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Pole-vaulting was the same sport for a long time. Even the advent of aluminum poles, which provided a bit more lift, didn’t change it radically. But advanced technology, in the form of fiberglass poles, allowed pole-vaulters to change their technique and catapult past the previously unheard-of 20-foot mark. Baseball was transformed when Babe Ruth clobbered 54 homeruns in 1920, signaling the end of the dead-ball era. The telephone changed the communication “game.”

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