May, 2008 Monthly archive
Witness Stand Is Wired for Sound (Dec, 1938)

Witness Stand Is Wired for Sound
To make sure that juries are able to hear clearly each word spoken by witnesses on the stand, a Los Angeles, Calif., court is now employing a public-address system with the witness answering questions through a hand microphone. On many occasions, it is believed, members of the jury miss part of the testimony by reason of the low voices of the witnesses or because of bad acoustics. The photograph above shows a witness telling her story to the microphone.


Here’s a better, more practical way to reproduce engineering drawings


1. saves time of engineers, file clerks, draftsmen

2. saves space—compact card files replace bulky drawing files

3. saves materials and mailing costs

Turn out high-quality prints on ordinary paper by xerography!

Atomic Planes (Aug, 1955)

Atomic Planes

Are Closer Than You Think High-payload atom-powered jet flying-boats within the next five to ten years: that’s MPs prediction, based on a study of design trends and necessities.

By Frank Tinsley

THE buckaroos of science are breaking the atom to harness at a fantastic rate. In just 15 short years, fission has grown from a super-secret equation whispered in a President’s ear to a solidly established 14-billion dollar industry. The hectic stage of A-and H-bomb monopoly is fast giving way to a happier and less explosive phase of atomic development. Late last year Congress enacted the Atomic Energy Act of 1954; directing that the atom’s neglected humanitarian potential be put to work “to promote world peace, promote the general welfare and increase the standard of living.” Along with this, President Eisenhower launched his World Atoms-For-Peace Program to spur the exchange of knowledge and the rapid development of international atomic power projects of all kinds.

Here’s what a ROBOT “thinks” with! (Oct, 1939)

Here’s what a ROBOT “thinks” with!

WHEN you see a Robot obey its inventor’s commands to rise, walk, talk, sing, and smoke, you wonder what kind of imitation brain it has.

The New Merriam-Webster tells you that the Robot’s “gray matter” is made of Selenium, and its chemical relatives, which also make possible all the other modern marvels achieved with the photocell, or “electric eye.” And the same kind of information which ”The Supreme Authority” gives on Selenium is also furnished on the other 91 elements known to the world of chemistry!

For scientific information, turn first to the New Merriam-Webster!

Send for FREE BOOKLET, “The New Merriam-Webster: What It Will Do For You.” G. & C. MERRIAM CO., Dept. 300, Springfield, Mass.



A plaything of high school science classes, the “Newton color disk,” inspired a Beaumont, Texas, man to invent a new advertising device. Thousands of color combinations appear and vanish on a whirling, motor-driven disk, across which moves an endless belt spotted with colors. At intervals an advertisement, a package of cigarettes, a picture of a girl, or words appears in a hole at the disk’s center.

There’s No Place Like Home – for Accidents (Aug, 1939)

There’s No Place Like Home – for Accidents

By Roderick M. Grant

MAKING gravy, you’d say, is a pretty safe occupation. One housewife will tell you it’s mighty dangerous; she was painfully burned by a flour explosion over her skillet. Another woman was careless with bleaching powder and set the house afire. Still another learned disastrously that it’s not safe to clean clothes with gasoline, even in open air. It all adds up to the fact that you’re living in a very dangerous place. More people were killed in their homes last year than died on all the streets and highways. Four times as many were injured.

What the Telephone Map Shows (Sep, 1914)

What the Telephone Map Shows

EVERY dot on the map marks a town where there is a telephone exchange, the same sized dot being used for a large city as for a small village. Some of these exchanges are owned by the Associated Bell companies and some by independent companies. Where joined together in one system they meet the needs of each community and, with their suburban lines, reach 70,000 places and over 8,000,000 subscribers.

The pyramids show that only a minority of the exchanges are Bell-owned, and that the greater majority of the exchanges are owned by independent companies and connected with the Bell System.

At comparatively few points are there two telephone companies, and there are comparatively few exchanges, chiefly rural, which do not have outside connections.

The recent agreement between the Attorney General of the United States and the Bell System will facilitate connections between all telephone subscribers regardless of who owns the exchanges.

Over 8,000 different telephone companies have already connected their exchanges to provide universal service for the whole country.

American Telephone and Telegraph Company And Associated Companies
One Policy One System Universal Service

Behind the SIGNS (Jan, 1947)

Behind the SIGNS

How the mechanical “spectaculars” work with steam, bubbles and light.

The new sky sign is an excellent example. Nearly every large city has at least one running electric sign—where words chase one another across the side of a building. But the dirigible “runner” is definitely new.

It took 26 miles of wire and 10,000 light bulbs, 5,000 on each side, to construct the dirigible sign. Enough ordinary lamps to light the display would have added too much weight, so Leigh’s thinker-uppers grouped small bulbs, about the size of Christmas-tree lamps, in such a way that their light appears to come from single large bulbs. “What from the ground looks like a single pinpoint of light is actually 10 small bulbs arranged in a spiral cluster 18 inches across.

Streamline Tricycle Serves Ice Cream in the Streets (May, 1936)

Streamline Tricycle Serves Ice Cream in the Streets

Ice cream is dispensed in the streets of London from tricycles equipped with streamline bodies which extend over the tops and sides of the vehicles. The top of the body forms a “counter” to hold the dispensing equipment.

When SPRING-SLAP throws a party… (Jun, 1930)

When SPRING-SLAP throws a party…

AUNT HESTER lets out a quick and exclamatory “Gracious!”—Jane voices a subdued but emphatic “Ouch!”—Bill winces as though someone had shot him. And you… well, outwardly you’re apologetic, but inwardly you’re as mad as a roughed-up hornet. And, we’ll add, for a very good reason.

We’ll grant that rough roads and unexpected hummocks can weave a frown on the face of the most placid driver. We’ll admit that those sudden jolts and jars are as racking on your car as they are on you. But do you know the cause of this commotion?