Google marks Penkala's birthday
The biggest web search engine Google on Friday marked the 141th birthday of Slavoljub Penkala by changing its logo to represent the famous Croatian inventor.
Penkala became renowned for further development of the mechanical pencil (1906) – then called an "automatic pencil" – and the first solid-ink fountain pen (1907).
Collaborating with an entrepreneur by the name of Edmund Moster, he started the Penkala-Moster Company and built a pen-and-pencil factory that was one of the biggest in the world at the time. This company, now called TOZ-Penkala, still exists today. TOZ stands for "Tvornica olovaka Zagreb," which means "Zagreb pencil factory."
He also constructed the first Croatian two-seat aeroplane in 1909, which Dragutin Novak, the first Croatian pilot, used for his first flight. He constructed and invented many other products and devices, and held a total of 80 patents.
Penkala died in Zagreb at the age of 51, after catching pneumonia on a business trip.