[ExI] book and inventions

spike at rainier66.com spike at rainier66.com
Tue Feb 5 18:57:37 UTC 2019



From: extropy-chat <extropy-chat-bounces at lists.extropy.org> On Behalf Of William Flynn Wallace
Sent: Tuesday, February 5, 2019 10:13 AM
To: ExI chat list <extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org>
Subject: [ExI] book and inventions


"They All Laughed"  Ira Flatow


History of a few major inventions….


Coincidence?  Lack of marketing skills and presence of high level creativity?  How can anyone think that no one would want to talk to another person over 

a line?  This is just stunning to me.


bill w





Cool this book sounds orders of magnitude more interesting than books on… cod.


It has long been known that inventors seldom successfully market their own inventions.  I have a good one for you that Flatow might have mentioned.  


John Harvey Kellogg was a doctor in the old days, a vegetarian, who recognized that the typical American breakfast table had little redeeming quality.  So he invented corn flakes (along with a pile of other health foods) and started a cereal company.  Kellogg was an all-around genius, but he was stubborn in his way.  He was convinced that sugar was terrible, so he didn’t sweeten his corn flakes.  So… they weren’t palatable.  


One of his patients, CW Post, realized that if he would just add sweetener, this stuff would sell like nobody’s business.  He was right.  


Meanwhile John Kellogg’s brother William realized that it would ruin Kellogg’s if they didn’t act, so he proposed adding sweetener, which his brother refused.  So William Kellogg started a third company called Kelloggs.  In those days they had brand name law, but couldn’t stop a guy from starting a new company with his own name.  So there were two Kelloggs companies and Post Cereals.  Inventor John Kellogg soon lost out to his brother’s more palatable concoction.  Now we have Post vs Kelloggs to this day.  The original inventor of corn flakes has his own name on neither of the companies.



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