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Hugo Gernsback

( physicist)

Comments for Hugo Gernsback
Biography Hugo Gernsback
Conservative Europe was too narrow for two decades enthusiast Science. How different America, . free from the chains of caste and prejudice, . America, . in which a young talented inventor without a thorough education (and a decent university education in Gernsback was not) could turn into the full extent of their abilities,
. America, fostered by the genius of Edison - the man who invented the light bulb!
Hugo Gernsback arrived in America in 1904 from Luxembourg.
Conservative Europe was too narrow for two decades enthusiast Science. How different America, . free from the chains of caste and prejudice, . America, . in which a young talented inventor without a thorough education (and a decent university education in Gernsback was not) could turn into the full extent of their abilities,
. America, fostered by the genius of Edison - the man who invented the light bulb!
. But, . apparently, . relationship between Edison and the light bulb Gernsback saw a few other colors - deep down (though the existence of the soul he would not believe entirely) Hugo was convinced, . that the primary was just electric bulb, . but Edison was created only for the, . to reveal to the world,
. Same goes for the phonograph. But were still Bell and his peerless Phone!..
When told about Gernsback, invariably mention - in a formulation - that it was an absolute supporter of the Church of Science. His relationship with science - excuse me, with science! - Were extremely religious. He fervently believed in what Science is a fundamental principle of all. The world was created in accordance with the laws of the sciences - could argue that it was for the laws, but only so long as the priests were different views on this subject. Man, as a science has proved Darwin, was also created in full accordance with the laws of Science - the doctrines of natural selection. In the chain of transformation in macaque homo sapiens erectus were still missing links, but that these links will soon discover there was no doubt. That man almost completely mastered Electricity, deprived of heavenly Thunderbolts most impressive weapon. And, unlike the divine miracles, Science could repeat its miracles indefinitely. Time after time, Montgolfier and flew airplanes, time and again clicked the spark of the Leyden jar, causing disturbances in essential areas that could catch hundreds of miles away - as did Popov and Marconi ...
Science gave master universe harmony - for Newton's laws were slim, and an equally slender formulas were Ampere and Faraday. And most important - Science, unlike inert religions that allows the creation of the New - Invention.
Electricity and the electromagnetic field were so scientific frontier, which wanted to build his kingdom Hugo Gernsback. He invented a completely new type of dry battery. Holy Bolt, who - in Luxembourg! - Needed a dry electric battery completely new tipaN Who - in Luxembourg! - Could assess the significance of this battery - and its inventor - for NaukiN!
. In New York! Immediately in New York!
. After emigrating to America, Hugo Gernsback felt ..
. little, cheated. Even in America, as it turned out, obviously lacked people and join the holy electrical gifts. But, those who join him have time, did some incredible things. Since 1903, the ships of the Navy United States were equipped with radio transmitters centrally (though, . the word "radio" came later, . as long as the move was the term "wireless communication"), . built an impressive chain of coastal receiving and transmitting stations,
. Selhozdepartament funded research aimed at creating a system of wireless data collection and dissemination of weather information across the United States ... Private development is also going full speed - in 1901, Reginald Fessenden - incidentally, not an American and a Canadian - has designed a patent (U.S., by the way) to a completely new type of radio transmitter. Its transmitter was supposed to send the broadcast not separate pulses, and continuous electromagnetic wave, which was supposed to make a wireless radio communication such as convenient as a telephone connection. However, Fessendenu able to build on this principle, valid for only a demonstration machine in 1906.

Compared with the invention of Fessenden, the latest battery Gernsback looked like a very prosperous. This was the level, unworthy of American poverty. Soberly weak commercial possibilities of his creation, Gernsback launched the instant a new venture that brought him, first, the glory of one of the heroes radiodela, and, secondly, some capital. Before emigration, he developed a portable device for wireless communications, but to bring it to the presentation did not have time. Arriving in New York, he discovered that many of the necessary parts to enable it to work in America just do not get it. This led to the idea of Gernsback founded a company to ensure that American technicians scarce European equipment. At the same time Hugo was going to, eliminating the lack of equipment, to complete its development.

