Flash of Genius

Flash of Genius

And Other True Stories of Invention

Book - 2008
Average Rating:
Rate this:

Flash of Genius And Other True Stories of Invention by John Seabrook, staff writer for The New Yorker , is a collection of true stories about where great ideas come from, and is the basis for the Major Motion Picture starring Greg Kinnear releasing October 2008.

"John Seabrook is one of America's finest non-fiction writers....Fascinating, entertaining, beautifully written and often poignant..."--Eric Schlosser, author of Fast Food Nation

Where Do Great Ideas Come From?

In Flash of Genius , John Seabrook explores the moment when inspiration strikes in an otherwise average life, and what happens when that idea moves out into the larger culture and takes on a life--and commercial possibilities--of its own. The title piece in this collection is the David v. Goliath story of Bob Kearns, a professor and inventor who came up with something we all use every chance we get: the intermittent windshield wiper. When Kearns' patents were infringed, he fought General Motors, Ford, andChrysler, and eventually prevailed in a classic American story of never giving up, never backing down.

Seabrook has been fascinated by stories of invention and entrepreneurship since childhood, when he grew up with an uncle who invented something as ubiquitous as Bob Kearns' wipers: boil-in-bag vegetables. In Flash of Genius , Seabrook also writes about his family's invention and about thirteen other iconoclastic visions that turned into the stuff of every day.

Publisher: New York : St. Martin's Griffin, 2008
Characteristics: xxiv, 356 p. ; 21 cm
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780312535728 : $14.95
0312535724 : $14.95
Call Number: 609 SEABROOK


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment

Apr 18, 2015

Let's take a look at one story in this book, The Tower Builder, about Twin Towers, and the people who built them and their collapse. The author states that a person jumping off the top of either tower would have hit the ground at the same time the tower did when each collapsed [technically, the towers hit the ground sooner, but let's go with the author for now] - - so what became of the compound resistance? The author mentions the fireballs, if that wasn't the jet fuel, what was it, cigarette lighter fluid??? The falling human has only air between themselves and the ground, in the towers there were solid objects, i.e., compound resistance. The author keeps emphasizing lightweight structures, but then claims that the weight was so colossal [except, didn't much of the top of the south tower fall into the Marriott below???]; and if the fire consumed much above where the planes struck, that removes further weight. The author cannot explain Physics 101 [2 objects of varying weight, dropped from the same height, given similar resistance between them and the ground, will strike at the same time - - not a single object and a building with stuff inside!!!!!], nor does he explain the removal of compound resistance? [If a human jumped off the top of either tower, at the same time a heavier object was thrown off, they would hit the ground approximately the same time, because neither had any solids between them and the ground. Both towers, and 7 World Trade, or Building 7, collapsed as if with ZERO compound resistance, or as if they were completely empty of any solids or structures internally. Author incorrectly states that Port Authority was the owner, owner of record of Twin Towers was Silverstein Properties and Westfield, owner of record of Building 7 was the Blackstone Group.]


Add Age Suitability

There are no ages for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number


Subject Headings


Find it at JCPL

To Top