When one typically thinks of NASA's greatest accomplishments, it probably includes putting men on the Moon. Maybe they'll think of Mars rover expeditions like Curiosity. We doubt most would immediately recognize digital cameras or memory foam mattresses as NASA achievements. However, those frequently-used items and more come thanks in part (or in whole) due to NASA research and development. Express Doors Direct compiled a list of the nine coolest ways NASA improved our lives -- most of which we take for granted.
Each image offers a little 'before and after' effect. Simply slide the arrows to uncover the NASA innovation or its modern, everyday counterpart.
(All images from the Express Doors Direct blog. We're not entirely sure why a door company would include NASA innovations on its blog. However, we definitely share their enthusiasm for outer space innovations!)
Super Soaker Water Guns
If you enjoy cooling off on a hot day with a water gun fight, thank NASA researchers. The National Toy Hall of Fame expounds on Johnson's story even more. The Tuskegee Institute mechanical and nuclear engineer hooked a nozzle up to his bathroom faucet. He improvised the first Super Soaker with just a soda bottle and PVC pipe. The initial name for the gun? The Power Drencher. When Johnson realized his invention would be better suited for a toy market, he struck a deal with the Larami Corporation. The company sold 27 million Super Soakers in the first three years of its production. To date, both the Larami Corporation and now Hasbro toys have sold 200 million Super Soakers in 175 different styles.
While supporting your family pics, NASA's camera developments have led to some of the most incredible images in the galaxy. Most notably, the Hubble Telescope's cameras have captured insanely beautiful pictures of the farthest reaches of our universe.
Memory Foam Mattresses and Pillows
Memory foam mattresses also help to displace pressure on the body, allowing for a more comfortable night's sleep. The foam has even found its way into shoe insoles, offering runners optimal comfort during a workout.
Classic 8-bit arcade consoles most notably feature the iconic joystick controller. However, modern controllers have mini-joystick setups as well (as any XBox fan will note).