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Table: Weight

I was in the Design Museum this week in Shad Thames, London. What a disappointment it was too. There was, however, something of a feature made of the now familiar anglepoise lamp ( a design classic apparently, like lace up shoes and Apple’s Bondi Blue iMac ). Anyway, the history of innovating the original invention […]

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Takes two to tangle

Using a spider’s web to catch a fish. A truly fascinating case of extreme inventing. Like many, I came across this technique while watching a BBC series about the islands of the South Pacific. Fish are caught  using a spider’s web, but not as you might first think. Immediate response to a story about fishing […]

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inspiration?

Neat eh? But where did the inspiration come from? Many of the examples of extreme inventing feature the capture of some property of a natural object. The sharpness or heaviness of a stone, for example. I suggest this otherwise great idea (from the lolbrary) is inspired by an existing product, probably familiar to many kitchen […]

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Nail-hammer combo

DIYers will appreciate this one, even it its application is limited to flatter surfaces. However, it could be adapted, and then it would be an extreme innovation-maybe? I’m putting it forward as an example of emergent functionality, because the comb is being used for something it wasn’t originally designed for. Emergent properties present an opportunity […]

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In Extremis II

My first example of extreme inventing featured a ‘log wheel‘. This may not seem so extreme but its deviser does deserve the accolade ‘extreme inventor’. What functionality has been captured by using this found object (the trolley)? One its height, two its wheels, three its strength. Picture found at the lolbrary.com

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Christmassy Cheer

Pretty obvious extreme invention this, no need to go into detail. The problem? Sticky tape is a great invention many of us will use this Christmas, but we know the process of present wrapping is slowed down considerably by having to pick up the roll, find the end, cut a piece off, then put it […]

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Practical Solutions. An Archive.

If you are looking for an archive of very very practical solutions, there’s no need to go to your nearest public library to look up a patents database, or the internet. In fact, you are probably sitting on a solution right now. If inventing things is about problem solving, which I say it is, then […]

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Thorny Issue

When I was very much younger, I used to called barbed wire ‘bad’ wire, and so did all my friends. It made sense—it was bad. This is not, strictly speaking, an extreme invention, only sort of. I found the story of bad wire invention on the Smithsonian Institute’s Lemelson Centre pages. It seems that back […]

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Kids Hate Crust

Lot’s of kids dislike eating the crusts of bread, and they leave lovingly prepared sandwiches in tatters as they  try get to the delicious fillings. I remember our kids were great, they even liked the crusts. But when it came to parties, to avoid the mess and waste from our childrens’ more faddy friends, we […]

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7UP? No— Light Up!

This is a perfect example of extreme inventing we were made aware of by Colin Dyas of Made in Liverpool Ltd. First we have a problem—darkness when lightness was needed—and then an extreme inventor recognised a property of a clear liquid to transmit light. Hey presto, the water bottle enabled solar light bulb was invented. […]

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