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Three Green Inventions for Earth Day and Every Day

Innovation, Innovative Inventions

Today is Earth Day, a worldwide annual event that looks to demonstrate support for environmental protection. Though many support green initiatives the other 364 days of the year, Earth Day is a great time to get back to basics and learn new, innovative ways to protect our environment.

Going green seems to be a common theme in today’s society and the invention world is following suit. Let’s take a look at three green inventions that are a few steps closer to lessening our carbon footprint.

YoGen Charger- Kinetic or human-induced power is one of the latest trends in powering green gadgets. Unlike solar-powered devices, which can take at least half of a day to charge your gadgets, the YoGen will charge them in about the same time as a wall outlet would charge your device. All that it takes is a few minutes of tugging on a string to power the charger. The tugging action is much like the friction cord that would be located on the back of a talking doll. As you pull the T-handle, the internal alternator will start to spin. Eventually, this motion will create enough power to charge the batteries of most small, portable electronic devices. This invention provides 100% green energy.

Bedol water-powered clock- This innovative clock runs solely on tap water. The Bedol converts ions in the water into clean energy. The clock is separated into two chambers by a clear plastic divider. In the interior-design of this clock, you can see metal plates in each chamber that conduct the electricity. These chambers are attached to the back side of the digital clock display, making them the power source. All you have to do is fill the tank with tap water and you are set for 10 to 12 weeks of punctual, accurate timekeeping.

The Buscycle- Taking public transportation and riding your bike when possible are both eco-friendly ways to get to and from work. But, what if you combined the two? The combination of a bus and a bike is, in fact, the buscycle. This invention is a 15-person pedal-powered bus that travels through neighborhoods throughout the United States. The Buscycle runs, or should we say pedals, solely on the energy of the passengers. The passengers use their own will and physical strength in order to get the group from point A to point B. Although this might not be the most enticing way to get to work, it’s definitely one way to get in your exercise while reducing your impact on the environment.

From a charger that is powered by tugging on a string to a water-powered alarm clock and a bike and bus rolled into one, these green inventions range from something that you can use every day to something that will help you go the extra mile in lessening your impact on our environment.

Happy Earth Day!

Copyright Davison 2014



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Dispensing Some Facts about the Invention of the ATM


Today, you might have already paid a visit to an automatic teller machine. If you aren’t entirely sure what we are talking about, an automatic teller machine is otherwise known as an ATM.

The invention of the ATM has allowed people across the world to access their money wherever and whenever they need it.
So, we are going to dispense some knowledge about the invention of the ATM. There are differing stories and timelines of when the idea for the invention of the ATM came to be.

Today, we are going to take a look at three of the most common invention stories. First, we are going to start with a not-so-successful attempt, Luther Simjian’s 1939 patenting of an early prototype of the invention. Then, we are going to explore the person who countless experts believe held the earliest patent for a modern ATM, James Goodfellow. Finally, we will take a look at John Shepherd-Barron, who also had an invention idea for a 24/7 cash dispenser.

Now, it’s time to withdraw some more details about each of the three most notable inventors of the ATM.

Let’s start with Luther Simjian. His invention idea was creating a “hole-in-the-wall machine” that would allow customers to make financial transactions. In 1939, he applied for 20 patents that were related to his invention. He also field tested his ATM machine in what is now known as Citicorp. However, six months later, the bank noted that there was little demand for the new invention idea and refrained from using it.

Next, James Goodfellow was given a project while he was a development engineer with Smiths Industries Ltd. in 1965. The project that he was given was to invent and develop an automatic cash dispenser. In conjunction with another company that would provide the secure physical housing, the team also was to develop a mechanical dispenser apparatus. The newly-designed system that he developed consisted of an encrypted card that the machine would read. To support this mechanism, he added a numerical keypad. This invention was given a UK Patent. Additionally, this invention also was covered by a US Patent and a few other patents that were granted by many other countries.

To this day, 40 years later, Goodfellow’s US patent still describes the basic ATM function.

According to BBC News, John Shepherd-Barron is widely credited with the actual invention of the ATM. In this case, the world’s first ATM was installed right outside of North London in a branch of Barclays Bank in 1967.

At first, his invention was known as De La Rue Automatic Cash System (DACS) which was named after the company who produced the first ATMs.

Despite the fact that many names have been credited with the invention of the ATM, whether it was Simjian, Goodfellow or Shepherd-Barron, there is one commonality and that is that all of their ideas were molded into the ATMs that we use in this day and age!

Copyright Davison 2014



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Tap Your Way to a New Floor Plan with this Invention

Innovation, Innovative Inventions, Inventions

Now that the weather is starting to break, this is usually the time when homeowners break out their hard hats to do some home improvement projects on their own.

The first step in the home improvement process might be the hardest and that is deciding exactly what you want/need to do to the room you are renovating. Rather than call in a group of contractors, there is a new invention on the market that can alleviate some of the steps in the re-design process.

