Tag Archives: invention

TASER (02/22)

I have always known what a TASER stun gun was, but never really considered what TASER stood for.

I was browsing through the latest edition of Time Magazine and found out where Jack Cover, the aerospace scientist who invented the Taser stun gun got the name. Are you ready?

Victor Appleton's Tom Swift series.

Victor Appleton's Tom Swift series.

Originally the invention went by the acronym T.S.E.R (Thomas Swift Electric Rifle).

“Adding the “A,” he explained to The Washington Post in 1976, “because we got tired of answering the phone ‘T.S.E.R.’ ”

Jack Cover Came up with the idea for a nonlethal weapon for use in law enforcement in the 1960s as a response to the emergencies in the news, including airplane highjackings.

The scientific inspiration, Ms. Cover said, was a newspaper article about a man who had inadvertently walked into an electrified fence and survived, though he was temporarily immobilized.

“When he read that had happened, he knew an electric current could be used without danger,” Ms. Cover said.

Sadly, Jack Cover passed away on February 7 at the age of 88.

Time Magazine

New York Times

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Rube Goldberg Contraption (02/21)

(noun) a comically involved, complicated invention, laboriously contrived to perform a simple operation.

(noun) a comically involved, complicated invention, laboriously contrived to perform a simple operation.

I don’t know about you, but one of my favorite scenes in Pee Wee’s Big Adventure is when he gets breakfast ready by turning on a fan and lighting a candle (thus beginning his Rube Goldberg machine). As a kid, I always thought that machines of that nature were a movie trick. I never knew that there was a name for them and that they can actually be made.

But who was Rube Goldberg?

Rube Goldberg (1883-1970) was a Pulitzer Prize winning cartoonist, sculptor, and author.

Best known for his INVENTIONS, Rube’s early years as an engineer informed his most acclaimed works. A Rube Goldberg contraption – an elaborate set of arms, wheels, gears, handles, cups, and rods, put in motion by balls, canary cages, pails, boots, bathtubs, paddles, and live animals – takes a simple task and makes it extraordinarily complicated. He had solutions for How To Get The Cotton Out Of An Aspirin Bottle, imagined a Self-Operating Napkin, and created a Simple Alarm Clock – to name just a few of his hilariously depicted drawings.

from the official Rube Goldberg website

See the top 10 movies with Rube Goldberg Machines

and a cool little Honda commericial:

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