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The Sebir that created Post-It Notes

Background

In 1968, a chemist at 3M Dr. Spencer Silver was attempting to develop a super-strong adhesive, but instead he accidentally created a 'temporary' adhesive. In concert with a colleague, Art Fry, he noticed that the unique low-tack adhesive allowed paper notes to be easily attached and removed without leaving marks or residue

Goal

Improve the ease of attaching and removing paper notes

Problem

Attaching paper notes to things is awkward and time-consuming

Sebir

The ease of attaching and removing paper notes was improved through creating an adhesive that bonded on a temporary basis only

A paper note can be added to and removed from a host surface because the adhesive it contains is reusable

Association Comment

Dr. Spencer Silver 'associated' the ability of weak adhesive to bond temporarily to a surface and adapted it to create a re-useable adhesive that enabled paper notes to be attached, removed and attached again

Historic Impact

As a result of the exploits of Dr. Spencer Silver and Art Fry, Post-It Notes debuted in American stores on 6 April, 1980