Thomas Edison never ran a company, never made a product, never sold anything but patents.
He did also say: Reinvention is the epitome of unproductivity, and so the idea of rewarding reinvention is antithetical to promoting technological progress. The patent system intends to accelerate invention. The very reason the patent system exists: to avoid reinvention.
Needless to say commenters were all over him about Edison:
Edison never ran a company?
W A T?
HAWK, if nothing else you can not spread blatant misinformation!
Nevar forget! Concrete houses!
This isn't even the tip o' tha ice though.
Wait until you get a load of this!
Electric power stations! Etc, etc. The man did little but invent and market his products his whole adult life! And trust me, not only did he start some of those corps, he ran a few of them too. Especially the concrete corp. From what I recall he blew a huge portion of his personal wealth on running that company into the ground himself. Hard. Even so, even if he went around setting up corps and then leaving them all behind, that's better than not doing a dmn thing with your invention to bring it to me and the rest of the world who needs it so so so so badly amirite?
"Edison was active in business right up to the end. Just months before his death in 1931, the Lackawanna Railroad implemented electric trains in suburban service from Hoboken to Gladstone, Montclair and Dover in New Jersey. Transmission was by means of an overhead catenary system, with the entire project under Edison's guidance. "
From the wiki sure, but trust me, there's a lot of evidence of this to go around.
[LBE notes: the original cars on the Lackawanna were STILL being used when LBE lived in New Providence, NJ, a stop on the Peapack/Gladstone line.]
Edison was hands-on with all his companies.
The phonograph business (see the article 6K linked) showed he was as shrewd a manager as any Microsoft has employed (driving the old business he assumed into the ground, perhaps, so that his new business could rise).
Edison and the light bulb, linking to
LBE's Edison as a Patent Troll, or Where is California Going in Stem Cell Research? : Of various suggestions that Edison was troll-like in his behavior in not making product, one observes that Edison himself obtained the funds from investors to set up the first electric power plant, and then created the power plant. He made product. Whether he was actually the inventor of the light bulb is a different story.