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The Inventions Done By Mistake

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You can’t learn anything from being perfect, so the most valuable thing you can make is a mistake. What looks like a mistake to others has been a milestone in others life. In fact, each mistake teaches you a new lesson which makes you more conscious and persistent in order to follow your dreams. Sometimes people ignore the fact that making mistake can be good for them and just feel frustrated believing that this mistake lead them to failure, while others adopt it as a way to success. Personally, I didn’t expect before that the most inventions that we are using now were done by mistake. We all know that any invention needs to be proven by experiments, rules and many other tools but some of them came mistakenly without previous expectation and have been adopted and taken into consideration as useful, daily and weird inventions. According to Traynor Sean, not all inventions followed the rule-of-thumb of identifying a problem, outlining a solution, testing a solution, and marketing the product. Many every-day objects that we deem “brilliant” were things discovered by mistake (2011). There are many different inventions that were done by mistake and each one has a specific story like what happened in the inventions of chocolate chip cookies, X-rays and penicillin.

The first invention that was done by mistake which became one of the most famous inventions is chocolate chip cookies. People have a great relation with chocolate, it gives them power, energy and it’s very delicious. Chocolate have many different kinds including chocolate chip cookies. In 1930, Ruth Wakefield opened a very popular restaurant called the Toll House Inn, located on the toll road between Boston and New Bedford, Massachusetts. While she was trying to make a batch of chocolate cookies for her customers, chocolate chip cookies were born because she didn’t mix the chocolate with the dough (Trynor, 2011). After this invention, she decided to sold the recipe to Nestle in exchange for a life time supply of chocolate chip cookies. Over seven billion chocolate chip cookies are purchased each year and this shows how this invention is important and precious. Finally, nestle company decided to put every bag of chocolate chip cookies sold a variation of Ruth Wakefield original recipe printed on the back as an appreciation for her greatest achievement.

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Nobody can imagine that the X-rays invention, which is considered as a medical miracle by some scientists and doctors has come by accident. Many doctors suffered a lot because they were not being able to diagnose some medical cases specially bones until the x-rays invention has been discovered.” A German physicist named William Rontgen was experimenting with different cathodes by tubes in 1895. He saw that even when covered up with cardboard, the tubes caused certain chemicals to glow from across the room. He realized that there were invisible rays that could pass through glass, paper and even skin! He called them x-rays” (Leelerdsakulvong, 2014). Within a year, the first radiology department opened in a Glasgow hospital and the department head produced the first pictures of a kidney stone and a penny lodged in a child’s throat. Shortly after, an American physiologist used x-rays to trace food making its way through the digestive system. X-rays is a new and mysterious form of radiation which led to a revelation in medical imaging.

Besides chocolate chip cookies and x-rays, penicillin is an another invention that came by mistake making a distinction in the medical field. Penicillin was the first antibiotic that doctors used to preserve human body and it was a fault of a messy scientist. People attribute the discovery of penicillin to Alexander Fleming. In 1928, the latter saved bacteria in a beaker; bacteria are small creatures and they cause pain for people; one of the beakers got some mold in it, then he realized that the bacteria were killed because of this mold. The mold is now used as a drug called penicillin (Britsh Science Week, 2002). This drug is used to prevent infection of the heart in patients with certain heart diseases who are having surgery. In addition to that, penicillin is used to treat infections of sinuses, stomach, intestines and kidney. Although the use of penicillin is widespread, but sometimes some issues can occur as any drug, for example: breast-feedings, interactions, kidney disease, methotrexate, phenylketonuria, gastrointestinal and bleeding problems. Not to mention that Howard Florey, Ernst Chain, Norman Heatley, and other researchers at England’s Oxford University developed penicillin into the life-saving drug. As a result, Alexander Fleming’s mistake has saved a lot of people’s lives as he contributed to prevent the growth of bacteria and get rid of it as much as possible.

Chocolate chip cookies, X-rays and penicillin are inventions that played significant roles in our daily life and facilitated a lot of things for doctors, scientists and many other people knowing that all these inventions were done by mistake. So, keep your eyes open for the possibilities and keep in mind that not all mistakes can lead to failure but sometimes a mistake can be a starting point for a new story, discovery or even invention… who knows.

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The Inventions Done By Mistake. (2022, February 18). Edubirdie. Retrieved June 6, 2023, from
“The Inventions Done By Mistake.” Edubirdie, 18 Feb. 2022,
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The Inventions Done By Mistake [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2022 Feb 18 [cited 2023 Jun 6]. Available from:
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