The Amazing Story Of Hedy Lamarr, Movie Star And Prolific Inventor

Hedy Lamarr is became a household name as a star in the golden age of Hollywood, but behind the scenes, she was also one of the greatest minds of the 20th century.

In the latest instalment of Lifehackers of History, we look at Lamarr's remarkable achievements, including patenting frequency hopping in 1942 (thus setting the stage for future Bluetooth technology); designing aeroplane wings for Howard Hughes; and handing over Mussolini's secrets to the allies.

She's perhaps the only person to have a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and be a member of the National Inventor's Council.


    "It's Hedley!"
    Who remembers Blazing Saddles?

      I knew this would be the first comment.
      And if there weren't any, I was going to make it the first comment. :)

    Actually, it was Hedy Lamarr. She was best known for her portrayal of Delilah in Samson & Delilah with Victor Mature as Samson. Was a great movie too. My mum took me to see it in London when I was about 8 years old. That was in 1949-50

    Let's also not forget that Dr. Kleiner pet (toothless) headcrab in Half Life 2 is called Lamarr, after Hedy.

    I tried to read up on her proposed frequency hopping radio control and why it wasnt used during WW2 but couldnt find any answer.Presumably it wasnt workable with the technology of the day, or other options provided the answer.
    For the record ,Hedy (and her co- developer George Anthiel) didnt invent of this idea.It's been proposed by several people since radio was invented, and also used on occasion. The germans used a version of this for voice coms in WW1.
    What they must have done is applied it in a certain new way and that's why they they were granted a patent.

    Also on a personal note, this reminds me of all the things ive invented only to find out later someone beat me too it :-).Life is funny

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