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Who invented the resistor?

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Quick Answer

Otis Boykin invented the resistor, and he received a patent for it on June 16, 1959. Boykin was an electronic scientist and inventor who lived from 1920 to 1982. He held a total of 26 patents when he died, having invented other significant devices, such as a control unit for pacemaker machines.

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Full Answer

Boykin was born in Dallas, Texas, and graduated in 1941 from Fisk College. He began working at Majestic Radio and TV Corporation and then at P.J. Nilsen Research Laboratories. Soon, Boykin created a business called Boykin-Fruth Incorporated.

All of Boykin's work was created on his own time by himself. Boykin's wire precision resistor was used in television sets and radios. He also created a device that could handle extreme temperature and pressure changes yet was more reliable and cheaper than similar devices on the market. IBM purchased his device for its computers and the United States military purchased his device for its guided missiles.

In 1964, Boykin moved to Paris to pursue electronic inventions for consumers in a new market. Ironically, Boykin died from heart failure though his most famous invention was the control unit for pacemakers. He is remembered as one of the first African-American inventors.

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