The world is becoming smaller due to the advances in technology and transport. Many natural barriers divided the world before advances in transport were made, this includes seas, mountains, deserts, forests and jungles. The first advance in transport was the taming of horses, this is believed to date back to 30,000 BC from paleolithic cave art. The use of camels closely followed horses, camels were used to cross the desert barrier, people met new cultures and traded their goods.
The water barrier between countries was overcome by the invention of the first boat made from wood. It was moved with paddles at first but the invention of the sail allowed the boat to travel along trade winds. Americans explored the Mediterranean and North Africa. In 1942 Columbus discovered a new world to the west whilst looking for a shorter trade route to the east. In 1519 it took Magellan 3 years to sail around the globe and prove was round. The elimination of the water and desert barriers made the world smaller, people could travel further but not very fast.
The use of steam as power began in the late 1800’s at the start of the industrial revolution. Steam was used in industry to power machinery as well as in boats and trains; The first steam train moved at 15 mph which shocked people at the time. In 1869 a train route was established from San Francisco to New York, through Queens and Chicago. This linked America from coast to coast, the tracks passed between mountain and through rivers. The use of steam boats meant that sailors were no longer reliant on wind, they could take their own route to areas instead of following trade winds or paddling.
The gasoline engine was invented in 1962, it completely changed transportation. This invention changed the look of the streets, there were less horse drawn carts and more cars. Gasoline travel led to the aeroplane, in 1903 the Wright Brothers took the first flight and the world followed.
The world’s barriers were now much less of an issue at this point, in theory the world had shrunk and would continue to do so. In 1889 Nelly Bly travelled the world in 72 days, she used a combination of land and sea travel as the aeroplane had not been invented. In 1924 the US Army flew around the world in 14 days, the advances in transport in those 25 years cut down the travel time around the world by 58 days.
Small light aircrafts were made a few years after 1903, a few pence could send a parcel from France to London. In 1945 it took less than a week to travel the world. Regularly scheduled flights lead to people in many countries having new relationships worldwide and goods from abroad. Advances in transport gave traders a much larger market, with the right resources a trader could sell worldwide.
In 1964 the bullet train was invented, it was the start of high speed land travel; the Eurostar in 1993 connected London, Brussels and Paris, it could travel at 520 km/hour and sit 900 people.
Air travel…Easy Jet and Ryanair open to the middle income families
Boeing 747 changed air travel since the 1930, 30’s- carried mail, built from metal, 6 passenger cabin, 1933 -boeing 247
Boeing 747 built in the 60’s and updated in 2010 carries around 450 people
To conclude, transport has connected the world by making natural features such as seas and deserts seem like paths instead of barriers. World travel is now fast, reliable and relatively cheap; people worldwide can travel easily and therefore have become more culturally aware. People from a range of cultures diffuse into others making countries more diverse.
9b) Explain how transport improvements have helped build a more interconnected world.