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Mon, 12/02/2019 - 09:28

Ruth Davis was “the real deal.” 

A pioneer in satellite and computer technology, she excelled in what was then a “man’s world” but never boasted about her accomplishments. Ruth always emphasized that it’s what you do and not who you are that’s important. In one interview she said, with a bit of marvel creeping into her voice, “You go to work in the morning, come home in the evening after you worked on something that had never been done before.”

Fri, 09/27/2019 - 11:47

I was a six-year-old Brownie in Las, Cruces, New Mexico, when I first discovered my passion for space and astronomy. I was on a camping trip with my Girl Scout troop, and my troop leader noticed my fascination with the night sky. She pointed out the stars to me and taught me how to identify constellations. She later encouraged me to earn my science badge, which I did by building an Estes Rocket, after much trial and error.

Fri, 09/27/2019 - 11:41
Dishwasher advertisement

JOSEPHINE GARIS COCHRANE seemed to have reached the low point of her life one Sunday in about 1880, when she went to church in the midst of an illness and heard the pastor deliver her eulogy. Whatever the intent of his wistful farewell, entitled “Hoping, Waiting and Resting,” Mrs.

Fri, 09/27/2019 - 11:32

WHEN STEPHANIE LOUISE KWOLEK RECEIVEPortrait of Stephanie KwolekD HER B.S., WITH a major in chemistry, from the Carnegie Institute of Technology (now Carnegie Mellon University) in 1946, she didn’t have enough money to pursue her dream of going on to medical school. So she accepted a research job with DuPont, hoping to eventually get a medical degree.

Fri, 09/27/2019 - 11:24

“This is the first time a woman has ever given a presentation in this room,” Grace Hopper was once told at the Pentagon, as she was escorted to a meeting with the Secretary of the Navy. As one of the highest-ranking females ever to serve in the Navy, she was a rarity. But not as rare a bird as an octogenarian in the computer industry, another distinction she would hold.

Mon, 07/08/2019 - 15:09

The American Civil War, causing more than 600,000 combatant deaths and many times that number of wounded, crippled plus those with PTSD, need not have happened. The framers of the U.S. Constitution knew well that the representatives from the Southern states would not sign unless language on slavery was omitted. The looming issue of slavery was very apparent.  A more visionary Federal government could have fostered a technology to free the slaves.

Wed, 01/16/2019 - 11:31

The air at 20,000 feet above Schweinfurt, Germany, was icy cold, but the bombardier crouching in the nose of the B-17 hardly noticed. Sweat poured down his forehead as flak rocked the aircraft, periodically spattering his compartment's Plexiglas bubble with fragments. He focused intently on preparing for the final bombing run.

Sat, 04/14/2018 - 08:21
Tue, 04/10/2018 - 06:39
Leonard Adleman was one of three researchers at MIT who invented public key cryptography.
Leonard Adleman was one of three researchers at MIT who invented public key cryptography.

RSA Cryptography is the world’s most widely used public-key cryptography method for securing communication on the Internet.

Mon, 04/09/2018 - 22:31

Here is the list of this year's inductees.

Thu, 03/29/2018 - 14:48

Two immense side-wheel steamboats lined up a few minutes before 11:00 am on June 1, 1845 at the foot of Vesey Street on the tip of Manhattan. Inside each pilot house, some 30 feet above the water line, were the boats’ owners—industrialist Cornelius Vanderbilt and George Law—two immense egos who had decided to race 66 miles race upriver to Sing Sing. The gleaming tk-foot-long Cornelius Vanderbilt.

Thu, 03/29/2018 - 10:03

By now, in the second decade of the 21st century, even pointing out the cliché has itself become a cliché. Namely, the frustrated tongue-in-cheek query favored by stand-up comics, science fiction geeks, social commentators, and technology critics: where’s my flying car? Which is generally followed by yet another tired old chestnut: the observation that the question has come to symbolize some failure of technological optimism, scientific advancement, or the supposed predictive powers of science fiction.

Thu, 03/29/2018 - 09:45

text to come

Thu, 03/29/2018 - 09:31

Fifth Avenue is the parade route for St. Patrick’s Day; three blocks to the east is Park Avenue. Many honorary Irishmen arrive from points east on that day, so police usually block motor traffic from a stretch of Park Avenue north of Grand Central Terminal. To a person waiting to meet friends at the corner of East 47th and Park, this looks like a fine stretch of midtown Manhattan, where the breadth of the avenue gives it a more spacious feel. There is a parkway with a grassy margin separating the streets, and glossy buildings with shops that front on the wide sidewalks.

Thu, 03/29/2018 - 09:28

Text to come.

Thu, 03/29/2018 - 09:24

Innovation is a hot topic in our editorial offices, only in part because we run a magazine devoted to it. "There's a way to do it better-find it," Thomas Edison once said-a notion that defines
so much of our working lives. Every day we devise more efficient systems, come up with fresh ideas, and create new opportunities. What circumstances, environments, and particular factors spawn creativity and bring breakthroughs?

Tue, 11/14/2017 - 15:58

In perhaps the most famous scene of any Bond film, secret agent 007 lies strapped to a table with his legs spread. Archvillain Auric Goldfinger directs an industrial laser toward Bond’s manhood, and slowly the thick red beam surgically cuts the table in half. The secret agent calmly convinces his foe to shut off the laser in the nick of time.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 16:55

In the mid-1960s Don Bitzer, the director of the Coordinated Science Laboratory at the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign, was tasked with creating the first computer-based instructional system. He recognized immediately that current screen technology would support such a program. A new, brighter display was needed, one that had no flicker and boasted higher contrast than what was then available on screens using cathode ray tubes.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 07:12

From Ducts To Dresses

THAT WAS AN EXCELLENT article on the substance that fixes anything and everything, duct tape (“Object Lessons,” by Curt Wohleber, Summer 2003). A student in my heat-transfer class last spring semester made a book bag entirely out of the tape, complete with pockets for a calculator and pencils. I found it a classic example of the innovative spirit. Here is a picture.


Tom Lawrence

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