A month ago I was challenged to invent a new thing every day and present it at the next Monday book club meeting. That, of course, is an impossible task that even Thomas Edison couldn’t keep up with for very long. However, I haven’t been trying to invent the light bulb, or the phonograph or General Electric corporation, just little things. Although even little things might be scaled up for a mass market like the Snowshooo, or …? The last couple of days along came:::

A meal in a bowl divider. That is a device with thin vertical dividers that fit into a bowl shape. A typical embodiment would be thin stiff sheets, fastened to a horizontal bar, placed parallel about an inch apart. The space between each sheet could be filled with different foods and when the device was lifted out they would remain in their original positions. That would make a multi-component meal of separate foods.

A plate divider – The same physical idea, but fitted with a flat bottom that would fit a plate.

A microphone transmission grip – Battery powered microphones commonly used by public speakers often lose radio contact with their pick up monitor because the speaker places their hand over the transmission antenna which is usually at the opposite end of the device from the microphone audio pickup. The improvement is to place an uncomfortable to grip belt around the antenna, and a hand grip shape where the speaker is encouraged to hold their hand.

A zip slide with a Pi scale (3.14) – The zip slide scale described in a previous invention list can be instantly adapted to measuring the diameter of cylindrical objects by pulling it tight around the object. The index marker gives the diameter in inches or mm.

Patterned printing blocks – these can be created in an infinity of pattern forms by varying the composition of the materials, such as mud or paint, and letting them set. Then spraying with colored paint and pressing materials such as paper onto the surface and transferring the pattern.

Make robots with feelings – by giving them internal sensors that are interpreted by their computers as pain and pleasure, and other emotions. As they interact with their environment, give them feedback that affects these internal sensors. The robot learns the kinds of external objects that give it a level of pain associated with that input.

Enable robots to search – Don’t teach them, but allow them to explore their environment and learn. Let them learn by rewarding their behavior in some way, like earning points or money.

These are obvious ideas once stated, and I admit all of them have probably been done by someone unknown to me.