The Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention & Innovation
Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation, Smithsonian Beanie Illustration
MIND: Documenting Invention

Inventing | Documenting | Things to Collect | Resources


Prototypes play several roles in the invention process. They offer the opportunity for the inventor to test the feasibility of a new idea, try out different materials, learn from failure, and balance form and function. As the invention matures, additional prototypes may be created for collaborators, or to communicate the scope of the invention to investors or potential users. Prototypes can be difficult to identify and collect because they are often cannibalized for parts by the inventor and might not resemble the final product.

Last Update: 27 Oct 2010

:: Home :: About Us :: Centerpieces :: Events :: Resources :: Video & Audio ::
:: Press Room :: Blog :: Newsletter :: Site Map :: Facebook :: Flickr :: Twitter ::