doughallphoto We at AmericanInventorSpot are proud to tell you that Doug Hall has volunteered to host a live blog, this Sunday night from 9:30 until 10:30 or longer, depending on interest. He will be responding to YOUR questions. He's going to be honest, straight forward, and is willing to do a no holds barred commentary. He will answer whatever he can, without breaking any of the obvious contracts he has signed being a judge on the show. So... don't expect him to give away the ending. But he will tell you how he feels about the show so far, those inventions that have moved forward or not. Whether he has made some mistakes along the way. Or not. He simply asks that there's no whining. Have intelligent questions, understand that the show needs the "reality tv" angle in order to be sellable to networks and get ratings. Be original with your questions. Let the sparks fly. This should definitely be interesting. And hopefully, for all the inventors out there who have posted their inventions in our gallery, will draw even more traffic to this site.

To those of you who have been dedicated followers of this site, please feel free to start the ideation process of what you'd like to ask tonight, right within this blog. Maybe tonight's show will inspire some questions. We'll be checking in to try to find the best questions - so we have some soup starter for Sunday night. So make sure you stop by and join in. The more interest and response we get, the more likely it is we will get great guest bloggers. Stay tuned. And keep on inventing. 

Apr 20, 2006
by Anonymous (not verified)


Looking forward to it. I wish it was tonight, but Sunday is cool too.

Apr 20, 2006
by Anonymous (not verified)

That's Great

That's really great that you got Doug on your site. How did you pull that one off. I read some where on the site that the judges were reading the comments on the site. I guess I believe it now. I'll see you Sunday night with my questions. BTW - the new logo looks really great.

Apr 20, 2006
by Think Outside T...
Think Outside The Circle's picture


Thanks. It should be fun. Doug and I have been in contact somewhat trying to find a way for him to make a guest appearance of some sort. Obviously, he's very busy. Beyond the show, he's got his Eureka Ranch day job. And I know what that feels like. Trying to keep this site fresh after also having a day job is no easy task.

so please stop by and make Doug feel welcome. and feel free to be bluntly honest. he can take it. just don't be foolish. have smart questions and don't just whine about stuff.

here's one question I'm very interested in. Will there be a season 2 and if so, which judges will be returning.

Apr 21, 2006
by S. Stebins (not verified)

Doug and his three inventor finalists

I'm following the show and from my observation Doug Hall has The germ filtering toilets seat couple (FlushPure or Pureflush), The round car seat man and the door clip woman. Sounds like such a broad range of ideas. Why these three???
They're all real inventions but helpful in so many different areas and if two of them are not chosen do they still get to bring these important products to market?
Doug seems to have the three true inventors.

Apr 21, 2006
by LBS (not verified)


Doug may not be able to answer some of these, but here are some questions I have:

  • Isn't there any QA testing?
  • Shouldn't focus groups be of target consumers?
  • Who were the consulting companies? Are they all in one production & marketing houses?
  • Don't they have sales prices in mind, and isn't the focus group a good time to propose that?
  • I know it wasn't Doug's call, but why did "Time Out Tot" get cut while "Naia" is still going?
  • Is ABC leaning toward exercising their option on any of the finalists?
  • If the show comes back, any hope of format changes?
Apr 21, 2006
by Think Outside T...
Think Outside The Circle's picture

Good questions. Keep them coming.

Please, spread the word that Doug will be here LIVE at AMERICANINVENTORSPOT Sunday night 9:30 pm EST. The bigger the showing, the more likely we can get interest from other guest bloggers. Who knows. Maybe the other 3 would also be intersted. We have extended the offer to Peter, but have yet to hear back.

Apr 21, 2006
by Marc Griffin (not verified)

I look forward to Sunday

I look forward to Sunday night. I'm sure Doug will have some good insight as to the future of American Inventor.

Marc Griffin
The "BulletBall Guy"

Apr 22, 2006
by Anonymous (not verified)

? for Doug...Invention or Inventor...what is important !!!

Question for Doug: The Invention or Inventor. Honestly what is more important? I use thousands of great inventions on a daily basis and don't know nor care who invented them. They work and that's the bottom line.
You are a mentor to 3 teams. Whatever works should move forward.

