The following is a list of significant men and women known for being the father, mother, or considered the founders mostly in Western societies in a field, listed by category. In most non-science fields, the title of being the "father" is debatable.
|3D gaming||Yu Suzuki
|Creator of Hang-On, Virtua Racing and Virtua Fighter
Creator of Wolfenstein 3D and Doom
|Miniature wargaming||H. G. Wells||Publication of Little Wars|
|Modern video game||Shigeru Miyamoto||Creator of many successful Nintendo franchises|
|Role-playing game||Gary Gygax||Creator of Dungeons & Dragons|
|Stealth game||Hideo Kojima||Creator of the Metal Gear stealth-action games|
|Video game||Thomas T. Goldsmith, Jr.||Inventor of the first video game|
|Video game industry||Nolan Bushnell||Creator of Pong and founder of Atari and Chuck E. Cheese's|
|Wargaming||Charles S. Roberts||Designer of tactics|
|American football||Walter Camp|
|American motocross||Edison Dye||Introduced motorcross to American riders.|
|American road racing||Cameron Argetsinger||Introduced the first US auto race that was dedicated to road courses at Watkins Glen.|
|American soccer||Steve Ross||Godfather, created the New York Cosmos soccer team and imported a number of well known international footballers to the team in an attempt to bring interest to soccer in the US.|
|Angling||Izaak Walton||Author of The Compleat Angler.|
|Argentine football||Alexander Watson Hutton|
|Argentine professional golf||José Jurado|
|Argentine winter sports||Otto Meiling|
|Association football||Ebenezer Cobb Morley|
|Australian rules football||Tom Wills|
|H. C. A. Harrison|
|Basketball||James Naismith||Created basketball.|
|Black basketball||Edwin Henderson||Introduced the sport to the black community of Washington, D.C. in the first decade of the 20th century, and organized many early competitions for African Americans.|
|Brazilian football||Charles William Miller|
|Camel Lights||Jim Downing||Built a racecar a season before it became the basis of a new lightweight prototype class in 1985.|
|Canadian rodeo||O. Raymond Knight||Coined the rodeo term "stampede" and was world's first rodeo producer, rodeo stock contractor, and rodeo champion in 1902.|
|Drag racing||Wally Parks||Founder of the NHRA and organized the first legitimate drag race.|
|Don Garlits||Considered to be one of the innovators of drag racing safety.|
|Eddie Hill||Regarded as the forefather of drag racing.|
|Drifting||Kunimitsu Takahashi||Introduced an aggressive high speed cornering technique that became widely used for illicit purposes which eventually became a sport.|
|East Coast skateboarding||Vinny Raffa (godfather)|
|Florida skateboarding||Bruce Walker (godfather)|
|Modern football||Ebenezer Cobb Morley|
|Freestyle BMX||Bob Haro|
|Freestyle Motocross||Mike Metzger||Godfather.[why?]|
|Funny Car||Dick Landy|
|Ice hockey||James Creighton||Captained of one of the two teams that participated in the first indoor hockey game on March 3, 1875 in Montreal.|
|Import drag racing||Frank Choi||Hosted one of the first events specifically for import cars in the mid-1990s to keep drivers out of street racing that progressed into a professional category.|
|Italian football||James Richardson Spensley||Given due to his association with Genoa CFC and his contribution to the modern day variation of the game in Italy.|
|William Garbutt||Laying the foundations of skilled coaching in Italian football.|
|Japanese baseball||Horace Wilson||Credited for introducing baseball in Japan.|
|Hiroshi Hiraoka||Credited for establishing the first baseball team.|
|Jogging||Jim Fixx||Founding father.[why?]|
|Kart racing||Art Ingels||Developed the world's first kart (1956).|
|Kenyan running||Colm O'Connell||Founded the first running camp in Kenya|
|Lacrosse||William George Beers||Codified the sport.|
|Mixed martial arts||Edward William Barton-Wright||For his experimentation during the years 1898–1902 into Shinden Fudo Ryu jujutsu, Kodokan judo, British boxing,Swiss schwingen, French savate and a defensive la canne (stick fighting) style that had been developed by Pierre Vigny of Switzerland which lead to the invention of Bartitsu.|
|Modern bodybuilding||Eugen Sandow|
|Harold Zinkin||Called so by Arnold Schwarzenegger during a press statement on his passing in 2004. Inventor of the modern exercise machines.|
|Modern boxing||James Figg|
|James J. Corbett|
