The Pizza War That Pepperoni Started

The chef that left New York’s Prince Street Pizza to start his own restaurant could find himself fighting a pizza war because of his pepperoni recipe.

Where to Find an Inventor

To fuel the innovation that jumpstarts economic growth, researchers have figured out less traditional ways that will encourage more people to become inventors.

Weekly Roundup: From Steak Patents to Marijuana Taxes

Our everyday economics includes behavioral economics, trade barriers, taxes, entitlements, externalities, intellectual property and industrialization.

The Difference Between a Cheese Steak and a Designer Dress

Classified as intellectual property, a new cut of meat and a new dress design are viewed differently by patent and trademark laws.

Why Tesla's Totally Illogical Strategy Might Work

Our Wednesday environment focus Elon Musk just flipped entrepreneurial logic upside down. Rather than building a patent moat around his technology, he announced it would be available to anyone using it “in good faith.” That means Tesla’s 203 patents will be accessible to all…

5 Best Places To Be Born

In 1988, the United States was ranked #1 as the best country in which to be born. The people who did the ranking for The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) selected criteria that you would expect. They included GDP per capita,…

All You Ever Need to Know About Amazon’s Customer Reviews

Yesterday, I “met” Michael in a Planet Money podcast. Ranked #1 as an Amazon product reviewer, Michael Erb has already introduced himself to millions of us. M. Erb is Amazon’s #1 Hall of Fame reviewer and a Vine Voice (we…

Innovation: Where Do Inventors Live?

Hearing about the producer of the high-speed hand dryer, I thought, “Tweaker.” Describing Steve Jobs, Malcolm Gladwell called him a “tweaker.” Like the 19th century inventor who made the spinning wheel spin more smoothly, tweakers make an existing device better. While we…

Innovation: More (or Fewer?) Sole Rights

A book that you write is your intellectual property. But what if you design the sole of a shoe? As econlife described last year: “The trademark of designer Christian Louboutin, his red soles are supposed to represent glamour, luxury and hidden…

Friction Free Clicks

Which friction minimizing invention received a patent in 1999? Amazon 1-Click. Described by Amazon in their application for patent 5,960,411, the purchaser just hits a button that activates the movement of payment information from “the client system” to the”server system.”…