Google‘s latest doodle, a giant zipper running down the centre of the search engine’s homepage, marks the birthday of Gideon Sundback, the Swedish-American electrical engineer most commonly associated with the development of the fastening device that revolutionised the clothing industry.

Before Sundback’s intervention, the idea for a fastener based on interlocking teeth had circulated among engineers for more than 20 years but no one had perfected it.

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