3/28/2016

Now that I’ve created something, how do I spread it?


Vaguely remember something about the “discovery of electricity”?

A guy flew a kite in a storm, lightning struck, traveled down the string of the kite to a key…When the key was touched, out came a jolt of electricity giving a non-lethal shock to its famous victim. Who was that famous scientist?

Jacques de Romas.

Wait, that’s not right. Wasn’t it Benjamin Franklin?

Well, not according to more than a few historians. And the Bordeaux Academy and The French Academy credit de Romas for successfully being the first to complete The Kite Experiment.

Even Mythbusters believe they’ve busted Franklin’s claim — the shock from the reported key would have easily killed him.

Still, if you were to believe Franklin performed the experiment, it was meant to prove lightning did indeed behave the same as electricity. (It wasn’t really about the discovery of electricity. People had already discovered that.) And a guy named Thomas-François Dalibard had proven a month prior to Franklin that lightning was electricity through an experiment similar to The Kite Experiment but using a lightning rod.

So why aren’t grade school kids taught about Thomas-François Dalibard’s discovery. Why isn’t de Romas flying the kite in that painting? Why is Franklin so famous for something he probably didn’t even do?...more