and white television as a child, those neural connections became cemented in a way that’s very difficult to change as you age.

7Constant Mobile Phone Usage Makes Us Depressed

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Like any new technology, mobile phones were once heralded as the coming of end times. Rumors of a link between cell phone use and brain cancer that sprang up when they were first introduced persist to this day. Although that’s clearly nonsense, cell phones may be changing us in detrimental ways.

In a 2011 study, the mental health status of mobile phone users was assessed using written questionnaires, which participants were asked to complete again one year later. What the researchers found was alarming: increased risks of depression and sleep disturbances were associated with high rates of mobile phone usage.

The researchers believe that constantly availability is the biggest factor that causes problems for users. The possibility of being contacted at any time or woken in the night increased the stress of the high-usage participants, making them more likely to report mental health issues. Researchers suggested avoiding this problem by limiting when people have access to you on mobile devices.

6The Internet Is Changing The Way We Read

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Depending on whom you ask, the Internet is either the end of everything as we know it or the greatest invention in history, but its effects on our thinking and behavior are only just beginning. It’s even changing the way we read.

For thousands of years, we have been reading in a mostly linear fashion, and large amounts of information were presented in novel form. Now, we’re more focused on scanning for keywords, following links, and amassing small amounts of information while we hop across different pages. Many Internet users rarely stay on a page longer than a few seconds before they click over to somewhere else.

According to Maryanne Wolf, a neuroscientist who has studied the effects of the Internet on how we read, our only hope for preserving the old ways is to teach children both methods of reading, if we agree that preserving the old ways is even desirable.

5Social Media Increases Our Self-Esteem

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Facebook and other social media platforms probably have lower approval ratings than most world dictators. However, despite all the bad press it gets, it turns out Facebook can be useful for something besides arguing politics with people you barely know and telling your friends what you ate for lunch today.

Two researchers at Indiana University studied the effects of Facebook on self-esteem and found something surprising. By “selective self-reporting,” which means using social media to create an image of your ideal self, participants actually experienced increased feelings of self-esteem.

According to the researchers, “mirror” images of yourself usually decrease self-esteem, but the unique nature of social networking allows users to alter that image to better suit them. These findings may also suggest that one of the major keys to self-esteem is choosing to be happy with yourself regardless of your current situation.

4Cultivation Theory

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Despite the seeming absurdity of some of the more alarmist claims, television does affect the way we think. We’re not as good at differentiating between fantasy and reality as we think we are. As we watch television, we are presented with images of the world that don’t reflect reality: more drugs, more violence, more poverty, and more wealth. As you watch a lot, you may start to integrate these images with your actual worldview.

This is called “cultivation theory,” and it’s supported by numerous studies. It can be dangerous because it can influence you to form opinions and biases based on a distorted view of the world. The methods of the studies that led to the theory’s conclusion have been criticized, but skeptical researchers seeking to replicate the studies have returned the same results.

3Digital Cameras Have Changed How We Attend Events

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In the past, if you wanted to take a photo, you had to load your (large) camera with a roll of film that could only capture about 20 images. Developing photos required a dark room and a lot of skill, and if you didn’t carefully set up the shots, all that film and hard work might go to waste. Keeping an extra roll of film on hand for possible mistakes at an important family event was a must.

User-friendly digital cameras that can store thousands of photos have relieved much of that burden. Now, you can take as many photos as you like, knowing that you can delete the bad ones without much effort. As a result, many people spend more time at concerts, parties, and other events taking and uploading pictures than they spend participating in the event.

Steve Coburn, a doctoral student at Sussex University who has studied the phenomenon, explained that concertgoers prioritize the desire to show everyone that “they were there” and beat the traditional media to the punch. It may seem absurd to place so much importance upon proving attendance at an event involving possibly thousands of people, but it’s the same idea behind the Facebook mirror image. The event becomes a form of self-actualization, and the pictures are uploaded to social media to nurture the positive mirror-image self.

2The ‘Walkman Effect’ And Interpersonal Communication

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Before the iPod, the Walkman revolutionized the field of personal music players. The problem is that wearing headphones effectively shuts out everything—and everyone—around the listener. One of the designers felt the effects personally during early testing, when his wife told him that she felt left out. As a result, features like extra headphone jacks and the ability to turn down the noise when someone talks to you were introduced to reduce interpersonal isolation.

