Archive
Origins
Cream Whipped By Expanding Gas (Jun, 1935)

Cream Whipped By Expanding Gas

AT THE push of a button, ordinary cream, subjected to a new process, can now be turned into whipping cream. The cream is first put up by the dairy in containers of automobile steel. Rendered air-tight by the elimination of oxygen, the container next receives an injection of nitrous oxide gas. As the housewife presses the button on the top of the small cask, the nitrous oxide expands, forcing out the cream under pressure and, through aeration, whips the product.

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Pimp your ride with… Turn Signals (Jun, 1949)

Personally, I think these wacky “turn signals” are just a fad.

AUTOMOBILE DRIVERS Flash Your Turns

New Model SIMPLEX DIRECTION SIGNAL KIT fits most ears. Gives new safety and comfort when making turns. Eliminates arm signals. Flashing parking and tail lights show other cars which way you’re going to turn. Flashes 60 to 80 times a minute. Works like factory installed models on expensive cars. Does not interfere with operation of present lights. Install it yourself. All parts furnished. For most 1942 to 1949 cars. SPECIFY MAKE AND YEAR. Adaptable to earlier cars at extra cost. MONEY BACK GUARANTEE.
DEALER INQUIRIES INVITED

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Polaroid Premiere (Feb, 1949)


Camera Gives Print in a Minute

NOW you can snap a picture and see it only a minute later. The camera that does this is an entirely new type. It’s the first production model of the Polaroid Land Camera (PS, May, ’47, p. 150). It costs less than $100.
The camera uses a special film that gives you eight pictures. Each one costs just a little more than you’d pay for drug-store processing of ordinary prints of this size.
Contained in the roll of positive paper are eight tiny capsules of jellied reagent. When you advance the film after snapping a picture, a capsule is opened as it passes between two rollers. The jelly simultaneously develops the negative and forms a print. You pull out the print after a 60-second wait. For extra prints, you make another exposure or copy the original.
One control sets both shutter speed and lens opening. Numbers from 1 to 8 in an opening above the lens show whether the camera’s set for bright sun or poor light conditions. The camera has flash contacts.

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The BBC did American Inventor 50 years ago. (Jul, 1955)

This show looks like it was really cool. It’s basically American Inventor without the overt competition.

BBC Puts Inventors On TV
INVENTIONS ARE the stars of one of the most popular television shows in Britain.

The Television Inventors’ Club of the British Broadcasting Corporation has been on the air for seven years. During this time more than 7000 inventions have been submitted to the club, of which 580 have been shown on the air. A quarter of these have caught the eyes of manufacturers and many are already in production.

The inventions range from a simple shirt stud which allows for the shrinkage of the collar, to a compressible ship’s fender which eases a 24,000-ton vessel against a dock.

A number of British inventors have hit the jackpot through the program. One of them actually did it with a better mousetrap, and the world has already beaten a path to his door to the tune of over a million sales. Years of patient observation taught the inventor that a mouse twists its head when approaching the bait and nibbles from below. His trap therefore springs when the bait is lifted—not pushed down. A tidy profit was also made by the inventor of a stair elevator for invalids. A moving step, carried on rails, is drawn up the staircase by a cable and winch. More than 500 inquiries poured into the BBC when this device was shown on TV.

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Pocket Softcore (Oct, 1952)

Wow, that guy looks scarily entertained by his movie. Think of it as the Video Ipod of 1952.

Now! SEE MOVIES without SCREEN OR PROJECTOR with Melton Pocket Movie Viewer

Men, you’re going to have a world of fun with the MELTON MOVIE ‘ VIEWER, and you’ll think of a dozen pals overseas to send one to. With the Melton, you can view a complete 50-foot roll of any standard 8 mm. film, without screen or projector. Easy to operate; just look in viewer and turn handle. You see clear live-action picture in color or black and white. A precision instrument you’ll be proud to own. Satisfaction, or money back. Only $4.95, ppd. Send to
MELTON INDUSTRIES, Inc.
Box 390 Dept. MI-3 Reno, Nev.
Add $1.00 ea. for film:

  • Beauties of Bali
  • Robinson-Turpin Fight
  • Danger Trail
  • A Thrill a Second
  • Bathing Buddies
  • Hit the Silk
  • Grand Canyon
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Machine Builds Muscles (Jul, 1939)

Machine Builds Muscles

THE young lady below is getting all the beneficial effects of rowing and riding from the machine on which she is exercising. It strengthens and stimulates muscles and internal organs.

