Ancient India – Stepping Stones To Modern Technology

By | August 14, 2019

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ORCHA, MADHYA PRADESH, INDIA - 1998/01/01: Abandoned ancient Hindu temples of the 16th century. Source: (Photo by Alberto Buzzola/LightRocket via Getty Images 158683505)

The world received a lot of technological advances from ancient India. As Albert Einstein put it, “We owe a lot to the ancient Indians, teaching us how to count. Without which most modern scientific discoveries would have been impossible.”

No one man or generation knows everything about everything but each contribution builds on the next one. Like stepping stones, mankind can climb higher and higher in technological advances as knowledge increases more and more. Each new generation relies on the information that was obtained in the previous generation.   

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Aryabhata. Source: (


Math, for example, would have not been achieved the way it is today without the number zero. A mathematician from India named Aryabhata, born in 476 CE, was responsible for introducing the symbol for zero. Imagine how hard it would have been to keep coming up with new numbers without the zero. Instead of 10, 20, 30, and so on, original numbers would have had to have been continually created to keep up. The number zero is also used immensely in computer languages consisting of bytes of code made up entirely of 1’s and 0’s. Besides the number zero, Aryabhata is also the one who introduced the irrational number for pi (π) which is 3.14159265. The reason why it is considered irrational is that it is a real number that cannot be expressed as a simple fraction; an infinite decimal. Aryabhata wrote a compilation of treatises called “Ayrabhatiya” that covered math and astronomy. His theories provided the groundwork (stepping stone) for algebra, arithmetic, and trigonometry.