The American entrepreneurial spirit burns bright today. As of 2018, the US Patent & Trademark Office had granted its ten millionth patent. But with over 500,000 applications now being filed annually, fewer than half of these applicants will be granted patents and far fewer still will realize commercial success. Some are flawed by mistakes or missing details, others too ridiculous to take seriously, still others simply ahead of their time.
From the best and worst to the wackiest and most bizarre inventions and products — from the horse headlight and Viagra to a motorized spaghetti fork and Slinky — this collection of 100 life-altering and entertaining patents from the US Patent and Trademark Office includes humorous and informative descriptions of each patent and dozens of original diagrams, figures, and illustrations. The guide also provides insight into the creation and execution of great and not-so-great ideas, what most successful patents have in common, and how great inventors view the world.