Toys That Inspired Scientific Breakthroughs

Anyone who reads Giz with any sort of regularity knows that we don't try to hide our affinity for toys. But for some brainiacs, toys like the Etch-a-Sketch aren't just diversions, they're launching pads for important scientific discoveries.

Scientific American rounds up 4 instances in which tiny toys led to some big answers, including the story of a nanoscale transistor that was invented by a physics professor who had the Etch-a-Sketch on the mind.

Head over to Scientific American to see the rest of the lot. Just don't blame me if you find yourself unable to build a LEGO set without thinking of "Directional Locking and the Role of Irreversible Interactions in Deterministic Hydrodynamics Separations in Microfluidic Devices." [Scientific American via BoingBoing]

Image credit star5112

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