October 8, 1958: Dr Åke Senning implants the first internal heart pacemaker. Although this prototype worked for only three hours, Arne Larsson, the Swedish man who received it, was still enjoying a full, normal life at age 83, 40 years and 26 pacemakers later.
October 10, 1865: John Wesley Hyatt receives a US patent for a billiard ball. Hyatt was the winner of a $10,000 prize offered by Phelan and Collender of New York City, for the best substitute for an ivory ball. The search for an alternative was not motivated by environmental concerns, but rather by economic ones: ivory was expensive and difficult to obtain. Hyatt made his billiard balls from a mixture of nitrocellulose, camphor and alcohol heated under pressure, moulded and left to harden. He had invented celluloid, a discovery which opened the way for the development of the modern plastics industry.
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