Fable: The Persistent Chemist
There was once a watch company that decided to make a watch with an LCD screen. It brought it out in 1973 at a price of $500.
One of the company’s directors asked the company’s chemist how much it would cost the company in customer claims if the whole lot failed.
The reply was $250-500,000. The director was happy to write that off
if needs be.
But the chemist couldn’t bear the thought of his product failing and initiated a range of accelerated aging tests to check out the watches.
None were returned in the one year guarantee period.
Although LCD digital watches were eventually replaced by a popular return to analogue watches, the work of the chemist had a massive pay off: LCD TV.
Moral: The rewards of technology development are often unexpected