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Google honors the inventor of the Mackintosh

Today would have been 250th birthday of Charles Macintosh — inventor of water proof fabric.

Photo by Google

Imagine living in a rain prone Scotland in the early 1820’s. Your clothes would have been inevitably been soaked anytime it rained — basically all the time. That was until Scottish chemist Charles Macintosh developed a way to waterproof fabrics in 1823. To celebrate his birth, Google released a doodle of the inventor getting drenched in the rain.

Macintosh conducted experiments with by-products of coal and tar — one of which was naphtha which turned rubber into a paste. Macintosh was able to apply this soluble rubber to fabric resulting in garments that would repeal water.

One such garment was a raincoat called the Mackintosh named after the Scotsman. In the doodle, Macintosh is shown wearing one of the coats as rain water rolls right off him. Just think, it only took a couple hundred years for water proofing to go from fabric to our to our phones!


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