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Making the Modern World

Tuesday, October 18th, 2005 by | Filed Under: Cool Sites

Making the Modern World

“Making the Modern World brings you powerful stories about science and invention from the eighteenth century to today. It explains the development and the global spread of modern industrial society and its effects on all our lives.”I found this explanation in the About Us section near the bottom of the page.

You’ll find the navigation of the site on the tabs across the top under the title. The sections are Home, Stories Timeline, Icons of Invention, Everyday Life, Guided Tours, and Learning Modules.

The Stories Timeline has a timeline dated all the way back to 1750 and ending at 2000. You can click on each block. For example, click on the gray block for “1750 to 1820 Enlightenment and Measurement”, and a drop down menu gives you three stories: “Measuring the Universe”, “Empire, Navy, and Trade”, and “Rational Manufacture.” At the very bottom of the menu, there is a link titled Read More, which will take you to a page where you can learn a little more about the subject and access the three stories. I like the Read More option for navigation of the timeline and I’m greatly appreciative that they included it.

Icons of Invention has information on the inventions that have changed our world. It’s divided into three sections: Science, Technology, and Medicine. Beneath that, you can browse the Icons of Invention either from clicking on the examples provided or by scrolling through the pages with the page numbers at the bottom.

If you choose the Browse Category option above each section, you can view the icons of invention through another timeline setting. I really love this option because it gave you a real feel for the progress that was made over time. Take a look at that Apple I Home Computer! It’s amazing to think how far just computers have come since their invention.

Everyday Life shows inventions that have changed (you guessed it!) everyday life. Everything from appliances and toothbrushes to synthetic fabrics. I am so amazed by this section and I adore the three examples that they put right out on the front. The first is about the Singer Sewing Machine, the second is about re-inventing a shovel, and the third is about house plants. Beneath that are more sections – Personal, Home, Work, Leisure, Control, and Health. Each of these sections is again set up in a timeline so that you can see the time progression. There’s even a button for an audio version of the stories!

Guided Tours has three pages of tours, each tracing a different aspect of progression. From the impact that woman have had in science to advancements in healthcare, you’ll find a lot of interesting information presented in pictures and text. I found Making Modern Health interesting as it tracks the progress of healthcare, from the x-ray to pharmaceuticals.

Last, but not least, is the section Learning Modules. Here you will find demonstrations, activities and media designed on a level to be used by just about everyone. This section is broken down into separate areas, like Biology, English, Chemistry, History, Geography, Mathematics, and Psychology. My favorite, Psychology, talks a lot about stress and stress management. Everyone has stress at some point in their life, but not everyone manages stress in a healthy way or knows how to channel it out of their system at all. This section was really useful.

This site is a great way to stimulate your brain.

~ Amanda

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