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Editor's Letter: Always Learning

Although Inc. is edited for its readers (entrepreneurs of all stripes and sizes), it's also true that the people who put it together (editors, writers, art directors, and the like) want to be educated, informed, and entertained by the material. The nature of entrepreneurship makes that pretty easy. Companies that are visionary or quirky, brilliantly managed or skating on thin ice can be found in every industry and all over the world -- all we have to do is get inside them. This means that with each issue of Inc., our horizons expand, and our knowledge grows.

Take, for instance, Adam Bluestein's story for this issue on the business of the human body (The Future of the Human Body). It offers up a number of companies dedicated to ameliorating the pains of disease, injury, and old age. Bluestein introduces us to Philipp Lang, who is working on replacement knees that, if you're ever unfortunate enough to need one, will be cheaper, better, and less risky than the knee implants available today. Lang's is one of 10 innovative start-ups in the story. The piece is worth a read for the jaw-dropping ambition of these companies -- there's one that is working on repairing the spines of people who suffer from paralysis and another that helps stroke victims regain control of their limbs by attaching them to bionic braces.

We have a fondness here for start-ups. But exciting examples of innovations that make life better and richer do not spring solely from new companies. The firefighters of Fire Station No. 11 in Dallas, the subject of this month's Behind the Scenes (The Business of a Fire Station), are benefiting from a product made by a company in Dayton, Ohio, that was founded in 1898 and is now run by the founder's great-grandson. The company, Lion Apparel, makes a Kevlar suit that keeps firefighters alive (while they save lives) in 2,000-degree heat. This is the kind of information I'm glad I know.

janeb@inc.com

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