|Modern figure skating||Jackson Haines||"Jackson Haines - The Father of Figure Skating," according to Roy Blakey|
|Modern football in Japan||Dettmar Cramer|
|Organized radio controlled car racing||Ted Longshaw||Regarded as a grandfather of the sport, beside founding an organization for racing in the United Kingdom (1971), he also founded governing bodies for organized racing in Europe (1973), the far east (1980) and worldwide (1979).|
|Modern sabre fencing||Italo Santelli|
|Modern surfing||Duke Kahanamoku|
|Rodeo bareback bronc riding||Earl W. Bascom||Bascom designed and made the first one-hand rigging in 1924.|
|Rugby union||A. G. Guillemard|
|William Webb Ellis||"Who with a fine disregard for the rules of football as played in his time first took the ball in his arms and ran with it thus originating the distinctive feature of the rugby game".|
|Scuba diving||Jacques Cousteau||Developed the aqua-lung jointly with Émile Gagnan; popularized scuba diving as a research diver, writer, and film and television producer and personality.|
|Skateboarding||Skip Engblom (godfather)|
|Tony Hawk (godfather)|
|Snowboarding||Jake Burton Carpenter|
|Stock car racing||Bill France, Sr.||Foundation of the sanctioning body for stock car racing|
|Supercross||Mike Goodwin||Organized the first supercross race.|
|Televised golf||Frank Chirkinian||Personally responsible for much of the production conventions of modern golf broadcasting.|
|Aerodynamics (modern)||Sir George Cayley||Founding father of modern Aerodynamics. The first to identify the four aerodynamic forces of flight—weight, lift, drag, and thrust. Modern airplane design is based on those discoveries.|
|Architecture||Imhotep||Built the first pyramid|
|Aviation||Father Francesco Lana-Terzi||Book: Prodromo alla Arte Maestra (1670). First to describe the geometry and physics of a flying vessel.|
|British watchmaking||Thomas Tompion|
|Clinical trials||James Lind||Conducted the first controlled clinical trial in the modern era of medicine, an investigation on using citrus food as a treatment for scurvy aboard HMS Salisbury in 1747|
|Computing||Charles Babbage||Inventor of the Analytical Engine which was never constructed in his lifetime.|
|Genetics||Gregor Johann Mendel||Founder of the Genetics|
|Modern bladesmithing||William F. Moran||Founder of the American Bladesmith Society|
|Modern kinematics||Ferdinand Freudenstein||Applied digital computation to the kinematic synthesis of mechanisms.|
|Modern Knifemaking||Bob Loveless||Founder of the Knifemakers' Guild|
|Modern Linguistics||Noam Chomsky|
|Nanotechnology||Richard Smalley||Nobel Prize Biography|
William Henry Fox Talbot
|Robotics||Al-Jazari||Invented the first programmable humanoid robot in 1206.|
|C (programming language)||Dennis Ritchie|
|Compiler||John Backus||John Backus at IBM is generally credited as having introduced the first complete compiler in 1957 although rudimental compilers(linker) were created by Grace Hopper in 1952 and by J. Halcombe Laning & Neal Zerlier (Laning and Zierler system) in 1954.|
|Computer||Charles Babbage||The concepts he pioneered in his Analytical engine later formed the basis of modern computers.|
|Konrad Zuse||Invented world's first functional program-controlled computer.|
|Alan Turing||Was a secret code breaker during WWII and invented the Turing machine (1936).|
|John von Neumann||Became "intrigued" with Turing's universal machine and later emphasised the importance of the stored-program concept for electronic computing (1945), including the possibility of allowing the machine to modify its own program in useful ways while running. John von Neumann is also considered to be the inventor of flowchat.|
|John V. Atanasoff||Invented the digital computer in the 1930s|
|John W. Mauchly
|Invented the ENIAC (Electronic Numerical Integrator And Computer) in 1946. ENIAC was the first general-purpose electronic computer capable of being reprogrammed to solve a full range of computing problems.|
|Computer program||Ada Lovelace||Recognized by historians as the writer of the world's first computer program which was for the Charles Babbage Analytical Engine, but was never complete within either her lifetime.|
||Co-invented Internet protocol (IP) and Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) in 1973, the two original protocols of the Internet protocol suite.|