This invention is the RoomScan, which is an app for your smart phone. The innovative idea comes in handy when overcoming common obstacles like measuring those awkwardly shaped rooms that make it hard to get accurate measurements. Not to mention working around all of the obstacles in the room like furniture, fixtures etc. make this an even more taxing task.

The app is fairly easy to navigate and is user friendly. In order to use the app, the user will walk around the room and hold their device on the wall for a few seconds until they hear a beep. Once they’ve heard the beep, the user will continue to the next wall and repeat the process. After this step is done to all of the walls in the room, RoomScan will put together a shockingly accurate map of the area.

The RoomScan utilizes the GPS, Wi-Fi and gyroscope features that are built in to your smartphone to figure out the distances and the orientation of walls. Realistically, the RoomScan can estimate measurements within about a half of a foot. However, if you need more precise measurements, a user can purchase the Pro version for $5 in the App Store. Through this upgrade, the user has the option to scan multiple rooms that are then stitched together in order to create one large, unified map of the area that was scanned.

Here is an inside look at the RoomScan Pro in action!

Copyright Davison 2014



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Students Pack Inventionland for 2014 WQED Invention Convention!

Davison News

What does it look like when a couple hundred middle school students take over our creative work space for a day full of inventing fun?

We found out exactly what that looked like last Friday, April 4th, when Inventionland hosted the 2014 WQED Design Lives Here Invention Convention!

Students in grade sixth through eighth from Franklin Regional Middle School, Seneca Valley School District’s Haine Middle School and Bethel Park School District’s Independence Middle School unleashed their creative sides during the day-long inventing extravaganza.

As usual, this year’s Invention Convention helped to support STEM education, or the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

The day included a few inventing challenges, but highlighted one in particular, where students teamed up to pitch new invention ideas to our very own team of Inventionland Creationeers.

Here’s just a peek at this year’s WQED Invention Convention:

Copyright Davison 2014


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Golf Inventions for the Average Joe to the PGA Pro

Innovation, Innovative Inventions, Inventions

After a long winter, golfers around the nation are slowly but surely getting back into the swing of things. This year, much like in year’s past, there are a slew of new, innovative inventions that are geared toward the sport of golf.

It just so happens that the 2014 Masters is underway today; so, we thought, what better way to tee off this prestigious tournament than with a blog about some new golf inventions? Let’s start with some innovative technology that can be used the next time you hit the links.

In an effort to better their game, golfers are always looking for new inventions to help them play their best. There is one invention in particular that can help golfers gain a newfound sense of confidence and accuracy on the course; and, that is through the innovation of range finders.

The range finder informs the golfer of their yardage for more than just the flagstick. Additionally, this invention gives golfers a better grasp at the distance between targets and is accurate to within a few yards of the mark. This invention comes in handy for those golfers who don’t trust the yardage markers located on the course.

On par with the range finder, there is another invention that is geared toward helping golfers make the most of their time on the green. A golf GPS is an innovation that is frequently being used by golfers today. This global positioning device can help a golfer better navigate the golf course, in addition to recording and saving their scores and statistics. Furthermore, these systems usually include a map of the course, which marks your location on the green and the precise distances between you, your ball and the hole. For those advanced systems, they even provide satellite images of the course. But, if you’d rather have a more compact golf GPS, there are apps that can be downloaded to your mobile device. And, in the realm of wearable technology, companies are inventing their own innovation in the form of a golf GPS watch, too!

Golfing isn’t just about the actual sport, it’s also about the fashion and Nike is never short on innovative golf-wear inventions. The Nike Lightweight Innovation Color Polo is a perfect example. The framework of this polo includes a new seam construction that allows for optimal movement. Rather than stitched, the seam is bonded so that it lies more closely to the body. Designers even shifted the seam towards the upper back, so that it wouldn’t run across the shoulders. This invention design allows for maximized movement through the swing, free of interferences!

From head to toe, golfers want to look their best and the latest innovation in the form of spikeless golf shoes is no exception! There has been an evolution of sorts in the world of golf shoes over the years. Now, spikeless shoes are overshadowing plastic spikes as plastic spikes once overshadowed metal spikes in the 1990s.

These shoes are equipped with nubs on the soles that are specifically designed to support the foot and make the shoes stay connected to the ground when golfers swing his or her club. This makes for good traction, which then enables the golfer to swing without slipping on the green.

These features play an important role in keeping the golfer from getting injured and can help improve their performance by enhancing the distribution of the golfer’s body weight to his or her feet. Let’s not forget spikeless golf shoes are fashionable and mimic the look and style of a fashionable pair of athletic shoes.

From inventions that measure distances on the green and everything in between and innovative, fashionable clothing, whether you are an average Joe or a PGA Pro, these inventions are helping golfers far and wide refine their game!

Copyright Davison 2014



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