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Nikola Tesla was born on July 9/10 (midnight), 1856 in Smiljam, Croatia, to a Serbian family. His father was an orthodox priest. His mother was unschooled but quite intelligent. Nikola was a dreamer who loved poetry. He was self-disciplined and compulsive. His principle contribution To the field of electromagnetic engineering is the discovery of the rotating magnetic field and the development of the polyphase electrical system. Historians credit Tesla with being a genius because he not only made unique discoveries in electromagnetic engineering but developed these discoveries into working systems in an area of science that had almost no existing body of knowledge other than what he himself had uncovered. Pioneering experiments were also conducted in fluorescent lighting, vacuum tube, radio, robotics, and X-ray technologies

Circumstances in Nikola’s early life resulted in his imagination being exercised to the extreme. In his mind, Nikola would see flashes of light and vivid images. These images were not of imagined subjects, but were familiar scenes. The effect was so intense that it affected his ability to see. Interestingly, his brother exhibited similar difficulties. To gain relief, Nikola would take control of his hallucinations by conjuring up his own images—creating his own imaginary world. He would take imaginary journeys to strange places. These experiences were intense and made as strong an impression on young Nikola as his real life experiences. He played this game constantly from early childhood until the age of 17 when he began channeling his thoughts
toward invention

As an inventor, he was able to eliminate a lot of models, drawings, and experiments by using the imagination he had developed in childhood to work through the development and trials of a new idea. He would conduct his first experiments in his imaginary world, noting problems and
making adjustments, thus completing much of the preliminary work before conducting physical experiments

The first commercially generated power was direct current. Although alternating current could be more efficiently transmitted, it was not used because no satisfactory alternating current motor had been developed. Tesla pondered this problem for many years. Finally, while walking through a park in Budapest, the idea came to him in a flash. He conceived of a rotating magnetic field, created by multiple phases of AC power. This concept would eventually permit him to develop the first successful AC motor

In 1882, Tesla worked at a telegraph office. He invented a telephone amplifier, which he didn’t bother to patent. In the fall of 1882, he went to Paris to work for an Edison subsidiary. He worked as a troubleshooter at power plants in France and Germany. He wanted to sell Mr. Edison on his AC power ideas, but was told that Edison was solidly in favor of DC current over AC. On his own time, he built his first AC motor

In 1884, Tesla immigrated to America, bringing a letter of recommendation addressed to Thomas Edison. He happened to catch Edison at a time when the inventor desperately needed help maintaining his many DC electrical systems. Edison sent Tesla immediately to repair dynamos aboard the SS Oregon. Tesla worked through the night to complete the repairs

Tesla informed Edison that he could make major improvements in Edison’s DC dynamos. Edison said if he did, there would be $50,000 in it for him. Tesla worked long hours for almost a year to complete the redesign. He visited Edison and asked about his $50,000. Edison replied,
“Tesla, you don’t understand our American humor.” Tesla resigned. America was entering an economic depression and Nikola Tesla found himself working on a New York street gang from 1886 to 1887


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