The device became extremely popular, but features didn’t do much to mitigate the social effects of the Walkman. However, the ability to control our environment can have interesting effects. It has been observed that people are sometimes more willing to discuss private matters in front of those wearing headphones, even if they might not currently be playing anything, because it gives them a sense of privacy.

1Playing The Bad Guy In Video Games Makes Us Feel Guilty

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The effects of violent video games on players’ behavior remains unclear. However, one study has shown that playing video games that include violent scenarios, among other immoral actions, can have a surprising and even beneficial effect. People who take part in immoral actions in video games later experience feelings of guilt about those actions.

In other words, even though we know it is a game, our brains still interpret those actions as real. We actually become more likely to toe the moral line after committing immoral acts against pixelated people and objects. Guilt is a strong motivational force for good, the researchers explained, and the guilt felt while playing video games can carry over into real life in the same way.

Heres The Difference Between A Hydrogen Bomb And An Atomic Bomb

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For all of the humanitys sake, lets hope no one is able to make and test out an actual H-bomb.The Difference Between A Hydrogen And Atomic Bomb 3

10 Earliest Versions Of Everyday Technologies

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Some of the earliest prototypes of common technologies bear about as much resemblance to their modern predecessors as Bell’s first working model does to your iPhone. Technology has marched on so much that we forget the first steps were sometimes a bit rocky.

10 Plasma Display

Plasma

In the 1960s, some physics professors led by Don Bitzer took the first steps down the road that would lead to the invention of the modern plasma display. He and his colleagues were looking to reduce the flickering inherent to standard cathode-ray tube displays, and their answer was to use three thin layers of glass, with the middle layer perforated with tiny holes filled with gas. The outer layers were lined metallic wires (so thin as to be invisible) that, when electrified, excited the gas. This was a completely new way to display images, which overcame the flickering by eliminating the need to refresh the image.

9 Touchscreen

Touch SCreen

The first touchscreen was implemented at Switzerland’s CERN laboratories. Though a device that created buttons on a touch-responsive display already existed, it was unwieldy and required an awkwardly large frame. The solution proposed by CERN member Bent Stumpe was to etch a set of electric capacitors into a film of copper, which was then joined with the glass screen. A touch would increase the capacity, sending a signal to the computer.

The screens were developed for use in the central control of CERN’s SPS division, and they remained in use at the facility for over 20 years. Compare that to your smartphone, which is lucky to get through the unboxing process without voiding the warranty.

8 Microphone

Emile

Although the credit for invention of the device was awarded to Thomas Edison by a federal court, the patents for the carbon transmitter or carbon-button microphone were filed nearly simultaneously by Emile Berliner, who often gets equal if not greater credit. In addition, Berliner’s design was much more robust—so much so that Alexander Graham Bell bought his patent for the contemporary equivalent of about $1,000,000 so that he could use the design in his early telephones.

7 Smartphone

simon the first smartphone

The world’s first smartphone hit the market on August 16, 1994. Its name was Simon. It was produced by IBM, and as smartphones go, it certainly contained most of the features we’re used to: email, predictive typing, even a rudimentary version of “apps” by way of plugging in a memory card to get more features. It also weighed over a pound, was the size of an actual brick, and cost almost $1,000.

Even though only 50,000 devices were sold, and even though it predates the existence of web browsers, Simon has still managed to influence the industry in a huge way: Today, smartphone manufacturers must still pay royalties to IBM and BellSouth, who hold many Simon-related patents on standard smartphone features like highlighting text on a touchscreen and remote activation.

6 Power Tool

Thing

German tool company Fein is a monolith in the industry, having been in existence since the mid-1800s. Today, they can supply practically anything classified as a tool. When it comes to power tools, Fein could certainly make a convincing argument that nobody does them better, since Fein did them first.

The very first electric power tool was created in 1895. Within eight years, significant improvements had been made to the already-groundbreaking equipment (aluminum components and multiple speeds). In 1908, Fein converted its factory to focus solely on the production of power tools. It’s a strategy that has served the company very well: Over the first couple decades of the 20th century they would produce the first-ever jackhammers and jigsaws, and in the ’60s, they invented an oscillating plaster saw that would lead to an entirely new class of oscillating power tools.

5 Sewing Machine

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The sewing machine is an invention that was chased by many, many people through the 1700s and early 1800s. Many inventors pitched in ideas, and some created prototypes that turned out to be impractical.

