Seventy-five years ago, a 13-year-old boy had the idea for creating "magic carpets" of sound and pictures that could take ordinary people to all kinds of new and exotic places. It took him more than a decade of determined effort and struggle to realize this idea. But in the end, Philo T. Farnsworth became the man most responsible for the invention of television. Learn more about some of the world's greatest inventors and their marvelous inventions by using the direct links on the Times Launch Point Web site: launchpoint/.

Here are the best sites for getting your schoolwork done or for just having fun.

Level One

Kid Inventors: View ideas for inventions created by young inventors, such as the Safety Fingerprint Gun or the Tree Planting Machine. See how kids are using their creativity to try to improve the environment.

Welcome to Invention: Want to become an inventor? All you need to do is find a problem and then think of possible solutions. Learn about some women inventors as well as some funny reactions to some important inventions. Inventing a New Kind of Pencil: Learn about the many different ways to invent through a sample exercise: creating a better pencil.

Level Two

The Inventors Club: Find out about inventors and how inventions like the telephone, camera and saxophone were developed. Try making your own version of the invention of the month by following the illustrated, step-by-step instructions.

Exploring Leonardo: Find out how the sketches Leonardo da Vinci made more than 500 years ago can easily be used today to create perfect working models of flying machines and submarines.

Inventor of the Week Archives: Have you ever wanted to know how air-conditioning was invented? What about the games of baseball and Monopoly?

Level Three

National Inventors Hall of Fame Index of Inventions: From amplifiers to antibiotics, learn about a variety of revolutionary ideas and contraptions and the people who dreamed them up.

The Farnsworth Chronicles: Find out how Philo T. Farnsworth took his teenage dream of television toward reality.

Madame C.J. Walker: Meet Sarah Breedlove Walker, one of the first American women to become a millionaire through her inventions.

Launch Point is produced by the UC Irvine department of education, which reviews each site for a ppropriateness and quality. Even so, parents should supervise their children's use of the Internet. This week's Launch Point was produced by Judith Sanchez, Monica Amitrano and Stephanie Hodges .


The answer to this Internet quiz can be found in the sites at right.

What invention by Richard Drew was used during the Great Depression to preserve cracked eggs, among other things?

CLUE: See Inventor of the Week Archives

Find What You Need to Know: Have a project on California history? Need help doing a math problem? Launch Point now covers more than 50 topics for getting your schoolwork done. Go to for the full list of subjects and direct links to the best Internet sites.

Answer to the June 15 Quest: the Vedas; veda is a word meaning knowledge.

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