🎧 Patented: History of Inventions

🎧 Patented: History of Inventions

This podcast investigates the curious history of invention and innovation. Did Thomas Edison take credit for things he didn’t actually invent? What everyday items have surprising origins? And would man have ever got to the moon without… the bra?

Each episode host Dallas Campbell dives into stories of flukey discoveries, erased individuals and murky marketing ploys with the help of experts, scientists and historians.

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🎧 Patented: History of Inventions
  • 🎧 The Telescope

    The telescope marked, arguably, the first invention to truly transform a human sense. For the first time it allowed our eyes to observe the universe beyond the bounds of our Earthly home.

    But how did this groundbreaking instrument first come about? Today on the show we find out who really invent...

  • 🎧 UFOs

    Is it a bird? Is it a plane? A UFO maybe? Or is it some reflective Lichen? Where does the idea of an Unidentified Flying Object come from and are they real? Spoiler alert - probably not. In this episode Dallas is joined by journalist and author David Clarke to discuss all things unidentified. Fro...

  • 🎧 Aeroplanes

    On 17 December 1903 the Wright Brothers successful completed the first manned, controlled and sustained flight in human history.

    They made it 'just' 120 feet in that first attempt. From there, aeroplane technology took off at a pace. Only 16 years later came the first non-stop transatlantic flig...

  • 🎧 The Bicycle

    Invented in the mid-1800s, bicycles have had enduring popularity. Across cultures, they have been embraced, promising freedom and mobility at a low price point.

    Today on the show we are joined by Tim Harford, host of the podcasts Cautionary Tales and The BBC’s 50 Objects That Defined The Modern...

  • 🎧 Prozac

    How β€” and why β€” did Prozac become the best-selling antidepressant of all time?

    As it is Mental Health Awareness Week, we are diving into this fascinating story that speaks to a greater shift in psychiatry and attitudes towards mental health since the invention of the first antidepressants in th...

  • 🎧 LSD

    How did LSD go from accidental discovery to the counter cultures go to drug?

    On April 19th 1943 Albert Hoffman had the first ever LSD trip in Basel, Switzerland. He was testing a substance of his own making, that he had initially developed 5 years previously and been thinking about ever since......

  • 🎧 Small Inventions, Big Impact

    Staples, paper clips, and washers - small inventions that improve our everyday lives and have even saved lives. In this episode Dallas is joined by author Helen Pilcher to talk about the origins of these tiny, lifer altering inventions and the impact felt still. From the use of ant heads to stop ...

  • 🎧 Robots

    Many of us became familiar with robots through science fiction β€” R2D2, C3PO, Rosie from the Jetsons, Marvin the Paranoid Android. In comparison, it can feel like the robots we actually interact with today fall a bit short of this imagined future.

    In this episode we are joined by Dr Beth Singler,...

  • 🎧 Wheeled Suitcase

    We put man on the moon, before we invented a wheeled suitcase.

    So, why did it take so long? Well, the research of today’s guest suggests entrenched, gendered attitudes made the embrace of this idea even slower.

  • 🎧 Tanks

    Tanks defined 20th century conflict β€” they conjure to mind images of Tiananmen Square or the Soviet Army rolling into a liberated Berlin. But over the past couple of weeks, we have began seeing them again on our TV screens during the current fighting in Ukraine.

    Today on Patented, we are joined...

  • 🎧 The Origin of Zero

    Nada, naught, nil, zip, zilch, zero. Whatever you call it, it's hard to imagine the world without it.

    Zero is the basis for all modern computing and engineering, including trigonometry, algebra, and binary code. So, pretty important.

    But despite how integral it is to our lives now, there was on...

  • 🎧 The First Motion Picture: Conspiracy, Murder, and Movies

    In 1890, the man who shot the first ever motion picture boarded a train in Paris β€” and was never seen again.

    Shortly after his disappearance, another inventor showcased a camera with uncanny similarities. Is it coincidence or conspiracy?

    Today on the show we are joined by author and filmmaker P...

  • 🎧 The Treadmill

    Today on the show we discuss the torturous history of treadmills.

    Before they found their way into gyms, treadmills had a much darker history. In the 19th Century, they could most commonly be found in prisons.

    In contrast to their modern track record of improving health, the Victorians saw tr...

  • 🎧 The Ear Trumpet

    Ear Trumpets are seen as old fashioned and clumsy, mostly deployed in pop culture for comic effect as a snarky shorthand for how old and out-of-touch a person is.

    But during the Enlightenment there was a wider embrace of this new technology as a means of increased participation.

    This episode we...

  • 🎧 Monks: Medieval Masters of Invention

    In medieval times it was monks who were the masters of invention. They were the most educated members of society who saw scientific and philosophical investigation as a way to get closer to god. However, any experimentation had to be carefully balanced with religion, the threat of being labelled ...

  • 🎧 Spacesuits

    It required borrowing skills from some surprising places to pull it off...namely, women's underwear.

    With the help of Ryan Nagata, artist and replica spacesuit maker, we chart the evolution of the spacesuit from the Wiley Posts, to the iconic Apollo suits and beyond.

  • 🎧 Breakfast Cereal

    Kelloggs Cornflakes are arguably the most iconic breakfast cereal, and for good reason. It was this product that launched breakfast cereal as we know and love it today.

    But as with all good invention stories, it isn’t quite as simple as a good idea at the right time.

    The invention of Cornflakes...

  • 🎧 The Atomic Bomb

    In a world at war, and with no end in sight, the atomic bomb was positioned to be the one weapon that could end the conflict for good.

    In this episode Dallas is joined by Dr Campbell Craig, who argues that it may have put an end to World War 2 β€” but also laid the foundations for the Cold War tha...

  • 🎧 Military Drones

    Drone technology has transformed the way we wage war today. They have been key in every major conflict since at least 2008, including the current war in Ukraine. But military drones have a much longer history than you might imagine, dating all the way back to the First World War.

    In this episode...

  • 🎧 Genetic Engineering

    Over the course of only half a century, genetic engineering has developed from an intellectual concept to a medical reality. Yet the ethical and moral questions underpinning it remain unanswered.

    Genetically modified crops, illegal human experimentation, and a handy hip-hop analogy - Dallas is j...

  • 🎧 Steam Engines and Transport Innovators

    The revolution in speed ground to a halt in the 1960s. The previous half century saw great leaps in how quickly people could get from place to place: high-speed railways, cars, intercontinental flight. In our life time transport may have become safer and comfier β€” but we aren't getting anywhere a...