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Hank Green, host of Youtube’s SciShow & Crash Course, shares a lesson on genius Nikola Tesla. Who was Nikola Tesla and how are his inventions impacting our lives and today and tomorrow?

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Think about the things you use in your daily life. The light you turn on in the morning, your smartphone with the alarm that wakes you up, the remote control for your TV, the satellite radio, what do they all have in common? Pretty much all the technology we use today can in some way be traced back to Nikola Tesla, Serbian inventor, engineering genius, Thomas Edison competitor, champion of hydroelectric power, inventor of robots, and one of the first people to experiment with wireless communications. You know that image of the mad scientist with the electricity coming out of his head? That's Tesla.

During his lifetime Tesla filed over 700 patents, most famously, perhaps, for his alternating current induction motor, also considered one of the ten best inventions of all time. When Tesla came to the US from Serbia in the 1880s he worked alongside Thomas Edison in Edison's Lab where the light bulb inventor was experimenting with direct current electricity. Tesla took an alternate approach. He thought harnessing an alternating electric current would be the more practical way to provide electricity to the public. Later he'd also invent the Tesla coil that could transmit and receive radio frequencies and in 1898 he demonstrated a remote control boat powered by wireless energy and yes, some say that this could be the birth of the robotics movement and even a precursor to drones.

How else do we experience Nikola Tesla's genius today? Tesla's AC electricity supply system remains the world wide standard and miniature versions of his Tesla coil are still used in radios and televisions around the globe. And way back at the turn of the last century, Tesla wrote about how quote "An inexpensive instrument, not much bigger than a watch, will enable its bearer to hear anywhere, on sea or land, music or song, the speech of a political leader, the address of an eminent man of science, or the sermon of an eloquent clergyman, delivered in some other place, however distant." Hardly a stretch to say Tesla with his inquiry into wireless communications was envisioning a take on the modern smartphone. Maybe that's why one of today's top inventors, Elon Musk, named his electric car company after this genius and Larry Page, one of the guys behind Google, counts Tesla among his heroes.

So what does Nikola Tesla's work mean for our lives tomorrow? Think of the near future when you could have a house that you can control with your smartphone or robot companions and lots of people will say that we have Tesla to thank. As today's scientists continue to build on his innovations, who knows where they will take us next.