Many years before Thomas Edison and Joseph Swan introduced their own light bulbs to the world, a Scotsman called James Bowman Lindsay demonstrated a constant electric light at a public meeting in Dundee. Reportedly, Lindsay’s light was so powerful and stable — for 1835 at least — that he could read his book from a distance of 0.4 metres (1.5 feet). Lindsay had invented the world’s first electric light bulb, however he neither patented the device nor sold it, instead moving on to wireless telegraphy. Regardless, Lindsay’s innovation was continuously honed in the following decades and, after Edison married a stable electric generator to this revolutionary light-giving device, the stage was set for its widespread adoption. Today, it’s hard to imagine a world without electric light bulbs and they’re often voted one of the greatest inventions of all time in polls.