Startdown: I Want to Vacuum

I came across this ad on the Craigslist just the other day: 65,000 Electron tubes. Amplifier / Radio tubes – $9999999. Before you get too worried, it is okay, they don’t actually want 9 billion dollars or however much that it. They do want to try to sell you all those tubes for […]


Startdown: Family Tree

The seed appears to be the Edison Effect. And from it came such awesomeness as shield-grid thyratrons!

Image via engineeringhistory.

User Input

User Input: Technological Perfection

In need of a relaxing and sedate night last night, I sat in my basement and watched a bunch of concerts by the new crop of blues musicians like Kenny Wayne Shepherd and Jonny Lang. These are young musicians, each fairly tech savvy and eager to embrace the latest and greatest advances in […]

User Input

User Input: The Age of Discovery

Vacuum Tuubes, courtesy of The Binary Blog

The 1950’s and 60’s were arguably the greatest age of innovation we have seen in the entire course of human history. Pretty much every piece of technology we use today had its start during these two decades, and the concepts and ideas that were developed during […]

Computers You Should Know

Commercial Advertising: Not-So-Personal Computer

Television advertisements evolved over the years into the slick short-film productions that we have today. Early on, ads like this 1956 biopic on the latest from Remington Rand, the UNIVAC, were more info-mercial like, essentially an extension of radio ads where the announcer would simply read copy expounding the virtues if the product at hand. While the visual impact of the television medium is not fully exploited here, it is easy to imagine technology fearing Luddites interpreting this commercial as confirmation of the government using computers to control the weather.

Continue reading Commercial Advertising: Not-So-Personal Computer