Apr 24, 2011 at 9:41
It took many decades for science fiction to become mainstream on the movie screen. The first example of the genre is usually given as La Voyage dans la Lune, directly translated as The Journey in the Moon but given the title A Trip to the Moon in English exhibitions. George Méliès directed the silent 1902 classic, which was a gem of special effects for such a new medium. In the next thirty years only the 1927 Metropolis, a German expressionist movie directed by Fritz Lang, made a further science-fiction-like mark on the screen. Metropolis was set in a futuristic "dystopia" and examined the social and economic crises of capitalism. At five million Reichsmark (the currency of the then Weimar Republic, with an exchange value of about USD0.40 per Reichsmark) it was the most expensive silent movie ever made.
After that science fiction was represented by the complete opposite of the financial investment scale with B-movies through the 1960s, until Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey was...
Apr 17, 2011 at 10:11
Gordon Smith was one of the US senators for Oregon (Republican) before his ouster in the 2008 elections that swept Obama and the Democrats to power. He seemed to be a fair man for the State and we were lucky enough to have some of his connections tied directly to the coastal community in which we lived – giving us a little more attention than we might otherwise have had.
The Smith family, Gordon and his wife Sharon, have had their tragedies including the suicide death in September 2003 of their eldest adopted son, Garrett, in his apartment in Utah where he was attending Utah Valley State College. In a strict Mormon family Garrett had a problem with alcohol in the Maryland school he was attending while dad was in the Senate, and he had returned to Pendleton High School in Northeast Oregon for his final year. He had admitted depression before his departure on the compulsory mission (his was to England) his faith requires.
Oregon vegetables have been the source of the Smith fortunes in the form of Smith ...
Apr 10, 2011 at 2:49
Almost two years ago to the day, here on lowpowerZONE, I went into a lengthy discussion about National Semiconductor. It was a break in my practice to so closely talk about a company in my purview but I felt it was necessary to expose the true situation of the company that has so dominated the last fifty years of the history of analog semiconductors. Readers responded in huge volumes on our blog and in private messages; some agreed with me, some disagreed; almost all offered tales of woes and sadness. Others have cussed me out, with one even declaring that her career was put in jeopardy because I put the company too closely under the spotlight. In a couple of cases I have had my name offered as a reference for job applications to other companies in the analog sphere; and in one particular instance I tried to steer an employee to a job that I knew was available to her – but she declined.
Brian Halla is now history for the company, the Tesla and the yellow Hummer no longer to be seen off Lawrence Express...
Apr 3, 2011 at 4:32
I have great sympathy for the road warrior looking for a Wi-Fi connection. Be it an occasional hook-up in a parking lot, a roadside rest area, or even in a traffic jam, offering an open RF link strikes me as the equivalent of giving a weary traveler a drink of water. So we had no problem over some years leaving our home Wi-Fi system available for the traffic on the major highway that passes by us.
That tolerance turned to hostility when I realized that our systems had slowed to a glacial speed about the same time that our modem was also starting to have lock-up problems from its power supply. The house next door had new occupants – replacing some tenants who, of university age, enjoyed such habits as riding bicycles off the roof and igniting garbage in a can with flames shooting twenty feet into the air – who seemed quite respectable. Their Internet habits, on our dime, however, seemed to involve streaming downloads of massive amounts of data.
That Wi-Fi door is now shut with maximum encryption ...