The big environmental footprint of human activity is indicative of its huge impact on Earth’s evolution. After moving out of the forests, man had to fight vigorously to survive in new, unfamiliar environments. Today, he has concurred nearly all of them. He learned how to use fire, and developed agriculture and horticulture. Nowadays, through science and technology, human exhibit a dramatically improved lifestyle.
The ability to communicate contributed enormously to human evolution. Simple facial expressions in the beginning, soon gave their place to oral and then written language and later on to printing. In our era, the internet has brought a revolution in communication.
As soon as man understood how to produce his own food, he abandoned the nomadic way of life. Humans cultivated plants and selected through plant breeding the most productive species. They also experimented on animals, some of which were domesticated and have been ever since used as sources of numerous products, such as meat, milk, pelt and manure.
The control of fire by early humans was a turning point in human evolution. From obtaining warmth and cooking food, the use of fire led to the production of iron from iron ore, of glass from sand and energy from steam, which ultimately led to the Industrial Revolution.
Humans have developed a number of food preservation methods (fermenting in brine or syrup, drying, and more recently, canning and freezing. They have been using bacteria and fungi for the production of new, “tastier” products. They have also elaborated wool, cotton and silk to make clothing material and used plants as herbal medicine and wood to build houses, boats and numerous utensils.
Man has invented machinery and techniques that shaped human history. From the early inventions of the wheel, the level and the pulley to the contemporary sophisticated scientific instruments, human curiosity, mental and construction ability never ceased to explore and exploit the natural world in an effort to cover the needs of an ever growing population.
A showcase is devoted to the exploitation of natural resources in the past and the present, regarding the fields of food production and communication, as well as the implementation of raw materials such as stone, marble, clay, wood, iron and cooper in various techniques and inventions. However, many human activities have had a negative impact on Earth. The positive results of human creativity are interwoven with the negative effect of human activity on Earth, due to the irrational use of natural resources.