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Patented: History of Inventions
Patented: History of Inventions
History Hit

This podcast investigates the curious history of invention and innovation. Did Thomas Edison take credit for things he didn’t actually invent? What... more

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Space Food

If humans travel to Mars then by the time they come home all the food they eat will be five... more

28 Sep 2022 · 40 minutes
FORENSICS: Fingerprinting

We hear from London’s most inaccessible museum, the Met police’s Crime Museum, and take you back to India in the... more

25 Sep 2022 · 41 minutes

First Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel shocked the world’s eyeballs with her fashion designs. Then she shocked its nostrils with a new... more

21 Sep 2022 · 34 minutes
FORENSICS: the beginning

Death by tiger bites. Death by prodding. Death from sexual excess. Deaths from over-eating and over-drinking. The opening of graves.These... more

18 Sep 2022 · 32 minutes

We take PowerPoint for granted. It's as much a fact of life as concrete. Or rainy afternoons. But it hasn’t... more

14 Sep 2022 · 30 minutes
Virtual Assistants ft. the real Siri

We talk to the real life Siri in this episode. Susan Bennett was the original voice of Siri back in... more

07 Sep 2022 · 31 minutes
Contact Lenses

The Contact Lens. The humble Contact Lens. Oh boy, do we have a rip-roaring episode for you about the humble... more

04 Sep 2022 · 28 minutes
Sports Bra

REAL LIFE INVENTOR ALERT!!!Two jockstraps cleverly sewn together. That was how the very first sports bra was made in 1977.... more

31 Aug 2022 · 34 minutes

If you feel confused and left behind by cryptocurrency then this is for you. We're taking you on a journey... more

28 Aug 2022 · 48 minutes
Home Security System

The patent for the Ring doorbell cites this as the starting point. A Heath Robinson looking design with peep holes,... more

24 Aug 2022 · 27 minutes

Find out what Play-Doh has to do with sooty walls. And how we have a nursery teacher called Kay Zufall... more

21 Aug 2022 · 28 minutes
Cloud Seeding & Climate Engineering

Pyres on the Appalachian mountains. Planes spraying chemicals into clouds. Mirrors in space. “I can make it rain, I can... more

17 Aug 2022 · 33 minutes
Vantablack: the darkest material on earth

!!!REAL LIFE INVENTOR ALERT!!!Usually we talk about dead people on this podcast. It is history after all. But this week... more

14 Aug 2022 · 31 minutes

The Great Pyramid of Giza was the tallest building in the world for nearly four thousand years…until it was beaten... more

10 Aug 2022 · 36 minutes
Transistors & Telecommunication Satellites: Bell Labs

The transistor; solar panels; the first telecommunications satellite; cell phone networks; UNIX code; information theory. All these and more were... more

07 Aug 2022 · 32 minutes
Shipping Containers

90% of everything you own arrived by sea.And there’s one invention to thank above all else – the humble shipping... more

03 Aug 2022 · 29 minutes

Barbie. What is it about Barbie? Love her or loathe her this 11 ½ inch doll gets a big reaction.Which... more

31 Jul 2022 · 29 minutes
Contactless Payment

*tap* *tap* *tap*That’s the sound of physical cash being consigned to the dustbin of history by us tapping cards/phones/watches instead.Contactless... more

27 Jul 2022 · 32 minutes
Air Conditioning

No summer blockbuster. No Las Vegas and no skyscrapers in Dubai. No chocolate bars when the weather gets hot. Air... more

24 Jul 2022 · 29 minutes
Baby Formula

The United States has been suffering from a baby formula shortage for months now. It’s shown how reliant we are... more

20 Jul 2022 · 29 minutes

A pint might be Britain’s most beloved measurement. But what’s the name for the distance a reindeer can walk before... more

17 Jul 2022 · 35 minutes
Sign Language

Imagine knowing no language at all…*wordlessness*…and then giving birth to one.This is what happened amongst the children at a school... more

13 Jul 2022 · 32 minutes

When the ancient Egyptians mummified their dead they were trying to stop time, to preserve the body so well that... more

09 Jul 2022 · 30 minutes
Cryonics: Living Forever?

Often mistakenly called Cryogenics, Cryonics is the speculative practice of preserving and storing recently dead bodies at very low temperatures... more

06 Jul 2022 · 43 minutes
Video Games

A whistle stop tour of the 50 year history of video games — and all the innovations along the way,... more

