Edison's Concrete Piano: Flying Tanks, Six-Nippled Sheep, Walk-on-Water Shoes, and 12 Other Flops from Great Inventors [NOOK Book]

Overview

Thomas Edison thought that making pianos, furniture, and houses out of concrete would improve lives. Others did not agree. Patent applications were rejected. People made fun of him. But what did the concrete piano actually sound like? And how Henry Ford end up with a tractor famous for killing its customers after his success with the Model T? A flying tank? J Walter Christie swore it was a good idea. And what was Nikola Tesla thinking when he tested his earthquake machine in ...

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Edison's Concrete Piano: Flying Tanks, Six-Nippled Sheep, Walk-on-Water Shoes, and 12 Other Flops from Great Inventors

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Overview

Thomas Edison thought that making pianos, furniture, and houses out of concrete would improve lives. Others did not agree. Patent applications were rejected. People made fun of him. But what did the concrete piano actually sound like? And how Henry Ford end up with a tractor famous for killing its customers after his success with the Model T? A flying tank? J Walter Christie swore it was a good idea. And what was Nikola Tesla thinking when he tested his earthquake machine in crowded Manhattan?

Failure amid greatness is the norm-not the exception. Edison's Concrete Piano highlights sixteen great inventors, revealing the lesser-known and most fascinating facts about their personalities, their wackier hobbies, their big flops and great successes. Amid misperceptions, cutting-edge technology, and outrageous characters, you'll find nuggets of wisdom that are surprisingly relevant for today's innovation age. These ludicrous ideas and faulty designs will leave you with a smile on your face and a new perspective on the meaning of success.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"[Wearing's] background as a science educator is advantageous in this entertaining piece of popular science: she portrays lively personalities and eccentric projects in concrete prose."  —Booklist

"Best Book Title of the Year?: The popular science is fun and easily accessible, and there's more to the inventor's experiments than the title can contain."  —

Los Angeles Times Jacket Copy

"This book sparkles with heaps of ideas, some plain bonkers, others, like the car, more pedestrian. . . . This book is fun and full of quirks . . . a fine yarn."  —Waikato Times

"Judy Wearing has written a captivating book on success and failure . . . This book is full of lessons for inventors and non-inventors alike."  —Henry Petroski, author, Success through Failure

Booklist
[Wearing's] background as a science educator is advantageous in this entertaining piece of popular science: she portrays lively personalities and eccentric projects in concrete prose.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781554905515
  • Publisher: ECW Press
  • Publication date: 11/1/2009
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 176
  • File size: 746 KB

Meet the Author


Judy Wearing is an award-winning educator, author, and science education consultant, who holds a PhD in biology from Oxford University. She lives in Newburgh, Ontario.
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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments 11

Introduction Great Inventors and Failure 13

The Historic Age

Understand Physics 21

Leonarde da Vinci's Walk-on-Water Shoes: (1452-1519)

Start With a Good Idea 37

James Watt's Apparatus for Administering Medicinal Airs: (1736-1819)

Write it Down 49

Robert Hooke's Flying Machine Powered by Artificial Muscle: (1635-1703)

The Golden Age

Give People What They Want 73

Thomas Edison's Concrete Piano: (1847-1931)

Try not to be Too Weird 93

Nikola Tesla's Earthquake Machine: 1856-1943)

Don't kill Your Customers 109

Henry Ford's Flipping Fordson: (1863-1947)

Be on the Side of the Successful 123

George Washington Carver's Miracle Peanut Cure: (1864-1947)

Be Sure the Market is Ready 133

Alexander Graham Bell's Six-Nippled Sheep: (1847-1922)

Have Adequate Funding 145

Elihu Thomson's Quartz Telescope Mirror: (1853-1937)

The Modern Era

Pay Attention to Details 157

Danny Willis Paint Can Robot: (1956-)

Be Agreeable 167

J. Walter Christie's Flying Tank: (1865-1944)

Make Sure You Aren't the Only One Who Thinks It's a Good Idea 183

George Davison's Popcorn Volcano: (1963-)

Please the Buyers and the Sellers 191

Jerome Lemelson's Flying Balloon: (1922-1997)

Stick to What Know, Mostly 203

Stanley Mason's Chinese Tallow Tree Plantation: (1921-2005)

Avoid Accidents 213

Buckminster Fuller's Fish-Shaped People Carrier: (1895-1983)

Have Perfect Timing 229

Leo Szilard and Albert Einstein's Howling Refrigerator: (1898-1964 and 1879-1955)

Endnotes 241

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 4, 2013

    A SIX nippled sheep?

    I WANT!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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