Friday April 25, 2014
In writing the book, Jon and I decided to try to find all NZ inventions or innovations we could. The trouble was, we kept finding them. Every time we thought we had the full list, we'd talk to someone or stumble on something online which would open a new line of enquiry.
You'd think it would be easy to work out the number of inventions - count the number of patents filed. The issue with that approach is that many of the patents are pretty technical and relate to minor things, and many of the truly great innovations are not patentable. So it came down to detective work, lots of searching online and in various databases, and particularly, input from colleagues at NZTE. Without their knowledge of the latest innovations from NZ companies, we may have missed quite a few.
In the end, the book features over 200 inventions, but we did have to leave a bunch out also. We now live in fear that between now (after the manuscript has been delivered) and August (when the book will come out), someone will come up to us and say 'but of course, you did include the xyz, that great kiwi invention'. Too late now, we are done. Keep your interesting innovations for the next book...