September 21, 1986
I would like to share with you a remarkable idea for a timely new invention that could conceivably be in place in time for the next presidential election. It is a toilet that would automatically perform a drug test. Should the results turn out positive, flexible robotic arms would fly out from either side of the commode, trapping the addict until the authorities could arrive. These units could be installed in public restrooms and their use would, of course, be voluntary. Anyone opposing such a measure would run the risk of being labeled "soft on drugs.
November 5, 1987 |
Physicist Gordon Gould completed a 30-year odyssey through the U.S. bureaucracy and legal system yesterday when he was formally presented a patent - and the possibility of a payoff worth millions - for his 1957 invention, the gas discharge laser. Gould, 67, fought the U.S. Patent Office and took his case through four separate federal court actions before he received credit for developing the process that is now most commonly used at cash register checkouts and in laser disc stereo equipment.
March 4, 1987 |
Patria P. Garde fulfilled a five-year dream in January when she received her doctorate in education from Temple University in Philadelphia. On March 25, the Cherry Hill woman hopes to see another dream come true when Pfizer Hospital Products Group announces the winner of its Innovative Award for 1986. According to Maria Zweng, project coordinator at Pfizer Inc. headquarters in New York City, Garde's invention is one of 250 being considered for the $50,000 cash award to "recognize a promising new innovation in the field of hospital products.
June 15, 1997 |
Six-year-old twins Nick and Stephanie Fillari wanted to stop their little brother Dominic from slamming his fingers in the bathroom door. What started as a project to keep them busy while they had the chicken pox ended up winning them a first-place prize in last month's statewide invention convention, Student Invention Through Education. They call it "Stephanie and Nick's Finger Saver," or "Nick and Stephanie's," depending on whom you ask. It's simply a Nerf ball and a piece of Velcro, but the twins say it is their ticket to fame and fortune.
October 1, 2009 |
"The Invention of Lying" turns out to be "Bruce Almighty" for atheists. Where the latter was a comedy about a man who taps into God's power, the former is a comedy about a man who acquires power by inventing God. It takes place in an alternate universe wherein mankind has evolved to be completely honest. Lying is unknown - indeed, men are incapable of lying. The movie (written by and starring Ricky Gervais) is funniest in the early going, when we see what life is like in a scrupulously candid society where there is no tact, because there is no need for it. Gervais plays Mark, a dumpy bachelor who endures a humiliating date with a gorgeous girl (Jennifer Garner)
May 1, 1999
Want to watch Rugrats? Seventh Heaven? Dawson's Creek? Hop on the exercise bike and pedal. Concerned about the rising level of obesity in children, researcher David Allison of St. Luke's-Roosevelt Hospital in New York City had an engineer rewire TV sets so they worked only when the viewer was riding an attached bicycle. His study sample was small and the findings preliminary, but he found that kids who were required to pedal watched less TV than those who were not, but those who rode nonetheless finished the study with less body fat. Either the exercise helped or the threat of exercise drove kids to pick another activity - maybe even going outside and riding a real bike.
July 6, 1992 |
The Minnie Mice of the Women's Tennis Association had their way. Monica Seles did not grunt. Monica Seles did not win. The WTA's childe of scorne did not moan, caterwaul or display any more audible emotion than an occasional muffled squeak. Not that it is all that easy to scream with a gag order jammed down your throat. Not all that easy amid threats of point, game and match penalties and the sexist Brit scriveners advocating everything from laryngeal surgery to a holding dungeon in the Tower of London.
August 30, 1996 |
Every year, approximately 7,000 New Jerseyans apply for U.S. patents. Their inventions vary in size and scope, ranging from brilliant technological innovations to tiny gadgets. Stephen Smith, a 48-year-old printer from Mount Ephraim, has a most unusual patent pending. He thinks he has invented a third hand. Well, sort of. Smith has been rowing for four years and wanted an easier way to operate his single scull. His problem, basically, was that he had to hold the oars with one hand while climbing into the boat.
June 23, 1991 |
Media resident Tom Long had gone through several careers before he took up photography. Long was an Air Force mechanic, a sailor in the Merchant Marine, and a securities salesman before 1984, when he opened up the Swarthmore Photography Center on Chester Road in Swarthmore, taking portraits and passport photos, developing film and framing pictures. The picture framing was just a sideline to the photography business, but it led to Long's development of a new kind of picture frame bracket, and a new addition to his list of accomplishments.
July 31, 1986 |
Skeptics shook their heads, kids nearly jumped out of their sneakers and a woman in a pink hat worried that her allergies might be triggered. But Joe Newman told them all to relax because they were seeing nothing less than a gizmo that would change the world. A simple electric fan was all the untrained eye could detect of this revolution, but Newman, in a flood of facts and figures, explained yesterday that he had invented a machine that produced more energy than it consumed, leaving certain laws of thermodynamics on the junk heap of broken myths.