This work features in-depth critical essays on important men and women inventors of all time, from around the world. Plus, free online access to the full content of this remarkable reference set is available. The printed reference includes: four volumes, including 2,048 pages; 409 essays and 409 sidebars; hundreds of photos, illustrations and graphs; and, appendixes, indexes and resource listings. Features of the online subscription include: fully supported; complimentary online access; unlimited users at your library; full access from home or dorm room; immediate access via online registration; a simple, intuitive interface; user profile areas for students and patrons; sophisticated search functions; complete content, including appendixes; and, fully illustrated. "Great Lives from History: Inventors and Inventions" features 409 essays covering 413 individual inventors (including 27 women) from all time, worldwide. All essays were written specifically for this new publication. The editors have included in this set those inventors recognized for shaping modern technology and the way we live today - coverage that is essential in any liberal arts curriculum. The editor's criteria for including these individuals in this publication took into account their fame as inventors, the significance of their inventions, the amount of time they spent inventing, their representation of world inventors, their relevance to class curricula, and their interest to high school, undergraduate, and general readers. For purposes of this publication, the term 'invention' was defined to include not only mechanical and other physical devices but also processes (e.g., the Bessemer process for making steel), software (such as Grace Hopper's invention of COBOL), and systems such as those applied to business management. Pure scientific theories (such as laws of physics) were excluded, although rare exceptions were made for such systems and tools that have had an comprehensive influence on our way of interacting with the world, such as Aristotle's invention of the first system of biological taxonomy, Newton's creation of the calculus, and Einstein's theories of relativity.