|Pentium microprocessor||Vinod Dham||The original Pentium (P5) was developed by a team of engineers, including John H. Crawford, chief architect of the original 386, and Donald Alpert, who managed the architectural team. Dror Avnon managed the design of the FPU. Dham was general manager of the P5 group. Some media sources have called him the "father of the Pentium".|
|Personal computer||Chuck Peddle||Developed the 6502 microprocessor, the KIM-1 and the Commodore PET|
|Henry Edward "Ed" Roberts
André Truong Trong Thi
|Programmable logic controller||Dick Morley|
|Search engine||Alan Emtage||Created Archie, a pre-Web search engine which pioneered many of the techniques used by subsequent search engines|
|World Wide Web||Tim Berners-Lee|
|Visual Basic||Alan Cooper|
|Air conditioning||Willis Carrier|||
|Chronograph||George Graham||Referred so by Bernard Humbert of the Horology School of Bienne on his 1990 book he Chronograph as Graham was the first to construct a horological mechanism|
|Color photography||Sergey Prokudin-Gorsky||A Russian chemist and photographer. He is best known for his pioneering work in color photography of early 20th-century Russia.|
|Compact Disc||Kees Immink|
|Ekranoplan||Rostislav Alexeev||Alexeyev revolutionised the shipbuilding industry (though in secrecy) by inventing crafts that use ground effect, whereby a wing traveling close to the ground is provided with a better lift-drag ratio - thereby enabling a combination of greater aircraft weight for less power and/or enhanced fuel economy.|
|Helicopter||Igor Sikorsky||Invented the first successful helicopter, upon which further designs were based.|
|Instant noodle||Momofuku Ando||Inventor of the instant noodle, also founder of Nissin Foods to produce and market them.|
|Japanese television||Kenjiro Takayanagi|
|Jet engine||Frank Whittle|
|Karaoke||Daisuke Inoue||Inventor of the machine as a means of allowing people to sing without the need of a live back-up.|
|Laser||Charles Hard Townes|
|Lightning prediction system||Alexander Stepanovich Popov||The first lightning prediction system, the Lightning detector, was invented in 1894 by Alexander Stepanovich Popov.|
|Marine chronometer||John Harrison|
|Mobile phone||Martin Cooper|
|Periodic table||Dmitri Mendeleev||Russian chemist, Dmitri Mendeleev, arranged the elements in an order that we would now recognise. He realised that the physical and chemical properties of elements were related to their atomic mass in a 'periodic' way, and arranged them so that groups of elements with similar properties fell into vertical columns in his table.|
|Radio||Alexander Stepanovich Popov
Lee De Forest
Jagdish Chandra Bose
Roberto Landell de Moura
|The research of these pioneers led to the development of the radio|
|Radio (Radio broadcasting)||Reginald Fessenden
David Sarnoff
|Fessenden is credited as the first to broadcast radio signals on Christmas Eve, 1906. Sarnoff proposed a chain of radio stations to Marconi's associates in 1915.|
|Radio (FM radio)||Edwin H. Armstrong||Obtained the first Federal Communications Commission (FCC) license to operate an FM station in Alpine, New Jersey at approximately 50 megahertz (1939)|
|Telephone||Alexander Graham Bell||See Invention of the telephone|
|Television||Philo T. Farnsworth||Co-Inventors of the Electronic Television. Farnsworth invented the Image dissector while Zworykin created the Iconoscope, both fully electronic forms of television. Logie Baird invented the world's first working television system, also the first electronic color television system.|
|Tube structure||Fazlur Khan||Invented the tube structural system and first employed it in his designs for the DeWitt-Chestnut Apartments, John Hancock Center and Sears Tower.|
Towns, cities, and regions
|British Columbia||James Douglas||Fur trader and manager for the North West Company and Hudson's Bay Company, Governor of the Colony of Vancouver Island and first Governor of the Colony of British Columbia.|
|Lan Kwai Fong||Allan Zeman||Noted for turning a small square of streets in Central, into a thriving bar and night life districts in Hong Kong.|
|Miami, Florida||Henry Flagler||Builder of the Florida East Coast Railway|
|20th century American car industry||Henry Ford||Noted for introducing a simple and affordable car for the ordinary American masses.|
|American Interstate Highway System||Dwight D. Eisenhower||Proposed and signed the act which created the System|
