Friday, February 2, 2007
Abraham Lincoln. That's it. For Patent #6,469 — [Method of] Buoying vessels over shoals. And he did not even attend a top-14 law school.
Now that Google introduced a patent search feature, the website Ironic Sans found it easy to compile a list and patent illustrations of Celebrity Patent Holders, including Prince, Zeppo Marx, Julie Newmar, Eddie Van Halen, Jamie Lee Curtis, Houdini, Mark Twain, Gary Burghoff [not for radar], Harry Connick Jr., and Marlon Brando. My count: the only lawyer is Abe, though Connick's dad was DA. (No professional credit for gelled cranberry sauce, but inventor Marcus Urann was no American Idol either, I concede.) Folks, we can do better!
Penn Jillette, too. For basically a hot tub sexual stimulator. In confirming that he does not happen to be a lawyer (so confirmed), I did find out that his daughter is named Moxie CrimeFighter Jillette. Hedy Lamarr (that's Hedly!) for a crypto device that has become the basis for modern CDMA cellphone technology. And Michael J. Jackson patented the moon walk; claim 1 begins: "A system for engaging shoes with a hitch means to permit a person standing on a stage surface to lean forwardly beyond his or her center of gravity...." Jackson is not a lawyer but has been amply supportive of the profession relevant to this blog.
I could not get some of the links to work, including Abe's (others worked intermittently--likely the beta aspect of Patent Search), so maybe Sans is putting us on. [Update: Abe works now, honest.] I don't think so, because the weirdest ones are definitely there. And many of the comments after, FWIW, confirm these achievements and add to them--e.g., "Dude, you totally missed Tom Scholz from the band Boston. He has patents for the Polaroid One-step camera and the Rockman guitar amp!" Whoa, Dude, take it easy, and don't look back so much. That's more than a feeling you're showing there.
[Alan Childress; Hat Tip to the Electronic Ephemera blog]