Follow this link to YouTube to hear Richard Feynman talk about Patents.
Richard Feynman talks about some of his unusual patents and how they came into being through some of his own ideas for possible.nuclear powered vehicles, which he brainstormed during his time working on the atomic bomb in The Manhattan Project.
Feynman himself had no idea they would patent these ideas and only found out about it when he was offered a job of being the head of a research team to develop a nuclear powered aircraft. Feynman did not accept this job, as he was a theoretical physicist and aircraft engineering was of no interest to him.
For legal reasons, a dollar was to be exchanged for the patent papers. Since Feynman received no dollar, he went to the patent office to get his dollar and used it to buy sweets as a joke to the bureaucratic and anal nature of patent law and the goons who enforce it.
It does not require genius to invent. Just original thinking around a basic understanding of how the universe appears to work; and having a problem to solve.