Thomas Alva Edison

homas Alva Edison (1847-1931) was one of the greatest American inventors. He was a self-educated American inventor and industrialist, who had three months of formal education. He was a very persistent and hardworking inventor with great enterpreneurial skills. Edison's greatest inventions were - incandescent lamp and phonograph, and he improved and perfected the telegraph, telephone and motion-picture equipment. His famous quotes was: " Always keep on the lookout for novel ideas that others have used successfully. We don't know one millionth of one percent of about anything... I start where the last man left off... Your idea has to be original, only in its adaptation to the problem you're working on. A good idea never was lost. Its possessor may die, but it will be reborn in the mind of another." He held many patents to his name.

e started with his entrepreneurial skills at early age of 12, when he began selling newspaper and candy; then he worked as a roving telegrapher, a night operator for Western Union Telegraph Company until 1869, when he decided to move to New York City in order to pursue with invention and entrepreneurship. In a year Edison established a workshop in Newark, N.J. Then he produced the Edison Universal Stock Printer and other printing telegraphs. In 1876 he set up a research laboratory in Merlo Park. During that period, Edison with the help of several highly talented engineers-associates achieved his greatest successes. In 1877 he invented the phonograph, in 1879 carbon filament lamp. He also improved motion-picture camera, which was invented by French brothers, Auguste and Louis Lumiere in 1896.

aving been a businessman predominately, Edison ruthlessly fought his competitors. The most notorious example of that was the "war of currents". It was well-documented, in that-time-newspapers, the length he went to discredit Nikola Tesla's alternating current(AS) system, universally used today, and known as superior technology to Edison's direct current (DC) system. This "war" resulted in production of the electric chair based on AS system.

here are many books, articles and web sites written on Edison's life and work.

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