Back when rollerblades became really popular (in my town, anyway) I thought it would be awesome to have a pair of sneakers that you could turn into rollerblades. The wheels come off so you can walk around, then slide back on when you want to blade again. I even submitted the idea a few months later as a school project (come up with your own invention). I got an A+
A year or two later I saw the commercial for them on TV. :smack:
I wouldn’t beat yourselves up over those lost ideas. If business school taught me anything, it’s that ideas are a dime a dozen and that if you thought of it, a hundred other people have too and most of those ideas suck. A lot of stuff can happen between an idea and making money off it.
One guy in my class had an idea for a web site where intelligent people would log on and discuss various topics or problems and share ideas and such…how freakin stupid is that?
Now if any of you guys want to send me your new ideas, I’d be happy to…um…steal…them
The TV show Jackass. My friends and I were doing stupid, funny, dangerous stuff for years, but Johnny Knoxville, Bam Margera, and those guys got on TV before we did. I know it all started with those CKY tapes, and they had Spike Jonze to help them, but dammit, we could have been famous for videotaping ourselves doing crazy stunts and goofy pranks. I guess I should just be thankful we don’t have brain damage.
What? What’s that you say?
I also had the idea for pre-mixed drinks sold in bottles like beer. Now they have several cocktails that come ready to drink in individual-sized bottles, like Jack Daniels and cola, mudslides with Kahlua, citrusy-tasting drinks, and all that. Of course, they’re never as good as mixing them yourself, but I’m amazed how popular they are anyway.
Inward singing. That’s when you sing on the inhale as well as the exhale and never have to breathe during singing. Invented by me in the backseat of the car circa 1979 witnessed by my brother. Tenacious D invented it many years later and of course history will remember them and not me.
Garfield226 , thank you so much for pointing out half-bakery for me!!! I’ve always been looking for such a site/community ever since dilber’ts lazyentrepreneur site closed. If anyone knows of other idea sites, please let me know! THanks!
Back in the Eighties, I had the idea of building an engine with a score or more lightweight valves per cylinder, each about the size of a nail. Each valve would be solenoid operated, so that intake and exhaust flow and duration could be changed for various engine speeds and loads. I’m pretty sure that solenoid operated valves are now in development.
I was browsing round Marks and Spencers one day and noticed that there was an awful lot of prepared vegetables on sale (pre cut carrots, shredded cabbage etc) and got to thinking how the logical step would be food packs that include all the prepped ingredients, condiments, oils, seasonings and instructions in one pack. I was on the verge of writing to M & S to suggest this then just didn’t bother. There are now two thriving companies selling these food packs around London. Shit.
I came up with regenerative brakes in about 1990. Someone may have thought of it before that, but I came up with it independently. My idea was to recharge the battery without an alternator. Now, they’re used to recharge drive batteries in electric or hybrid cars.
I thought of remote-start for your car when I was twelve. Mom and I walked out of the mall one night after some Chirstmas shopping, and we sat in the car and nearly froze to death while we waited for it to warm up. I remember thinking, what if there was some sort of remote-control gizmo where she could press a button and the car would start without her. Then it could be warming up while we were finishing up our shopping, and it would be warm when we got to it.
Another idea I’ve had is based on this type of curio that’s sold at craft malls and county fairs. You make these little sculptures more or less out of dough (but with a really high porportion of grain so the dough is thicker). When the dough dries, it’s hard as a rock. You can then paint it, glaze it and glue a magnet on it, then sell it to people to put on their refrigerator. Anyway, I’ve thought for the longest time that if you had a thin enough layer of that dough, you could make it into a disposable dish of some kind, like a plate or one of those little boxes they serve sushi in. As a bonus, it would be instantly biodegradable.
When I was five and waiting for my ice-pops to freeze, I though of the insta-cool machine.
Finally, I’ve had in my head for about four years an idea for a M:tG-style collectible card game. It would be more oriented toward the junior-high boys set and involve rather cartoonish artwork. The only trouble is, Pokemon beat me to it. That, and I don’t know enough about game mechanics to make it work.
I’ve been bandying about an idea for a couple of years now. Now, nobody steal it!!
Dimple implants. All I need is a surgeon to go into this with me. I will do all the marketing, research, and assisting. Everybody loves dimples, right? Why not just snip here, stitch there, and viola! Dimples!! I’ve even got a Brand Name for them: Dimplants. I’m gonna make millions, you’ll see.
Today while I was emptying our wind-tunnel cyclonic action bagless wonder vacuum, I got a facefull of carpet grit (I’d rather not talk about it). It made me sneeze and generally act the fool while my immune system went nuts for the next hour or so. Great invention though–Bags are much worse IMO. But I got to thinking about The Straight Dope and some of my own posts, and then THIS thread.
A while back, there was a GQ about Grafitti Removal, my suggestion involved a relatively new technology involving low temperature plasma–amazing stuff if you’re an English-major-gone-insurance-dude like myself–Basically vaporizes organic matter & leaves the bricks alone. So my invention, which will not be patented by me, because I am a slacker, is a household vacuum that uses such a plasma device in its inital phase of carpet grit containment. What happens?
You clean house, you vaporize the organic stuff, and the marbles & rocks end up in the can. Clean Clean Clean.
-A shotgun mounted underneath the barrel of an M-16, in lieu of a grenade launcher.
-You know those frame-things full of rounded-off nails held loosely in place, so that when you press something on one side, the nails will produce a 3-Dish relief of the object on the other side? Something like one of those, only with tiny motors hooked to each “nail,” and the whole thing hooked up to a PC instead of a monitor. For a simple B&W display, each nail would represent a pixel (or a group of pixels). For black, the nail would stay down. For white, the nail would be raised. Combine that with a braille font, and bam. A fairly high-resolution computer display for the blind. With a little work, you might be able to use a GUI or a graphics program with the thing. (Probably with the nails raised or lowered incrementally, to simulate a grayscale.)
A friend and I were strolling through the mall one day and we saw an ad for Microsoft Train Simulator. “Train Simulator?” we scoffed, “What’s so fun about trains?”
Even recognizing the niche market of scale-model train enthusiasts, Flight Simulator had a Sopwith Camel with something that went bang. For a few days on we began plotting a wargame based on the Age of Railroad Expansion in America. You’d play as a railroad company, and beat other companies by laying tracks, finding routes in the untamed wilderness, and delivering cargo. A cunning trick would be to let some other shmoe find and spend money on a great track, then sneak around and plant a connection to your own line at a fraction of the cost. Which meant you’d have to have teams roaming your tracks and destroying unauthorized connections. Should two trains meet or have parallel tracks, huge broadside cannons would be in place for “defense.” Then we realized that the most efficient train would: a) lay its own track ahead of it, b) tear up its own track behind it, and thus c) be a giant cargo-hauling tank, and we kind of lost interest.
We had another idea for a naval strategy game involving massive oil-tanker based societies battling each other for salvage and trade rights, fielding both other ships and “land” based defenses for storming other tankers, but it got a bit silly and heavily derivative of Waterworld, but without pirate island strongholds or fishmen.