In a world where .250 batters are often feted as stars, there's a good bar argument about the selection criteria Google uses to honor individuals with its occasional doodle. But if ever someone was worthy of Google Doodle status, the great Thomas Alva Edison fits the bill.
And so on the anniversary of his 164th birthday, Google celebrates the man with a glowing, moving doodle. Pretty neat. As the New York Times noted in its 1931 obituary of Edison:
"Thomas Alva Edison made the world a better place in which to live and brought comparative luxury into the life of the workingman. No one in the long roll of those who have benefited humanity has done more to make existence easy and comfortable. Through his invention of electric light he gave the world a new brilliance; when the cylinder of his first phonograph recorded sound he put the great music of the ages within reach of every one; when he invented the motion picture it was a gift to mankind of a new theatre, a new form of amusement. His inventions gave work as well as light and recreation to millions."Indeed, one of those inventions is highlighted in the video clip at the top of the page, courtesy of the Library of Congress: the Jan. 7, 1894 video of his assistant recorded sneezing on camera. As Edison was not only a master inventor of his day. He also turned out to be quite the clairvoyant, predicting many of the technologies that would shape the future of the century ahead of him.