Thomas Edison

 

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Feb 11, 1847 – Oct 18, 1931

Newsboy, Entrepreneur, Tramp Telegrapher, Inventor, Businessman

American

“Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work. “

Edison’s autographic printer, which was patented in 1876 and intended as an engraving device, has since been modified slightly and is now used as a tattoo machine.

Thomas Edison did not learn to talk until he was almost four. When he finally began to speak, he asked lots and lots of questions about how things worked. Bothered by Thomas’ persistent questions and cruelly noting his broad forehead, Thomas’ teacher claimed Thomas was retarded. So, after only three months at the machine, his mother withdrew him and began to teach him at home. When he was seven, he lost most of his hearing. Ultimately, he became completely deaf in his left ear and 80% deaf in his right ear. At one point in his life, he had the opportunity to undergo an operation which may have restored his hearing, but he opted not to have it done, for he was afraid the noisy world would interfere with his intense concentration. At 11, his parents tried to appease his passionate appetite for knowledge by teaching him how to use the resources at the local library. This led him to prefer learning through self-instruction. His independent style of acquiring knowledge led him to questioning the prevailing theories of the day. He used his mind, memory and dexterity to perform experiments to come up with his own theories. Edison became a central figure in the development of electricity. He was always coming up with ways of improving old ideas or inventions. He was tireless when working on something. Once he worked on a problem for three straight days with no sleep. He filled 34,000 notebooks with sketches and ideas. Edison accumulated over 1,000 patents in his lifetime.