Happy Birthday, Nikola Tesla!

Today is Nikola Tesla Day! Celebrated on his birthday, July 10th, people around the world pay homage to this remarkable man. He would have been 157 years old this year, and, in his honor, I’m rocking my Tesla Coil t-shirt to work.

The creator of modern electricity, radio, robotics, and wireless energy, Tesla is one of the most inspiring people I’ve ever read about. I picked up a free book about him on my Kindle, and it blew my mind. For your edification, here’s a summary of his life from The Oatmeal. It’s a great overview of why you should celebrate his genius, with some added snark and hilarity for your entertainment.

I have no experience in any of the fields in which Tesla was influential, but I celebrate him for his character as well as his brilliant mind. His humility made him a man of great integrity – he created with the mindset of benefiting all, rather than making a profit for himself. Do you know that he invented a machine with the hopes of powering the entire planet with free electricity? He tested a prototype and it worked, but his idea was squashed by a gentleman (JP Morgan), who didn’t want to give away anything for free. Even something that wasn’t really his to control in the first place. So, unfortunately for Tesla, his naiveté about helping society was arguably also his greatest downfall.

He was exploited time and time again, being screwed over by people who wanted to use his genius for their monetary gain. But the thing is, he never stopped creating, or trying to better society. Even one that seemed to want nothing more than to take advantage of him. And for that reason, above all, I celebrate Nikola Tesla.

I encourage you as well, dear reader, to learn more about Nikola Tesla so you can appreciate his genius and let his relentlessly creative and brilliant mind inspire you as well.