Amid all the ballyhoo over what a bold visionary Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg is, let's pause for a moment to appreciate the work of Eugene Polley, inventor of the TV remote control, who has died at age 96.
Think about it. Before Polley's brainstorm, people actually had to get up out of their seats and cross the room to change TV channels.
Simply put, there would be no couch potatoes without this man.
I don't mean to be snarky. The TV remote truly is one of those rare devices that change the way we live. I'd put it right up there with personal computers and microwave ovens.
Polley earned 18 U.S. patents for his inventions, which include the "Flash-matic" remote control. Introduced in 1955, the gadget "used a flashlight-like device to activate photo cells on the television set to change channels," according to one-time TV powerhouse Zenith.