Graphic designer Gábor Filkor has created a pop-up book featuring some of the most notable Hungarian scientists and engineers, whose inventions and significant contributions to their field made a mark on the world.
The ‘inventive’ video showcasing the book in action was created as a commercial for the fictitious Rubik’s Museum. According to index.hu, there have indeed been plans to build a Rubik’s Cube-shaped museum in Budapest, which would exhibit Hungarian inventions, although the idea has not been realised yet. It does, however, have a great commercial already. Check out this video:
To see more of Gábor Filkor’s work, check out his website.
A short guide to the inventors and their inventions featured in the video:
Jedlik Ányos – szódavíz – carbonated water
Although artificially manufactured carbonated water has been around since the 1760s, the foreign methods of production were kept secret. Ányos Jedlik is credited with manufacturing and popularizing carbonated water in Hungary in 1826. He was also the inventor of the electric motor and the dynamo.
Irinyi János – zajtalan gyufa – noiseless match
János Irinyi invented the noiseless and non-explosive match in 1836, at the age of 19. This became his most well known invention, although he greatly contributed to the spreading of modern chemistry in Hungary as well. He also had a significant political role in the Hungarian Revolution of 1848.
Puskás Tivadar – telefonközpont – telephone exchange
According to the American inventor, Thomas Edison, “Tivadar Puskas was the first person to suggest the idea of a telephone exchange”. The first experimental model was built in Boston in 1877, based on the plans of Puskás. Later, he also invented the multiplex telephone switchboard, which contributed a further step in the development of communication.
Bíró László József – golyóstoll – ballpoint pen
After noticing that newspaper ink, unlike the ink used in fountain pens, dried quickly and left no smudges, Bíró devised a pen which had a ball in the tip that carried the thicker ink from the cartridge to the paper. Although the idea of a ballpoint pen was not new, early attempts were unsuccessful, and Bíró managed to perfect the invention. The ballpoint pen was first presented in 1931, and is still widely referred to as a biro or biro pen in many countries.
Neumann János – „a számítógép atyja” – “the father of the computer”
John von Neumann, as he was known after moving to the US to teach at Princeton, made major contributions to many fields of science, most notably mathematics, physics, and computing. He was a key figure in the invention of the digital computer. His computer architecture, known as the von Neumann model is, to this day, the basis of modern computer design. He also worked on the Manhattan Project, together with Hungarian physicist Leó Szilárd who was the first to discover that nuclear chain reactions are possible.
Goldmark Péter Károly – mikrobarázdás hanglemez – microgroove vinyl record
The long-playing vinyl record, or the LP, was introduced by Columbia Records in 1948. Péter Károly Goldmark was the leader of the team that developed the record, which could hold 22 minutes of sound per side. The format has remained the standard for vinyl albums ever since.
Rózsa László, Lassú Gábor, Színi Béla – csuklós busz – articulated bus
Although the idea of the articulated bus did not originate with the Hungarian engineers, the contributions of László Rózsa, Gábor Lassú, and Béla Színi are recognised all over the world, and their work was essential to the development of public transport in Hungary in the 1960s. Urbanisation and growing need for bigger capacity inspired the buses which could transport 200 people, and thanks to their innovative design, could also navigate the narrow streets of cities.
Rátai Dániel – Leonar3Do
The most recent invention in the video is Dániel Rátai’s virtual reality kit, the Leonar3Do, which can create a complete three-dimensional virtual reality environment. The invention has won many awards, most notably six first prizes at the International Science and Engineering Fair in 2005, and it has a variety of practical applications in education, art, design, and gaming.
Rubik Ernő – Rubik-kocka – Rubik’s Cube
The final pages of the book show perhaps the most well-known Hungarian invention of all time, the Rubik’s Cube, invented by Ernő Rubik in 1974. The cube was initially created to be used as a demonstrational tool in the classroom, but Rubik soon realised that it would make a great toy as well. It took the inventor a month to solve his own puzzle. Today, world champions around the world can accomplish the same in less than 6 seconds.
Copy editor: bm