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back to article Wind-up bloke Baylis winds up broke, turns to UK gov for help

Trevor Baylis, the brains behind the wind-up radio and a shoe-powered phone charger, has called on the UK government to back Blighty's inventors. And he is reported to be selling his one-bedroom self-designed house on a River Thames island in Twickenham after failing to convert his creations into a mountain of money. He told …

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Offensive spelling...

should be "a full-blown criminal offence"

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Recent titles

Whats with the annoying fucking tongue twister titles on here the last couple days. They're not clever, they're just a fucking pain.

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Facepalm

Re: Recent titles

Recent?

n00b alert!!!

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Recent titles

They are noticeably worse lately.

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Boffin

Moral of the story

You can't make money inventing things for poor people to use.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Moral of the story

I feel dirty but I couldn't help laughing aloud at your comment

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Facepalm

Does Anybody Take Responsibility For Anything Anymore?

It's not UK.gov's fault that inventors are clueless when it comes to business.

Why should they hold inventor's hands?

Surely a man of Baylis' intelligence would know that it would have been wise to retain the services of a patent lawyer BEFORE releasing an new product on the market?.

I remember a documentary on Channel 4 a few years ago that featured a similar guy - some old colonel type who had invented a small device which was to be fitted to air-conditioning units to reduce power consumption. He prototyped it and off he went to China hawking it around to find a manufacturer. He didn't bother his arse patenting it, and was genuinely shocked when the Chinese inevitably copied it and put on sale...

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Silver badge

I had a Freeplay radio

I got it as a Christmas present. The thing lasted about 4 weeks before the plastic widget that regulated the enormous spring snapped and the thing would then unwind itself frighteningly fast in about 3 seconds flat. As an idea it was pretty good but the implementation put me off the idea permanently. It was a shame because it was a good radio when it worked.

It also does not follow that just because he invented a clockwork radio that it would have covered other kinds of wind up devices. Most don't even "wind up" per se - the handle is usually attached to a dynamo which stores charge in a battery. Dynamo operated devices have been around for ages most notably in vehicles but also bicycle lights and even torches.

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I'm broke

I'm broke too, I think I'll ask the UK government to protect me and give me a job and money.

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Anonymous Coward

Does the patent system even work nowadays?

If, as a lone inventor, you come up with a relatively simple widget which can easily be copied, I find it hard to believe that a patent will offer any kind of protection against China.

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Silver badge

Re: Does the patent system even work nowadays?

No, you don't even bother. I was involved in developing a patented product, and the services of a professional patent lawyer were engaged: We applied for patents in Europe, the UK, Australia, New Zealand and the United States, but didn't bother with Brazil, China, India, Africa or Russia, IIRC. The Chinese can choose to make it, but they can't sell it here.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Does the patent system even work nowadays?

Well they can but you may be able to stop other people selling it. The reality is if it gets popular it will be copied and imported 'grey' anyway.

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I'm surprised Baylis didn't snuggle up with Dyson on a joint venture...

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Silly inventor

Patents are for corporations not inventors.

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Re: Silly inventor

Patents are for lawyers, no-one else.

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They used to have him on the Big Breakfast in the shed, back when it was a brilliant show in the Jonny Vaughn era. Presumably Locak Kepper's Cottages is now item #18 on the London Legacy Development Corporation tourist trail.

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WTF?

Purpose of patents misunderstood

Their purpose may have originally had something to do with incentivising invention. But the donkey with a carrot tied to its back is never intended to eat the carrot. The purpose of patents nowadays is to line the pockets of patent lawyers and patent officers. I'd have thought that much was pretty obvious by now.

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Thumb Down

Reinvented

It was done before, just not patented.

Also he didn't handle the product very well. Back shed work not a business.

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FAIL

Not original ideas and poor execution

I was given a Bayliss Torch; I was not impressed, it was expensive, used NiCd cells and a filament bulb, at a time when LEDs where already good enough; the design was bulky, hard to use, and failed after little use. I've see a lot better and MUCH smaller dynamo battery light designs; in fact a RockTrail one I have is the size and roughly the shape of an Duck egg, and very easy to use.

A dynamo, batteries and lights has already been done many times before, including for bicycles, so plenty of prior art; so nothing worth patenting. Anyhow, patents are like walking sticks for healthy teenagers, a completely pointless liability, which just get in the way of healthy business; Bayliss really failed because his products simply weren't good enough.

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