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New TV Sets Project Pictures (Aug, 1949)

New TV Sets Project Pictures
A PACKAGED projection unit made by North American Philips Co. is being incorporated in current models by more than a dozen manufacturers of home television receivers. Some of these new models will throw the video picture on a screen outside the unit, just like home movies. Main components of the Protelgram® are shown in the photo at right. The optical system is diagrammed below.
A 2/2-in. picture tube, whose face is a lens as well as a fluorescent screen, forms the heart of the unit. A 25,000-volt power supply produces a picture of high brilliance on the tube face. The image is reflected by a concave mirror and another tilted at 45 degrees. Spherical distortion is removed as the image passes through a correcting lens.
The projector is a modification of the Schmidt-type optical system. Most of the receivers in which it will be used will employ 12- by 16-inch viewing screens in the cabinet; a few will use the projector to throw a three- by four-foot image onto an external screen.

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Pouring Spout for Milk Carton (Nov, 1953)

This one is very close to current milk cartons. The only difference I can see is that instead of being folded and stapled, the top of the container is heat bonded, allowing you to simply pull the sides apart instead of taring the overlap.

Pouring Spout for Milk Carton
A pouring spout for cardboard milk cartons of the type shown that will eliminate dripping and spilling, and allow the carton to be drained completely, can be made by slitting the ridge of the carton and pulling out the fold under the ridge. To re-seal the carton, simply push the flap back to its original position. On most cartons, this can be done without removing the staple, but a few have a long staple, which interferes if not removed.
W. Dyre Doughty, Tucson, Ariz.

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Origins of CSI (Jul, 1953)

This is an excellent 1953 article on the beginnings of forensic science. It covers the establisment of a forensic school at harvard, the switch from untrained coroners to skilled medical examiners and all sorts of modern forensic techniques. It also has pictures of amazingly detailed models made to recreate crime scenes for instructional purposes.

Mysterious Death Their Business

By Richard F. Dempewrolff

Death from causes unknown is a phrase that will drop from its too frequent use in the nation’s homicide files if a new kind of investigator has anything to say about it.

Today, on en upper floor in a remote wing of the Harvard Medical School, an eerie atmosphere hangs over a certain laboratory headed by pathologist Dr. Richard Ford. Called the Department of Legal Medicine, its business is concerned with unexplained death.

Sightless eyes stare at intruders from a row of life-sized plaster heads of murder victims—one with slashed throat, another with a bullet hole drilled through one temple, trickling a painted red stream against its death-white cheek. Beneath them, rows of plaster chest sections are perforated with accurately simulated bullet holes and powder burns typical of wounds inflicted by various-caliber bullets at varying distances.

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Big City Sign (Oct, 1939)

Very cool article from 1939 about the first programmable electronic sign in Times Square (think the grandfather of the Jumbotron). Every single change of a light, and there are 27,000 of them, is punched as a row on a 160 column roll of paper that gets fed through the vast machine.

Oh, and in response to the question posed here:

“The paper is wide enough for 160 perforated holes across. One hundred holes to represent all the lights in each zone. Thirty to represent the zones in all the sectors. And nine to represent the sectors.”

“But that’s only 139 holes’” we remark brightly.

“Well, there are nine holes to erase the sectors.”

“That’s 148.”

“And nine for flashing the sectors on and off.”

“That’s 157.”

“And—” Mr. Latz scratched his head. “There’s three more for something else, but darned if I know what they are!”

The answers are:
158 – displays goatse
159 – displays Xeyes. Every platform needs Xeyes.
160 – reserved for pending MPAA DRM solution.

Big City Sign

“How does it work?” is the question most frequently heard, as New Yorkers and visitors gaze at the sign whose color and action make it one of Broadway’s most startling attractions.

27,000 light bulbs! 40 miles of wiring! 500,000 connections!

THESE figures are impressive, but an electric “spectacular” must depend on more than sheer size to attract attention in New York City’s Times Square, which has the most imposing collection of electric signs in the world. It must have action, color, and originality—and that’s just what the Wonder-sign, newest and brightest addition to the Great White Way’s signs, has.

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