Benjamin Franklin was a statesman, inventor, writer, founding father, musician, diplomat and scientist. With all of this going for him, he still managed to find time to invent some of the most important and lasting advancements in United States history.
Benjamin Franklin made homes all over the world safer when he invented the lightning rod. This device is attached to the top of a house and grounded with wire, so lightning does not harm the structure. It hits the lightning rod and the electricity travels straight to the ground. He probably did not come up with this idea by flying a kite in a storm, but he was a daring inventor, nonetheless.
People out there who have ever had to have a catheter put in have no idea just how painful it used to be. Before Benjamin Franklin came up with a flexible alternative, catheters were rigid. That is right. A rigid tube was placed in the urethra. This invention relieved a lot of people's pain.
Bifocals enable a person to look down for their reading prescription and up for their everyday use lenses. This was and remains a major advancement in vision care. This simple idea made it so visually impaired people do not have to carry more than one pair of eyeglasses.
These are just the most major of Benjamin Franklin's inventions. He also invented a glass armonica, the first map of the Gulf Stream and much more. However, history buffs should beware. Franklin is also credited with inventions that were not his, though he did create or imagine his own versions of other inventions quite a bit.