Poster series honors creative inventions from Minnesota minds

Categories: Art
It came from Minnesota: Pop-up toasters, indoor malls, mind-controlled toy helicopters
Most Minnesotans are aware that our fair state boasts the first indoor mall and is the birthplace of Spam. However, folks may not be aware that Minnesota inventors and teams of scientists also came up with the first pop-up toaster, the first retractable seat belt, and the first commercial computer to use RAM.

To honor these major breakthroughs in history, creative branding agency Replace has come up with a pretty cool series of posters featuring bright colors and interesting tidbits about these major achievements.

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Oregon Trail: How three Minnesotans forged its path

The series, titled MN Invents, explores great ideas from local scientific creatives. Each poster focuses on one moment in history, from the early 1900s to the present. Breakthroughs range from when St. Paul grocery store owner Walter Deubener thought to add handles to his paper bags in 1912; to Alvin, a deep-sea submarine built in 1964 (and still in use today); to a group of researchers at the University of Minnesota who figured out just this year how to create a remote-controlled helicopter that moves based on the operator's thoughts.

Replace recently set up a website for the project, which can be viewed at You can scroll over each poster to read a little bit about how each item came into existence.

We shall see what Minnesota inventors come up with next. In the meantime, museums, schools, and other organizations continue to encourage scientific creativity. This October the Science Museum of Minnesota will be hosting Girls in Science on Saturday, October 12. The event showcases women working in science and technology. Meanwhile, the Bakken and the Children's Museum continue to offer hands-on activities, workshops, and classes for young minds, as does the quirky Leonardo's Basement.

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@Jennifer Beth Mykleby The Wright brothers are from Dayton, Ohio, and their first flight was in North Carolina (hence the rivalry between those two states both claiming to be the birthplace of aviation). As far as I know, there's no Minnesota connection there.

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