Lighting Up Computer Keyboards

All Clinton Fleenor wanted to do was light up his computer keyboard. He never could have expected his idea to be picked up by Quirky and showcased on the Home Shopping Network. However, that is exactly what has happened, reports Richmond Times-Dispatch.

The result is the Mantis, a battery-powered clip-on light that can be used to illuminate more than computer keyboards.

While many inventors keep their ideas as closely guarded secrets, Fleenor said he wasn’t worried that a fellow Quirky member would steal his idea and claim it as their own.

“I have no ability to manufacture this thing,” he said. “It’s the choice of either keeping it in my head and carrying it around for my whole life wishing I could do something with it or just put it out there.”

Fleenor said asking Quirky members for input helped make his idea better. For example, one member came up with the idea to use a clip instead of attaching the Mantis directly to a computer monitor, while another suggested built-in legs so that the device can be used as freestanding light.

Fleenor said he expects to get about 3 percent of profits, if the Mantis sells. In addition to sharing profits with inventors, Quirky rewards members who influence a product with small cash awards, ranging from pennies to hundreds of dollars, depending on the influence. They also get their names on the packaging. The people who submit the idea get their photos on the packaging.

Photo from Quirky

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