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As many of you reading this have probably heard, the direct response television industry lost a true pioneer last weekend, with the untimely and sudden death of TV Pitchman Billy Mays. Billy, well known for his thumbs-up pitches and larger-than-life personality, was born in McKees Rocks, Pennsylvania, just minutes away from our InventHelp and INPEX headquarters, here in Pittsburgh.

Over the years, Billy had been seen hawking everything from Orange Glo to Oxiclean, and most recently was featured alongside Anthony Sullivan in the Discovery Channel reality show, Pitchmen. Like many consumers, I was also a big fan of Billy Mays and had the opportunity to meet him at the Inventors Corner back in March at the Home & Housewares Show. It was a true pleasure to meet the man who made selling products on television look like a fine art and whose zest for life was infectious.

On behalf of the entire InventHelp and INPEX staff, our condolences go out to the Mays family. He will be greatly missed.


Hey Ladies!

Do you think your invention will have all of America wondering, “Why didn’t I think of that?” Would you like the chance to have your new product seen nationwide?

If so, Milojo Productions (the production company owned by Kelly Ripa and Mark Consuelos) wants to meet you. They have contacted INPEX to let us know they are now casting women with inventions and great personalities from across America for a new series on TLC to help women inventors and potentially take one inventor’s product to the Home Shopping Network.

If you have an invention or new product and a working prototype, TLC and Kelly Ripa may be able to help you manufacture, market and sell it on the Home Shopping Network.

A few requirements you should keep in mind:

  • Invention or product may not be edible or make any guarantees of satisfaction (such as “guaranteed weight loss” or “best ever”)
  • You must be a woman over the age of 18
  • All applicants are subject to background check and standard television release forms

If you’ve got ambition, an idea and a working prototype, apply now at

Casting calls are scheduled for New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Dallas.

Good Luck!


One thing that a lot of exhibitors at InventHelp’s INPEX Invention Show have in common is the desire to have everyday people look at their inventions and say “wow, I could really use something like that.” For most inventors, the motive for inventing is to create something others will find useful – something that makes life easier, more convenient or more entertaining.

There’s a really interesting book out now that delves into the subject of how people relate to inventions and technology, which I recommend checking out – especially for those working on creating new products. It’s called The Inner History of Devices and it was written by a sociologist and psychologist named Sherry Turkle, who teaches at MIT.

In the book, Turkle examines the emotional bond that develops between people and their gadgets. Memoirs, ethnographies and clinical cases collected in this very readable book tell specific stories of individuals and their personal attachments to the inventions that play prominent roles in their lives – computers, cell phones, video poker machines, even prosthetic eyes.

For those interested in peering into the psychology of consumers and tech users (and it’s always a good thing when developing a new product to get inside the heads of your target audience), this book is definitely worth a look. The Inner History of Devices is currently available for purchase from MIT Press for $24.95.


2009 Marks the 25th Anniversary of InventHelps INPEX Invention ShowHere’s a riddle for everyone: what do INPEX, “Police Academy”, Mac computers and the MTV Video Music Awards have in common? The answer: they’ll all be turning twenty-five in 2009.

Yes, it’s hard to believe but, much like those 1980s staples, the Invention and New Product Exposition (INPEX) will be celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2009! That’s a quarter of a century of bringing inventors and companies together!

Since INPEX’s formative years during the Reagan administration, we’ve added features like the Inventor’s University, to help educate inventors on the business side of inventing; Product Reviews, allowing inventors to pitch their new product ideas to company or expert panels; even boxing matches sponsored by Everlast®!

While a lot has changed in America since the year “The Cosby Show” premiered and the L.A. Raiders won the Super Bowl, our commitment to assisting inventors in spreading the word about their inventions and new products hasn’t changed a bit. We’re working just as hard as we did back in 1984 to make INPEX the best it can be (only difference: we don’t listen to Duran Duran while we work anymore).

We invite all inventors and entrepreneurs to join us in celebrating InventHelp’s 25th annual INPEX Invention Trade Show June 24-26, 2009 at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center in downtown Pittsburgh. You can request more information about exhibiting at INPEX 2009 or call us at 888-54-INPEX.

Did you exhibit at the INPEX ‘84? If so, grab your latest invention and exhibit again – you’ll be truly amazed at how the show has evolved!


Author and INPEX Inventors University Speaker Jill LublinInventors, there’s a really informative piece in the November Inventors Community newsletter that I’d like to call to your attention.

It’s titled “Ten Tips for Getting Noticed” and it was written by Jill Lublin, an internationally renowned speaker and publicity expert. For our audience of startup inventors and entrepreneurs, the article may be very useful as you attempt to draw attention to a new product idea or launch a small business.

For those of you who aren’t familiar with Jill Lublin, she’s been a regular speaker at the INPEX Inventors University for years, and exhibitors always find her seminars really helpful and valuable.

Along with her work as a speaker, Jill is also the author of the books “Networking Magic” and “Guerilla Publicity” (both bestsellers), and she came out with another book called “Get Noticed…Get Referrals” just this past June. On top of that, Jill also hosts a TV program and a nationally syndicated radio show.

Make sure to check out Jill’s article in this month’s Inventor’s Community newsletter! You can also sign up to receive this free newsletter via email, or learn more about Jill Lublin by visiting her Web site.