Who Invented Enigma Machine


In times of war, it is important for messages to be distributed amongst your troops without the enemy being able to know what is being said. The need for secret messages has evolved over the years and some coding efforts became quite famous. One of the best was the Enigma machine, which was an electro-mechanical cipher machine that could be used to distribute messages. Several models of the machine were produced to encrypt and then decipher texts, with the first model being developed by Arther Scherbius at the end of World War I.

Scherbius obtained a patent for a cipher machine in 1918 and then purchased the rights to a second machine a year later. The first Enigma machines were pitched and then the German military began using them around 1926. Scherbius died in 1929 and not much is known about his life beyond his studies in Munich and his work with Enigma.

The German military, however, was responsible for a number of inventions during this time period. Here is a look at their contributions to world history.

1. Sonic Cannon

One of the most disturbing weapons to be created during the German military was the first sonic cannon. It could literally shake someone apart from the inside out because the sound waves would compress and release the liver and kidneys. Dish reflectors would magnify the sounds and people as far as 400 meters away could feel the sound vibrations in their inner ear and feel nauseous.

2. Fanta

This soft drink was invented in 1941 because it became difficult for Germany to imported because of the trade embargoes that had be levied. The head of Germany’s Coca-Cola division decided that the German market needed a new drink and he used only ingredients that could be secured at the time, which included whey and pomace, which are the solid remains of grapes after they’ve been compressed for juice, wine, or oil. It sold well during the war, but Coca-Cola scrapped it after taking control of the plant once again. Then in 1955, with Pepsi introducing new products, Coke decided to bring Fanta back.

3. Methadone

This drug is a synthetic opioid and it is used as a painkiller in a similar way to morphine. It also has the addictive effects of heroin. It was invented in 1937 because the synthetic painkillers were needed and it came to the US about a decade later. It’s a Schedule II substance in the US right now because of its addictive qualities and about 5,000 people die from overdoses every year.

4. The First Programmable Computer

The Z1 came out of Germany as well and it was the first computer in the world that could be freely programmed. The computer was destroyed in December 1943 during bombing raids on Berlin, as were the plans for the computer, but two additional models, the Z2 and Z3, were created in the follow-up years afterward and they contained just about all the parts of today’s modern computers – just in larger form.

Alan Turning History