This image is from “Scientific American” circa January 1890. Here’s what it has to say, in no uncertain terms, of this image of an inventor.

“The accompanying fancy sketch from the N.W. Mechanic presents a popular but very erroneous idea of what is supposed to be going on in the head of a first-class inventor. If the inventor’s caput contained anything like the hodgepodge of ideas intended to be suggested by this cut, he would be a pitiable creature, never able to invent or accomplish anything definite or useful. The truth is, the mind of the inventor is rarely fixed upon more than one subject at a time. In order to succeed, he must have a clear intellect, and be able to concentrate his thoughts strongly in a single direction. He is generally the most practical-minded man in the world, though by reason of his power to think a little differently, on new lines, or in advance of the gaping crowds around him, they ignorantly regard him as erratic or lacking in common sense.”

Clearly, the Scientific American of the 1890’s has an idea of the inventor as the solitary unappreciated superman..kind of like now. But no gears in his head!

-sam smiley :-)