Skip to comments.Long-Dead Inventor Nikola Tesla Is Electrifying Hip Techies - His Name Is Branding Magic; Thomas...
Posted on 01/15/2010 9:42:15 PM PST by neverdem
His Name Is Branding Magic; Thomas Edison Is 'So 20th Century'
Decades after he died penniless, Nikola Tesla is elbowing aside his old adversary Thomas Edison in the pantheon of geek gods.
When California engineers wanted to brand their new $100,000 electric sports car, one name stood out: Tesla. When circuit designers at microchip producer Nvidia Corp. in 2007 launched a new line of advanced processors, they called them Tesla. And when videogame writers at Capcom Entertainment in Silicon Valley needed a character who could understand alien spaceships for their new Dark Void saga, they found him in Nikola Tesla.
Tesla was a scientist and inventor who achieved fame and fortune in the 1880s for figuring out how to make alternating current work on a grand scale, electrifying the world. He created the first major hydroelectric dam, at Niagara Falls. He thrilled packed theaters with presentations in which he ran high voltage through his body to illuminate a fluorescent light in his hand. His inventions helped Guglielmo Marconi develop radio.
And his rivalry with Edisoncalled the Battle of the Currents because Edison had bet on direct currentwas legendary. Tesla won the contest, when his AC equipment powered an unprecedented display of electric light at the 1893 Chicago World's Fair.
Fifty years later, the 86-year-old Serbian emigré died in obscurity at a New York hotel, unmarried, childless and bereft of friends. Meanwhile, Edison was lionized for generations as one of America's greatest inventors.
But Tesla has been rediscovered by technophiles, including Google Inc. co-founder Larry Page, who frequently cites him as an early inspiration. And Teslamania is going increasingly mainstream.
An early hint was "Tesla Girls," a 1984 single from the British technopop band Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark. Performance artist Laurie Anderson has said she was fascinated by Tesla...
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Standing on a giant dynamo!!!
Too bad he didn’t stick to what he was good at, rather than trying to be another Edison. Tesla brought about his own misfortune.
Well they did take his papers,,, and have them to this day.
Just the thought of Tesla makes my hair stand on end.
He would also be a good brand of energy drink. NiKola!
Most people don’t realize that the reason Tesla died penniless was because J.P. Morgan, who was backing Edison, saw more merit in the George Westinghouse / Nikola Tesla AC venture. But Tesla held all the patents for generators and motors run by AC. Morgan got Westinghouse to talk to Tesla, and Tesla tore up all his patents in order that the world could accept his vision of power utilization.
Neither of the visionaries Edison and Tesla had all their screws tightened down. Edison pooh-poohed the idea of alternating current for power transmission although he could have had rights to it if he had wished. Edison also built room sized horns for his acoustic phonograph recording machines believing (contrary to physics and empirical evidence) that this would somehow make those recordings significantly better. (The advent of the electronic amplifier ate Edison’s lunch in phonograph recording but Edison stayed acoustic to the bitter end.) In turn, Tesla ceded low-frequency alternating current technology to George Westinghouse believing THAT to be worthless. Tesla wanted to fill the air with radio frequency energy which would be free, not thinking about either the physics or the practical problems that would pose.
Nikola Tesla - The Forgotten Wizard, 9:53
Too bad he died childless and did not pass on his genes.
Charlie Callas might be one candidate.
The way I understood his intentions about electrical transmission was through the GROUND. I think that he even lit some lights on the other side of a river with underground transmission.
See wireless energy transfer, Wikipedia.
On all modern understanding, a literal transmission of power through nothing but the earth would have been incredibly wasteful. It sounds like what was really happening was electromagnetic transmission through the air (almost free space) with the earth serving as a ground plane part of the antenna system as we understand it today.
Tesla was working with resonant frequencies, having calculated the resonant frequency of the Earth, and using that in his transmission of working electricity. I’m not going to argue with what he said he was doing, he was way ahead of his time. He also was working with mechanical resonance, and he almost destroyed a building in NYC with a little hand-held vibrator. All in all, a very interesting man. And it is truly too bad that he had no interest in women.
Like Scotty said, we canna change the laws of physics. There couldn’t be one single electrical resonance for the earth, being the agglomeration of diverse materials it is, but any approximation to that would be in the infrasonic.
Actually, I think you are in need of a fact finding history lesson.
Tesla was held against his wishes in this country by western political ingrates and scientific thieves. Eleven of his inventions were somehow patented (stolen) by western inventors, including the AC Power Generator, stolen by Edison himself!
Edison was a ‘light-weight’ compared to Edison.
Oops! Edison was a ‘light-weight’ compared to Tesla.
At one time, Tesla was an extremely wealthy man. What the fan boys never mention is that while Tesla was right about AC, he was extremely wrong about the wireless transmission of power. He not only lost all his investor’s money, but his own.
“He also was working with mechanical resonance, and he almost destroyed a building in NYC with a little hand-held vibrator. All in all”
I remember reading about that. He clamped it to a beam.
Tesla had no interest in being a thief unlike Edison and Marconi who viewed stealing as a noble vocation.
There were “inventors” that collected inventions from others and became rich, then there were those that invented for the pure joy of creating. Tesla was the last sort, Edison the first.
Even Newton stood on the shoulders of Giants.
Science is like that.
Interesting biography here:
But it is hardly deniable that he was a one-of-a-kind genious. Even Albert Einstein admitted on his deathbed about him and his knowledge and theory on folding space-time and that the speed of light was not the final frontier on speed or time travel through space.
There are actually two statues of Tesla at Niagara Falls. One is on Goat Island, between the two falls. It was erected in 1976.
Tesla had the “Ark” in his apartment???
That would be a small dynamo these days!
I suspect that the economics would have been a far bigger hurdle than the physics.
Actually, the quote is "Amateur poets borrow; mature poets steal." It was by T. S. Elliot.