Apr 23, 2006
by Sally (not verified)

The Catch

I may be double-posting, as I asked this on the main page, but why oh why do the judges keep asking what the market potential is for the receiver's training pole? When my youngest was in her teens, any sport she thought she'd like, I would buy the sports crap. She had a closet full of it. Same for my best friend even more so because she has two "sporty" kids and her husband played college football. Heck, parents with non-sporty kids would buy this just hoping the kid might turn out to be great at catching footballs. The market is huge--any parent who wants their kid to get outside, try football, maybe find out they can succeed at it. Put this product in Walmart before Christmas and it will be under the tree for every boy and sports-loving girl over the age of 10. Nobody knows what to buy kids over 10 anyway, except more electronics. (Gah! I'm SO glad my kids are grown now.)

And by the way this doesn't include the instant orders from every football team at every school in the country. I predict they would order a case of 12, as the product looks like it could take only so much wear & tear.

Apr 23, 2006
by Sally (not verified)

One More Thing

Doug, as a viewer I am *so* tired of hearing the inventors talk about how much time and money they put into their invention, as if nobody else has ever put all their time and money into something. If this show is to go another season, less melodrama and more of the science (CSI-type angle). I hate to say it, but I cringe every time they go in for a closeup on Mary Lou as she tears up (oh, pleeeeease). I know you're not the producer, but could you pass this along?

Production-wise, one of the best shots in the show was when you went back and encouraged the boy inventor who chose the wrong invention to present.

Apr 23, 2006
by Jeff Oblak (not verified)


My product needs,needs, needs to get on this show, what do I do?

Apr 23, 2006
by Sally (not verified)

Another Question

What's to keep others from stealing the inventions we see on the show? Or more precisely, how much exactly must a similar idea differ for a mega-company to get their own patent on it?

Along the same vein, why doesn't the show screen inventors before they come before the judges so they don't waste your time with products that already exist? I would think a quick internet check would have turned up a product like the bedside organizer (Yep! It's at I bet if the show was live you'd have people blogging within seconds of each presentation telling where to find many of these inventions.

Apr 23, 2006
by Sy (not verified)

The catch could possibly destroy American Inventor

Sally, I believe if the world were filled with lots of you then the catch would be a hit. The point is do you want America's next great invention to be device which might help a child to catch a football OR a safer baby car seat? The chances that Erics sparkling personality could win him the American vote over the car seat is possible. This would mean he might win and we'd end up with a Pool Noodle on a harness being the American Inventor winner. That's SAD. If this were to happen it would be Mr Ed's (Evangelista the judge) fault. What a fool for Ed to choose the Catch over The sackmaster.
If AI does not return next year it is absolutely Ed Evangelista's fault.

Apr 23, 2006
by Sally (not verified)


The football invention is just a pool noodle? The whole show is *ruined* because its focus isn't primarily humanitarian? How old are you?

Rest assured, Sy, somebody somewhere is inventing safer baby car seats and all kinds of other things that will make this world a better place. Otherwise I'd say Evil Ed deserves capital punishment for ruining our society as a whole just when this show came along and things were looking so good.

Apr 23, 2006
by Sally (not verified)

There Goes Niya!

Interesting! And a quick check reveals that the links to purchase the doll have been removed from, a site for professional African-American women.

Apr 23, 2006
by mcnultyco (not verified)

Can Niya say "Goodbye" in English, Swahili, and Spanish?

Hmmmmm... yes, ver-r-r-r-r-ry interesting that the links have been removed. Maybe Niya 1.0 will become a collector's item.

After perusing more of, I've noticed that others have posted the same info I did about Niya and K-Mart. This begs the question... if a lot of viewers have easily found this online info about Niya with a simple Google search, how come no one with the show seemed to find it? Of course, maybe they did. But then my original query of how the heck this made it through while "Time Out Tot" didn't, still stands.

I'll be interested to see how she uses the $50,000 to improve the doll. In the preview of the next episode it looks like an artist is illustrating a new look for the doll's face. She says in the article the original doll's face was sculpted in the likeness of her daughter, the real Niya, who also recorded the doll's voice. I can't imagine Davenport-Powell being too happy with the suggestion of a redesign.

Apr 23, 2006
by Anonymous/Timeless (not verified)

Real Time versus TV Time

I'd like to know how much delay there is between the time that an episode is aired and when it was taped. The show isn't live, is it? So, are the inventors and their work still in progress, or is all the work, modifications, etc. complete?

If the decisions have not yet been made, won't these forums possibly affect the judges' decisions and/or influence them in some way?

Apr 23, 2006
by BobLoveland

Niya - Invention or PR Stunt

So basically they USED the show for product promotion then. Personally I saw the doll as being a limited market item anyway, targeting mostly the African American family. Shouldn't the next great invention be one that would sell to almost anyone.

