R. Buckminster Fuller
"I determined to give up forever the idea of "earning a living" for my family and self while depending entirely on ecological precession to provide the critically needed material, tools, and monies to carry on the work..."
Field: Inventor, designer, poet, futurist.
Born: 1895, Milton, Massachusetts.
Background: Leaving Harvard early, Bucky educated himself while working at industrial jobs and serving in the U.S. Navy during World War I. One of the century's most original minds, he freelanced his talents to solve problems of human shelter, nutrition, transportation, environmental pollution, and decreasing world resources, developing over 2,000 patents in the process. Developed the Dymaxion ("dynamic and maximum efficiency') House in 1927, and the Dymaxion Car in 1932. Inventor of the Geodesic Dome (1947). An enthusiastic educationist, he held a chair at Southern Illinois University (1959-75), and in 1962 became professor of poetry at Harvard. In his later decades he was a popular public lecturer, promoting a global strategy of seeking to do more with less through technology.
Works: Fuller wrote some 25 books, most notably Nine Chains to the Moon (1938), Utopia or Oblivion (1969), Operating Manual for Spaceship Earth (1969), and Critical Path (1981).
Lesson: You get what you need.