Company called aloud - "The Electro Importing Company of New York City". In 1905, the company dumped on the market the world's first device for radio - "Telimco Wireless Telegraph Outfits". The kit "Telimko" (cost $ 7 a set of 50 cents) and consisted of a transmitter and receiver, allowing virtually everyone who wishes to arrange at home amateur radio. The room "Scientific American" on November 25, 1905 an advertisement appeared "Telimko" - and this was the first in the world of the radio advertising company, . intended for a broad audience, . and even in the journal, . which was distributed to all states - on a national scale!,

. Gernsback Very soon it became clear how low technical culture of the masses - even at home Edison
. Creator of "Telimko" had rejected accusations a charlatan - some experts could not believe that such a fantastic thing as a wireless station, can not cost tens of thousands, or even thousands of dollars, and only seven and a half. Once the letter of "cheating" Gernsback got to the office of mayor, in Gernsback's office raided the police verification. Gernsback demonstrated performance devices, but police are not convinced
- Still, you thieves, - the policeman said. - If a device for wireless communications, why is it such a lot provodovN
Gernsback managed to create something more than a simple and affordable to the masses the radio. "Telimko" encourage the growth radiosoobschestva. He gave many enthusiasts the opportunity to develop their own "ethereal frontier", and it was a real breakthrough. Impressive - until then - the achievement of the military department of radio for the U.S. Navy were closed almost immediately. In 1910, amateur broadcasting, according to leaked to the press reports the military, already hampered the work of a powerful naval radio station in Boston.

In April 1912 the whole world was shocked by the news of the death of the "Titanic". By accident of hams, . Clearly, . had no relation, . but it is the famous shipwreck has been exacerbated by the debate about the need for state - and even international - ordering air activity and accelerated the adoption of long-awaited decision,
. August 13, 1912 is dated "Act to regulate radio communication", this Code of the Nomads radio activity is limited to 200-meter range.

The idea to give hams a separate range is also owned by Hugo Gernsback. At least he stuck to just such a version. Gernsback jealously watched the, . as a proliferation of amateur transmitters (still have - they provide profits to the company), . and well aware, . that the Government may at one point simply ban the sale of transmission equipment to individuals, . if it suddenly jeopardize the program of the government,
. Therefore, the allocation for amateur broadcast of a special range - a kind of ethereal Reserve - makes life easier for both the government and the military (they do not interfere with any amateurs), . and by radio enthusiasts - they have their "legalized" the territory, . which can feel quite comfortable,
However, the ether could not and should not have been the only means of communication between radio amateurs. He was absolutely necessary information center, where they could gather news about the latest technical developments, to clarify the disputed issues, get advice, discuss the prospects. Moreover, anecdotal history with the police and the wires persuaded Hugo, that should be harnessed to educate the public on the part of the technological leadership. Gernsback quickly realized that the monthly magazine for amateur radio could use a fairly popular.
In 1908 he started producing a "Modern Electrics".
In our history, comes one of the most interesting moments. In 1908, Hugo Gernsback is publisher and editor of the magazine - as Gernsback himself has repeatedly emphasized, the world's first magazine devoted to radio. Magazine rapidly gaining subscribers, its popularity among fans is growing. "By 1911, its circulation was about one hundred thousand copies - wrote Gernsback - he sold at all newsstands in the United States and Canada and to subscribers around the world". Hundred thousand copies - this edition even now impresses. Even if we take into account that other sources are called half the number of circulation, it is generally not a big difference. Think what intense interest felt towards the topic of wireless communications, how great was the audience at this in general, highly specialized promotional magazine!
. "Modern Electrics" turned out to be quite a sensible and practical, it was not nonsense, he did everything to be interesting
. It is not only printed the article, but that is very important, and more works of art. In April 1911, for example, the journal began to publish the continuation of the story "Ralph 124S 41 +" - and its publication continued from issue to issue twelve months up to March 1912. The story that Hugo Gernsback conceived as an artistic review of the boundless prospects of science - as he saw them. Judging by that cover all twelve issues of the journal, which published "Ralph", were designed to illustrate the fragments of another story, Gernsback gave this publication is very important.
Notice how versatile tool in the hands of Gernsback "Modern Electrics"
. The first - the magazine provides a consolidation of consumer products company gernsbekovskoy (the range of manufactured goods is growing magazine, . sure, . advertises them in every way and promotes), . circulate among readers important Gernsback ideas and approaches, . attached movement enthusiasts wireless organization and orientation,
Second - the magazine itself brings considerable revenue, which can be directed to conduct new experiments (and a lot of experimenting Gernsback, filling the lack of deep experience arriving Education).
Third - the magazine gives a chance to realize Gernsback, thinker, visionary Gernsback Gernsback and even writers.
Let us say frankly - writer Gernsback was, to put it mildly, not brilliant. Fortunately, he was not and graphomania. Few literary texts, which Hugo made happy humanity, though scanty from the literary point of view, but exactly correspond to the challenges posed by the author himself is.
That's what Gernsback thought it necessary to inform the reader in the notice to the first fragment of his story:
"This story, which takes place in 2660, will be published in our magazine throughout the year. It should tell the reader about the future with an accuracy that is compatible with a striking contemporary development of science. The author would like to particularly draw your attention to the fact that although many inventions and developments in the story may seem to him strange and unbelievable, they are not impossible and not beyond the reach of science. "