|flight simulator||Edwin Albert Link||Developed the Link Trainer|
|High-performance VW industry||Gene Berg|
|Hot rod||Ed Winfield|
|Import car culture||RJ DeVera||Influential for popularizing the import car scene in the mid-1990s.|
|Kustom Kulture||Von Dutch|
|Monster truck||Bob Chandler||Famed for building Bigfoot, which was the first to be capable of driving over cars and subsequently became one of the most famous monster truck in history|
|Mountain bike||Gary Fisher|
|Rock Crawling||Marlin Czajkowski||In 1994, Marlin made final drive ratios of 200:1 and lower possible in typical off road vehicles (primarily Toyota Hilux trucks) and changed the way people access remote off-roading destinations.|
|Rotary engine||Felix Wankel|
|Route 66||Cyrus Avery|
|Traffic safety||William Phelps Eno|
|Yellow school bus||Frank W. Cyr|
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- "Henry Chadwick, Chad, The Father of Base Ball [sic]"; National Baseball Hall of Fame bio,. Not a player, but a journalist and organizer, the Hall of Fame credits him as "inventor of the box score" and "author of the first rule-book."
- Spalding's Baseball Guide and Official League Book for 1889, ed. Henry Chadwick at Project Gutenberg: "Henry Chadwick, the veteran journalist, upon whom the honored sobriquet of 'Father of Base Ball[sic]' rests so happily and well, appears in portraiture, and so well preserved in his physical manhood that his sixty-three years rest lightly upon his well timed life."
- "Matty" at Harvard; The New York Times, February 16, 1909, p. 7: "Charles H. Ebbets, Chairman of the Chadwick Monument Committee, has announced that the contract has been awarded for a suitable monument to be placed on the plot in Greenwood[sic] Cemetery where the remains of the late Henry Chadwick, 'the Father of Baseball,' repose."
- Collins, Glen (2004): "Ground as Hallowed as Cooperstown," The New York Times, April 1, 2004. (Article on baseball notables interred in the Green-Wood Cemetery in Brooklyn) "Among the nearly 600,000 people buried there are no less than four pioneers who were accorded the title 'Father of Baseball' in the popular press: Henry Chadwick, Duncan Curry, William Tucker and William Wheaton....The memorial for Henry Chadwick bears a 'Father of Base Ball' inscription.... [Duncan] Curry, first president of the Knickerbocker Baseball Club, is immortalized with a monument that proudly dubs him 'Father of Baseball' because he headed the club that scholars say first codified many of the game's rules...."
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- Booth, Martin (1999). Opium: A History. St. Martin's Press. p. 30. ISBN 0-312-20667-4. Retrieved 2013-08-21. "Robert Hall, the divine, was addicted [to opium], as was Thomas Wedgwood, the father of photography."
- Marco Ceccarelli, ed. (2009). Distinguished Figures in Mechanism and Machine Science: Their Contributions and Legacies, Part 2. Springer. p. 13. ISBN 9789048123452. Retrieved 2013-08-20. "Other chapters of Al-Jazari's work describe fountains and musical automata which are of interest mainly because the flow of water in them alternated from one large tank to another at hourly or half-hourly intervals. Several ingenious devices for hydraulic switching were used to achieve this operation (Rosheim 1994). These revolutionary machines owed him the title of the father of robotics (Chapius and Droz 1958; Nocks 2007)."
- Diana Darke (2010). Syria, 2nd. Bradt Travel Guides. p. 98. ISBN 9781841623146. Retrieved 2013-08-21. "One of the most important mechanical inventions in the history of humankind was the crankshaft, invented by the Muslim engineer Al-Jazari. He devised it to raise water for irrigation. He also invented or refined the use of valves and pistons, and was the father of robotics."
- Marco Ceccarelli, ed. (2009). "Al-Jazari". Distinguished Figures in Mechanism and Machine Science: Their Contributions and Legacies, Part 2. Springer. p. 4. ISBN 9789048123452. Retrieved 2013-08-20. "Others gave amusement and aesthetic pleasure to the members of royal circles, which led him to invent the first programmable humanoid robot in 1206. Al-Jazari's robot was a boat with four automatic musicians that floated on a lake to entertain guests at royal drinking parties (Margaret 2006; Franchi and Güzeldere 2005)."
