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  1.  
    Richard III and Leicester
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dsTyGKKl8UA

    I found this hugely enjoyable.
  2.  
    The Most Important Invention of the 20th Century: Transistors
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OuFlISa73Sw

    Some errors but still entertaining.
  3.  
    I guess so. Transistors might exist without the stock market, but the stock market could not exist without transistors. Vacuum tubes are just too slow and use too much power.
    • CommentAuthorAsterix
    • CommentTimeDec 24th 2019 edited
     
    Maybe--negative-resistance solid-state devices have been observed for a long time, but material impurities have kept any early ones from going commercial. Heck, the point-contact BJT was so variable from unit-to-unit that it was doubtful that it could ever be manufactured in quantity.

    It, like most other inventions, involved a lot of development.

    Few know that Shockley started off by trying to duplicate the device described in Lilienfeld's 1925 FET patent, but failed--primarily due to material impurities. Lilienfeld also patented a transistor-like device constructed of copper sulfide. His patents were accepted, so he probably did make working devices. Today's electronics owe more to Lilienfeld than they do to Shockley et al., in my opinion. More than a slight nod is also owed to Bernal and Pfann of Bell Labs for their zone-refining process (1951). AT&T needed this to produce reliable transistors in quantity; without it, transistors would have likely have lapsed into the "lab curiosity" category.

    Electron tubes were making significant strides in miniaturization and power consumption. Early 1960s car radios, for example, often used vacuum tubes for all but the final audio stage. There was a line of low-anode voltage (12V) devices made for just this purpose. Subminiature tubes have been around since before WWII, developed mostly for the hearing-aid business, but found their way into early computers and portable radios (e.g. Motorola Pixie). I owned a hybrid FM tuner that used Nuvistor (very small) tubes in the RF amplifier section, but was otherwise transistorized. "Tunnel cathode" devices were being explored in the 1960s that eliminated the requirement of a heated cathode.

    And, the last time I looked, kitchen microwave ovens still use vacuum tubes to warm your coffee.
  4.  
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      CommentAuthoralsetalokin
    • CommentTimeDec 25th 2019 edited
     
    Posted By: AsterixAnd, the last time I looked, kitchen microwave ovens still use vacuum tubes to warm your coffee.


    So that's why it takes so long to get a venti latte at Starsucks! An old extension cord, a couple of alligator clips and a metal fork get the job done a lot faster.
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      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeDec 25th 2019
     
    The ventilattor works slowly.
    • CommentAuthorAsterix
    • CommentTimeDec 25th 2019 edited
     
    Italian "venti" = 20. Strictly Starbuckianese term for a 20 fluid-ounce drink. Why the 16 ounce beverage is called "grande" and not "sedici" is one of life's mysteries. And why aren't "venti" and "trenta" (30) the "grande" sizes?

    I just call all of that "bad coffee with a lot of other stuff to mask the flavor".
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      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeDec 25th 2019
     
    Nobody in Italy, to my experience, would consider drinking either 16 or 20 USfloz of coffee all at once. Proper coffee comes in 1 dl cups and is monstrous strong and sweet.
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      CommentAuthoralsetalokin
    • CommentTimeDec 25th 2019 edited
     
    Then there's that Turkish stuff that oozes out of an ibrik or cezve. I like that, but if one is not careful one can make a huge mess.
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      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeDec 25th 2019
     
    Or the Arab stuff that is made by boiling water with ground coffee in a brass urn inserted into a wood fire. It begins to approximate Navy coffee, but you need a toothpick.
    • CommentAuthorAsterix
    • CommentTimeDec 25th 2019
     
    Yeah, my Italian stove-top coffemaker produces not a lot of coffee per batch, but it'll curl your toes.



    Turkish coffee tends to be more sludge than anything.

    Arabic coffee, oddly, is almost the polar opposite, light roast, other spices (e.g. cardamom), boiled and filtered, very light in color.
    •  
      CommentAuthorgoatcheez
    • CommentTimeDec 26th 2019
     
    I also like the way the Greek prepare coffee.
  5.  
    When I worked at the State Hospital we got this stuff called "soluble coffee". And sometimes it was.

    More often you had to chip it out with a screwdriver, which, as a potentially deadly weapon, had to be checked out from the nurses' station. And don't get me started on what we had to go through for some really hot water.
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      CommentAuthorgoatcheez
    • CommentTimeDec 26th 2019
     
    I gather this was a mental hospital? Trustee?
  6.  
    It was certainly enough to drive one mental. Imagine OFOTCN in street clothes.

    No, I actually got paid to be there, I got to go home at end of shift (3 to 11) and I had a key that would open the seclusion room door.
    • CommentAuthorBigOilRep
    • CommentTimeDec 26th 2019
     
    Radio 4's In our Time show discuss history of coffee

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m000c4x1
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      CommentAuthorgoatcheez
    • CommentTimeDec 26th 2019
     
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      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeNov 8th 2020
     
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      CommentAuthoroak
    • CommentTimeNov 15th 2020