E. Robert Kinney: His Shtick was Fish Sticks

If you’ve ever struggled to get a picky seven- or eight-year-old to eat some fish, you have E. Robert Kinney to thank for making the job just a wee bit easier. Kinney, who died on May 2 at age 96 in Arizona, was a Maine native who originally dreamed of becoming a history teacher but decided during the Great Depression that the job market in education wasn’t bright enough. Instead, after a stint in the New Deal’s National Youth Administration, …

Andre Cassagnes: 7 Facts About the Etch A Sketch and Its Inventor

Kids today have iPads and Xbox game consoles, but a lot of Baby Boomers had a childhood gadget that we loved just as much, and it didn’t even require batteries. The Etch A Sketch first appeared in toy stores in 1960 and became an immediate must-have in kids’ letters to Santa. In the half-century since then, Ohio Art has sold more than 100 million of the classic toys, and children (even some adults) are still twisting the dials on the …

Stanford Ovshinsky: 5 Facts About ‘The Edison of Our Age’

It’s a safe bet that unless you’re a scientist or an engineer, you’ve probably never heard of Stanford Ovshinsky. And that’s a shame, because his inventions made possible a lot of the electronic gadgetry that our 21st-century high-tech world has become so dependent on. The quirky, self-taught inventor, who died on Oct. 17 in Bloomfield Hills, Mich., at age 89, was once labeled the “Edison of our age” by The Economist magazine, and for good reason. Ovshinksy held almost 700 patents, …