Piketon farmer’s ingenuity scores him a U.S. Patent

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest One hot summer of dealing with the task of connecting his old 330 John Deere hay baler’s driveshaft to the PTO of his John Deere 6230 was quite enough for 80-year-old Roy Noel.As Noel was working on his rolling-hill farm in Pike County, he came up with a solution for this painstaking chore.“The first year I had that tractor, I could hardly turn the power take off shaft and the driveshaft on that baler is really heavy. It was all I could do to hold it up when I was connecting it,” Noel said. “By the time I tried to hold that driveshaft up, in line, and turn the tractor’s shaft to put it together, 20 minutes would go by.”The second year in the hay fields with those same green and yellow implements, Noel knew that there had to be a better, more productive way to get the job done.“I had a prototype of this tool I designed made at a shop in Waverly,” Noel said, as he showed off his “Y”-shaped, wrench type instrument with a thumb screw on one tip. “I used it all of that summer on my baler, bush hog and mower conditioner and it worked just fine.”Noel knew he had something that could make a difference on many other farms, like it did for his, so he called up a lawyer in Cincinnati. After 3 years, Noel’s ingenuity and hard work was recognized in the form of a U.S. patent. Patent number 9,009,943, to be exact, means Noel is the only one that can manufacture this particular design.“Research was done about this idea of mine all the way back to the 1800’s, and I found out that PTOs on tractors didn’t start until the 1920’s,” Noel said. “So I figured I had something unique, which surprised me because the concept is so simple.”Noel’s inventions give a farmer just enough leverage to turn the tractor’s PTO shaft to get any piece of equipment hooked up safely and much more efficiently, in about 10 seconds.The prototype still sits on Noel’s kitchen table, alongside one of 31 tools that have been manufactured for sale. Right now he is all sold out.This isn’t the first time that Noel, a retired machinist, has come up with an idea on his farm that has made the job more productive. Years ago, he designed a guard on a small bush hog to keep the weeds from wrapping around the shaft, but the idea of patenting that concept never came to mind and he says he wouldn’t mess with another patent now.As for the patent he did get, he doesn’t plan to keep it too much longer.“I’m not sure what it’s worth, but the plan is to sell this patent,” Noel said. “I’m dealing with a company in Arizona that specializes in selling patents like this and they will deal on the price with a company that wants to buy it. They’ll get a small percentage for selling it and I’ll get the rest.”When that day comes, Noel says he doesn’t have any big plans because he is too attached to the farm.While Noel waits for that little piece of paper to come in the mail, he is getting plenty of big items sent to him, including commendations from the Ohio Senate and the Ohio House of Representatives.“Between the patent letter and those two recognitions from Columbus, we have plenty of new frames to hang,” Noel said, as he looked along the walls lined with his prized deer heads. “But I guess we’ll have to move some of these first.”Trophies from a good day in the woods will soon be replaced by trophies from a lifetime of a job well done in the field.last_img read more

Apple: Time to Drop Anti-PC Sarcasm from TV Ads

first_imgA Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… guest author 1 Related Posts I always looked forward to seeing new “I’m a Mac – I’m a PC” ads on television. As a long-time Mac fan and a marketing pro, I really admired these spots. They were smart and edgy, yet friendly. They were fun. They differentiated Macs from PCs. From a marketing perspective, they were appropriate to Apple’s David fighting Microsoft’s Goliath. And they worked really well, perhaps better than any other mass-market technology product ads.Now I wince every time I see a new one, hoping its smug attitude and condescending tone doesn’t go too far.This guest post was written by Frank Cioffi.I also relished how Apple’s spots unhinged Microsoft, prompting the Goliath to produce its own, usually inept, TV ads that broke a major rule of marketing: never appear reactive to a smaller competitor. Microsoft’s PC ads and the flurry of Ballmer-isms that accompanied them, all on the heels of the Windows Vista catastrophe, actually seemed to reinforce Apple’s point.But what has worked for Apple over the last three years doesn’t seem to work as well now. Call it a psychographic observation, but the theme is getting tired, and the emotional impact of the ads has shifted. The superior, mocking tone of the ads sometimes goes too far, especially now as the new Windows 7 is being well received. Don’t get me wrong. I’m a born-and-raised New Yorker. I like sarcasm. But for me, edgy has gone over the edge in some of these ads.Do we Mac users tend to feel superior? Of course. We know we enjoy the world’s most elegant operating system. But when a Mac evangelist like me starts feeling mildly apologetic about these spots and empathizing with the PC guy, something is amiss.Does Apple’s research show that prospective Mac customers, their intended audience, still like these ads? I assume so. But perhaps Microsoft’s jab at Apple in its TV ads earlier this year (the one in which PC buyer Lauren says, “Maybe I’m not cool enough” to be a Mac person) was accurate, signaling that Apple’s approach borders on arrogance, especially as it gains ever greater market share.While Mac’s market share still pales in comparison to Windows, Apple is no longer a David. With its omnipresent retail stores, the iconic iPod and the runaway popularity of the iPhone, Apple is a real and perceived leader. It has a market cap of over $170 billion and more cash than Cisco or Microsoft. Its TV ads, its recent mishandling of App Store developer issues and criticism from prominent tech journalists show that the Apple perception machine is showing cracks. The company is starting to appear arrogant.To its credit, Apple’s iPhone television ads are clean and crisp, relaying useful features and the latest apps. And not all of the Mac-PC ads are disdainful. The recent one with actor Robert Loggia as PC’s coach is fun. But the spot portraying a top-of-the-line PC model as a semi-sleazy sales guy? That’s when I cringe. The new spots reacting to Windows 7? Not so bad, but they still rely too much on criticizing Microsoft. There’s a difference between conveying product superiority and having a superior attitude.For this Mac fan, these ads are past their peak. They were great fun for a while. But it’s time to shift the tone or move on. Certainly Apple’s creative teams can come up with a follow-up act that is informative, entertaining and edgy, without sounding smug. Otherwise, Apple runs the risk of (gasp!) emulating Microsoft.Guest author: Frank Cioffi is editor and publisher of Apple Investor News, the Apple-only news aggregator and part of the Tech Investor News network.. 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Marketcenter_img Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Tags:#Apple#web Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic…last_img read more