In his lifetime, he had near 1,100 patents (government licenses for an idea or invention)! He was also a businessman and was able to turn some of his inventions into commercial (business; financial) successes.
But not everything Edison invented was a success.
In 1890, he invented a talking doll (see photo). The doll had a mini (very small) phonograph inside of it. Edison had hoped that the talking doll would help him sell more phonographs.
But the doll was a flop (failure).
First, the doll itself wasn’t very lifelike (looking like a real person) compared to other dolls sold at that time.
Second, and more importantly, the doll’s “voice” sounded very . . . well, listen for yourself. (Warning: If you don’t want to have nightmares (bad dreams), you might not want to listen to this!)
“Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep” (a bedtime prayer (message to God))
“Little Jack Horner” (a nursery rhyme (children’s poem))
The doll’s voice was a recording of a woman imitating (trying to sound like) the voice of a little girl. Edison himself thought the recordings were very unpleasant to listen to and everyone else agreed. The doll voice was creepy (frightening), perhaps something you would hear in a horror (intended to be frightening) movie.
The final flaw (problem) was the price: it cost about $200 in today’s dollars.
Edison stopped making dolls after only a month. His experience just reminds us that even very talented people have failures.
But it’s just a good thing for us that he didn’t stop inventing after this setback (failure after having some success) or we might be writing this in the dark!