Jagadish Chandra Bose was one of the world’s greatest scientists, which is why he is the subject of today’s Google Doodle. November 30th 2016 marks what would have been the Indian scientist’s 158th birthday. During his lifetime, Bose became a world leader in telecommunications with many achievements to his name.
The doodle shows the scientist, who was known all across the US, Australia, India, and France, with the crescograph. This instrument was one of his inventions that was used to measure growth in plants. And it helped Bose to determine environmental effects on vegetation.
Here are a few important facts that you should know about Sir Jagadish Chandra Bose.
Learning Bengali Sparked His Interest in Nature
Bose’s father sent him to a vernacular school located in Munshiganj when he was just a young boy. His father believed that Bose should know his own mother’s native tongue before he learned the English language.
“I listened spellbound to stories of birds, animals and aquatic creatures. Perhaps these stories created in my mind a keen interest in investigating the workings of Nature,” Bose later told a conference at Bikrampur in 1915.
His father encouraged him to become a scholar, even though his family suffered from poverty. He left Bangladesh at the age of 18 to study natural science at Christ’s College in Cambridge.
He was Denied Access to Labs Due to his Race
After he joined the University of Calcutta as a Professor of Physics, Bose was often denied access to the labs due to his ethnic background. As the British Empire continued to assert its control over Indian educational institutions.
Because of this, the professor would resort to conducting elaborate experiments inside his home, which was a 24-square foot room in downtown Calcutta, where he struggled to store all his scientific supplies.
Bose also reportedly faced racial discrimination and abuse during his time as a professor, but he refused to let it affect his pioneering research.
He Was Considered One of the Father of Radio Science
There was a great misconception that the famous biophysicist is in some way connected with Bose, the modern technology company that manufactures high-quality headphones and sound equipment. But this is not the case. Bose was, however a highly significant figure in the creation of modern radio and sonic technology, while also showing a great interest in botany.
During his years of research, Bose made great progress in bringing remote wireless signaling to life and invented an early version of wireless telecommunication.
He would have been able to reap significant financial and commercial benefits from these discoveries if only he had decided to cash in on his inventions. But he rejected wealth and made his inventions public, to allow others to develop from his research.
In 1997, the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers named Bose as a “father of radio science.”
He Understood that Plants “Feel Pain”
One of Bose’s greatest achievements was his invention of the crescograph which allowed scientists to discover how the seasons and external stimuli affected plant life.
The scientist worked endlessly to chart how chemical inhibitors, temperature, and light could change the way that plants grow, and he advised humans on how to better care for all types of vegetation.
This knowledge helped to pave the way for scientists to understand how to cultivate crops in a more effective way and encouraged people to take better care of plant life. In one report, Bose wrote that he believed plants “feel pain and understand affection” just as much as humans do.
There is a Crater on the Moon Named After Him
A small impact crater that is located on the far side of the Moon is named after Bose. The Bose Crater, is located close to Crater Bhabha and Crater Adler, and has a reported diameter of 91 kilometers.
The outer rim of the Bose Crater has become worn and the edges rounded by impacts, although the shape of the site has been well-preserved.
The crater was named after Bose to recognize his achievements in the field of wireless telecommunications in particular, which are said to have paved the way for satellite communications.
He was Reluctant to File Any Patents for his Inventions
Even though Bose filed a patent for one of his inventions due to peer pressure, his reluctance to any form of patenting was well known. To facilitate his research, he constructed automatic recorders capable of registered extremely slight movements, these instruments produced some striking results, such as Bose’s demonstration of an apparent power of feeling in plants, exemplified by the quivering of injured plants. This information is available in further detail in his books Response in the Living and Non-Living (1902) and The Nervous Mechanism of Plants (1926)