A few notable STEM achievements from the Netherlands

Don’t let the Netherlands’s size fool you (its colonial power and status as a European nation more than made up for its land mass), the nation has a rich history in science and tech. So I thought I’d list a few I found on Wikipedia that I thought were interesting.

  • A 1608 patent for a telescope was submitted to the Netherlands’ government in the Netherlands by a Dutch spectacle makers Zacharias Janssen and Hans Lipperhey (although it’s not confirmed that they actually invented the device).
  • Cornelis Drebbel constructed the first recorded navigable submarine in the 1620s and it was propelled by oars.
  • Christiaan Huygens, a mathematician, physicist, engineer, astronomer, and inventor, discovered the rings of Saturn and one of its moons, Titan (amongst so many other things, it’d need its own article)
  • Biologist Jan Swammerdam first observed red blood cells during a frog dissection
  • Jan Ingenhousz discovered the process of photosynthesis in 1779
  • The eye chart you see at the opticians? A Dutch ophthalmologist named Herman Snellen invented that, and the chart bears his name
  • Paleoanthropologist and geologist Eugène Dubois discovered of one of the first known specimens of Homo erectus in East Java
  • We have Maurice Gatsonides to thank for the invention of the speed camera, all so he could increase his own speed
  • Kees Schouhamer Immink pioneering work influenced the creation of media such as the Compact Disc, DVD and Blu-ray
  • Guido van Rossum invented Python (and I’m personally grateful for that)
  • Jaap Haartsen played a role in creating the Bluetooth specification in 1994
  • Lisa Mandemaker invented a prototype artificial womb for premature babies, alongside Hendrik-Jan Grievink and Guid Oei

I’m missing a lot of women in this list, I know, so if you have any suggestions, please leave them in the comments and I’ll add them in.

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