As I scribbled something down on a post-it note the other day at work and stuck it to the bevel around my monitor, I paused for a moment to reflect. Post-it notes are everywhere, yet I know so little about their history. As I looked around the office, I realized I didn't really know where any of these fairly mundane, but incredibly useful things that made my life so easy had come from. Someone must have invented them - but who cares? And who knows?
Well, luckily it's the information age, and it just so happens that Wikipedia both knows and cares about the history of just about everything.
Post-its were actually invented not with offices in mind, but with churches. The inventor, Arthur Fry, was apparently a very pious, churchgoing man who didn't like it when his bookmarks fell out of his hymnal each Sunday.
Luckily for him, he happened to work for the Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing Company. If that name seems unfamiliar, it's probably because in 2002 they changed their name to simply 3M. Fry had recently been to a seminar on a (previously) useless weak adhesive that the company had developed. It turned out, sticky hymnal bookmarks were the perfect application.