MY FAVOURITE SCIENTIST
My favourite scientist is Thomas Alva Edison. Now as a child he was considered to be a foll. He was not attentive to his studies and could not pull on well at school. His wise and sympathetic mother, however, succeeded in teaching him the essentials of education, reading, writing and arithmetic.
Pressed by poverty, Edison had to work for a living at an early age. But from his very childhood, he was fond of making various experiments some of which made him the laughing stock of the common people. A kind railway guard allowed him to set up his laboratory and printing press in compartment of the train. Besides selling fruits and candles, Edison sold his own paper edited and printed by himself: unluckily one day a bottle broke and inflammable substance in it set fire to some of the boards. The angry guard put young Thomas along with his apparatus and printing press, out at the next station.
Edison now carried on his experiments at his home: one day he stood school talking to a telegraph operator at the railway station when one of his children ran towards a coming train and jumped on to the lines. Edison dashed forward with the speed of lighting and brought the child out to safety as the train flashed by the operator, out of the gratitude, taught him telegraphy. Edison soon became an expert telegraph operator.
Soon he got a golden opportunity. The Telegraphic Company of Newyork got into a fix. None of their engineers could remove a disorder in their system. Edison volunteered to find out the defect and soon set the system in operation. He was given a very handsome reward with which he has set up a laboratory and factory of his own.
Edison had long dreamt of seeing whole cities lighted with electricity. The arc lights in use in his times were costly and could not be used on a large scale. He thought of a filament which could produce light when charged with electricity. He tried various materials but they were soon burnt out. He sent out men in search of a suitable substance and at last succeeded in obtaining a special type of cane for the purpose. The invention was perfected and today there is light not only in the street but in every house. Besides it is also very cheap.
The inventions of Edison are too numerous to be related here. Two of his remarkable inventions, however, need special mention. They are the gramophone and cinematography. After a long effort running into several years Edison succeeded in inventing photography. The principle underlying this is very simple. By means of an instrument the sound is beamed on a disc. A needle is then made to vibrate and with the help of a diaphragm the sound is reproduced.
One of the greatest contributions to the advancement of science is his work on cinematography. If the credit for this wonderful invention can go to one man, it is Edison.
People laughed at young Thomas Alva Edison when he tried to hatch an egg in imitation of the mother goose or made his friend swallow seidlitz power in the hope that this would produce a gas within the boy enabling him to fly. But the work done by him has not astonished the world the world but also greatly benefited mankind. Edison died rich in money and fame. His untiring efforts were aimed at enriching the world with scientific knowledge and he succeeded even beyond his own expectations. So he is my favourite scientist.