Apr 23, 2006
by Sheryl (not verified)

Hello to Doug and all participants

Hey all,
It's AI's Sheryl "Inbrella" McDonald. I just wanted to extend continued gratitude to Doug for keeping it real during my stint on AI... and to all of you who post your commentary (both positive and negative) thank you. It's wonderful that you are so supportive of the show. While I am unable to offer any commentary about my experience on the show, it is important that you know I am greatful for your continued viewership of the show. Keep on inventing...

Apr 23, 2006
by BobLoveland

Good Evening Doug, Thanks for coming.

Love the show, and looking forward to Season II. (Hint hint)

I'm curious about the entry process of the show. Did you and the other judges have to screen ALL the entries or was there a process to help weed out any of the absolutely absurd products, or were there multiple panels of judges and your team had the final say so?

Any idea of how many entries there were in the competition?

Did you see anything that didnt make it as an entry that you thought.. Hmm I want one of those..

Finally, if it were your decision to make, would you allow previous participants to re-enter into the competition for season 2 if there was one?

For example, if someone's prototype had some problems and didn't win.. What if between seasons the issues were resolved. Do you think that participant should be granted a second chance?

Apr 23, 2006
by BobLoveland

Great to see you visiting tonight too.

Loved your invention, and will watch for its release in the future.. Our family wants several of the InBrellas and believe it will be a big hit in the near future!

Keep up the Great Work Sheryl!!!

Anxiously Awaiting an Inbrella,
Bob Loveland
Highland Springs, VA

Apr 23, 2006
by Think Outside T...
Think Outside The Circle's picture

HELLO INBRELLA! Thanks for visiting THE SPOT.

Gotta tell you, your invention is pretty cool. yeah... there were a few bugs to fix. But that takes time. usually more than 30 days. And the way I see it, you went from idea to product in front of millions in the equivelant of a blink of the eye. Awesome. Once you make it a bit smaller, and open and close instantly, it's a no brainer hit.

But you know what, even at the size it is, and manual, it would be a hit. Why? Because it works and fills a need.

That's one man's opinion. But I'm usually right. No really. I am. ... ok like, most of the time, that I can remember. but my wife says I'm losing it anyway, so... what was I talking about?

Apr 23, 2006
by Anonymous (not verified)

where, wehn, how

I'm lost, where do we ask doug q's...right here? or is there a live chat room of some sort.?

Apr 23, 2006
by Anonymous (not verified)

i'm lost as well, but here are some q's:

1. Being where you are in the competition now, do you have any regrets to any greats inventions that should be this far.

2. What was the most ridiculous invention.

3. What were the strengths of the others judges in your opinion.

4. Knowing that the judges part in filtering out the competition is doen now, who do you predict america will vote for to win.

5. How hass AI changed your life, or flooded your mailbox.

6. Are there any inventors on the show that you are contining work with.

Apr 23, 2006
by Sara (not verified)

Questions for Doug Hall

Hi Doug. I have enjoyed watching the show although I
feel ABC has underestimated their viewers by not
showing all of the top 24 inventions when the final
cuts were made to 12. My dad counted about 19 out of 24 inventions that were actually shown. Did the other 5
people drop out of the competition before the final cut?
Can you give us some insight to what other inventions
you thought should have made the cut?


Apr 23, 2006
by Amarsir

Not sure the format either

My number one question has to be about prices. Doug's the only one who I've seen even bring it up (drink plates and solar cooler IIRC), and was scoffed at by the rest of the panel both times. At some point are the inventors actually going to say what they expect to charge?

Apr 23, 2006
by Suzette (not verified)

Two Inventions

Hello, My name is Suzette and I live in Pompano Beach, Florida.
I have two inventions one is patented and one patent pending. I
would like to know how to get on the TV show.

Apr 23, 2006
by Anonymous (not verified)


1.If you had to rewrite the show format, in your oinion, what would you do.. perhaps you might give insight to the downfalls of the current show.

2. What have you learned from the show experience?

Apr 23, 2006
by BobLoveland

Best & Worst Invention you have seen in the marketplace?

(Not necessarily an AI tv question) Doug, what is the best & worst product you have seen that actually made it to the marketplace for sale, whether it be in the past or present.

Apr 23, 2006
by Anonymous (not verified)


If AI2 happened, would you do it? or want terms/changes? if so, what?