. Perception Gernsback literary creativity was very, very limited
. Form a fantastic story gave him the opportunity to realize gripping his "scientific" ideas, if not in life, at least in the text. No other advantages, besides limiting saturation descriptions of science and technology of the future, "Ralph 124S 41 +" does not imply, and the author of this text deliberately not found anything beyond that. The story should have been perceived by the reader as a set of patent applications for futuristic inventions and discoveries. All predicted in the novel inventions and discoveries, Gernsback believed to be equal to or later surely performed.

Now, after ninety years after the first publication, "Ralph 124S 41 +" is seen almost as an archaeological monument, as the battered ruins of the numerous invasions Chersonese. At the very ruins of what can be found in them during the excavations, you can learn a lot about the last time and about the people who walked through the ancient streets. Ralph 124S 41 + "narrates the events of the twenty-seventh century - but it gives the reader a vivid idea about the ideas and mindset of the people era heyday Age of Science - the turn of the XIX and XX centuries, the hero of the story is a futuristic name - but through his" inscrutable face of clearly visible Hugo Gernsback himself - a man, . suffered deeply from the, . that he has to do not so, . than he would like,

Hugo Gernsback wanted to be a scientist and inventor - but he was not under the force of what in English is called a "conceptual breakthrough", but in Russian - a fundamentally new idea. Gernsback longed to create something completely new in terms of technology, but it consistently misled linear thinking. Realistic its invention (by the end of his life he was the holder of eight dozen patents) were careful development of already existing concepts. His direct contribution to the development of technology, . limited introduction to the scientific use of the word "television" - he liked to remind, . that he first used the term in the published in "Modern Electrics" article "Television and telephoto (this was in 1909),
. He himself had a lot of experimenting in 20-ies with the practical transfer of TV imaging, but these experiments did not find fame ...

