Tuesday, 4 October 2011

What is African contribution to Science and Inventions past, present and future? - (22/09/11)

BIS Publications presented their Black Scientists & Inventors, What is Africa’s contribution to Science Past, Present and Future? event at the London Science Museum's Dana Centre.

The event featured 3 presentations from presenters Michael Williams who is an engineer, publisher and co author of the best-selling Black Scientists & Inventors series of books. Dr. Mark Richards a physicist, lecturer at Imperial College, and DJ also known as DJ Kemist and finally Leeroy Brown an engineer, driver and inventor of the portable electric combined car-jack and air pump.

All three delivered extremely inspiring presentations to a jam-packed audience at the Science Museum's Dana Centre.

Dr. Mark Richards started by reminding the audience that Imhotep the African from Egypt is the first recorded scientist. He then introduced the audience to one of the most popular topics scientists are currently raving about String Theory and simplified it so that all could understand. He went on to show us how African/Caribbean people are at the leading edge of this.

Leeroy Brown who in the late 90s had won the BBC's best inventions and the BBC’s Tomorrow's World best Inventors awards treated the audience at the Dana Centre to a world first preview of his new invention. The audience applauded with absolute praise and encouragement, when they saw his newly improved 2011 electric car jack and pump the room was electric.

Then Michael Williams who put together a marvellous number of video pieces of Black Scientists and Inventors from all over the world to put into context, the historic continual line of great inventors and inventions from Africa, Caribbean, America and the UK to the present day black scientists and inventors. Michael Williams finished his presentations with a look at a technological revolution scenario in Africa, which would see high speed magnetic rail from Cape Town to Cairo, irrigation systems which would fertilize deserts lands, renewable energy, and Africans using their natural resources to empower themselves and in turn help the rest of the world, Instead of outside nations appropriating African resources.

The question and answer session was equally good, the one notable question that kept coming up was what was/is the role black women played in science and invention. All three speakers agreed women’s contributions need to highlighted we need to award black children when they succeed in science. Michael Williams said ‘I have started this with a book I co-authored “Black Women Scientists & Inventors Vol 1”.

The only regret was that over 80+ people were not able to attend due the event being over-subscribed. The organiser said ‘this shows that it’s clear that people and black people in particular are keen to learn about the contributions that people of African descent in science and invention have made in the past and are presently making’.

All in all this was a great event, one that I hope can be repeated in the very near future. I think the work that BIS Publications are doing is absolutely amazing I am so proud of them I am glad that there is some one out there champing the contributions that people of African decent are making in science and technology.

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