Table of Contents for
Inventors at Work: Interviews with 16 Notable American Inventors

Foreword by James Burke ix
Introduction xiii
 
PAUL MacCREADY 1
His Gossamer Condor, for which he won the 50,000 Kremer Prize in 1977, made man-powered flight a reality. His pedal-powered Gossamer Albatross later flew 22.5 miles across the English Channel to win yet another Kremer Competition.
 
WILSON GREATBATCH 19
Inventor of the implantable pacemaker, he has spent much of his life working in interdisciplinary fields. In the case of the pacemaker, he combined engineering and medical electronics. He also works in the fields of biomass energy conversion and genetics.
 
MAXIME FAGET 45
As NASA's chief designer for more than twenty years, he led the development work behind the Mercury space capsule. He was also responsible for pioneering design and conceptual work on the Apollo spacecraft and the space shuttle.
 
MARVIN CAMRAS 69
In the 1930s, he invented magnetic recording for a relative who was an aspiring singer. Today, he holds more than five hundred patents in the field, and his inventions are used in tape recorders, videotape recording, and stereophonic sound reproduction.
 
BOB GUNDLACH 91
With inventions such as the first multi-copying process, he helped to shape xerography into the high-speed, high-quality process it is today. Holder of more than 130 patents in the field, he became Xerox's first research fellow.
 
JEROME LEMELSON 121
With more than four hundred patents, he is one of the most prolific inventors in the United States. He started out inventing toys and novelty items and later moved into such hightech fields as automated manufacturing systems and machine vision.
 
STANFORD OVSHINSKY 147
While established scientists and engineers were developing integrated circuits on carefully structured silicon crystals, he began studying amorphous materials. Today, his amorphous materials are used to build computer memories, photovoltaic cells, and integrated circuits.
 
MARY SPAETH 167
She invented a tunable dye laser while with the Hughes Aircraft Company. Now a research director at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, she helped develop laser isotope separation using dye lasers.
 
JACOB RABINOW 183
Honored for his wartime inventions by President Harry Truman, and a member of the National Inventors Council, he invented the machines that sort mail at the Post Office. His reading machines are used by banks to process checks and credit card slips, and he holds more than 220 patents on inventions ranging from automatic headlight dimmers to magnetic-particle clutches.
 
STEVE WOZNIAK 219
Working out of a garage in California's Silicon Valley, he helped start the personal computer industry. His revolutionary Apple II computer established Apple Computer, Inc., as an industry leader.
 
RAYMOND KURZWEIL 237
Using artificial intelligence techniques, he developed a reading machine for the blind. At the urging of singer/composer Stevie Wonder, he also built a synthesizer capable of accurately reproducing the sounds of more than thirty acoustic instruments.
 
ROMAN SZPUR 265
After escaping from Poland during the Second World War, he got started as an inventor designing weapons for the United States Army Air Corps. Following his invention of the first non-lens focusing system for lasers, he left the Air Force to begin working on his own inventions. Today, he has patents on everything from a wet medical electrode to a waffle maker.
 
MARCIAN E. "TED" HOFF 283
In 1969, he invented for Intel Corporation the first microprocessor, which revolutionized the microelectronics industry. Built on a tiny silicon chip, the 4004 microprocessor contained more computing power than the mainframe computers of the 1950s.
 
GORDON GOULD 309
He invented the laser in 1957, but it took twenty years for him to receive his first patents. After proving the validity of his patents by defeating in court such companies as AT&T and General Motors, he is finally beginning to receive royalties on his laser patents.
 
HAROLD ROSEN 335
While working at Hughes Aircraft Company, he invented the first geosynchronous satellite, Syncom II, which made instantaneous worldwide communications a reality.
 
NAT WYETH 353
Born into America's famous family of artists, he was an inventor and engineer for the Du Pont Corporation. Now a senior engineering fellow for Du Pont, he is best known for inventing the familiar plastic soda pop bottle.
 
Appendix 381