I have read the life stories of several scientists who have brought about revolutionary changes in the life of modern man but none has impressed me so much as Thomas Alva Edison.
Thomas Alva Edison was born in a poor family and as such could not get any education except the rudimentary knowledge of the three Rs — reading, writing and arithmetic. At a very early age he had to work for living. He was allowed to set up his laboratory and printing press in a compartment of a railway train through the kind offices of a railway guard. It was here that Edison printed and sold his newspaper. But one day however, as luck would have it, he broke a bottle which set fire to some of the boards. The angry guard thereupon turned Edison out of the train.
Edison was fond of making strange experiments which made him a butt of ridicule. One day however, he saved the son of a telegraph operator from being run over by a train. The operator, out of gratitude, taught him telegraphy.
This was a great opportunity to him. He became such an expert in the work that he set right the disorder in the wires of the telegraph company of New York. Edison got a handsome reward for this and he could now set up his own laboratory and factory.
Now began the period of his inventions. He tried various filaments which could produce light when charged with electricity. At last he succeeded in finding out the right type of filament. The invention was perfected and there is not a place where there is no electric light.
The other most important inventions are the gramophone and cinematography. After a long search Edison succeeded in inventing phonography. His invention was based on the principle that the sound can be drawn on a disc. A needle is made to vibrate and with the help of diaphragm the sound is reproduced.
One of the greatest contribution of Edison was cinematography. There are thousand and one inventions made by this man and therefore people called him a wizard. Edison began his life as a poor man but he died rich. He worked untiringly to enrich the world with his scientific knowledge. He is therefore my favourite.