Ten Inventions Inspired by Science Fiction
The innovators behind objects like the cellphone or the helicopter took inspiration from works like "Star Trek" and War of the Worlds
- By Mark Strauss
- Smithsonian.com, March 16, 2012
In 1914, H.G. Wells published a novel, The World Set Free, imagining the emergence of “artificial” atomic energy by 1933, followed by a devastating world war and the eventual emergence of a peaceful global government. Physicist Leo Szilard read the book in 1932, which inspired him to solve the problem of creating a nuclear chain reaction—in 1933. The same book would inspire Szilard to campaign for arms control and the peaceful, international use of nuclear power after World War II.