Saturday, July 09, 2011

July 9: Our Lady of Chiquinquira; Tesla; Charles Bridge, Prague

"In the mid-16th century the Spanish painter Alonso de Narvaez created a portrait of the Virgin of the Rosary. He painted in pigments from the soil, herbs and flowers of the region of modern Colombia, and his canvas was a rough 44" * 49" cloth woven by Indians. The image of Mary is about a meter high, and stands about a half moon ...

Tesla1856 Tesla: almost-forgotten genius

Nikola Tesla (d. January 7, 1943), the Serb-American electrical engineer, inventor of the alternating current (AC) motor, was born on this day at Smiljan, Lika, "at the stroke of midnight" with lightning striking during a summer storm. The midwife commented, "He'll be a child of the storm," to which his mother replied, "No, of light."
He was a great genius whose luck was not as great as his abilities, and for many years his name was almost completely lost to public knowledge.
The unit of magnetic flux in the metric system is the 'tesla', as another unit is the 'faraday'. His Tesla Coil supplies the high voltage for the computer monitor you are looking at. The electricity for your computer comes from a Tesla-designed AC generator, is sent through a Tesla-invented transformer, and gets to your house through 3-phase Tesla power. The electric power of Niagara was harnessed through his inventions.
During Tesla's lifetime, the US Patent Office recorded 111 utility patents, one reissued patent, two utility patent corrections and one utility patent disclaimer. US patent number 613,809 described the first device anywhere for wireless remote control. "You do not see there a wireless torpedo," he angrily corrected a newspaper reporter, "you see there the first of a race of robots, mechanical men which will do the laborious work of the human race."
"When wireless is fully applied the earth will be converted into a huge brain, capable of response in every one of its parts," Tesla told Morgan.
Tesla's plan for an international wireless communications system was funded for a time by the squillionaire, JP Morgan, but Morgan prematurely lost faith in the inventor and pulled the plug on the money bin – perhaps one of the worst financial decisions of the 20th century. Tesla had to abandon his ambitious project forever. The newspapers called it, "Tesla's million dollar folly." Humiliated and defeated, Tesla suffered a nervous breakdown.
By 1890 Nikola Tesla was generating fields that would light up, without any wires, phosphorescent tubes across his laboratory. Yet for all this, his name was forgotten for decades, until recently when at long last the public has come to know of one of history's great geniuses.
The brilliant inventor who had been so far ahead of his time died penniless on January 7, 1943 in New York City at the age of 86. Nikola Tesla was living in the dilapidated Hotel New Yorker in a room that he shared with a flock of pigeons, which he considered his only friends (he had been friends with Mark Twain, now long dead). The great inventor's ashes are now stored in a golden sphere at the Nikola Tesla Museum in Belgrade.
It has been suggested that Tesla might have been responsible for the Tunguska Event of June 30, 1908 (more).
"Even today, many texts still credit Marconi with the invention of radio, despite the Supreme Court decision which overruled the Marconi patent, awarding it to Tesla. In many parts of this country, people still refer to the electric utility as the 'Edison Company', even though they use the Tesla-Westinghouse alternating current system, NOT Edison's direct current. At the Niagra Falls power generating station, a small statue of Tesla is purposely left unilluminated at night. It has been said that Tesla is the Forgotten Father of Technology. Tesla himself once commented '... The present is theirs. (skeptics of the day) The future, for which I really worked, is mine.'"    Source
Serbian poetry
"Another anecdote about the inventor is told by the Reverend Stijacic. On his first trip to America as a young writer for the Serbian Federation, Stijacic had been surprised to find in the Chicago Public Library, a book of poems, the author of which was the popular Serbian poet, Zmaj-Jovan. The translator was Nikola Tesla. Later, when Stijacic was taken by Dr. Rado to meet the inventor in his offices on the twentieth floor of the Metropolitan Tower, he said, 'Mr. Tesla, I did not know that you were interested in poetry.'
"A look of wry amusement shone in the inventor's eyes. 'There are many of us Serbs who sing,' he said, 'but there is nobody to listen to us.'"
Adopted from "Tesla: man out of time", by Margaret Cheney, 1981   Source
A bronze statue of Nikola Tesla at Niagara Falls was produced some time in the mid 70's to honor Tesla and the work he did for Westinghouse in building the turbines which converted the power of the Falls into electricity. The original statue is in front of the Electrical Engineering building of the University of Belgrade in Belgrade, Serbia.  
"Cyberspace as described by William Gibson in Neuromancer  (1984) was prefigured in Nikola Tesla's 1901 plan for a world system of totally interconnected, planetary communications. He believed he could engineer a globe unified by the universal regulation of time and fully traversed by flows of language, images, and money-all reduced to an undifferentiated flux of electrical energy."

Mark Twain at Tesla lab
Mark Twain at the lab of his long-time friend, Nikola Tesla

1357 5:31 am, Saturday: Charles IV, Holy Roman Emperor assisted laying the foundation stone of Charles Bridge in Prague.
How do we know the precise time? Because the palindromic number 135797531, carved on the Old Town bridge tower, was chosen by the royal astrologers and numerologists as the best time for starting the bridge construction.

The image at right, if it's appearing, is generated by a live webcam. Webcam images refresh at set intervals, so if you refresh this page it might show a changed image. If you click it, you'll go to an enlargement or the recommended webcam site.



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