03 Jul 2022 · 35 minutes
Drone Delivery

The drones are coming. In twenty years there’s going to be a hundred times more flying planes, taxis, parcels in... more

29 Jun 2022 · 23 minutes
Warships with Dan Snow

Today we are talking warships: from the revolutionary Tudor ships to modern aircraft carriers, and all the innovations along the... more

26 Jun 2022 · 31 minutes
Special Effects

The history of Special Effects — from stop motion to motion capture.In just over a century, we special effects have... more

22 Jun 2022 · 35 minutes
The Invention of Sex Toys

_CW: This episode is a bit saucier than normal with explicit sexual references and some swearing. If that isn’t your... more

19 Jun 2022 · 23 minutes
Lunar Rover

The success of the Apollo Missions relied on hugely imaginative engineering. There is perhaps no better example of this than... more

15 Jun 2022 · 30 minutes
Plastic Surgery

As a result of all the military and medical advancements of World War One there were more seriously injured and... more

12 Jun 2022 · 36 minutes
Daylight Saving Time

Introduced just over 100 years ago, Daylight Savings have always been divisive.So, why are people for and why are people... more

08 Jun 2022 · 31 minutes
Coronation Chicken

Chicken, mayonnaise, curry powder - and wait, sultanas? What exactly is Coronation Chicken and what does it have to do... more

05 Jun 2022 · 21 minutes

A cup of coffee was once a luxury. Now it is quick, cheap and widely available — a daily essential... more

01 Jun 2022 · 35 minutes

“As ancient as time, as modern as tomorrow.’Why have tattoos been reinvented in so many cultures - and with so... more

29 May 2022 · 34 minutes
The Telescope

The telescope marked, arguably, the first invention to truly transform a human sense. For the first time it allowed our... more

25 May 2022 · 33 minutes

Is it a bird? Is it a plane? A UFO maybe? Or is it some reflective Lichen? Where does the... more

22 May 2022 · 31 minutes
The Aeroplane

On 17 December 1903 the Wright Brothers successful completed the first manned, controlled and sustained flight in human history.They made... more

18 May 2022 · 40 minutes
The Bicycle with Tim Harford

Invented in the mid-1800s, bicycles have had enduring popularity. Across cultures, they have been embraced, promising freedom and mobility at... more

15 May 2022 · 38 minutes

How — and why — did Prozac become the best-selling antidepressant of all time? As it is Mental Health Awareness Week,... more

11 May 2022 · 37 minutes

How did LSD go from accidental discovery to the counter cultures go to drug?On April 19th 1943 Albert Hoffman had... more

08 May 2022 · 35 minutes
Small Inventions, Big Impact

Staples, paper clips, and washers - small inventions that improve our everyday lives and have even saved lives. In this... more

04 May 2022 · 33 minutes

Many of us became familiar with robots through science fiction — R2D2, C3PO, Rosie from the Jetsons, Marvin the Paranoid... more

01 May 2022 · 34 minutes
Wheeled Suitcase

We put man on the moon before we invented the wheeled suitcase. Why did it take so long? Find out in todays... more

27 Apr 2022 · 26 minutes

Tanks defined 20th century conflict — they conjure to mind images of Tiananmen Square or the Soviet Army rolling into... more

24 Apr 2022 · 28 minutes
The Origin of Zero

Nada, naught, nil, zip, zilch, zero. Whatever you call it, it's hard to imagine the world without it. Zero is... more

20 Apr 2022 · 23 minutes
The First Motion Picture: Conspiracy, Murder, and Movies

In 1890, the man who shot the first ever motion picture boarded a train in Paris — and was never... more

17 Apr 2022 · 29 minutes
The Treadmill

Before they found their way into gyms, treadmills had a much darker history. In the 19th Century, they could most... more

13 Apr 2022 · 24 minutes
The Ear Trumpet

Ear Trumpets are seen as old fashioned and clumsy, mostly deployed in pop culture for comic effect as a snarky... more

10 Apr 2022 · 30 minutes
Monks: Medieval Masters of Invention

In medieval times it was monks who were the masters of invention. They were the most educated members of society... more

06 Apr 2022 · 35 minutes
Patented: History of Inventions
Patented: History of Inventions

Listen now on

Apple Podcasts
Google Podcasts
Podcast Addict
Pocket Casts
Player FM
Podcast Republic


Many of us became familiar with robots through science fiction — R2D2, C3PO, Rosie from the Jetsons, Marvin the Paranoid Android. In... more