For today's reader to the numerous inventions Ralph 124S 41 + a lot more talk about ideas and concepts prevailing in the early XX century, than about the subsequent development of science. Some of these concepts - such, . the idea of ether as a medium, . which applies electromagnetic waves, . - Obsolete almost immediately after writing the story (and Gernsback faithfully pointed this out in the re-release "Ralph"), . some have been implemented almost letter for letter - as, . say, . artificial lighting of sports grounds, . - But the conceptual novelty did not pull,
. Other ideas show some ability to author to a linear extrapolation - but, again, based on popular in the early XX century, technical solutions. Example, . Gernsback seemed reasonable to reduce the size of the daily newspaper to the size of postage stamps and to invent for her reading of a special projector - and in this he anticipated the idea and technology of microfilm (which, . by the way, . instantly obsolete after the computerization of the archives),
. But smaller futuristic newspaper continues Turkel in 12 columns that read from the screen is definitely uncomfortable ... Or the idea of wireless transmission of energy - really, . if you can send electromagnetic signals without wires, . why not send and energiyuN True, . energy transfer, . the description Gernsback more reminiscent of a natural disaster: the transmitter energy is formed around the "ethereal vacuum" (where, . on the author's thoughts, . can not exist any electromagnetic waves, . including light range), . All metal objects within a radius of tens of miles or magnetized glow, . beeping siren, . vibrate the building - some of which are resonant vibrations and are not destroyed just because, . that are constructed from stiloniya - the latest substitute steel ..,
. All this is a catastrophe happens, pay attention, in the heart of New York.

But - a sin to speak ironically about misconceptions and naive ideas about a century ago. Much more interesting, I think, to look at Ralph 124S 41 + "as the reflection characteristics of the nature of its author

. Whatever it was dangerous for the researcher at least a small extent, to identify the author with his hero, in this case, I would venture to suggest that Gernsback, creating a Ralph-s-advantage, drew just his character - such as he would like to see myself
. Ralph - realized an innovator and inventor, one of a dozen people in the world, who as a sign of their services to science and humanity is allowed to add to the name "plus". He was briefly with the president of the Earth, the man whose portrait during the festival is drawn in the sky "vozduholetami" five-minute standing ovation and calls the citizens of New York. Ralph tired universal recognition of his merits, he reluctantly agrees to appear in public, when the masses are going to pay him homage for scientific organized rescue from certain death of the heroine of the novel. The inventor lives in a luxurious home, superbly adapted for scientific research, it serves valet ...

This is a dream - a dream about the role that the inventor must, according to Gernsback, play properly ordered society. This is a dream - a dream of recognition of the inventor to the society. This is a dream - the dream of a world in which the inventor can not disquiet earning funds for the creation of more and more machines, materials, technologies ... Inventors in the world this dream will do for society is. They will provide its low-cost solar energy. They paved the streets of cities newest metal, through which does not break through any pesky weed. They will create the device to ensure that theatrical performances could be viewed without leaving the apartment, and thus irrevocably priobschat masses to culture. They solve transportation problems through an underwater tunnel under the Atlantic, electric roller skates and entirely made of metal "flying cars ...

Alas. World in which Gernsback had to exist, was not the world of his dreams. In order to bring happiness to the twentieth century for its inventions, he had to first earn the money necessary to pay for expensive experiments. And these experiments were really expensive - if we take into account that all income from business and from the publication of the popular "Modern Electrics" is not enough to compensate for losses, which plunged Gernsback his scientific researches. In the experiments, he did not regret the money never. And sometimes, in order not to interrupt the investigation, he had to withdraw large sums of working capital journal ...

From the standpoint of any sane businessman, it was absolute idiocy. And, as a man of business, Gernsback is understood. But as adept science, he was absolutely certain: every penny spent by him on the invention, will be well spent.

Because of this, he got burned - the first time, but not the last. In 1913, due to financial problems "Modern Electrics" was declared bankrupt and fell into the hands of publishers of the magazine "Popular Science", which he just strangled by quietly - as annoying competitor.

Alternatively, the historical version of events states that Gernsback renamed "Modern Electrics" and he was called "Electrical Experimenter". This version appeared, apparently due to the fact that Gernsback, instantly recovered from bankruptcy, he immediately opened a new magazine. However, the new edition, although it took over almost all the features of the former, the legal successor of "Modern Electrics" could not be.
In addition to other customs "Modern Electrics", Gernsback retained in the new magazine and a fantastic custom print products. This made the "Electrical Experimenter" more appealing to casual readers who Gernsback hoped in this way - little by little, by reading something amusing, fascinating and fantastic - to attach to the science.

This idea - append someone to some achievements through reading fiction stories - will be his banner for the rest of life. But at the same time - will ruin the reputation of the whole science fiction for the next hundred years ...

