Hollywood Legend And Wi-Fi Inventor Hedy Lamarr Honored With Google Doodle

Hedy LamarrHedy Lamarr was hailed as “the world’s most beautiful woman” and was a legendary Hollywood actress who romanced Clark Gable, Spencer Tracy and Jimmy Stewart onscreen.

Monday’s Google Doodle celebrates the beauty and brains of actress and inventor Hedy Lamarr, who would’ve turned 101 on Nov. 9.

Lamarr (1914-2000) was one of the most popular actresses between the late 1930s and 1950s and she starred alongside some of old Hollywood’s celebrated actors including Spencer Tracy, Clark Gable and Jimmy Stewart. In 1960 she received a star on the Hollywood Hall of Fame.

“The boys abroad, during the Second World War, voted her the most desirable, beautiful actress or pinup that they could possibly see,” author Richard Rhodes, who wrote a biography about Lamarr, told CBS News in 2012. “She had a great deal of fame and fortune.”

But for Lamarr, whose fascinating life was honored in a Google doodle on Monday, the fame she garnered for her looks was unsatisfactory.

The Doodle shows Lamarr’s turn from the glamorous life of a famed actress to that of an inventor by night.

Her patent for an idea for a frequency-hopping system, with the help of composer George Antheil, during World War II helped later to make mobile and wireless communications possible.

When she grew bored of Hollywood and tired of being typecast as the “exotic seductress,” Lamarr embarked on another path in life, that of inventor.

Does “Bluetooth” or “GPS” or “Wi-Fi” sound familiar? It turns out Lamarr’s work helped lay the groundwork for these widely-used technologies.

According to Rhodes, Lamarr “was constantly looking at the world and thinking, ‘Well, how could that be fixed? How could that be improved?'”

Jennifer Hom, who spent two months working on the Google doodle highlighting Lamarr’s achievements, said it was the star’s curiosity and eagerness to tinker that inspired the animation.

“We love highlighting the many good stories about women’s achievements in science and technology,” said Jennifer Hom from Google, where Lamarr holds a “kind of mythical status”.

“When the story involves a 1940s Hollywood star-turned-inventor who developed technologies we all use with our smartphones today… well, we just have to share it with the world.”

Google’s animated Doodle, designed by Jennifer Hom, honors the actress’s technological achievements along with her glamorous film career.

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