10 Everyday Inventions That Exist Thanks To War

War, it turns out, is good for making people invent things that millions use every day.

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War has brought the world some pretty impressive, if horrific, things. Nuclear weapons, enormous warships, an ever-diversifying parade of guns, all of them dreamed up in the depths of some military design bureau in response to the demands of war.

The multitude of arms races, from strategic weapons to bullets and uniforms, results in an unending stream of innovations for the use of the world's various military.

It's no surprise that, say, a type of missile or body armour was invented as a direct result of war. What is more surprising is how many everyday household items, inventions that have apparently nothing to do with warfare, were created because of it. Some had a military application that could be crossed over into civilian life, while others were accidental discoveries made while trying to develop something else.

Depending on your point of view, the contribution of warfare to technological innovation is either impressive or deeply disheartening. Either way, the demands of the military have driven the invention of things around you, and it doesn't look like that's going to change any time soon.

10. Superglue

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By Omegatron [Public Domain] Wikimedia Commons

In 1942, making products for the United States military was a very good way to get by, and the Goodrich Company was beavering away to do just that. In particular they were trying to find material that could be used to rapidly manufacture plastic gun sights.

What they made instead was a gloopy, weird-smelling, and above all sticky substance named cyanoacrylate. The substance is found in the wild as superglue or Krazy Glue, where it has been sticking scale model pieces to kids' fingertips for well over 60 years.

The military history of superglue doesn't end with its accidental discovery. During the Vietnam War, cyanoacrylate spray was used by medics to quickly seal wounds. It might have only been a temporary solution, but it was fast and it worked long enough to get casualties to a hospital.

The medical industry now has several medical forms of superglue to close tears in the skin, which is ironic since it was originally discovered while developing ways to make them

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Ben Counter is a fantasy and science fiction writer, gaming enthusiast, wrestling fan and miniature painting guru. He was raised on Warhammer, Star Wars and 1980s cartoons that, in retrospect, were't that good. Whoever you are, he is nerdier than you.