Serbian-American inventor Nikola Tesla was born on this day in 1856. Famous for his contributions to the study of electricity, he was born in modern day Croatia. Moving to the United States in 1884, he worked for two years with American inventor Thomas Edison. His work has stayed relevant nowadays as Tesla coil is still used in radios. With his company, the Tesla Electric Company, he helped create modern air conditioning systems, along with new methods of energy distribution. Despite his success in the field of electricity, Tesla was an inept businessman, and by 1900, due to his obsession with global energy distribution, he drove himself bankrupt. He was forced to sell his project to save himself from debt, and suffered a nervous breakdown soon after. His infamous death beam brought the attention of the FBI, and his increasing eccentricity drove him to poverty and loneliness. At the age of eighty-six, on January 7, 1943, Tesla died in New York City, where he had lived almost his entire time in the United States. His work continues to inspire research in science.
“It is paradoxical, yet true, to say, that the more we know, the more ignorant we become in the absolute sense, for it is only through enlightenment that we become conscious of our limitations. Precisely one of the most gratifying results of intellectual evolution is the continuous opening up of new and greater prospects.”-Nikola Tesla