The ballpoint pen was invented by Hungarian journalist László Bíró in the 1930s. Bíró noticed that the ink used in newspaper printing dried quickly and without smudging, and he set out to create a pen that used the same type of ink. He and his brother Georg worked together to develop a pen with a tiny ball bearing in the tip that rotated as the pen moved across paper, picking up ink from a cartridge and depositing it on the page. The Bíró brothers patented their invention in 1938 and went on to found the Bíró Pens of Argentina company.
The invention of the ballpoint pen by László Bíró revolutionized writing and made it much more convenient and reliable than previous writing instruments such as fountain pens and quills. Before the ballpoint pen, writing with ink was messy, required frequent refilling of the pen, and often resulted in smudging or blotting on the paper.
Bíró's design made use of a small ball bearing that rotated in a socket at the end of the pen. As the ball rolled across the paper, it picked up ink from a cartridge and deposited it on the paper in a controlled and consistent manner. This made writing with a ballpoint pen much more reliable, as the ink would not smudge or blot and the pen would not require frequent refilling.
The Bíró brothers patented their invention in 1938, but the outbreak of World War II delayed the widespread commercial production of ballpoint pens until the 1940s. The pens quickly became popular with soldiers, who found them to be more reliable than fountain pens in the field.
Today, ballpoint pens are widely used all over the world and come in a variety of styles and colors. They remain one of the most popular writing instruments, thanks to their convenience, reliability, and affordability.