A local amateur inventor with scores of ideas, concepts and inventions is giving them all away in the hope that they might provide viable commercial opportunities for entrepreneurs.
“It’s counter-intuitive,” said Ballincollig man Bill O’Riordan (42), “in that you’re not supposed to give away your ideas. But my attitude is: I don’t care.”
Bill’s self-published book, Fly-Flaps & Other Inventions, contains descriptions and explanations for some 200 of his ideas, some of them humorous and tongue-in-cheek, and others that he believes could be turned into viable business ideas.
“These are ideas which I can’t really take any further, because I don’t have the necessary entrepreneurial mindset, but my hope is that someone might be able to bring some of the ideas, or be inspired to develop their own ideas,” he said.
“None of these ideas are patented, so really, it’s a matter of whoever gets to develop the idea first. I’d just love to see someone using the book to develop a successful product or service, and generating employment at a time when it’s badly needed,” Bill said.
Written in a tongue-in-cheek style, the ideas range from the fly flaps of the book’s title (a trap for flies that enables the insects to leave your home by the window); an LED light-emitting duvet for people who read in bed, complete with slow-dim deactivation; a fibre-optic binocular attachment for telescopes; self-sterilising escalator handrails; and Irish skiing, inspired by the Austrian ‘sommerrodelbahn’ tobogganing phenomenon.
Bill believes some of the concepts are realistic commercial propositions, not least the carbon monoxide detector cell for Smartphone cases, but he has no regrets about setting his “babies” free.
“I just don’t have the skills to develop these ideas into products. I enjoy writing, and the way I think is in short, sharp bursts, where I will get the inspiration for an idea. I’ve probably unburdened myself in a way, because now, the ideas are out there, and it’s not up to me any more. It’s for someone else to take it to the next level—I’ve no claim on what anyone does with them from here,” Bill explained.