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Ummmm Cheesity!I don't know about polystyrene but potty putty was an accident. They were trying to make fake rubber and got that lovely farty stuff instead. I'll find out.
Ray McIntire invented Styrofoam for the Dow Chemical Co.. McIntire said his invention of foamed polystyrene was accidental. His invention came as he was trying to find a flexible electrical insulator around the time of World War II. Polystyrene, which already had been invented, was a good insulator but too brittle. McIntire tried to make a new rubber-like polymer by combining styrene with isobutylene, a volatile liquid, under pressure. The result was a foam polystyrene with bubble, 30 times lighter than regular polystyrene. source The Detroit News Found it!