The Career Of Thomas Edison

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The possibility that I might one day conceive of a patentable idea is an appealing one. After all, not many human endeavours could lead to both fame as well as wealth with so little effort. That notion is an illusion of course as the career of Thomas Edison illustrates. Edison was a man of enormous accomplishments. Armed only with his natural abilities and aptitudes, Edison, who had only a limited education, changed the face of the planet and the lives of almost every human being with his inventions. The only individual who invented a greater number of things was Leonard Da Vinci and many of his inventions were conceived before the technology that would permit them to be built, existed. In addition, Da Vinci designed many weapons of war, which was something Edison took great pride in having never done. All of Edison’s inventions facilitated the production of consumable goods or the enjoyment of life.
A patent is simply a license issued by a government that acknowledges an invention and protects the inventor from having others steal his/her original design/idea and produce it in order to make a profit from it. This is the financial benefit that accrues from an invention but there is another value that may be assigned to an inventor. That of course is the professional satisfaction that the inventor will feel when his work is acclaimed by his peers or in the case of popular inventions, fame of the public. The latter may be achieved by publishing the idea (or a description of
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