Thursday, March 31, 2016

History: The Year is 1756

I've uploaded year 1756 to the TSP Wiki...

Here are some one liners...

The Longitude Project is Delayed... Again -- The 7 Years' War has caused a delay in testing, but Harrison set out to develop his 4th clock, a mariner's watch. I talk about GPS and how it is important to remember how to do things manually.

Mozart is born! -- I mostly talk about music and popular movies. Much of his music is instantly recognizable.

A Few Happenings -- German chocolate, Aaron Burr and the Black Hole of Calcutta.

The Longitude Project is Delayed... Again

The 7 Years' War has disrupted the testing of the 3rd version of the marine chronometer designated H-3. It is small enough to fit into the captains cabin. Amazing! But the British Longitude Board is worried that H-3 might be captured or destroyed. The inventor, John Harrison, has taken 19 years to build H-3. John is in his 60s. How many more clocks can he make? Currently, navigators find their position using a process called "dead reckoning" or "deduced reckoning" by plotting from a known position and then estimating based on assumed speed, and time. This procedure often results in sailing past a destination without realizing it, or unexpectedly running into a destination really, really hard. An early sextant uses astronomical objects to find a position at sea but they haven't figured it all out yet. (In other words, it stinks.) Despite the delays, Harrison has begun work on an even greater invention: H-4... the first marine pocket watch. [1] [2]
My Take by Alex Shrugged
In a world of GPS apps for your SmartPhone, it is easy to know where you are at all times, but GPS can be spoofed. (University of Texas engineers showed how it can be done.) Our new tools are wonders, but we still need to know how to perform this task the old-fashioned way. Knowing how to use our old tools gives us a fallback position. It's like the problem with cash registers that lose power and suddenly, the guy behind the counter no longer knows how to make change. Don't be that guy. The early marine chronometers were very expensive, which made the cheaper sextant quite popular. Once they mass-produce Harrison's watch, the price dropped considerably, but sextants have remained useful. A quick search of Amazon shows several available for under $60. [3] [4]

Mozart is born!

We call him Amadeus Mozart (am-ah-DAY-us Moh-zart), which is simple compared to his real name. Mozart is not simple, though. He is a musical genius! By age 5 he will be composing his own music, playing the violin and performing before royalty. By 35 he will be dead, buried in a common grave. His country will one day be called Austria. His father is a violinist and music teacher. His mother comes from a musical family. Mozart is a child prodigy and more. He will compose over 600 pieces of music and many of them will remain popular into the modern day. [5] [6]
My Take by Alex Shrugged
The names of his most popular pieces will be meaningless to the average listener, but once you hear them, they will be instantly familiar because they are in the background of so many movies including The Net starring Sandra Bullock, and even the children's movie, Richie Rich. The movie about Mozart's life is the Academy Awarding winning Amadeus. It is still worth watching, although the story about his rivalry with a lesser court composer is total BS. It makes for good drama, though, while listening to some of Mozart's best work. Here are a few links:
A Little Night Music
The Marriage of Figaro
Symphony 40
Symphony 25
Motzart's Requium from the movie, Amadeus.

A Few Happenings

  • German Chocolate is made in Germany. It is their first chocolate factory. [6]
  • Aaron Burr is born. He will shoot dead Alexander Hamilton in a duel. [6]
  • 120 British Soldiers die in the Black Hole of Calcutta, India. (That's a dungeon in Fort William.) If you ever wondered how Great Britain came to rule over India, it has already begun. The 7 Years' War has come to India. [7] [6]

This Year in Wikipedia

Year 1756, Wikipedia.

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