After the compass and gunpowder

You have probably been bored numerous time with the four great inventions of ancient China – namely the compass, gunpowder, papermaking and printing – and how close the middle kingdom was of doing its industrial revolution during the Sung dynasty (960 AD-1280 AD).

A millenium later, it is time to look back at the major technological development of the People’s Republic. For its 60th birthday, the official news agency Xinhua has highlighted the following achievements in the field of science and technology:
- Li Siguang’s theory on geomechanics which allowed the discovery of the Daqinq oil field (1959)
- the explosion of China’s first atomic bomb in Xinjiang (1964) which projected the country in the league of nuclear powers
- Yuan Longping’s development of hybrid rice varieties (in the 1970s) which helped China move towards autonomy
- connection to the Internet (May 1994)
- the launch of China’s first lunar exploration satellite (2007) and the coining of a new word for a Chinese traveling in space (taikonaut)

Nowadays, China cooperates with foreign multinationals (when it doesn’t buy them out) to explore oil at home and abroad; it plans to build 50 nuclear reactors over the next 10 years, to plant the Chinese flag on the moon. Finally, it quietly became the country with the largest number of netizens.

Let’s see what the next 60 years bring us!