- Pigott 1995.
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- Ada Lovelace
- Making Televised Emergency Information Accessible from the Gallaudet University website
- Although it's a title he objects to (see Interview with Vinton Cerf, from a January 2006 article in Government Computer News), Cerf is willing to call himself one of the Internet's fathers, citing Bob Kahn in particularly as being someone with whom he should share that title.
- Kahn do, No (2007). " Father of internet warns against Net Neutrality", The Register, Thursday 18 January
- Louis Pouzin
- "Fascinating facts about the invention of the Internet by Vinton Cerf in 1973". The Great Idea Finder.
- "Kosaku Inagaki’s Home Page". Kyoto University. Retrieved 2010-04-01.
- The Technology Trailblazer: Vinod Dham. University of Cincinnati.
- Priya Ganapati at Techfest 99, IIT Bombay. Rediff.com.
- p. 54, "Intel Turns 35: Now What?", David L. Margulius, InfoWorld, July 21, 2003, ISSN 0199-6649.
- p. 21, "Architecture of the Pentium microprocessor", D. Alpert and D. Avnon, IEEE Micro, 13, #3 (June 1993), pp. 11–21, doi:10.1109/40.216745.
- p. 90, "Inside Intel", Business Week, #3268, June 1, 1992.
- Commodore History: Chuck Peddle
- "Microsoft founders lead tributes to 'father of the PC'". BBC News. April 2, 2010. Retrieved 2013-08-21.
- A Talk with the Father of Computing, Wired Magazine
-  from the Eweek website
-  History of the Internet
-  History of the Search Engine - What Came Before Google?
- XML for Newcomers and Managers - Part I
- Three loud cheers for the father of the web, 28 January 2005, Telegraph.co.uk
- Cooper, Alan, Why I am called "the Father of Visual Basic" "Mitchell Waite called me the "father of Visual Basic" in the foreword to what I believe was the first book ever published for VB, called the Visual Basic How-To (now in its second edition, published by The Waite Group Press). I thought the appellation was an appropriate one, and frequently use the quoted phrase as my one-line biography."
- XML.com: "XML Father" leaves W3C for OASIS
- The Father of Cool - Willis Haviland Carrier and Air Conditioning
- Untitled Document
- Igor Sikorsky is considered to be the "father" of helicopters not because he invented the first. He is called that because he invented the first successful helicopter, upon which further designs were based, an article from inventors.About.com by Mary Bellis
- "Kenjiro Takayanagi: The Father of Japanese Television". NHK Science & Technical Research Laboratories. Retrieved 2006-12-09.
- "Kenjiro Takayanagi, Electrical Engineer, 91 (obituary)". New York Times. 1990-07-25. Retrieved 2006-12-09.
- "Sculpture to jet engine inventor". BBC News. 2005-10-20. Retrieved 2010-05-08.
- Aircraft Engine
- "John Harrison (1693-1776)". Retrieved 2013-08-21.
- "Meet the man who invented the mobile phone". BBC News. 2010-04-23. Retrieved 2010-05-08.
- "Mendeleev's periodic table". BBC - GCSE Bitesize. Retrieved 2012-06-22.
- The "The First Electronic Church of America" website poses the question: "Russia's Popov: Did he 'invent' radio?" According to this account, Alexander Popov is the "radio man." Among other things, it notes that Popov reported sending and receiving a wireless signal across a 600 yards distance in 1895. Two years later, it says, he set up a shore station at Kronstadt and equipped the Russian navy cruiser Africa with his wireless communications apparatus to provide ship-to-shore communication., an article by Stan Horzepa wondering who is the father of the radio
- De Forest, Lee (1950). Father of Radio: The Autobiography of Lee de Forest. Chicago: Wilcox & Follett. (This book sold fewer than a thousand copies and is accordingly rare and expensive today).
- Dennis, Everette E..; Edward Pease (1994). Radio—The Forgotten Medium. Transaction Publishers. ISBN 1-56593-873-9., p. 198: "the egotistical Lee De Forest who discovered, however unwittingly, the audion tube that allowed him to proclaim himself 'the father of radio'"
- Shurkin, Joseph (1996). Engines of the Mind: The Evolution of the Computer from the Mainframes to Microprocessors. W. W. Norton and Company. ISBN 0-393-31471-5., p. 132: "De Forest, who was not a modest man, called himself the 'Father of Radio,' an epithet whose accuracy is debatable."