The first working machine was put forth by Elias Howe, who was awarded a patent for a machine on September 10, 1846. He was having a surprisingly hard time gathering any interest in America (perhaps because of all the decades of false starts), so he tried his luck in England, where he wasn’t faring much better at the time his wife died. During the time Howe was traveling back to America and dealing with her death, however, sewing machines took off in popularity. Howe was able to successfully defend his patent in court—his biggest victories were against Walter Hunt and Isaac Singer, which is a name you may know as being associated with sewing machines to this day. The resulting settlements and royalties made Howe extremely rich and his company very successful.

4 Parachute

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Oddly enough, the parachute predates the airplane by over 100 years: The first successful parachute jump from altitude took place on October 22, 1797 in Paris, France. It was performed by the parachute’s inventor, André-Jacques Garnerin, from a hydrogen balloon 975 meters (3,200 ft) above the ground—and it didn’t exactly go as planned.

The prototype didn’t include a crucial feature (an air vent in the top) so it spun wildly en route to the ground. But the canopy sufficiently slowed his descent, and Garnerin was unharmed upon landing. Subsequent successful exhibition jumps were made all over Europe, including one from 2,400 meters (8,000 ft) in England.

3 Bulletproof Vest

First Bullet Proof Vest

The inventor of the bulletproof vest, Casimir Zeglen, was so confident in his invention that, like parachute inventor Garnerin before him, he submitted his own body to its initial test on July 10, 1897. Zeglen was a priest who first conceived his invention after the 1893 assassination of Chicago mayor Carter Harrison. He had previously experimented with different, more rigid materials, but eventually discovered a way to weave threads of silk together into a dense, multi-layered cloth that would not allow arms fire to penetrate it.

Even though guns at that time were not nearly as large and powerful as modern firearms, Brother Zeglen’s initial models seemed to be incredibly robust. According to the newspaper article published at the time: “Lieutenant Sarnecki, of the Austrian army, loaded a thirty-two caliber revolver, took his position ten paces (seven meters) from the target—and fired. The bullet was repelled and everyone ran toward the inventor, who was not only smiling but overjoyed because the only feeling he experienced was that of being prodded with a stick.”

2 Personal Computer

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That thing may not much look like anything we think of as a PC, but the Altair 8800 is indeed the first computer ever made available to the general public. It was sold in the pages of Popular Electronica magazine for $400 as a kit to be assembled by the customer. They expected a few hundred orders at the most, but ended up swamped with a couple thousand within the first few months.

Up until that time, such magazines had only published schematics of computer designs for hobbyists. The only way to obtain a computer as a consumer was to follow a long shopping list (the contents of which weren’t exactly available at every corner grocery store), read the schematics, and build the machine. At least with the Altair, the parts were included—though you still had to put the thing together.

1 Wireless Tower

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Finally, we have Nikola Tesla. While he did not invent alternating current (AC), he did refine it, endlessly championing it over direct current (DC), much to the chagrin of his nemesis, Thomas Edison (for whom he worked for several years, and upon whose designs he greatly improved). His contributions to the development of electrical power supply cannot be overstated, but his most ambitious project—had it been realized—would have put to shame not only those fantastic contributions, but those of pretty much every other inventor to ever exist.

Wardenclyffe Tower, shown above, was built in 1901, and it was meant to be exactly what it looks like: the world’s first wireless transmission tower. The long-term plan was to build a global network of these towers (just like the one that exists today) to transmit information around the globe. The tower stood almost 60 meters (200 ft) high and reached 36 meters (120 ft) underground. Due to financial and tax troubles (and the fact that Tesla, while a genius, was probably kind of insane), the project was never finished, and the tower was demolished in 1917.

But had he somehow been allowed to see the project through to completion, it would not just have beaten our current global wireless network to existence by decades and decades. Tesla intended for this network to transmit not just wireless electric signals, but also wireless electric power, to the whole world.

Mike Floorwalker

Mike Floorwalker”s actual name is Jason, and he lives in the Boulder, Colorado area with his wife Stacey. He enjoys loud rock music, cooking and making lists.

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Polish Scientists Invent Bulletproof Liquid That Is Better Than Kevlar

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In impact handling, liquid has a considerable number of advantages over the solid counterpart. A liquid by definition is a state of matter in which continuous shear is possible, and this makes the instantaneous pressure absorbing capacity of the liquid much more than the solid matter. So naturally, bullet proof vests containing liquid core will have better functionality than the solid ones. A Polish engineering institute Moratex Institute of Security Technology has recently unveiled such a liquid that can be used for this purpose.

