Imagine if you get a great idea and before you know it, it’s declared a government secret. Well, this is exactly what happened to a guy called Jim Geer, who patented a novel technique for tracking stealth aircraft without any intentions of attracting attention on a national level. In fact, it seemed unlikely that something practical would ever come of his patent application. But the U.S. Air Force had opinions and concerns of their own, and subsequently preferred to take no chances. They ordered Geer to refrain from promulgating his stealth-detection concept and replicating their concern, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office sent Geer a warning letter that declared his idea a national secret.
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