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By J.D. Houvener
Patent Attorney and Founder

Hi everyone, I’m J.D. Houvener , and welcome to the Bold Today’s Show where you, the inventor, entrepreneur, or business owner, get your daily dose of inspiration to make the world a better place. We’re on part three of our series about patriotism here today, and we’re thinking about Memorial Day, honoring those who have served us in the military. So, thank you to any of you who are listening that have served. This week, we’ve been looking at American flags, and we’re going to take no exception today either.

We’re looking at a really old invention from 1920 from a fellow, and I like his name, JD Hubbard or Hudson rather, and you can see at the top he’s got his name there. He’s the inventor of a moving flag, a mechanically driven flag. He envisioned a time that when a flag was raised up on the pole, there was an event. How would he actually get this flag to move if there were no wind? My goodness, it’s a complicated device. If you look at it in some of the figures, you can see on the top view, there were at least 10 cylindrical rotating mechanical knobs with gears. They move in an alternating pace so that when these bars move back and forth across the whole pattern of the flag as it moves longitudinally left to right, the flag appears to be moving much like it would be with sort of a perfect wind.

The invention is very interesting, and it sort of plays on the aspect that it’s not necessarily the gears and the behind-the-scenes machine that’s interesting or that produces the function. It’s what it looks like, right? But the invention is not on the way the flag is waving but how it does it, the functionality that goes and drives that utility. And that’s what’s being claimed, are the specific type mechanics and the entire machine and what it does.

What I want to point out here is that invention could come about in almost any form. The American flag has been around for hundreds of years by the time even this invention was done in 1920, and this inventor found a way to reinvent, to progress forward. You don’t necessarily need to reinvent the wheel, as it’s a common phrase. Just looking at something that’s in use today and being able to take it to the next level, right? Solve a problem, figure out a way to make it perform in a way that’s never been done before.

I use this method with my son, my clients that come to us with their first version of their invention. We like to ask this question, you know, how else might your invention be used? What’s a new application for this, perhaps in a different field? It’s a really mind-blowing, newly mind-expanding type exercise. Some people get focused on the first version of their invention; they don’t really think of how else that same type of thinking would fit into a different application.

So, it’s a fun example; it aligns with our weekly theme here, recognizing Memorial Day and the American flag too. If any of you have questions about design patents, utility patents, functionality as we looked at here with this invention, I’d be happy to talk with you. Our attorneys are still giving away free 30-minute consultations. You can book your own consultation if you go to and click on the free consult link. It’ll take you to a calendar session where you can book it right into your calendar.

I’m your host, J.D. Houvener , of the Bold Today Show. Have a great day, everyone. Go big, go bold.

About the Author
J.D. Houvener is a Registered USPTO Patent Attorney who has a strong interest in helping entrepreneurs and businesses thrive. J.D. leverages his technical background in engineering and experience in the aerospace industry to provide businesses with a unique perspective on their patent needs. He works with clients who are serious about investing in their intellectual assets and provides counsel on how to capitalize their patents in the market. If you have any questions regarding this article or patents in general, consider contacting J.D. at