What People Do You Know...

Discussion in 'Community' started by EJBasile, Jul 24, 2005.

  1. EJBasile macrumors 65816

    EJBasile

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    Apr 20, 2004
    #1
    What people do you know (or decendants of the inventors) that invented something really stupid, but made a ton of money from it.

    I know:
    - Decendant of the guy who invented the paper grocery/shopping bag. These people are so rich they do not need jobs yet still support 3 kids, a huge house, and constant vacations
    - Daughter of the guy who invented the hinge that opens both ways (like the doors the lead to the kitchen in resturants so that the people with trays of food just have to push the door instead of having to pull.

    I know another guy who invented something useful, but very simple, but I can't remember what it was.
     
  2. katie ta achoo macrumors G3

    Joined:
    May 2, 2005
    #2
    I know the guy that helped invent the UPC.

    He got screwed over by his partner, who took all the credit... so he's not mega rich.


    I also sort-of know the guy that does wordpress. Matt Mullenweg. Awesome saxophonist, AWESOME ECONOMY NERD. Has a 12" PowerBook G4.
    When he moved to Cali (working for CNET, turned down a job at google, writing a book for O'Reily.... accd. to his mother) I became his mom's tech support. She got a brand new mac mini, and I got to help her with it over the phone. yay.
     
  3. The_Man macrumors 6502

    The_Man

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  4. clayj macrumors 604

    clayj

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    visiting from downstream
    #4
    One of my cousins (read: my long-deceased grandfather's long-deceased distant cousin, but it's still family) sold the Wright Brothers the petrol that they used to power the First Flight back in 1903. He owned a service station out near the Outer Banks of North Carolina... not that there were many cars about, but there were a few gas-powered engines being used for various things at the time.
     
  5. ~Shard~ macrumors P6

    ~Shard~

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    #5
    My fiancee's best friend's uncle brought the bikini to North America and made a killing off it. He's one rich guy now! Not saying of course that the bikini is a stupid invention, but it's still a cool story...
     
  6. ham_man macrumors 68020

    ham_man

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2005
    #6
    My grandma once met Bonnie and Clyde and a dude that I know holds the world record for highest altitude via a water rocket...

    But that is nickel and dime stuff compared to what you guy's did... :rolleyes:
     
  7. minimax macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2005
    #8
    not really a stupid invention I guess but my great-uncle discovered the Casimir-Effekt (named after him of course) which most scientist see as evidence of the existence of anti-matter. When you put two mirrors facing each other they attract each other with an unknown force I believe it was. Don't know how it explains anti-matter though.
     
  8. katie ta achoo macrumors G3

    Joined:
    May 2, 2005
    #9

    :eek: WOW!! That's REALLY COOL!!!!

    Wow!
     
  9. Mitthrawnuruodo Moderator emeritus

    Mitthrawnuruodo

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    Location:
    Bergen, Norway
    #10
    Don't really know them, but are related - by marriage - to the guy who patented(?) the idea of putting commercials on the nozzle of a gas pump. He made lots of money on it (but later lost at least some of it, as far as I can remember, told you I didn't really know him ;)).
     
  10. clayj macrumors 604

    clayj

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    #11
    Actually, the Casimir Effect is believed to be essential to creating such technologies as wormholes and anti-gravity. Basically, the Effect is this: If you move two metal plates VERY close to each other (and by VERY close, we're talking millionths of a meter or even less), suddenly they will snap together. This occurs because as the two plates become very close, the space in between them finds itself unable to allow the normal mix of free neutrons, photons, electrons, etc. to enter... in effect, a NEGATIVE energy density is achieved, a truer vacuum than what normally exists. The negative energy density draws the plates together.

    Check out Stephen Baxter and Arthur C. Clarke's novel The Light of Other Days for a very good explanation of the Casimir Effect and how it might be used to create wormholes (and a really good story, to boot).
     