The main problem associated with the liquid use in bullet proof vests is that since the fluid film can not be thicker than a few inches at the most, it cannot withstand the impact if it remains in the fluid form once the force is applied. So, the Polish engineers have come up with a liquid that hardens upon impact thus incorporating desired properties of both liquid and solid.

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The fluid is a non-Newtonian fluid as it hardens with shear-force increase. Such is its remarkable properties that Moratex claims that it can withstand bullets approaching the supersonic speed (up to 450 meters per second). In a normal kevlar, this is not possible since the high speed would induce a large deflection dangerous enough to break sternum, ribs and other bones in proximity to the kevlar itself.

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In a normal kevlar, this is not possible since the high speed would induce a large deflection dangerous enough to break sternum, ribs and other bones in proximity to the kevlar itself. Moratex claims that the use of fluid fully eliminates such danger.

The fluid hardens according to the force exerted on it. Larger the impact, harder the fluid will become. If the impact is a bullet, it will immediately harden and save the user. Moratex claims that the fluid-based kevlar will be ordered by security agencies and law enforcement departments in the near future.

This Is Worlds First Fully Robotic Hard Metal Band And Is Looking For A Vocalist

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The campaign on Kickstarter will run till 5th December with the early perks going out to backers in January 2016 and the albums copy in the middle of next year. Check the band out below and let us know what you think of this amazing robotic band.

10 Amazing Underground Cities

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Everyone has heard tales of people living in abandoned mines, caves, or subway tunnels. Or maybe you’ve read the book The Time Machine and recall the Morlocks, who lived beneath the earth. What a lot of people don’t realize, is that subterranean cities have not only existed . . . in many cases they have thrived.

10
Beijing Underground

Beginning in 1969 and continuing through the next decade, Mao Zedong ordered the construction of an emergency shelter for the socialist government. It was located beneath Beijing—stretching 30 kilometers. The giant city was built during the Sino-Soviet border war for the main purpose of military defense.

Within the city were stores, restaurants, schools, theaters, barbershops, and even a roller skating rink. The underground city also featured over 1,000 air raid shelters, and it was built to house up to forty percent of the Beijing’s population in the event of an attack.

Amazingly, there are rumors that every home had a secret trapdoor to allow the citizens to quickly retreat to the great underground complex. In 2000, the giant city was officially opened up as a sort of tourist attraction, and some of the shelters are actually used as youth hostels.

9
Setenil de las Bodegas, Spain

Unlike most of the cities on this list, Setenil de las Bodegas continues to thrive and is home to more than 3,000 people. The houses are built directly into the stone walls—not entirely underground—in the mountains of this Spanish town.

Much of the town is built out in the open, and it remains a fascinating place to visit to see the incredible carved structures. The town has served as a Moorish fortification, and was used similarly by the Roman Empire.

8
Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan

Moose Jaw is located in Saskatchewan, Canada, which means winter lasts an awfully long time. Not surprisingly, it was just as cold in the early twentieth century, which led to a series of tunnels being constructed beneath the city to allow warm travel for the workers. Considering the time period in which this took place, it should not come as a surprise that this underground network was soon being used for illicit purposes.

The tunnels of Moose Jaw were put to use by mobsters and bootleggers, because it was the era of Prohibition. Where illegal alcohol exists, gambling and prostitution soon follow, and soon enough the underground city was turning into a mini Las Vegas. It’s said that Al Capone was heavily involved in all of this illegal activity, which gave rise to the tunnels being nicknamed The Chicago Connection.

7
City of the Gods, Giza Plateau

The Great Pyramid of Giza is the only wonder of the ancient world still standing. In addition to being an architectural marvel, some believe that beneath the Giza Plateau exists something almost as extraordinary: a massive series of underground tunnels and chambers.

Beginning in 1978, researchers began to map out a massive underground complex that they referred to as a potential “metropolis.” Known as the City of the Gods, it is still shrouded in mystery. Considering this vast underground city is directly beneath one of the most important historical structures in the world, it is not likely that its mysteries will be easily unlocked for the foreseeable future. Furthermore, many vocal opponents to the theory of the City of the Gods claim that they don’t exist and are a pseudoscientific idea invented to support the notion of alien gods.

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Portland, Oregon

Beneath one of the largest cities in the Pacific Northwest region of the United States lie the Shanghai Tunnels. They are located beneath Chinatown and were used to transport goods and, legend has it, people. Thanks to this giant underground infrastructure, Portland gained notoriety as the worst place on the West Coast of America for Shanghaiing—kidnapping men for forced labour aboard ships.

