Archive
Communications
Scientist’s Theory Explodes Hopes of Talking to Mars (Mar, 1932)

Scientist’s Theory Explodes Hopes of Talking to Mars

THE possibility of transmitting signals to Mars by short waves has long been a moot question among scientists. Some say no, and some say yes, but the latest contribution to the dispute has been made by Dr. Alexanderson, world famous electrical wizard.

Dr. Alexanderson’s stand on the question is negative, for the reason, he claims, that there exists another electrical ceiling beyond the moon which impedes the signals sent out from the earth. He also believes that the signals may get “snarled” in a mysterious electrical medium of some sort, which holds the waves imprisoned for a fraction of a second before releasing them for a return to earth.

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PHONE GIRLS USE SKATES (May, 1929)

PHONE GIRLS USE SKATES

OPERATORS in Los Angeles telephone exchanges go roller skating each night. They don’t have any boy friends along to pick them up when they fall, nor is their skating comprised of fancy turns and difficult tricks. Business is the primary cause of their donning skates.

After 10:30 p.m. phone calls become less frequent, and not many girls are on duty. Distances which used to keep the girls doing kangeroo jumps to plug in a call are now covered with ease.

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Repairing Cables Broken by ‘Quake (Mar, 1930)

Repairing Cables Broken by ‘Quake

Twelve of the 21 cables between England and America were broken by a tremendous submarine earthquake on November 18 reported to be the most severe on record. The drawing above shows the submarine floor, with locations of the cables and points of damage, mainly off Newfoundland.

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NEW in SCIENCE (Aug, 1951)

NEW in SCIENCE

Navy’s Newest Copter is the Kaman HTK-1 eggbeater with two intermeshing rotors. It is easy to fly and exceptionally stable. Photo at upper left shows blower for engine cooling and servo-tab on rotor blade used for control in flight.

Land-Anywhere Plane is a Piper Cub exported to Rome, Italy where Count Giovanni Bonmartini attached his trick landing gear. It is a tank-track type which enables the plane to land on rough terrain. It fits any small plane.

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Telephones OF TOMORROW (Feb, 1958)

Not too shabby. He gets touch-tone, voice mail, car phones, cell phones, pagers and computer dial up service.

Telephones OF TOMORROW

by J. R. Pierce

Condensed from The Atlantic Monthly

The telephone network is the nervous system of our civilization, carrying messages of demand and direction, of pain and pleasure, to collective enterprises and to individuals alike. The telephone itself is a mere end-organ which enables any of us to make use of billions of dollars worth of complex switching and transmission equipment.

A new car is a complete means of transportation, but a new telephone can be only a small alteration in a massive electronic organism that seems to change with glacial slowness. For this reason it is far easier to see what sort of advances in telephony are technologically possible than to say when they may actually take place, and I doubt if anyone can make detailed predictions concerning the future.

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Buttons Tune Low-Cost Car Radio (May, 1938)

I don’t think I’ve ever seen someone put a car radio in that location.

Buttons Tune Low-Cost Car Radio

Push-button tuning, the modern safety feature that enables car drivers to adjust their radios without taking their eyes from the road, has now been built into an inexpensive, easily installed set. Pushing any one of five buttons on an instrument-board panel instantaneously tunes the self-contained receiver to a corresponding station.

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There’s Music in the Air for Airplane Travelers (Apr, 1940)

There’s Music in the Air for Airplane Travelers
AS THEY fly to their destinations, passengers on planes of a major transcontinental air line can now listen to broadcast radio programs. Stations are tuned in on a master set and the programs are piped to individual loudspeakers housed in padded units that hang over the seat backs of those passengers who desire to listen in.

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Fabulous Floating Control Center Will Guide us to the Moon (Feb, 1968)

Fabulous Floating Control Center Will Guide us to the Moon

Huge antennas, eyes and ears for our moon shot, mark Redstone — a $45-million engineering miracle

By W. STEVENSON BACON

One fateful day within the next two years, crew members of the USNS Redstone, a smallish converted World War II tanker, will find themselves with a momentous mission. Cruising in the South Pacific off American Samoa, they will be responsible for the safety of our first astronauts to fly to the moon. Second by second, they will check out the condition of the Saturn S-IV B stage that will carry the Apollo out of its parking orbit and into a translunar trajectory.

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W3XFE TRANSMITS ON ALL WAVELENGTHS (Sep, 1938)

I’ve always loved that the Heaviside Layer sounds like the name describes its properties, but was actually just discovered by a guy named Heaviside. Obviously it confused the writer or editor of this piece because they spelled it “Heavyside”. I wonder if there is a term for eponyms that sound like they are descriptive words.

W3XFE TRANSMITS ON ALL WAVELENGTHS

THE nation’s most unique radio station, which has the only permit ever granted by the Federal Communications Commission to transmit continuously on all radio frequencies, is in operation at Kensington, Maryland. Known as special experimental station W3XFE, the all-wave transmitter sends only to itself, using special apparatus.

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TALKING BY NUMBERS (Feb, 1959)

I don’t see how this would work. It assumes that all of the words have equivalents in all the languages and that there is no such thing as grammar or context.

The other difference between this and other artificial languages like Esperanto is that you can actually learn to speak those. The only time you see someone walking around spouting a string of numbers is in movies where an android goes haywire.

TALKING BY NUMBERS

3283 1621 1 2047 1705 467 1800.

The above sentence in Logography, a new international language devised by Dr. Hans Binem of Denmark (photo above), means “This is a new language called Logography.”

The beauty of Logography is its simplicity. The first sentence of numbers in this article means the same thing in English as it does in French, German, Spanish and Scandinavian languages— and can easily be extended to include Chinese or any other language.

Dr. Binem’s slogan, “Nothing to learn, nothing to remember” just about sums it up. Note the illustration at the top of this page. It is a section of a page from the inventor’s American-English list of words using the Logography system.

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