Thomas Alva Edison prolific inventor and legendary lunatic

Thomas Alva Edison prolific inventor and legendary lunatic

Thomas Alva Edison is considered one of the most prolific inventors in history, credited with numerous inventions that contributed to mass communication and telecommunications.

Edison's first invention was the Universal Stock Ticker in 1869. Edison used the money he earned from the stock ticker to start his lab in Menlo Park, New Jersey.

It has been said that Edison did not just have a laboratory at Menlo Park, he created an invention factory. Edison was a systems thinker and a project manager. Edison took the image of an inventor as one man tinkering alone in a shop and turned it into an industry.

Edison’s first major invention at Menlo Park was the phonograph in November 1877.

Thomas Edison the rock star

Edison was the top rock star of his generation for creating the magical music box known as the phonograph. Edison conceived the principle of recording and reproducing sound as a byproduct of his efforts to play back recorded telegraph messages and to automate speech sounds for transmission by telephone. Edison was a pioneer in the field of audio recording with his tin foil voice recorder. Considered to be his first great invention, the phonograph was Edison's life-long personal favorite.

Edison made a name for himself as the inventor of the phonograph giving demonstrations of his famous talking machine to the president and the US Congress. Becoming a legendary larger than life folk hero of the 19th century, Edison was dubbed the Wizard of Menlo Park.

Anything one man can imagine other men can make real

True geek visionary Jules VerneIn the modern media of the 21st century people often complain that the news seems to focus on problems rather than solutions. As we study geek history we find many examples of the news media telling what can't be done while someone was in the process of showing us what is possible.

In the 1870s there were three different inventors working on the technology to transmit speech electrically that would become our telephone system. Thankfully they did not believe what they read in the newspaper back then.

In 1865 an editorial in the Boston Post stated that, "Well informed people know it is impossible to transmit the voice over wires and that were it possible to do so, the thing would be of no practical value."

A New York news item from 1868 reports, "A man has been arrested in New York for attempting to extort funds from ignorant and superstitious people by exhibiting a device which he says will convey the human voice any distance over metallic wires so that it will be heard by the listener at the other end. He calls this instrument a telephone. Well-informed people know that it is impossible to transmit the human voice over wires."

Jules Verne was a true inventor and visionary

There were many people who could look into the future and see what was possible, such as a true visionary Jules Verne, who was quoted in 1865 as saying, "In spite of the opinions of certain narrow-minded people who would shut up the human race upon this globe, we shall one day travel to the moon, the planets, and the stars with the same facility, rapidity and certainty as we now make the ocean voyage from Liverpool to New York."

Explore who invented the internet and origins of all things geek

Geek History explores who invented the internet

GeekHistory explores who invented the internet, the history of computers, and the origins of all things geek. History is often a matter of perspective, as it is seen through different eyes the answer to the question changes.

One of the biggest misconceptions of any type of history is when a single person is credited for a discovery we often fail to realize that the discovery was not the work of a single person done in a void of any outside influence. Many times the person given credit for an invention is one of a number of persons who can easily be credited for the invention.



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