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6 Simple products born out of necessity

dog on leashThroughout history, some of the most innovative and inventive technologies have come about as a result of a common person deciding that they needed a simple product that simply did not exist yet. To that end, we’ve compiled a list of some of the greatest simple products that were born out of necessity:

  • Playing cards for the visually impaired
  • A crossbow tree stand aid
  • Hurricane fabric
  • All-in-one dog stroller
  • The “What Can I Eat?” food directory
  • The MiniSportBelt

Let’s delve into these 6 technologies and see what made them become such a staple of life.

Playing Cards

A.J Saper was just an ordinary optician that was content to fill out prescriptions and sell glasses from his store until insurance companies began introducing new policies that were destroying his business. Without the ability to provide glasses to his customers, he thought of a new way to sell them the types of products they would need.

It started with playing cards with larger print than normal and has now evolved into a full-fledged business for the vision impaired. From larger playing cards to TVs and tablets that help people to read books, A.J Saper has created an inventory of simple products with incredible value.

Tree Stand Aid

Ron McGhan was a sixty-five year old hunter with a problem; his new crossbow was too heavy to hold when he went hunting in trees. To counteract this problem, McGhan invented an intuitive tree stand aid from which he could hang his crossbow. This convenient item is easy to use and has since evolved to include parts for an umbrella and camera component. For hunters out there, elderly or not, this product has turned from an interesting idea into a must-have.

Hurricane Fabric

After the powerful hurricanes of 2004 and 2005 in Florida, the team behind Hurricane Fabric realized that something had to be done. With their knowledge of sailmaking, they created a new type of product to withstand the forces of hurricanes in areas that are commonly hit by them. With hurricanes causing more damage to the country than ever, the value of something like this cannot be overstated.

Dog Stroller

After DeAnna McKillip’s husband was deployed to Iraq, she had a lot of time on her hands. When she bought a new puppy to help with her newly developed loneliness, she found that she now had an even bigger problem; the dog. More specifically, carrying the dog had become too much of a problem. She couldn’t support its weight at all times and it had a hard time with walking on its own. From this problem, a simple solution was born: a doggy stroller.

McKillip’s stroller design is similar to that of a toddler’s, allowing dog owners to walk their dog in a comfortable stroller while also providing room for other useful items that may come about during the day. The success of McKillip’s stroller is not lost on her, as she has, since then, moved on to many other innovative products of old mainstays for dogs, such as her line of “click and stay” leashes.

“What Can I Eat?”

Australian Kylie Hollonds spent more than ten years working in the specialty food business before deciding to branch out and pursue her own business. From there, “What Can I Eat?” was born, a simple site that helps users to determine what foods might interact with their allergies, as well as healthy alternatives to keep them safe.

The MiniSportBelt

Shify Pomerantz invented the MiniSportBelt due to the stress of trying to balance working out with other “mom” activities. As hard as it is to keep your heart rate up while jogging, try doing it with a phone in one hand and keys in the other. Clearly, there was room for improvement. So, Pomerantz capitalized on this by inventing a new type of innovative belt that could hold important items like phones while, most importantly, not bouncing around everywhere.

This is just a few glimpses at some of the marvelous things that people have made in their spare time and turned into a burgeoning business. If you’ve got a great idea that no one else has capitalized on, don’t be afraid to get out there and start innovating. Maybe you’ll find yourself on one of these lists in the future.

[About the author: Ryan Jones is Blogger at Hunting Club. Image: Orin Zebest]

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