Technological achievements of the past that cannot be properly explained

Viktor Grebbenikov & The Cavernous Structure Effect (CSE)

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Recently, the work of a highly obscure Russian entomologist has become available to a much wider audience, a humble and quiet man by the name of Viktor Grebbinikov). His life work was the study of natural objects such as beetle wings, honeycombs, stalks of wheat, and flowers. Although he was a...

19th century Engineering Magazines

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Just like with any information, its comprehension depends on which angle you approach it from. If you are ready to accept that semi-naked Ancient Egyptians built the Pyramids using chisels and sleds, it will prevent you from considering other possibilities. Any attempts at visualization of the...

Was Jules Verne's Nautilus based on a real submarine?

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Here, M. Aronnax, are the several dimensions of the boat you are in. It is an elongated cylinder with conical ends. It is very like a cigar in shape, a shape already adopted in London in several constructions of the same sort. The length of this cylinder, from stem to stern, is exactly 232 feet...

Subterrene Vehicles Traveling Underground: Past and Present

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Subterrene is a vehicle that travels underground (through solid rock/soil) much as a submarine travels underwater, either by mechanical drilling, or by melting its way forward. Subterrenes existed first in fiction as mechanical drillers, with real-world thermal designs and examples following in...

19th century compressed air cars and street cars: gone and forgotten

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This is actually some fun stuff folks. 150 years ago people could have been getting around by driving compressed air powered personal cars, and were boarding compressed air powered modes of public transportation. We are so duped into our internal combustion engines, that it is both sad and...

Egyptian Electricians

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A fringe hypothesis suggests that the Dendera light depicts advanced electrical technology possessed by the ancient Egyptians; however, mainstream Egyptologists view the carvings as representing instead a typical set of symbolic images from Egyptian mythology. These depict a Djed Pillar and a...

Nuclear Weapons: do they exist or not?

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The Emperor Deterrence may have no clothes, but he is still Emperor. Despite his nakedness, this emperor continues to strut about, receiving deference he doesn’t deserve, while endangering the entire world. Nuclear deterrence is an idea that became a potentially lethal ideology, one that remains...

19th Century: Tunnel Boring Machines, Frederick Beaumont, Second Industrial Revolution

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Could the Second Industrial Revolution (1850-1914) be the process of legitimizing multiple pre-existing technological achievements? If you know an Officer serving in the Military Corps of Engineers, ask that Officer to design a machine similar to the one presented in this thread. If that Officer...

1936 Skype Video Telephone, Nazi Style

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I was looking at Gyro cars, trains and monowheels of the early 20th century, and saw the Duesenberg Coupé Simone. It got me thinking about German technology ahead of its time. Like, oh, I don't know, a German videophone: the world's first public video telephone service was developed by Dr. Georg...

1878-1884 Photography in Motion

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While looking for some other things today I ran across this and thought I'd share it in this thread. Since we are talking about blurry motion etc., and the quality of pictures. Wallace G. Levison photos are really fantastic. Photographs snapped amid the hustling crowds of Manhattan and the...

19th century Photo Business Advertisement

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Very often we hear that the reason for not having too many 19th, and early 20th centuries photographs lies within the novelty of the invention. It is often suggested that opportunities to have a photo taken were few and far between. I am not so sure about that, for the amount of the 19th century...

Why is China not centuries ahead of the world in technology?

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According to official sources, China has been hundreds of years ahead of the rest of the world in just about every field of civilization building-medicine, weapons of warfare, technological inventions, manufacturing processes, structural engineering, and so on. So how is it that China hasn't...

NASA: 1960s artificial Sun, Moon and Earthlight patents

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Apparently this is not even news. It sure is to me though. The fact that these patents are 50+ years old makes it even more intriguing. How far did they manage to improve on the 1960s technology? These inventions are not something BBC, or CNN would report on in their daily news, yet the...

Lightning Rod Fashion: 18th century grounded Umbrellas and Hats

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It appears that a time specific necessity is being dismissed as an insignificant fashion style of the past. There is nothing better to have other than a wire cable dragging behind pulling back on your umbrella, or tagging on your hat. Gentlemen could simultaneously work on strengthening those...

19th century Fax Machine by Giovanni Caselli

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Once again, this is supposed to be common knowledge, for it is googlable, and can be found on Wikipedia, as well as on a whole bunch of other resources. Yet, I doubt that things similar to the ones presented below are being taught at school. If they are, they are probably being presented as some...

1597: World's oldest 421 y.o. eight shot revolver

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Every single article pertaining to this, allegedly, 1597 revolver contains nothing but speculations. The official story says that this gun was made by a certain gunsmith named Hans Stopler. Apparently a stamp mark of a horse spur, told the director of Maihaugen Folk Museum, Gaute Jacobsen, that...

1680 pocket watches by Thomas Tompion

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Thomas Tompion was an English clockmaker, watchmaker and mechanician who is still regarded to this day as the Father of English Clockmaking. Tompion's work includes some of the most historic and important clocks and watches in the world and can command very high prices whenever outstanding...

1662: 17 hour Tartarian Muscovy Clock

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Little by little, things reveal themselves, though without any specific explanation of what their meaning could be. Here we have a seventeen hour clock which apparently was installed on the Kremlin Spasskaya Tower as recently as 17th century. In this case, the kudos goes to a certain German...

1914: vision of Moscow in 22nd, and 23rd Centuries

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We are so used to the linear human development model, that any deviations from the said model sound very questionable, and unrealistic. Yet, we have various authors who operated within the genre known as surrealism, and fantasy fiction. Individuals like Jules Verne, H.G. Wells, Edgar Rice...

The "Draughtsman-Writer" automaton by Henri Maillardet

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In November of 1928, a truck pulled up to The Franklin Institute science museum in Philadelphia and unloaded the pieces of an interesting, complex, but totally ruined brass machine. Donated by the estate of John Penn Brock, a wealthy Philadelphian, the machine was studied and the museum began to...

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