In 1915 it was in the pages of "Electrical Experimenter" first appeared the word "scientifiction". Gernsback aptly remarked, . that that the phrase "scientific fiction" style "fic" is repeated twice in a row, . correctly removed the extra repeat and has a convenient term to describe the fantastic literature, . concentrating on the popularization of scientific ideas,
. Posted to them for three years before, "Ralph" was, . undoubtedly, . "Scientifiction", . and the cycle of short stories "The scientific adventures of Baron Munchausen" ( "Baron Munchausen's Scientific Adventures"), . he began to publish the same in 1915 in Electrical Experimenter "- too,
. Consequently, for the word already had some real content. But to a new term hold, own literary authority Gernsback was insufficient.
Therefore Gernsback did impeccable - from his point of view - a move which gave the newly-word quite certain literary foundation. He postulated that:
"Scientifiction" - a kind of fiction, written by Jules Verne, T. J. Wells and Edgar Allan Poe, is a fascinating romantic stories, implicated in the scientific data and the apocalypse ".
This definition (which is textually enshrined it in an editorial introduction to the first number, "Amazing Stories") without further explanation now looks pretty blatant manipulation. It can be perceived either as a deliberate vtalkivanie creativity of different authors, . In both, . Verne and Wells in the narrow confines gernsbekovskoy popularization of the concept, . or as an attempt to expand this concept to such an extent, . that it have enough and Jules Verne, . and HG Wells, . and Edga by,
Unfortunately, Gernsback never gave reason to believe that he adheres to the second point of view. From "scientifiction" requires only cognitive and predictive, it is this - the main meaning of "scientifiction". That idea sounded in its editorial content persistently and consistently ...
But - all this will be only ten years. Until Gernsback have time to establish in 1919, another magazine - "Radio Amateur News", . rename (this time it was renamed) "Electrical Experimenter" in 1920 in "Science and Invention" (apparently, . to underscore, . that electricity - that's not all science), . as well as the release in August 1923 theme issue of the journal, . completely devoted to "scientifiction" ..,
. About the same time, in 1923, Gernsback attempted to find out what the public thinks about the organization of the monthly magazine "Scientifiction", devoted entirely fiction. The audience was receptive to the idea without much enthusiasm, and Gernsback decided that the time has not come.
As history has shown, he was wrong. Emerged in the same 1923 pulp-horror fiction magazine "Weird Tales" quickly gaining popularity - however, . He did not get in range of interests Gernsback, . as published for the most part every anti-scientific mysticism and only occasionally diluting stories, . which could be called "scientifiction",
. However, it was a clear signal - the reader was ready for the emergence of a new type of pulp-publishing - a thematic literary journal. If "All Story" and "Argosy" (by the way, . by the time they, too, fell victim to the publishing experiments Frank Mansi - in 1914 he merged the monthly magazine "All Story" and the weekly "Cavalier Weekly" in a literary centaur "All Story Cavalier Weekly", . and in 1920, this dough was mixed and even "Argosy"; these things weekly dish was called "All Story Argosy Weekly") published the entire entertainment literature, . regardless of its nature - adventure, . Detectives, . fiction, . Westerns and so, . - A journal of a new type held some sort of a niche commercial fiction, . but held on to her stranglehold,
. They were much less universal, their audience was limited to fans of one particular "genre", but the audience this was a constant and reliable.
Perhaps Gernsback for a distracted from the idea of publishing the magazine devoted to "scientifiction", experiments on the transfer of TV imaging - a lot and he worked vigorously in the 20 years it is this area of Radio Engineering. Perhaps he had other reasons not to hurry - for example, very likely, he could not collect the required amount to start the project. But three years later he has all finally coalesced.
The first issue of "Amazing Stories", dated April 1926, appeared on the magazine stands on March 5. It is this date should be considered the beginning of a new era in the history of XX century fiction.
Hugo Gernsback and then I could not think of what this project immortalize his name. Much more hope on this score he laid still on the radio ...

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