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It’s a tough call as to what’s benefited mankind most – synthetic diamonds or Post-It notes. But the National Inventors’ Hall of Fame has played it safe, and inducted the inventors of both.
The three inventors of synthetic diamond – Francis Bundy, Tracy Hall, Herbert Strong, and Robert Wentorf – all receive the award posthumously.
Jaques-Yves Cousteau – who invented Scuba gear as well as weird vowels – also gets the honour too late to swank about it, along with W Lincoln Hawkins, Vincent Lanza and Field Winslow, who designed a more effective sheathing for communications cables.
You might argue that Spencer Silver doesn’t deserve the honour at all as he invented Post-It notes by accident. And surely Ralph Baer, a video game pioneer, should be vilified for the timewasting he’s caused.
“We at the National Inventors Hall of Fame are proud of our 38-year history of drawing much deserved attention to the remarkable people who exemplify the key role that innovation plays in America’s free enterprise system,” said Edward Gray, President of the Board of Directors of the National Inventors Hall of Fame.
“The individuals of this year’s class of outstanding inventors have shaped our future and their remarkable achievements will surely inspire a whole new generation of like-minded dreamers to see the worth of hard work and passion.”
Other inductees include Yvonne Brill, who invented the rocket propulsion systems used by geosynchronous communications satellites today, and Roger Easton, who developed the Timation system used in GPS.