In the question of the Golden Age of Islam, we have replied to this many times. You should read Fjordman's essay on that topic. Even in Europe's "Dark Ages" one is lead by rationality to believe the Europeans were evenly matched if not farther along than the Muslims.
To read postings by Muslims from the Middle East with all their spelling errors due to the lack of vowels in the Arabic language, one might question the whole "translation of texts" story that keeps getting repeated.
To suggest that once Rome was defeated, that the books of the collpased empire, which by then had circulated throughout Europe, were suddenly not available until an Islamic rescue is a rather quaint and fictitious notion. Did Greek and Roman 'thought' cease to exist simply because the empire had outlived its usefulness? Unlikely. Anything emanating from the Middle East after Islam was the result of them plundering it and bringing it home, and from the graces of their captives being able to preserve it.
Look to the Far East for the origin of the techniques of ceramics. Italy's own Marco Polo traveled through the Middle East on his way to China, and commented that there was nothing to be found but murderers, liars and thieves.
Even the new world was discovered because the merchants could not safely pass through the Middle East on their way to the Far East and they were looking for a safer route. Not necessarily a shorter routea safer route. Remember the Cape Horn was also a very dangerous route.
Muslims take credit for far many things that, if one really investigates closely, just does't make sense. The fact is simple. Islam is the pillaging civilization.