Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Edison, Tesla and Twist?

I was a curious child growing up. Not curious as in strange, although that may also have been true, but curious about everything. My favorite reading material in the bathroom was the Worldbook Encyclopedia. My parents gave me chemistry kits, hoping I would grow up to be a scientist. I played with all the chemicals in the various experiments and decided that chemistry was a little too boring, though the fireproof matches were quite interesting. Stick matches dipped in an asbestos solution. The most exciting results were achieved by making the stink bomb using sulphur and wax.

I used to take things apart to see how they work. Radios, TVs, (Dad’s old slide projector... I’m not sure he ever knew) lawnmowers etc. Working on lawnmowers and cars convinced me I’d never be a mechanic. Plumbing held no appeal either. I eventually gravitated to electronics. I took electronics classes in high school and learned a lot. I’ve lost track of how many crystal radio sets I’ve built. I also etched circuit boards, built a metal detector and a lie detector. But for some not to be mentioned here circumstances, I might have become an electrical engineer. As it is, I handle financial records and dabble in ham radio and other miscellaneous electronics.

Back in the 70’s I collected electrical project schematics. One of the more interesting was a “working” Star Trek communicator. When finished, it would look like the one Captain Kirk used and was a functioning walkie talkie. Most of the projects I never built, but I kept most of the plans. I remembered one of the projects from the past when I heard about a Tesla cell phone charger. Basically, the unit uses radio and electromagnetic waves all around us to generate enough current to charge a cell phone. I finally tracked down the schematic for that project. That prompted me to go back to my plans from the 1970’s. There was a similar project that generated 3 volts DC output. Though the newer plan doesn’t specify the exact output, it incorporates a similar, yet apparently updated design. In the 70’s, 3V DC wasn’t of much use. Now that is sufficient power to charge a multitude of modern portable electronics.

I have to wonder if such devices have been carefully hidden away by battery companies, patents purchased and filed in deep dark basements by gasoline or natural gas companies, or if such inventions have simply been pooh poohed by those who would say there is no perpetual motion or free energy machines. You decide. I’m going to try my hand at tapping into plucking free energy from the airwaves.

T Boone, give me a call,


Saturday, February 18, 2012

I'm a Survivor

I’m a Survivor

I’ve been a fan of the Survivor TV show for years. I missed the very first season as I thought it would be another “Big Brother” or some such reality show. I didn’t realize how awesome the show was that season. I guess the buzz and hype caught my attention, because I’ve never missed another episode.

Throughout the years we’ve had our favorites in every season, some more memorable than others. We have hated some players, loved planned by the directors, in general. On every season I wonder why the tribe members starve themselves so much instead of spending most of their waking hours looking for food.

I have applied to be on Survivor 3 or 4 times...I lost track. I know the first application was on a VHS tape, while the rest were uploaded videos. I can’t help but think they actually may have called for me, but as I ignore unknown, unidentified incoming phone calls, I may never know.

While preparing for a possible season in Samoa, I studied the local flora and fauna for food sources, including sea plants and fish species. I was vindicated in my research as Rob made fire using a fire saw, the method I determined to be the most effective and easiest to use for Samoa.

Effective January first I began a new career, after a 3 year stretch of retirement from a prior employer. When I next retire, I’ll draw on 2 retirement systems and, if it’s still around, the Social Security system. While I won’t make a million dollars using any combination of my income, I will have a steady income which will prepare me financially for the rest of my life...exactly what I had hoped for on Survivor.

I won’t have time again to take off the required 6 weeks to be on Survivor again, so I won’t be applying again, sorry, Jeff. I think I would have been an awesome player. I think I would have been one of the few to gain weight on the Survivor diet, but I guess it was not meant to be.

Um, Jeff, only kidding. Feel free to call me anytime. I’ll work something out with the boss...