Thomas Alva Edison

Thomas Alva Edison

Thomas Edison invented very few of the things people think he made. He had a small team of people he would pay next to nothing to come up with ideas which he would then patent and take credit for. He did not invent the light bulb. Electric lights had already existed for more than 70 years before he filed his patent in 1878. He once waged a negative press campaign on Nikola Tesla in order to sell his DC system and undermine Tesla. In fact, he electrocuted and killed an elephant called Topsy to prove that AC electrical system was dangerous. He once offered Nikola Tesla $50,000 to improve his DC motor. Upon completion, Edison failed to pay and scoffed, “You don't understand American humor.” In spite of all this, he should be credited with making most of “his inventions” commercially viable.

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