August, 2006 Monthly archive
Talking Robot (Jan, 1952)

Talking Robot at a recent Paris auto show also walked, shook hands, flickered its eyelids and purled its cheeks. How it answered questions is a secret. Skeptics say a man nearby answered through a mike.


BABY GOES SKIING when there is snow on the ground if mother has a set of these sleigh-runner attachments for the carriage. The wheels fit into curved casings mounted on the runners, and are clamped by an easy operation. Adjustment means are provided for wheels varying in size, tread, and wheelbase. For rough or uneven ground, there is a separate runner for each individual wheel to obtain greater smoothness of going. When the runners are not required, they may be attached to the underside of the carriage. The invention is by Emanuel R. Morando, New York City.

Ad: “For A Smart Man I’m Pretty Dumb” (Mar, 1940)

“For A Smart Man I’m Pretty Dumb”

“I never realized this until too late—every fire insurance policy states that a complete list of destroyed and damaged property must be supplied before insurance can be paid. I had insurance, but the fire we had caught me way off base. It’s too late now to make a complete list for insurance settlement.

Walking Stick Becomes Camera Tripod (Feb, 1940)

Walking Stick Becomes Camera Tripod

Serving either as a cane for the strolling photographer, or as a tripod for the picture-making stroller, the combination accessory shown in the photographs at the left has just been introduced. Made of telescoping steel sections hinged at the top, the three legs form a sturdy camera support when spread apart and extended. Collapsed and folded together, they form the shaft of a walking stick when the curved handle and a special tip are replaced.

Whole Clock Moves As Pendulum (May, 1935)

Whole Clock Moves As Pendulum

AN UNIQUE eight-day clock which is about three feet high and swings bodily to act as its own pendulum has been built in the workshop of an Arkansas man.

An escapement wire running from the central case is attached to a wire fork suspended from the window ledge of the shop. The swinging of the clock causes the escapement to tick one notch with each swing. Each swing is about an inch and a quarter.

Fun Under Water (Apr, 1946)

Fun Under Water

War gear of “Frog Men” will create new sport, save lives


OUT of the wealth of atom bombs, flame throwers, booby traps, and other World War II inventions, have come some devices that promise to survive and become indispensable in peace. Among them are oxygen-charged respiratory units, perfected for the Army and Navy for underwater offensives against the enemy. Like DDT and the jeep, these breathing machines will be of service to anyone who learns to use them.

Punctured cloud (Mar, 1950)

Punctured cloud…
Here’s how a man-made hole in a cloud looks from topside, 15,000 feet up. The racetrack-shaped opening, 20 miles long on the sides, five miles across on the ends, was formed by seeding a stratus cloud with dry ice.

Fiber Optics (Sep, 1955)

Rope ‘Scope
GLASS FIBERS finer than human hair make up the chief part of an optical instrument that can see around corners. The fibers are aligned in a rope bundle. By looking along the axis of the fibers, you can see an image at the other end, no matter how the rope is looped or twisted. Doctors may use it in internal examinations of the human body. Scientists could observe radioactive materials shielded behind lead walls and engineers could use it to investigate concealed parts of complex machinery. Known as the Fibrescope, it was developed by Dr. H. H. Hopkins and a 27-year-old Punjabi, Dr. Narinder Singh Kapany, at the Imperial College of Science in London. The simple instrument may replace expensive optical systems which are bulky and inflexible.


Get Rid of the Spectacle Handicap
The Natural Eyesight System tells how to do it at home. Full information FREE
Dept. 67-H, Los Angeles, Calif.


ONE of the world’s most unique orchestras—made up entirely of robots—plays nightly at the Robot Club in Antwerp, Belgium. Designed and constructed by the club owner, Zenon Specht, the electrically-controlled musicians can play anything from tangoes to bop, changing their expressions to suit the mood. The customer is provided with three songs for a nickel and then the robots sit down. When another nickel is fed to them, the boys get up and swing out three more numbers. Their motion is controlled by perforated tapes looking like player piano rolls.