Happy Birthday Thomas Edison!!

Did you know Thomas Edison was born on February 11? He would go on to become an inventor, entrepreneur, project manager, technology leader, manufacturer, businessman, husband, and father. In his lifetime, he achieved more than the average man such as a record 1,093 patents, only one of them being the lightbulb.

Below are some of the highlights of his life. Thanks for everything, Tom!

Major Career Stats

Thomas Edison created whole new industries such as:

  • Music industry (phonographs)
  • Motion pictures (camera to projector)
  • Power industry/electric light bulb
  • The West Orange invention factory [R&D labs]

Thomas Edison also disrupted and radically changed these industries:

  • Telegraphs
  • Telephones
  • Cement making
  • Battery manufacture

Thomas Edison made lasting impressions on the world through:

  • Championing solar energy (ca. 1910-1915)
  • Promoting electric vehicle garage charging (ca. 1905)
  • Being the great grandfather of STEM education and team based problem solving
  • Inspiring people to “fail” their way to success
  • Continuous product improvement in all industries

Thomas Edison’s Impact on Society

  • He has the most recognizable face in the world
  • His landmark light bulb invention is the international icon for bright ideas
  • Life Magazine proclaimed him the “Man of the Millennium” [1996]
  • TIME Magazine featured him on cover of special July 2010 history issue which proclaimed him relevant to our world today
  • He was an inspiration to generations of inventors and entrepreneurs
  • The biggest effect on today’s society? Thomas Edison’s inventions and creations to this very day account for about $12 trillion of the world’s $80 trillion economy; and one-fourth of the jobs on the planet. How is that for staying power?

Thomas Edison teaches us more than anything else that inventors and entrepreneurs are a huge positive force for good in the world.

Enjoy an exciting TEDx Talk story about Thomas Edison at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vrw5brX1Wfo .

Thomas Edison said, “Anything that won’t sell, I don’t want to invent. Its sale is proof of utility, and utility is success.”

Left: Intel-Edison module now available world-wide for developers. Right: The “Tommy” award given by the Edison Innovation Foundation.
Left: Intel-Edison module now available world-wide for developers. Right: The “Tommy” award given by the Edison Innovation Foundation.
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