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11 Very Important Inventions That Happened In The '80s

Yes, scrunchies are important. Something very awesome that also happened in the '80s? The original Post-it® Brand Canary Yellow Note was introduced.

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1. The Disposable Camera

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What could be better than a camera, an almost magical device that allows you to capture those ~special~ moments and gives you endless content to hang in that very empty wall above the fireplace? Answer: a camera that you can throw in the garbage...'cause it's cheaper. 1986 brought exactly that.

2. High-definition Television

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Today we have plasma, LCD, LED, OLED, and 3D TVs. Heck, we even have 4D movie theaters where you get sprayed when a dinosaur sneezes on-screen. But back in the day, people only got to enjoy their shows with the quality of a texturized acrylic painting. But by 1989, the first high-definition images appeared across 89 screens in Japan, forever changing the way the world watched TV.

3. DNA Fingerprinting

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In 1984, geneticist extraordinaire Sir Alec Jeffreys aimed to show the genetic links between people when — BAM! — a key technique identifying genetical variations was discovered. Jeffreys describes it as "magical," and granted he could've tried to invent unicorns or something (being that they're also magical), but unicorns ain't gonna help solve any crimes.

4. The Scanning Tunneling Microscope

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It's the little things that mesmerize some of us — maybe a pretty flower or the scent of pizza. But other people, like Gerd Binnig and Heinrich Rohrer, were mesmerized by the tiniest things, specifically: atomic surfaces. So in 1981, they designed a microscope that allowed them to see atoms and molecules, which opened up a world of awesome new fields. They won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1986.

5. The Scrunchie

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Before anyone rolls their eyes so hard they'll get stuck in the back of their cranium, let us say this: Scrunchies are friggin' comfortable. Comfort-wise, the difference between a regular ponytail holder and a scrunchie is literally the difference between sitting on a cold, hard rock or on a warm, velvety sofa. So for that, we thank this 1986 accessory.

6. The Space Shuttle

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The launch of the Space Shuttle in 1981 also launched a legacy of pure technological badassery. How so? Well, it was shot like a dang bullet into outer space, propelled by a couple of ~reusable~ rocket boosters that later fell into the ocean (where they'd later be collected). And once in route back to our terrestrial sphere, it landed super smoothly.

7. Compact Discs

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In 1982, the shiny, doughnut-shaped music-storing disc was unveiled to the public. It allowed us to listen to 74 minutes of bad '80s songs and turned the music industry on its head.

8. The Permanent Artificial Heart

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It sounds crazy: opening up a body, taking a heart out, and putting a fake one in. The first permanent artificial heart recipient, Barney Clark, kinda knew this and thought he'd only live a few days after his surgery, but he lived 112 days — they weren't necessarily pleasant, but hey, the device worked (although temporarily) and is still used to this day.

9. 3D Glasses

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Student of human vision/genius Kenneth J. Dunkley found out that a regular ol' picture can look 3D if you blocked two areas of your peripheral vision, and then created the funky-looking glasses that allow our eyes to trip a little. So you can sort of thank him for feeling like you're legit gonna get slapped by a poltergeist next time you go watch a 3D movie.

10. Mullets (and Hideous Hairstyles in General)

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Without the existence of the unsexiest hairdo in history, we wouldn't have the opportunity to laugh at the abundance of terrifying looks in years past. And although the mullet had certainly been around since the '80s, it didn't officially get its name until 1994.

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