What Germans Have Given Us Besides Their Soccer Players

PHOTO: U.S. soccer players, from left, Fabian Johnson, Jermaine Jones, Julian Green, and Timothy Chandler meet after a practice in preparation for the World Cup tournament, in Stanford, Calif., May 22, 2014.
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The bond between Germany and the United States runs deeper than a few soccer players and coach Jurgen Klinsmann as the two countries get set to clash in the 2014 World Cup. Chances are, even if you're rooting for the U.S. men's national team Thursday, you’ll encounter these everyday inventions made possible by great German minds.

Beer

In 1516, Dikes Wilhelm IV and Ludwig X of Bavaria issued a decree known as the “Reinheitsgebot,” or “Purity Law” that put an end to adding unusual ingredients in a brew, such as ox bile and snake root, which were typically used to make it last longer or increase its intoxicating effect. Since the decree, only barley, hops, and water could be used to produce beer, a food regulation still existing today.

PHOTO: Beers are pictured in this stock image.
Grant Faint/Getty Images
PHOTO: Beers are pictured in this stock image.

The Automobile

In 1886, Karl Benz and Gottlieb Daimler made humankind more mobile with their motor-driven tricycle and a motorized carriage.

PHOTO: A Volkswagen is pictured in this stock image.
Beth Perkins/Getty Images
PHOTO: A Volkswagen is pictured in this stock image.

Toothpaste

In 1907, Ottomar von Mayenburg experimented with tooth powder, mouthwash, ethereal oils and added a little peppermint for good taste. The result was Chlorodont toothpaste, which went on to win a gold medal in 1911 at the first International Hygiene Exhibition in Munich.

PHOTO: Toothpaste is pictured in this stock image.
Adam Gault/Getty Images
PHOTO: Toothpaste is pictured in this stock image.

The Coffee Filter

German housemaker Melitta Benz hoped to brew a cleaner cup of coffee without the remnants of coffee grinds and the bitterness caused by over-extraction. She patented the coffee filter in the summer of 1908.

PHOTO: A coffee filter is pictured in this stock image.
Jose Luis Pelaez/Getty Images
PHOTO: A coffee filter is pictured in this stock image.

Gummy Bears

Hans Riegal first created the fruit-flavored treat in his kitchen in 1922.

PHOTO: Gummy bears are pictured in this stock image.
Melissa Ross/Getty Images
PHOTO: Gummy bears are pictured in this stock image.

Television

Manfred von Ardenne made the first successful electronic television transmission on Christmas Eve of 1930.

PHOTO: A television is pictured in this stock image.
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PHOTO: A television is pictured in this stock image.

The Computer

In 1941, Konrad Zuse created the first electro-mechanical computer, called the Z3, which could carry out the four basic types of calculation in three seconds.

PHOTO: A computer is pictured in this stock image.
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PHOTO: A computer is pictured in this stock image.

Airbags

The safety device now standard in vehicles around the world was used for the first time in 1981 as an option in the Mercedes-Benz S-Class.

PHOTO: An airbag is pictured in this stock image.
Patti McConville/Getty Images
PHOTO: An airbag is pictured in this stock image.

Asprin

On August 10, 1897, Felix Hoffmann synthesized acetylsalicylic acid, now known as Asprin. Bayer released the pain remedy, which soon became the best-selling painkiller on the market.

PHOTO: A woman with aspirin is pictured in this stock image.
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PHOTO: A woman with aspirin is pictured in this stock image.

Office Supplies

The hole punch, ring binder, glue stick, and adhesive tape are all the work of German inventors.

PHOTO: Tape is pictured in this stock image.
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PHOTO: Tape is pictured in this stock image.

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