Actress Hedy Lamarr is credited with inventing key concepts used in radio and telephony to this day. Her biography, by noted author Richard Rhodes, has been published.
book review from Newsweek:
"Actresses often long to turn director, but how many of them yearn to turn inventor? Given the success that the screen siren Hedy Lamarr achieved in that realm revealed in Richard Rhodes's fascinating biography, Hedy's Folly it's a pity more of them don't consider it. In 1940, while acting alongside Jimmy Stewart and Judy Garland in the MGM musical Ziegfeld Girl, the 26-year-old Lamarr spent her free time devising a radio-controlled submarine missile-guidance system to help the U.S. Navy in World War II. What moved her to do this? "She didn't drink and she didn't like to party, so she took up inventing", Rhodes explains. Of course, there was more to it than that. The torpedo was not the starlet's only invention: she also came up with an antiaircraft shell with a proximity fuse, and a fizzing cube that could turn a plain glass of water into soda."
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