Category: Time Tested

Ringing the Bell

Faced with pilfered profits, saloon owner James Ritty invented the mechanical cash register. He was inspired by the automatic mechanism that recorded the revolutions of a ship’s propeller.

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Tops of the Flops

The anticipation of failure and having a healthy attitude about it are essential traits for anyone trying to bring a new idea or product to the masses. However, it’s true that some inventing failures get added notoriety—whether due to their unconventional nature, excess hype, or number of dollars invested.

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Slow Path

It took 31 years of planning and constructing before Sicard finalized his concept and became the generally acknowledged inventor of the first commercial snowblower in 1925.

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Fortunate Misstep

It was 1943. Richard James, a naval engineer, was trying to develop a meter for measuring horsepower on naval battleships. During his work with tension springs, one of them fell from a shelf to the floor. The spring didn’t stop moving when it landed, briefly “walking” along the floor. An idea for a children’s toy was soon put into motion.

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