Solar cells on top of helmet power a tiny transmitter and receiver during daylight. The silicon cells also charge four small storage batteries to operate the set at night. (U. S. Army Photo)
Under the Mistletoe By JOHN T. FRYE "FOR the last time, no!" Carl shouted at his friend, Jerry, sprawled on the old leather divan of the basement laboratory; "I'm not going to take your visiting cousin Patricia to the Christmas party." "And why not?" Jerry demanded truculently. "With those blue eyes, black hair, and dimples, she isn't exactly a crow, you know. And didn't she win the science award? She knows darned near as much about electronics as we do. Lots of guys would jump at the chance." "Let 'em jump," Carl said firmly. "I'll not deny she's easy on the eyes, quite hep, and nice, too, for a girl. It's simply that I've had it as far as these Christmas party capers are concerned."
By BEN PREECE THE PILOT and copilot of the Douglas DC-8 Jetliner couldn't see anything through the windshield. It was totally dark outside. The altimeter was winding down as the giant plane dropped through the overcast. The crew chief watched his instrument panel. "We'll be out in a minute," the pilot said, referring to the cloud bank he'd been in since take-off. Then the lights of the field appeared below.
The phone booth of the future, designed by Bell Telephone Laboratories, will have a plastic bubble dome for maximum visibility. It will be installed in an indoor area, such as a railway concourse.
By Hugh B. Brous, JR. FIRST OFF, let me tell you that the MRS is no off-the-shelf commercial computer. MRS stands for Multipurpose Research System, and we designed and built the whole works ourselves at the Research Institute. Consequently, we can blame only ourselves for the design features that led to all the troubles. Everyone on the staff still feels that the basic concepts are sound but we unanimously agree that some changes will have to be made before MRS can be a dependable computer system. MRS is a well-built hunk of hardware with just about everything a computerman could want. She's got microprograming, built-in compiling routines, half a billion words of high-speed memory, a basic pulse rate of a micromicrosecond, and fantastically fast input-output scanners that work with a whole printed page at a time.
By WILLIAM TENN Electronic robots, in one form or another, are influencing our daily lives . . . are we due for an "electronic revolution"? THE AGE OF SCIENCE has made the word "robot" the focus of popular fears and hopes. The hope is that machines with minds, machines that can talk, think, and work like men, will give everyone a life of leisure. The fear is that robots will replace mankind, that they might run amuck and destroy their masters, that the robots will get us if we don't watch out. What was conceived as a work-saving machine has become the popular bogeyman of the age of science. The robot nightmare hasn't been with us long, a little over 25 years. It pops up in films, in fiction, in newspaper editorials, every time someone develops a more advanced piece of programing for automatic machinery. When Remington Rand unveiled a computer which responded to written commands in ordinary English rather than computer code, prophets of mechanical doom made dire predictions on the future of mankind.
"PAT" is the nickname given to a British talking machine which creates all the sounds that are normally used in speaking, and can string them together to produce the illusion of complete words and phrases. It can, in fact, talk. In place of the human vocal cords, PAT (short for Parametric Artificial Talker) has an electron tube oscillator. In place of tongue and lips which normally vary the size of the mouth cavities, electrical resonators are provided and their resonant frequencies varied.