How did the light bulb change the world?


Quick Answer

The invention of the light bulb changed the world in many ways, including facilitating the creation of large power grids, changing the social and economic structure of society and bringing other appliances into the home. Although many inventors had experimented with incandescent light bulbs, Thomas Edison created the first widely distributed model in 1879.

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How did the light bulb change the world?
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Full Answer

The implementation of light bulbs led to the need for a widespread electrical-distribution system, and the world's first large-scale power station was built at Niagara Falls in 1895. The power was distributed only locally at first, but some was also transmitted to nearby Buffalo, where it was used to power streetlights and streetcars. The transmission to Buffalo proved that long-distance power distribution was efficient, and this eventually led to a national system of large, interconnected power stations. The light bulb also had wide-reaching social and economic consequences. Interior lighting changed the structure of society, allowing activities to extend into the night. Industrial plants and other businesses could operate all night long, dramatically increasing profits. Electric lighting also allowed cities to stay active into the night, changing the natural rhythm of society and allowing people to stay up later. Electric lights necessitated the installation of electric wiring, which allowed for the development of other electric appliances for the home. Toasters, refrigerators, washing machines, vacuums and air conditioning systems all became common, making life far more convenient.

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