Hedy Lamarr – The gorgeous Hollywood actress who invented WiFi, GPS and Bluetooth


This might have been a little unconventional but true, Hedy Lamarr is the Hollywood actress who invented WiFi, GPS and Bluetooth, perhaps even more.

Hedy Lamarr was a famous American figure throughout her life. Hedy Lamarr was born in Austria to Jewish parents; she was known for her fantastic performance on the silver screen. According to almost all the cinema lovers of that time, her gorgeous face was even an inspiration for two widely loved comic/cartoon characters-Snow White and Catwoman. She was also described as the most beautiful woman in the world. Hollywood actress who invented WiFi had a very complicated feeling about her beauty and believed that outward appearance doesn’t matter; however was involved in multiple plastic surgeries later in her life, apparently, because she couldn’t bear to see her beauty fade. 

Hollywood actress who invented WiFi
Hedy Lamarr invented Wifi

Her beauty wasn’t all, Hedy Lamarr invented WiFi, GPS and Bluetooth.

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Hollywood actress who invented WiFi, Bluetooth and GPS

Hedy Lamarr’s interest in innovation extends back to the time when she was 5 years old, she dismantled an entire music box and reassembled it and thus begun the curiosity. She was technically leading a double life, where she also worked as an inventor along with George Antheil, an unconventional inventor. Their inventions weren’t particularly discussed or revealed, but a fellow inventor Carmelo Amrena fondly recalls, “We talked like two engineers on a hot project,” Amarena said. “I never felt I was talking to a movie star, but to a fellow inventor.”

Hedy was said to have made remarkable progress during the early times of World War II; she was known to have invented a device that could restrict enemy naval base to transmit or communicate with each other. Antheil later confirmed that it was Lamarr’s design by which he created a practical model. Their model aimed at the radio guidance transmitter that escalated the frequency to several various frequencies, making it impossible to track. This approach was later known as “frequency hopping.” However, that didn’t succeed because the US Navy rejected the idea claiming it to be too confusing. But during the 1950s the American Navy had said to have used Lamarr’s concept of frequency hopping for a considerably long time.

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Hedy Lamarr invented Wifi

Hedy Lamarr, the Hollywood actress who invented WiFi didn’t get any early recognition for this groundbreaking discovery for a long time. It cannot be denied that it was an early model and has technically nothing to do with the modern-day WiFi, Bluetooth or GPS, but the base for all the other frequency hopping based inventions. She was lucky enough to see all these innovations being developed with her invention as a foundation. This Hollywood actress who invented WiFi was not forgotten.

Hollywood actress who invented WiFi
Hedy Lamarr invented Wifi

It was in the year 1997, that her work was recognised and she was honoured with the Pioneer Award of Electronic Frontier Foundation. Unfortunately she didn’t make any money from her invention but it is noteworthy that the concept of frequency hopping alone estimates around 50-60 billion dollars.

Frequency Hopping

The development of frequency hopping is a concept that helped wireless communication system that allowed more and more users to transmit or communicate at the same time with less signal interference. So if multiple signals are deployed at the same frequency, it is possible for the system to hop from one signal to another even if one signal is dropped. 

Hollywood actress who invented WiFi
Hedy Lamarr invented Wifi

“Since Lamarr and Antheil’s groundbreaking work in frequency hopping,” Joyce Bedi of the Smithsonian’s Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation points out, “many other applications of spread spectrum technology—the broader term for wireless communications using variable signals—have arisen, including Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and GPS.”

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This may be a simple story of a Hollywood actress who invented WiFi or technically invented WiFi but there are certain things that we need to look into. The condition of women that we speak about, even after making a considerably great innovation, was recognised almost 50 years later. The Hollywood actress who invented WiFi.

Amal Varghese
Amal Varghesehttp://moonjis.com
Lecturer by profession, a philologist by qualification and a scribbler by passion. Like John Lennon says, "I believe in everything until it is disapproved, so I believe in fairies, myths and dragons", everything around me is an illusion and a reality. I am basically you, but I am a confined me.

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