Geek Quiz Doesn't Add up


The Geek Quiz question “Who invented the light bulb” is full of baloney! The answer you chose, Sir Humphrey Davy is wrong. His invention was the arc lamp, not the light bulb. Huge difference and clearly worded to mislead readers into choosing the wrong answer; which you do often, not sure why.

If the question were “Who invented the first electric light?” then Davy would be a good answer. The arc lamp is as different from the electric light bulb as a truck is from a wheelbarrow.

F.Y.I: I often see problems with the quiz, you should allow people to comment directly on it or have a dedicated category for people to comment.


Sir Humphry Davy, 1st Baronet PRS MRIA FGS FRS (17 December 1778 – 29 May 1829) was a Cornish chemist and inventor,[1] who is best remembered today for isolating, using electricity, a series of elements for the first time: potassium and sodium in 1807 and calcium, strontium, barium, magnesium and boron the following year, as well as discovering the elemental nature of chlorine and iodine.

He also studied the forces involved in these separations, inventing the new field of electrochemistry.

He also invented the Davy lamp and a very early form of incandescent light bulb.


Not a scientist at all, but I am also at a loss why an air-gap arc device that produces light using electricity is considered a bulb?


I’ve seen these articles, but the fact remains, your question asked “Who invented the light bulb?” although Davy did some early experiments, his solution was not viable, it did not use a vacuum and it did not use a durable metal filament. He was a pioneer, he had the idea, but that isn’t the same as “inventing” something. Criteria usually used to define an invention: is it commercially viable and is it patentable. Davy was, however, instrumental in development of the battery.