Inventors, Take Note: Invention Ideas From the Cluttered Desk of Anne Seaworthy

I’m no inventor. But I do admire those who can create innovative machines and products. Here are some I wish they would make:

1) A sea turtle friendly plastic bag. Sea turtles often mistake plastic bags for moon jellies and eat them, a fatal error. If those plastic bags had the same chemical composition as a moon jelly, maybe they could nourish sea turtles as well as holding humans’ sandwiches!


2) A growing pencil. For those of us who prefer traditional pencils to mechanical, it’s always sad when we’ve sharpened our favorite pencil too many times and it’s too short to use. What if pencils were made of living, growing bamboo, with a pot of soil on the end instead of an eraser? Then they’d grow back rapidly after writers wore them down.

3) A high school for high achievers. Wouldn’t it be nice if kids had more of a chance to explore job opportunities in high school? It would be amazing if this could be integrated into the curriculum, perhaps through a semester of working or completing an internship, or having the students do various (real) jobs on campus throughout the day, such as peer counseling, culinary arts, and coaching.

4) A hovering beach umbrella. Recently, my family went to the beach and ended up with our beloved umbrella so chock-full of sand, we had to throw it away. What if the umbrella never touched the sand, but instead used the sun’s energy to hover over people, detecting their heat when they moved and resisting the wind so it wouldn’t blow over?


5) A moving makeup station. Some women get up painfully early to apply makeup before heading to work or school. What if there were trains where, if your commute was long enough, a makeup artist would somehow put on your makeup without smearing anything while the train was moving, allowing you to get up later?

6) A blue whale clean vehicle. Many humans could fit inside a blue whale. Why not design a giant vehicle run entirely on clean energy and shaped with the aerodynamics of the blue whale, to replace noisy airplanes and harmful ships?


Photo credits in order of appearance: National Park Service South Florida / Caribbean Network (National Park Service website [1]) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons; By User:Amada44 (Own work) [GFDL ( or CC BY 3.0 (, via Wikimedia Commons; Larry Hobbs, NMML


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