Out of 26 million Texans, you may have an idea to change the world. You may have had several ideas to change the world. But only a tiny minority of you pushed through the U.S. Patent office from application to successful patent. We've seen Texans change the world many times over. Jack Kilby did it with Texas Instruments in 1958 with the integrated circuit, causing the start of the digital revolution, which, in part, is why you can read these words over your electronic device.
Over the last few years, Texas Business has brought its feature: Texas Business Patent of the Day. This list is of the ones that were either extremely clever, odd or strange. One thing becomes apparent from these patents and the patent that runs daily in Texas Business—Texans have a unique mind set.
Though the history of the Corn Dog is disputed, the State Fair of Texas claims to have introduced the Corny Dog sometime between 1938 and 1942. As a paean to that invention that now sits in the freezer section of every grocery store in the southwest, here are the fried foods the State Fair of Texas has introduced, or tried to introduce, in the last seven years.
Don't get caught up with John Wayne religion. For one thing, he's not Texan. He's in some fine movies involving Texas, most notably The Searchers, but none of his movies can make the best cut of Texas movies. Here's the short list.
Unsung Texas Business Journalists Mention that one is a reporter, and there's a spark of interest. Mention that one is a business news reporter, and watch the eyes glaze over. Except to the players, business and economic journalists are unappreciated. While many wish to become sports reporters when they grow up, most do not realize that business journalists cover the Real Game. Mention that reporter covers business, and watch the eyes glaze over. A toast to these below on the short list and the numerous unnamed ones slogging away. Full Story » TexasBusiness.com
Best Texas Mexican Food: The Short List No, we're not going to debate the difference between Tex-Mex, Mex-Tex, Mexican and Texican food. Just know these establishments are the pinnacle of Texas Mexican fare. No brag, just fact. Full Story » TexasBusiness.com
Best Texas Burgers Texas Burgers. . While a hamburger is merely sustenance and gratification for a meal, the memory a good Texas burger can give rise to Homeric odes. The short list. Full Story » TexasBusiness.com
Ronald M. Helton of Conroe, Texas, recently received U.S. Patent 8,166,719 for “System for Flood Proofing Residential and Light Commerical Buildings."
Texas Business Patent of the Day: If you live by a river, in a flood plain, near sea level atthe coast or by a marsh, you worry about floods. Now a Texas man has devised a way to floor proof your home or building, at least up to a certain height of water.
Ronald M. Helton of Conroe, Texas, recently received U.S. Patent 8,166,719 for “System for Flood Proofing Residential and Light Commerical Buildings.
Helton applied for the patent more than three years ago on April 21, 2009.
Helton’s invention relates to protecting wood frame and light gauge steel frame buildings from damage by flood water intrusion into the interior of the building, according to the patent documents.
More particularly, method and materials for preventing water from passing through walls, windows and window openings and doors and door openings of buildings are provided.
According to the Federal Emergency Management Administration of the U.S. government (FEMA) and the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), flash flooding is the most common natural disaster in the U.S. One-third of flood loss claims paid are in "low-risk" areas, and the average flood loss claim payment is $42,000.
For many years, flood protection methods have been developed and used in protection of commercial, institutional and high-rise multi-family residential buildings. Temporary flood barriers and gates have been developed as an improvement to sand bags to keep rising surface water out of buildings, but there is a need for a "passive" method and corresponding materials for flood proofing wood frame and light-gauge steel frame buildings.
A passive method of flood protection is defined as one that does not require human intervention to prevent interior flooding of a building during an unexpected flood event--one that prevents intrusion of rising water into an exterior building envelope. Such method and materials should be applicable to retrofit existing residences, small commercial buildings and other types of structures that are built on concrete slabs and that utilize wood structural framing or light-gauge steel framing in exterior walls. In addition, such method and materials should be applicable to various veneer wall finish materials, i.e. masonry, stucco, and wood or composite siding materials or to new construction.
Helton’s invention provides method and materials for sealing the exterior of a building built on a concrete slab to a selected height above the slab. Window frames are sealed and special construction of windows extending below the selected height is provided. Door frames are sealed and special construction of doors extending below the selected height is provided. Doors open outwardly from the building walls. Walls are sealed by waterproof panels that are sealed to the slab.
The Texas News Scrawl is a handy reference to stories Texas Business recommends from other news sources. Some of the stories that Texas Business currently suggests include: Robert Rodriguez breathes new life into an old vampire favorite; ClubCorp buys Prestonwood Country Club in Dallas and Plano; Office Depot overcharged Dallas by up to $3.6 million, city auditor finds; Texas power market monitor resigns amid unresolved reform debate; U.S. Supreme Court denies review of Farmers Branch immigration ordinance; Aggie Vanishing Act: Sale of Texas Wesleyan’s law school to A&M leaves alumni out in the cold;ExxonMobil CEO Doesn't Want a Fracking Operation Near His Backyard bDrowned bridge worker’s employer had prior OSHA violations;and more.