The Hottest New Gadgets Of 1623

The date of America’s first Thanksgiving is a matter of small debate.

The harvest feast that inspired the holiday took place in 1621, but a “larger and more organised event in 1623 was the first recorded religious day of thanks,” so let’s go with that for now.

Were you a part of that larger and more organised event when it took place, here’s what you and your pilgrim tech geek pals would have been raving about.

William Lee invented the knitting machine in 1589, which played a seminal role in kicking off the industrial revolution to come.

Small things were made big with Zacharias Janssen's 1590 invention of the compound microscope.

Galileo invented the water thermometer in 1593. Small glass containers of different densities are suspended in water inside a larger glass cylinder. As temperatures rise and fall, so do the different containers.

Cornelis Drebbel invented the first practical submarine in 1620. It was human-powered and had a wooden frame covered in leather.

Hans Lippershey, a German spectacle maker, patented the refracting telescope in 1608.

William Oughtred's invention of the slide rule (his was circular) had people using a true analogue mechanical computer to do maths in 1624.

French mathematician Blaise Pascal invented the adding machine, a mechanical calculator, in 1642.

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