Thomas Edison Failed 10,000 Times

by Luke McKnight 14 replies
Thomas Edison estimated he failed at making the light bulb 10,000 and was proud of it. After he did, he said, if I didn't have it working by now, I would still be trying other ways to make it work.

Failure is just one more way of not doing something. Don't give up and take it for what it is, a cold hard lesson.
#mind warriors #edison #failed #thomas #times
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  • Profile picture of the author krtinberg
    This is one of the main things I lived by.. Success comes to those with perseverance. Failure is just an opportunity to learn something new.
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  • Profile picture of the author janicelou
    so true! the average man tries once. fails.. and says " THATS IMPOSSIBLE "

    join the great.. .try, try, and try again
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  • Profile picture of the author KevinBolty
    Nothing is impossible.

    Failure is not trying!

    Never Give Up Guys!
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  • Profile picture of the author JoeUK
    Imagine he packed it in after the 9999th attempt - now would have been a real failure!
    Popular - Because Everything Popular Is Wrong... - Positive News, Uplifting Views & Inspirational Tidbits!
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    • Profile picture of the author The Marketeer
      Originally Posted by JoeUK View Post

      Imagine he packed it in after the 9999th attempt - now would have been a real failure!
      Yeh, not only that but we'd probably all still be using torches for light. I admire his perseverance.

      It would be nice to know how he made a living while he was finding a way to make the light bulb work.
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      • Profile picture of the author J Bold
        Originally Posted by The Marketeer View Post

        Yeh, not only that but we'd probably all still be using torches for light. I admire his perseverance.

        It would be nice to know how he made a living while he was finding a way to make the light bulb work.
        Ya, sorry, no.

        I know I'm a little off topic but Thomas Edison did not invent the light bulb, he merely improved existing technology. Not to mention there were a few others racing to be the first to get the patent and to refine the technology to make a small bulb that could be something cheaply producible on a mass scale, so that the patent holder could make a lot of money. But the technology already existed, it just wasn't cheaply producible on a mass scale, yet. Also, it needed to be a long lasting, efficient light bulb so that you wouldn't have to be replacing it every day. That's what Edison did, and he had a very smart team working with him. He wasn't some tinkerer mad scientist in his little lab coming up with this all alone. And he wasn't even close to coming up with the idea of the light bulb, but what he and a couple others doing the same thing as him at the time achieved was quite notable and yes affected society greatly.

        Edison was an inventor, though, as he invented many things and used the power of other people to work together on his many projects. So his name is on many inventions, but he had a lot of help from his team, even if he was the head of the operation. While "inventing" the light bulb, he was working on all kinds of other inventions and improvements on existing technology and was one of those rare people who had a notable impact on society with the results of his tests and research.

        He also made money before the light bulb improvement by being a telegraph operator and coming up with other inventions. He made money from patents and his projects. He really started out quite poor but through his hard work and smarts, really in the end became very powerful. We should also applaud him for his business acumen and relentless, aggressive business competitiveness. He really did things in an astute way so he could make as much money as possible from his work, and became quite powerful.

        But anyway, regarding the light bulb, if he had died in some car accident as a kid or never existed at all, there would still be an "inventor" of the light bulb. In fact others beat him to the patent, and he basically bought one guy out by partnering with him and fought a legal battle against another and came out on top in the end, even though he had lost the initial case.

        But yes, we should recognize Edison. He was certainly a hard worker and never game up in his quest to be known as the inventor of the light bulb, even though he wasn't...

        The most notable invention by Edison though was the phonograph, as it was extremely unique and almost unheard of to record sound. Not sure if there were any competing inventors on that one.

        He did work hard though. He did never give up in innovating and creating and filing a lot of patents, though.

        We can admire him and use him as inspiration for many reasons, just not as the "inventor" of the light bulb as the way it's always told people think he just came up with this out of thin air and people were only using candles before him. The main thing we should admire him for about the light bulb though, was his innovation and improvement in a way that opened up the possibility of electric light being used by the poor as well as the rich.

        We can all learn something from. In IM-related business, we should innovate with perhaps a Wordpress plug-in that could be made better, or an SEO software that makes things even easier for SEO experts to use. And we should test, test, test to get the highest converting squeeze pages and sales pages. And we should, at least in some niches, make a name for ourselves for what we do, just like Edison.

        bla bla bla I'll shut up now. I just get annoyed that Edison's "invention" of the light bult is always used as some inspirational, emotional example of the value of never giving up for entrepreneurs, when in reality it's not exactly accurate.

        Use him as inspiration, though, for all the reasons I've mentioned above.
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  • Profile picture of the author ThatMichaelKid
    Thanks for this, this is exactly what I needed to pick myself up from being in the depressing zone of failing. I remember the story, so inspirational. Thanks again.
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  • Profile picture of the author Arima Brunson
    I have read a lot of Bio, and most of the successful people always tell they failed 100s of times but from each failure they learned "what does not work..."
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  • Profile picture of the author uebomoyi
    Thank you so much for sharing this post. I actually read this in a book and it really encouraged me. It's nice to see someone else is bringing this up because it is so true. A lot of people who are successful now a days actually failed a lot more then they succeeded and it feels nice to here such a thing cause I've failed a lot myself. The main thing is just to keep striving and being persistent. I believe I heard the term before that "failure is your friend" I couldn't agree more and I have been failing and learning ever since...=) thanks again for starting this thread..


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  • Profile picture of the author gearys57
    yes i have heard this too, you got to keep trying
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  • Profile picture of the author andy moore
    "Our greatest glory consists not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall." - Confucius
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    • glanced at a self imp. book last month about the need for
      practice (failure or Edison inventing 10,000 ways to Not build a light bulb)) .

      those that do become the best, those that don't, stay average.

      they studied a ice skater and her risky move in which other professional skaters would not attempt it in practice.

      they estimated, for the year she would have to fall on her butt 1,000's of times
      to get it right.
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  • Profile picture of the author That Guy
    So true, here at university people are used to the 90%+ that they get in highschool that when they get ecen a 70% they start to freak out. Some can't even get over it. What I'm trying to get at is that this is true for almost every situation in life. Adversity has to be faced with strength not fear, and we can't let our failures get the best of us.
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