  11. MacHarne macrumors 6502

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    Mar 3, 2005
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    Virginia, U.S.A.
    #12
    My grandparents are enormous geneology buffs and have traced two American presidents in our family line. My 4xgreat-grandmother is Mary Todd Lincoln. And I am somehow related to President Hoover, although I can't remember the explanation my grandmother gave me on that one. Apparently, in all of their searching, they have traced our family back to the 16th century in Germany! Needless to say, they have a lot of time now, being retired and whatnot.
     
  12. mpw Guest

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2004
    #13
    Wouldn't that make a funfair's 'Hall of Miirors' a death-trap?
     
  13. mpw Guest

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    Jun 18, 2004
    #14
    I was at the beach the other day thinking I wished bikinis had never been invented.....'cause then the girls would've all been naked :D
     
  14. mpw Guest

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2004
    #15
    I know(vaugley, met a couple of times and speak to occasionly) the guy who invented the Black & Decker WorkMate, he made millions.

    He introduced himself to me, when parking his car near mine and wanting to ask if it was OK to park it there, by saying "Is it OK if I park my car here, it's that Lotus Elan, which I designed in the 60's, over there"
    You'd think the millions would be enough that he didn't need to tell everyone all the time who clever he is.
     
  15. EJBasile thread starter macrumors 65816

    EJBasile

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    Apr 20, 2004
    #16
    Supposidly my Nephew's girfriends father is the patent owner or inventer or something like that of the USB port. He says they live in this enormous house in CA on a cliff overlooking the ocean.
     
  16. Dagless macrumors Core

    Dagless

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    Fighting to stay in the EU
    #17
    well not really famous or anything, but my mate Tom's granddad has a bizarre story to his name.

    the story goes that he was a german soldier in WW1 or 2 (i forget), captured and either sent to England or was caught here... ended up in a prison/POW camp style thing and tried to break out 3 times after he stopped believing that the germans had any chance of winning the war. he played football every weekend and a girl used to bring him sandwiches. after release they got married. apparently he also tried to find Hitler as a freelance spy to warn him, maybe even kill him. but he never went back to Germany.

    oh, and im a direct relation to the Duke of Bedfordshire or someone. but thats me, not someone i know! my granddad was a viscount at some point too. hah. i should really check up on these! maybe get more details.
     
  17. iSaint macrumors 603

    iSaint

    Joined:
    May 26, 2004
    Location:
    South Mississippi y'all, near the water!
    #18
    I used to babysit the drummer for Blind Melon, and his sister the original bee girl on the cover of the album. His parents are my god-parents.

    My grandfather was a CIA operative. He was from Russia and was sent to L.A. with his siblings and mother during the revolution of 1917. They never saw his father again. I wish I had interviewed him more but he wouldn't say much anyway. His brother went on to be a rather famous architect in Hawaii.

    I'm also a direct descendent of Daniel Boone.
     
  18. Chip NoVaMac macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

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    Dec 25, 2003
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    #19
    The guy that invented the intermitted wiper system for our cars was a customer of mine many years ago.
     
  19. ~Shard~ macrumors P6

    ~Shard~

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    #20
    Hmm, never thought of it that way... ;)
     
  20. Jaffa Cake macrumors Core

    Jaffa Cake

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    Aug 1, 2004
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    The City of Culture, Englandshire
    #21
    A family friend who recently passed away was apparently a direct descendent of the man who invented the whistling kettle. I don't think a 'ton of money' was made from it though...
     
  21. ~Shard~ macrumors P6

    ~Shard~

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    #22
    I wonder if not making a lot of money from that hurt his self e-steam... :eek:
     
  22. Jaffa Cake macrumors Core

    Jaffa Cake

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    #23
    Magnificent. If I had a hat, I'd be taking it off to you now. :p
     
  23. WeeShoo macrumors regular

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    Jul 7, 2005
    Location:
    North Carolina
    #24
    I knew a Guy who worked at my local best buy who was a former WCW wrestler, he invented some moves and what not.
     
  24. ~Shard~ macrumors P6

    ~Shard~

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    1123.6536.5321
    #25
    I always aim to please, Jaffa Cake! :cool:
     

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