Sunday, 22 January 2012

List of Pakistani inventions and discoveries

Pakistani inventions and discoveries have received worldwide attention. Included in this list are inventions and discoveries made by Pakistanis in institutions in other countries, as well as those made in the territorial area of what is now Pakistan prior to the independence of Pakistan in 1947.

Contents

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Indus Valley Civilisation

Computer-aided reconstruction of Harappan coastal settlement in Pakistan on the westernmost outreaches of the civilization
  • Button, ornamental: Buttons—made from seashell—were used in the Indus Valley Civilization for ornamental purposes by 2000 BCE.[1] Some buttons were carved into geometric shapes and had holes pieced into them so that they could attached to clothing by using a thread.[1] Ian McNeil (1990) holds that: "The button, in fact, was originally used more as an ornament than as a fastening, the earliest known being found at Mohenjo-daro in the Indus Valley. It is made of a curved shell and about 5000 years old."[2]
  • Cockfighting: Cockfighting was a pastime in the Indus Valley Civilization in what today is Pakistan by 2000 BCE.[3] The Encyclopædia Britannica (2008)—on the origins of cockfighting—holds: "The game fowl is probably the nearest to the Indian red jungle fowl (Gallus gallus), from which all domestic chickens are believed to be descended...The sport was popular in ancient times in India, China, Persia, and other Eastern countries and was introduced into Greece in the time of Themistocles (c. 524–460 BCE). The sport spread throughout Asia Minor and Sicily. For a long time the Romans affected to despise this "Greek diversion," but they ended up adopting it so enthusiastically that the agricultural writer Columella (1st century CE) complained that its devotees often spent their whole patrimony in betting at the side of the pit."[4]
  • Plough, animal-drawn: The earliest archeological evidence of an animal-drawn plough dates back to 2500 BCE in the Indus Valley Civilization in Pakistan.[6]
  • Ruler: Rulers made from Ivory were in use by the Indus Valley Civilization in what today is Pakistan and some parts of Western India prior to 1500 BCE.[7] Excavations at Lothal (2400 BCE) have yielded one such ruler calibrated to about 1/16 of an inch—less than 2 millimeters.[7] Ian Whitelaw (2007) holds that 'The Mohenjo-Daro ruler is divided into units corresponding to 1.32 inches (33.5 mm) and these are marked out in decimal subdivisions with amazing accuracy—to within 0.005 of an inch. Ancient bricks found throughout the region have dimensions that correspond to these units.'[8] Shigeo Iwata (2008) further writes 'The minimum division of graduation found in the segment of an ivory-made linear measure excavated in Lothal was 1.79 mm (that corresponds to 1/940 of a fathom), while that of the fragment of a shell-made one from Mohenjo-daro was 6.72 mm (1/250 of a fathom), and that of bronze-made one from Harapa was 9.33 mm (1/180 of a fathom).'[9] The weights and measures of the Indus civilization also reached Persia and Central Asia, where they were further modified.[9]
  • Stepwell: Earliest clear evidence of the origins of the stepwell is found in the Indus Valley Civilization's archaeological site at Mohenjodaro in Pakistan.[10] The three features of stepwells in the subcontinent are evident from one particular site, abandoned by 2500 BCE, which combines a bathing pool, steps leading down to water, and figures of some religious importance into one structure.[10] The early centuries immediately before the common era saw the Buddhists and the Jains of India adapt the stepwells into their architecture.[10] Both the wells and the form of ritual bathing reached other parts of the world with Buddhism.[10] Rock-cut step wells in the subcontinent date from 200-400 CE.[11] Subsequently the wells at Dhank (550-625 CE) and stepped ponds at Bhinmal (850-950 CE) were constructed.[11]

Centers of Ancient Learning in Pakistan

The Ancient University of Taxila in Pakistan.
Pakistan was the seat of ancient learning and some consider Taxila to be an early university [12] [13] [14] or centre of higher education,[15] others do not consider it a university in the modern sense, [16] [17] [18] in contrast to the later Nalanda University.[18][19][20]
Takshashila is described in some detail in later Jātaka tales, written in Sri Lanka around the 5th century CE.[21] Generally, a student entered Taxila at the age of sixteen. The Vedas and the Eighteen Arts, which included skills such as archery, hunting, and elephant lore, were taught, in addition to its law school, medical school, and school of military science.[22]

Post-Independence

Standard model of Electroweak Interaction.
The boot sector of an infected floppy.

Biology

  • Dr. Naweed Syed, a specialist in the field of biomedical engineering and member of the medicine faculty at the University of Calgary, became the first scientist who managed to "connect brain cells to a silicon chip". The discovery is a major step in the research of integrating computers with human brains to help people control artificial limbs, monitor people's vital signs, correct memory loss or impaired vision.[23]

Chemistry

  • Development of the world's first workable plastic magnet at room temperature by organic chemist and polymer scientist Naveed Zaidi.[24][25][26]

Physics

Medicine

Computing

  • A Software simulation based on blast forensics designed by Pakistani computer scientist, Zeeshan-ul-Hassan Usmani, that can reduce deaths by 12 per cent and injuries by seven per cent on average just by changing the way a crowd of people stand near an expected suicide bomber.[34]

Music

Economics

Defence and engineering

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