Take any popular science magazine.
The first page will probably say:”Quantum Invisibility Cloak Prototype Released.”
A few pages down the line, you might find a write up on Martian sightings in California. And perhaps the next page talks about the quantum mechanical possibilities of time travel.
Absurd as they may sound, these ideas have become commonplace in contemporary world. Exactly a hundred years ago no one talked of invisibility,time travel or alien invasions.
So what has changed over the past century? The answer is Herbert George Wells.
H.G. Wells has recreated the world of science fiction with his literary masterpieces most notably The Invisible Man, War of the Worlds and The Time Machine.
Even before J.K. Rowling introduced us to invisibility cloaks, Wellsâ€™ Â The Invisible Man narrated the story of a scientist who invents a way to change a bodyâ€™s refractive index to that of air so that it absorbs and doesnâ€™t reflect light and thus becomes invisible. Though initially nothing more than mere fiction, the idea of invisibility has inspired scientists to devise methods to reflect incident light and render objects invisible.
Letâ€™s set invisibility aside, maybe Harry Potter wouldâ€™ve brought one to the Muggles someday. But the idea of life on Mars was first introduced in the work ‘The War of The Worldsâ€™ in which Martians invade Earth. It is perhaps this book that has created the deepest impact on popular culture than any other work of science fiction.
H.G.Wells has yet again beat Rowling by successfully travelling through time even before Hermione got her hands on a time turner. Though Wells initially introduced time travel in his short story The Chronic Argonauts, the idea was popularized through the novel released later.
Although his name has faded with time, the influence of H.G. Wells is with us to this day. Along with Jules Verne, he is yet another great mind that deserves the title “Father of Science Fiction.”