Scientific American was founded by inventor and publisher Rufus M. Porter in 1845 as a four-page weekly newspaper. Throughout its early years, much emphasis was placed on reports of what was going on at the U. S. Patent Office. It also reported on a broad range of inventions including perpetual motion machines, an 1860 device for buoying vessels by Abraham Lincoln, and the universal joint which now can be found in nearly every automobile manufactured. Current issues include a "this date in history" section, featuring excerpts from articles originally published 50, 100, and 150 years earlier. Topics include humorous incidents, wrong-headed theories, and noteworthy advances in the history of science and technology.