Livescience looks at the remarkable impact that German inventor Johannes Gutenberg has had on the world with the invention of his printing press. Using Asian typsetting methods, an oil based ink recipe,, his own metal letter molds and s press design based on European grape and olive presses, he revolutionized the written word for the world, allowing literacy to flourish across first Europe and then the globe.
"He didn't invent printing. He didn't even invent movable type. He often ran into legal trouble and, when he died in 1468, he did so with little money or glory. And yet today Johannes Gutenberg is one of the most celebrated inventors in history, chiefly because his chef d'oeuvre – the printing press – allowed his story, as well as the stories of thousands of others, to be set down on paper. Gutenberg's printing press spread literature to the masses for the first time in an efficient, durable way, shoving Europe headlong into the original information age – the Renaissance."
The Guttenberg Bible is widely credited with the assisting the spread of the Renaissance and the Protestant Reformation. Guttenberg's press design was so successful that it wasn't replaced until the 19th century, when steam powered presses began to be designed.