Australia is a nation of innovators, we always have been. Our geography and isolation have shaped us. Australians have been leaders in both maritime and aeronautical fields, including powered flight, the black box flight recorder, the inflatable escape slide, the wave-piercing catamaran and the winged keel (thank you Ben Lexcen). In the fields of agriculture and mining, Australians have invented the grain stripper, the stump jump plough, mechanical sheep shears, the Dethridge water wheel, the froth flotation ore separation process, and the buffalo fly trap. Australia has a proud history in defence technology, including the underwater torpedo and most recently hypersonic rocket breakthroughs. And Australian scientists have invented breakthroughs such as ultrasound, the bionic ear, the electronic pacemaker and WiFi. Our current Australian of the Year is Emeritus Professor Alan Mackay-Sim, a pioneering stem cell scientist.