- Guglielmo Marconi - the "father of radio"
- A. K. Sen (1997). "Sir J.C. Bose and radio science", Microwave Symposium Digest 2 (8-13), pp. 557-560.
- Ask the average person "Who invented radio?" and the average answer will be "Marconi." Ask the same question on the Internet, and the average answer will not likely be "Marconi." Instead, try one of the following on for size: Nikola Tesla, Alexander Popov, Oliver Lodge, Reginald Fessenden, Heinrich Hertz, Mahlon Loomis, Nathan Stubblefield, James Clerk Maxwell and even Thomas Edison, among others, an article by Stan Horzepa wondering who is the father of the radio
- McLuhan, Marshall; Barrington Nevitt (1972). Take Today; the Executive as Dropout. Harcourt Brace Jovanovich. ISBN 0-15-187830-7. "Fessenden, the Forgotten Father of 'Wireless' Telephony" (section heading)
- Zuill, William S. (2001): The Forgotten Father of Radio", American Heritage of Science and Technology, 17(1)40–47, as cited in Silverman, Steve (2003). Lindbergh's Artificial Heart: More Fascinating True Stories From Einstein's Refrigerator. Andrews McMeel Publishing. ISBN 0-7407-3340-0. p. 160
- Van Meggelen, Jim; Jared Smith; Leif Madsen (2005). Asterisk: The Future of Telephony. O'Reilly. ISBN 0-596-00962-3., p. 190: "Although Alexander Graham Bell is most famously remembered as the father of the telephone, the reality is that during the latter half of the 1800s dozens of minds were at work on the project of carrying voice over telegraph lines."
- "Philo Farnsworth". Society of Television Engineers. Retrieved 2013-08-21. "Isn't it about time that Philo Farnsworth gets some credit???"
- "Zworykin at IEEE Global History Network". Retrieved 2008-03-03. "the oft-called Father of Television Vladimir Zworykin"
- "Zworykin at Museum.TV". Retrieved 2008-03-03. "inventor Vladimir Zworykin is often described as "the father of television"."
- "John Logie Baird: TV Inventor". Retrieved 2009-07-26. "John Logie Baird invented Television in 1926. His initial TV system was electro-mechanical. He (later) embraced electronic TV and developed the world's first color television system."
- "The World's First High Definition Color Television System". Retrieved 2009-07-26.
- Weingardt, Richard (2005). Engineering Legends. ASCE Publications. p. 75. ISBN 0-7844-0801-7.
- BC Archives: Sir James Douglas
- Beasley, Adam H. (February 4, 2012). "Henry Flagler, his town, and the fire". Archived from the original on August 2, 2012. Retrieved 2012-08-05.
- "Frequently Asked Questions". Federal Highway Administration. Retrieved 2013-08-21.
- "Gary Fisher’s busy day". Archived from the original on 2008-12-23. Retrieved 2013-08-21.
- Steil, Tim (2000). Route 66. MBI Publishing Company. p. 18. ISBN 0-7603-0747-4. "Avery, though dubbed the 'Father of Route 66' by some, was a political appointee who also left office the next year."
- Real NASCAR: White Lightning, Red Clay, and Big Bill France. Univ of North Carolina Press. 2010. p. 360. ISBN 9780807895726. Retrieved 2013-08-21.
- McCosh, Dan (2003-03-07). "DRIVING; Most Cars Are Born As Models of Clay". The New York Times.
- "William Phelps Eno". Eno Transportation Foundation. Retrieved 2013-08-21.
- Watson, Rollin J. (2002). The School As a Safe Haven. Bergen Garvey/Greenwood. p. 30. ISBN 0-89789-900-8. "The modern school bus began in a conference in 1939 called by Frank W. Cyr, the 'Father of the Yellow School' bus, who was a professor at Teachers College, Columbia University. At that meeting, Cyr urged the standardization of the school bus. Participants came up with the standard yellow color and some basic construction standards. Cyr had... found that children were riding in all sorts of vehicles—one district, he found, was painting their buses red, white, and blue to instill patriotism."
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