Naga Chokkanathan

Why Not? — Worth Of An Invention

Posted on: March 5, 2010

During the early days of 19th Century, people were afraid to build tall buildings!

The problem was, if someone is constructing a building with six or more floors in it, they can’t fully rely on staircases for people to move up and down. Elevators were necessary.

Fortunately, the Elevator (Lift) technology was already there. But people considered them unsafe. Imagine falling all the way from 10th floor, or worst, 25th Floor. No one wanted to take that risk.

In 1853, Elisha Otis, an American inventor developed a new and reliable safety device to avoid elevator accidents. His ‘special’ brake will come into effect whenever ropes of an elevator broke and save the people inside. It was a wonderful new invention.

But people were not sure if it would work. What if we believe this gentleman, get onto a lift and suddenly the safety brake doesn’t work? Again, no one wanted to take the risk.

Hence, Mr. Otis decided to take the matters on his own. In front of a huge audience, he got on an ‘open’ elevator, went to several feet high, and then cut the rope. When he started falling from that height, people were horrified, fearing a certain death for him.

But guess what, the safety device worked. Every time, he was saved and calmly told his audience, “All Safe Gentlemen, All Safe”.

This dramatic experiment, and the fact that Elisha Otis was willing to risk his own life to prove the worth of his invention, changed fortunes for the Otis elevator company. After that no one hesitated to build tall buildings and a whole industry grew around it, resulting in today’s skyscrapers!

What risk you will take, to prove your creation’s worth?

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[…] Why Not? — Worth Of An Invention « Naga Chokkanathan […]

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