What He Invented: The Modern Home-Video Gaming Console.
Why It’s Important: Anyone who owns a Playstation, Wii or Xbox should know Lawson’s name. He created the first home video game system that used interchangeable cartridges, offering gamers a chance to play a variety of games and giving video game makers a way to earn profits by selling individual games, a business model that exists today.
Patricia Bath (1942–)
What She Invented: The Cataract Laserphaco Probe.
Why It’s Important: Her device used an innovative method of removing cataract lenses with a laser, which was more accurate than the drill-like instruments that were in common use at the time. The New York ophthalmologist’s invention, patented in 1988, helped save the eyesight of millions and even restored sight to people who had been blind for more than 30 years.