American Inventor: Offshored

As a product designer it’s basically a foregone conclusion that I had to watch the premiere of ABC’s new Simon Cowell-produced show, “American Inventor“. So that’s what I did.

True to expectation, there were plenty of non-inventive offerings which were pretty obviously ideas generated only to get the participants on television. There was also manufactured drahma, bleeped words, behind the scenes tears and all the rest. But there wouldn’t be a show if there weren’t some worthwhile ideas to pursue in future episodes, so they found a few of those too. More interesting to me, however, is hearing how much money some people spend to develop their ideas.

One idea in particular, the Sand Bag Shovel, comes to mind. The inventor, Mark Martinez, said he’d spent $20,000 to reach a point that seemed to me to be pretty early in development. I certainly hope that included a full-blown utility patent. Even so, I couldn’t help but think he paid twice what he should have … assuming the basic idea he demonstrated was his alone (a safe assumption I believe). No wonder Western corporations are taking their R&D overseas.

{Favorite line: “I don’t know how you make it, I’m just the inventor.”}

2 thoughts on “American Inventor: Offshored

  1. Please. Tell me how to get backing. I need $9,600 to get a final protoype made. I have a winner…who wants it?

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