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The Mission of Public Invention is to “Invent in the public, for the public.

Robert Read

The Fuller Scale: A Unit of Humanitarian Invention Impact

Science is about truth; engineering is about compromise. At Public Invention, we do both, but perhaps more engineering than science. Our goal is to have a large positive impact on many people; but time and money are always in short supply.  How, then, to compromise on which projects to prioritize? In order to be able …

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Public Invention Project #40: A Wheel for Painting Very Thin Lines

“Oyarsa”, by Robert L. Read I probably should not have taken up oil painting; I have always admired art done with pen-and-ink, which produces very thin, precise lines. It is possible to make thin lines with oil paint, but it is difficult. One must either have a terribly steady hand with a very fine brush, …

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The Story of a Public, Cooperative Mathathon

A hexagonal-centered toroidal 1.053-bounded regular tetrahedral simplex chain, discovered at the Mathathon by Nathan Gilbert. Two weekends ago, something rare happened. Thirteen people, sharing only a common interest in math, joined together from India, the Middle-East, England, Canada and the United States to solve real math problems. As might be expected, most of them dropped …

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What to do when you hear about your idea: “That’s been done…”

A prototype of a flying machine, constructed by Václav Kadeřávek in Prague about 1860–1865 About twenty times in my career as a Computer Scientist and Public Inventor I have somehow informally presented an idea to someone or a group of people, only to hear them say, “That’s been done.” Sometimes they add some additional information …

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