Showing posts with label Tabitha Babbitt. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Tabitha Babbitt. Show all posts

Nov 14, 2014

Famous Inventions by Women

A Shaker community in Massachusetts had a woman named Tabitha Babbitt who worked as a weaver. She would regularly witness the men cutting the wood with a pit saw (a two-handled saw that needed two individuals to operate). Although the saw needed to be pulled in two directions to cut the wood, there was only cutting going on when the saw was being pulled in a forward direction making the backward motion useless. In 1810 Babbitt developed her own draft of a saw that was circular in shape and would eventually be commonly used in saw mills. She attached the blade to her own spinning wheel in order to make every movement count toward cutting results.

Admiral Grace Murray Hopper joined the military during 1943 and was stationed at Harvard University where she was employed using IBM’s Harvard Mark I computer, which was the first large-scale computer in the US. She was the third individual programming the machine and she wrote a handbook of operations that led the way for many that would follow her. During the 1950s, the Admiral came out with the compiler, which converted English instructions into a computer code. This meant that computer code could be developed by programmers with less errors and complications. Hopper then created the Flow-Matic, which was utilized to program the UNIVAC I and II computers. Hopper had also been overseeing the advancements of Common Business-Oriented Language or (COBOL), which was one of the very first computer languages. She went on to obtain various awards for her work and even had a US warship named after her. Heard her speak one time and she used a length of wire 11.8 inches long as a prop. She described how light traveled that distance in one nanosecond.

Nov 15, 2013

Even More Inventions from Women

Patsy Sherman's role in the invention of Scotchgard™ was a "happy mistake". As a research chemist with 3M in 1953, a lab mishap with fluorochemicals lead her to a new discovery. An assistant accidentally dropped a bottle of synthetic latex that Sherman had made, it splashed onto the assistant's white canvas tennis shoes. The substance did not change the look of the shoes it couldn't be washed away by any solvents, and it repelled water, oil and other liquids.

In 1813, Tabitha Babbitt created the circular saw. It was circular so that the teeth would continue cutting, unlike the straight saws that only cut on the pull and not the push motion. Her other building innovations, like machine-cut nails instead of individually hand-crafted nails. As a Massachusetts Shaker community member, she helped create tool innovations for furniture making. She lived a simple Shaker life and never applied for patents.

The inventor of "Liquid Paper" or "White-Out" was Betty Nesmith Graham. Graham got an idea she had seen done by sign painters, which was to add another layer of paint to cover-up mistakes. She used a kitchen blender to mix-up her first batch of substance to cover-up over mistakes made on paper at work. After much experimenting and then being fired for spending so much time distributing her product as a trial, she received a patent in 1958.