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Comment Funny you should mention the Wright Brothers (Score 5, Informative) 280

They held up progress in aviation for almost 10 years in the US by making their plans secret and suing anybody who made planes. Their big patent fight was against Curtis Aircraft who invented ailerons, whereas the Wright's used wing-warping. During that time up till the early 20's, France took the lead in aviation, hence all the French sounding parts: fuselage, aileron, empenage, etc. Of course they contributed the most out of anyone in the old days but after the first few flyers there wasn't nearly as much innovation coming out of Wright Airplanes. The last truly succesful product they made, please correct me if I'm wrong, was the Wright Cyclone, a large radial engine used in WWII aircraft.

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