Joseph Newman is an inventor, originally from Mississippi, who has for many years been trying to sell a high-voltage motor (powered by a large number of batteries connected in series) as a free energy device; that is, as a device that produces more energy than it uses. He has called the device an “electromagnetomic motor”, and written extensively about it (along with presenting an alternative physics – or perhaps a misunderstanding of basic physics – that “explains” how it works) in a self-published book titled The Energy Machine of Joseph Newman. Among his more notable pieces of alleged evidence is that, according to himself, he and his device were predicted by Nostradamus.
Although Newman’s device were featured (back in the 80s) in e.g. Discover magazine, his results have never quite made it through peer review. Of course, this is partially because any test of his device apart from his own rigged tests, such as one by the National Bureau of Standards, have failed to replicate his results (duh!). At least he (and fellow free-energy enthusiast Dennis Lee) received extensive coverage in Bob Park’s book Voodoo Science.
Diagnosis: Harmless crackpot.