News gathering for the Scaq Blog has been slow: Natalie Coughlin is out of the water so she can plan her wedding, Phelps isn't training and is spending the rest of the year being a 20-something, Grant Hackett has retired, Nick D'Arcy hasn't punched anybody out lately, and I still have not found the "Holy Grail" of swim blogging: A photo of Gwen Stefani swimming butterfly in high school.
So, when in doubt, find something ridiculous that is swimming related and that is exactly what I accomplished. I found a "breaststroke machine," or perhaps it is a "swimming bicycle?" I can't figure it out and neither could, Ferdinand Minkus, the inventor of the device who, in his patent application, calls it a "swimming appliance."
Here is a link to the patent Minkus filed in 1906: [Link]
You can click on the image to see a larger version or just go to the link and see the image and a writeup along with it. Also note if you are a journalist or want to keep up with swimming technology, you can subscribe to a Google Patent RSS feed with a key word such as Speedo, or TYR Sport and you will be notified if said companies have a patent in the works. If you need help with it, write me and I will tell you how to set up an RSS reader with Google.
Here is a link to Google's patent search engine. Try typing in the word Speedo or TYR Sport and see what you find: [Link]