Prize CONTESTS Aid Science
by GILSON VANDERVEER WILLETS
Prize contests are always staged in the hopes that some definite object will be attained, whether it be increased business or the perfection of some scientific or mechanical achievement. In this article the world’s foremost authority on prize contests tells how these have aided science.
IT IS popularly conceived that prize competitions are conducted exclusively for the literati, or for those who enjoy solving puzzles and similar pastimes. Few persons realize that the history of scientific achievement is crammed with exploits of those who were inspired by monetary awards, which were nothing more or less than prize competitions.
Postal flyers Succeed Against Odds in “Bringing” Mail Through
AT NOON, May 15, 1918, four pilots stood beside their planes ready to take off on the first official attempt to carry mail by air. That day was the beginning of a thing that has spread, not only through the United States, but into all of North America. Since that day millions of dollars have been spent, planes have been wrecked, and pilots killed, but the air mail goes on and it stands today as one of the great affairs of the nation.
• For more complete information on any of the inventions shown here, you may order copies of each original patent by sending your request with the patent number to Commissioner of Patents. Department of Commerce, Washington 25, D. C.
Enclose 25c in cash for each patent.
Racing Booster Jets. These swivelling nozzles, jetting engine exhaust gas backward and laterally (opposing centrifugal force on curves) will boost racing-car power up to 10%, says the inventor. Patent No. 2,724,450, Reinhold G. Kamps, Stuttgart-Bad Cannstatt, Germany (Assignor to Daimler-Benz, A.G., Stuttgart-Unterturkheim, Germany).
Checkerboard Searchlight TRAPS Planes
BRITISH war officials have just announced the development of a new anti-aircraft searchlight of radical design which, instead of throwing the usual cone of light into the sky, projects a gigantic criss-cross pattern which looks something like a checkerboard on the clouds.
Photo Lab Flies to Front
THIS “flying darkroom” can turn out 20,000 photo prints a day. A complete photographic processor, it is designed to fit inside the detachable fuselage of the Fairchild C-120, latest version of the Flying Boxcar. Developed by the Air Materiel Command, the photo-multiprocessor will make photographic intelligence immediately available in front-line military areas.
The AGE of AIR
By Colonel Edward S. Evans
President of Evans Products Company
WHO could have envisioned in 1928, when a dozen young men were making the first glider experiments at the University of Michigan, that the crude ship then used was the forerunner of what would ultimately be one of the world’s great means of transportation?
These members of the first glider club of America, which was formed under my sponsorship, learned the delight of being pulled into the air with a rubber cord and gliding gently to the ground several hundred yards away. Some of these same young men today are still flying gliders, beautiful ships known as sailplanes which have established records of distance, altitude and duration that are almost unbelievable.
VIC-20 – Commodore’s Entry in the Small Computer Arena
by David D. Busch
If first impressions stick, the Vic-20 microcomputer by Commodore (King of Prussia, PA) will lodge itself in the mind of any potential purchaser. The 6502 microprocessor-based computer just doesn’t look like a $299 machine.
In fact, when I demonstrate the unit to those unfamiliar with it, I always save the price for last. This ploy is especially effective if the potential user already has some familiarity with other microcomputers and their prices.
First, I demonstrate the full-stroke, typewriter-style keyboard, which features four special function keys and a control key. The Pet Basic is identical to that used in higher-priced Commodore machines and comparable to Applesoft or Radio Shack’s model III Basic.
MIGHTY MIDGETS OF FILMDOM
MODERN total war has the bewildering effect of changing our values, eliminating many of the things which seemed essential in peacetime and giving a terrific boost to the importance of others.
Microfilm is in the latter class.
Strangely, these little films have now attained gigantic value because of their small size. They are suddenly mighty for the very reason that they are midgets. Even the larger type is only as wide as a man’s thumb from tip to first joint. The smaller microfilm might be compared roughly to the size of the nail on that section of the thumb. Yet, they are doing a Herculean task.
CONEY ISLAND — Which Way’s the Ocean?
BY MURRAY ROBINSON – ILLUSTRATED BY LOWELL HESS.
They call this beach The Poor Man’s Riviera, but on any hot Sunday substitute Bedlam-by-the-Sea. It’s also the only known habitat of certain species yet unclassified by science—like the knish bootlegger THE defendant in Coney Island Magistrates’ Court one muggy midsummer morning was a squat, balding man in a sport shirt. He listened impatiently as the charge against him was read: A startled policeman had found him on the jammed beach fetchingly attired in a woman’s ofF-the-shoulder dress, and had given him a summons for “causing a crowd to collect.”
Giant Slingshots of the Navy
by Rear Admiral E. R. Stitt (U.S.N.)
and Lt. Com. J. C. Adams (U.S.N.)
Senior Flight Surgeon, Aircraft Squadrons
Fighting seaplanes of Uncle Sam’s navy are launched into the air by means of powerful catapults which throw them into the air like giant slingshots. This is only one of the unusual stunts which naval flyers are required to perform—which explains why only the most perfect pilots win the title of “naval aviator.”