A crowd of nearly 500
people made their way into the Denver Cable Center on Thursday, Nov 15th to see the
latest creations coming out of the minds of the area’s inventors.

For some of
the inventors like Scott Rizzo traveling down from Casper, Wyoming, the chance
to show off his hot tub dome and retractable protection walls was about finding
a company that wanted to manufacture and produce the products.

For others
like Rick Martin, the patent attorney turned inventor, the event was an
opportunity to test the market for his whirling light gadget designed for large
events like concerts, parades, sporting events, and maybe even the Democratic
National Convention.

for the event included patent firm Townsend & Townsend & Crew,
ColoradoBiz Magazine, the City of Westminster, and local PR firm Lynott &

The event
was also a rare opportunity for people to meet and talk to the USPTO
Commissioner of Patents, John Doll, the Washington DC-based official who is
responsible for the entire US patent operation, over 5,400 patent
examiners, and an annual budget of around $1 billion.

Two times
during the day Commissioner Doll took the stage and addressed the crowd, first
during the morning Inventor Boot Camp to give an “inventing 101” talk from the
USPTO perspective, and later as the evening keynote giving a futuristic vision
of the direction the patent office is headed.

“This was a
rare opportunity for both inventors and patent attorneys alike to meet and talk
to the person who controls the whole patent system,” said Charles Hanes,
inventor of Card Parlour Darts, a combination poker-dart game.

out the evening was a presentation on the DaVinci Institute’s Museum of Future Inventions project and the announcements of
the winners.

Using a
team of 48 celebrity judges that included corporate officials, venture
capitalists, media people, and other industry leaders, the final tallying of
votes gave a very credible result.

caliber of people attending this event was truly impressive,” said Enrique
Gutierrez, one of the evening’s winners.

included the following:


  • Inventor of the Year Award: Jim Turner – Company, Optibike – High Performance
    Electric Bike
  • Consumer Product of the Year Award: Company, Lucid Lights – Inventor, John
    Craig – Hand
    held, oscillating light device that paints bright images in thin air
  • Commercial Product of the Year Award: Company, Omnilux – Inventor, Enrique
    Gutierrez – Novel
    Mechanical resonant method for light distribution
  • Software Product of the Year Award: Company, Txtbus – Inventor, Freidrick
    Schweitzer – Bus
    schedules on-demand via free text message
  • Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award: Parker Semler (Age 14) – Company, Parker’s Pesky Pets
    Robotic Squirrel to Exercise Pets
  • Honorable Mention Award: Company, Tensegrity Prosthetics – Inventor, Jerome Rifkin –
    Prosthetic foot designed specifically for the biomechanics of walking
  • Honorable Mention Award: Company, Quality Home Living – Inventor, Tim Butler –
    Motorized storage box that works on wheelchairs
  • Honorable Mention Award: Company, Chronicle Graphics – Inventor, Jim Black – Desktop software that
    takes complex project stories and creates rich timeline animations

The final
consensus was that this was an impressive event all around. Deb Frey and her team from the DaVinci
Institute did a terrific job of organizing and producing the event.

Many thanks
to all of the inventors, exhibitors, and judges who made this possible.

Via the DaVinci Institute