We are in a new generation. The listed, famous, teenage inventors were centuries old: Blaise Pascal (1642) – invented the mechanical adding machine; Anton van Leeuwenhoek (1648) microscope that led to the establishment of microbiology; Benjamin Franklin (1721) wrote articles that were widely acclaimed. (He was 15); Louis Braille (1824) Reading by means of raised dots.
These are men of extraordinary accomplishments at a remarkably early age. Without doubt, these inventors improved life and gave innovators the tools to expand and perfect their devices. Inventions are not only in the past, but are improving lives today. These young people have worked on previous inventions, and their innovations have affected modern-day lives.
1921 Philo Farnsworth, 14, working on his father's Idaho farm came up with the idea of an electronic television. He began his love affair with electricity when he was 11-years-old. He showed his plan to his a high school teacher for the electronic television at 17. He left school to find an investor. Money problems plagued him, and he could not develop his invention to fruition. In 1934, he sold the patent license to British Gaumont, and in 1939 to Radio Corporation of America (RCA).
2005: Taylor Hernandez, 10, invented “Magic Sponge Blocks” that can safely be stacked without concern that they will fall and injure a child. Patent Pending.
1997: Adam Cohen, 18, nanotechnology. He invented a system to pattern microchips called Scanning Tunnel Microscope. The system transfers hundreds of times per second.
1998: Krysta Morlan, 14, invented a cast cooler. She went through several operations because she had cerebral palsy. She was in casts and the irritation to her skin made her think about a way to relieve it. She came up with the idea of using a tube attached to a modified fish tank motor. It runs on a nine-volt battery. It circulates the air under the cast. She is in the process of refining a water bicycle for therapeutic and recreational uses.
2002: Kavita Shukla, 13 invented a safety cap for hazardous materials, patented and the name “Smart Lid”. Before she was graduated from high school, she had patented Fenugreek-Treated Paper, which keeps food longer. The idea came to her when she visited her grandma in India and accidently drank bacteria-ridden water. Her grandmother gave her a concoction containing ground fenugreek. She did not get sick and properties of fenugreek fascinated her. She began experimenting. She discovered that fenugreek could remove toxic substances from aqueous solutions and inhibit bacterial and fungal growth. She created the paper that is biodegradable, nontoxic and easily produced.
Then there is Richie Stachowski, who at the age of 11 invented a megahone-like device to use underwater to talk to his friends. It is call Water-Talkies. He invented other water toys and developed his own company to market his items. At the age 13, he sold his company for over $1 million dollars.
The whimsical Dean Kamen began inventing when he was a teenager. Today, the Segway Man has over 440 patents. He gives this advice: “In some cases, inventions prohibit innovation because we're so caught up in playing with the technology, we forget about the fact that it was supposed to be important.”. .