The Shanghai Tunnels, also known as the Forbidden City, are believed to have been used for other illegal activities such as prostitution. Today you can tour the tunnels with a significantly smaller risk of being shanghaied than in the past.

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Wieliczka Salt Mine, Poland

Wieliczka Salt Mine—located in the south of Poland—was built in the thirteenth century. The mine produced salt until 2007, making it one of the longest running salt mines in history. In addition to producing tons of our favorite food additive, the mine was also home to a massive underground complex that included statues, chapels, and even a cathedral.

The mine itself is immense—measuring186 miles (300 km) in length. During World War II, the mine was used by the Germans for building munitions. It contains an underground lake and sees over one million tourists per year.

4
Coober Pedy, Australia

Like Setenil de las Bodegas, the town of Coober Pedy still exists and is home to more than 1,600 residents. It is referred to as the opal capital of the world because it produces more opal than anywhere else on Earth. The town consists of homes called “dugouts,” which were built underground to combat the unbearable heat on the surface and to keep their babies safe from dingoes and Australians.

Ever since opal was first discovered in Coober Pedy in 1915, the area has continuously been occupied and mined for the gemstones, and chances are if you own anything with opal in it, it came from the Coober Pedy mines. Along with the dugout homes and mine shafts, the town boasts underground shops and pubs, as well as a church, and even a graveyard.

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Kish, Iran

Beneath Kish, in Iran, lies a mysterious city that is in fact so mysterious, it doesn’t have an official name. It is called various things, including Kariz, but is most commonly referred to by tourists simply as the Kish underground city. The city is more than 2,500 years old and was initially used as a water management system.

Of course, like so many other ancient things, the underground city has been renovated and there are plans to turn it into a modern tourist destination. The new version of Kariz will include restaurants and shops throughout the 107,640 sq ft (10,000 sq m) complex.

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Cappadocia, Turkey

The area of Cappadocia, Turkey, has become famous for its underground cities—most notably the underground city of Derinkuyu. It consisted of seven underground levels and is said to have housed residents in the thousands. This was not a small city and it was not a series of small cave homes either. Throughout Derinkuyu were shops and churches, areas in which the residents produced wine, and even schools. The underground cities are believed to have been hiding places for Christians avoiding persecution from the Roman Empire, because no one likes being fed to lions.

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Burlington—Secret English City

While many people have heard of Cheyenne Mountain, the not-so-secret underground government facility in the United States, not nearly as many are aware of a similar structure located underneath the English countryside. Code named Burlington, the facility was built in the 1950s to house the British government in the event of nuclear war.

Burlington was built in an old stone quarry and covered 240 acres (1 sq km), and it could accommodate up to 4,000 government officials. What it could not accommodate, however, was their families. Burlington had 60 miles (95 km) of roads, a railway station, hospitals, an underground lake, a water treatment facility, and a pub. It also had a BBC studio from which the Prime Minister would be able to address whatever was left of the population from the safe and cozy confines below the surface. Burlington was kept in working order until 1991 when the Cold War came to a close.

Jeff Kelly

Jeff is a freelance writer from Texas. He”s married and has one son, and spends most of his time obsessing just a little too much over movies, television, and sports.

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US Developed The Worlds Smallest Nuke During Cold War That Could be Fired By Regular Soldiers

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However, the sheer danger of having a group soldiers carrying a live atomic bomb in their backpacks wasnt realized by the pentagon. They were soldiers and not robots and there was no off-switch in case one of them went rogue. But, the military decided to take them and deployed them for decades even though they werent ever used. With the dismemberment of the Soviet Union and the successful common sense Strategic Arms Limitation Talks between the nuclear powers, the nuclear stockpiles were significantly reduced and other confidence-building measures were introduced and implemented by both parties. However, the countries relatively new to the nuclear era like North Korea, India, Pakistan and Israel have no intentions of giving away their weapons of mass destruction as they think of them as necessary deterrence. Almost all of them are actively pursuing tactical nukes and have probably developed them by now. US and Russia learned about it the hard way then the Cuban missile crisis almost led to a full-scale nuclear war. Afterward, they have been sensible about it. The emerging nuclear powers especially India and Pakistan need to think about it rationally and stop arms race in the region. Arms race leads to inequality of firepower and it leads to the smaller nations developing irresponsible weapons like these tactical nukes!