The French refer to the decade between 1920 and 1929 as les Années folles, “the crazy years,” which is apt when you consider how the French middle and upper classes generally loosened their brassieres and defined modern bohemia, à la Coco Chanel.
But the American moniker — the Roaring 20s — fits too.
Kurt Vonnegut once commented, in an interview with Joseph Heller, that the best audience he had ever encountered was at the 92nd Street Y in New York. “Those people know everything. They are wide awake and responsive.[...]
Next year marks the 40th anniversary of a modern classic, Roman Polanski’s Chinatown. And surely no other film has even come close to making the construction of an aqueduct so thrilling.
For sure, the sizable servings of incest, corruption, and greed help carry Robert Towne’s brilliant screenplay.
There was lots of money to be made at the end of the 19th century and Dudley Docker made his share of it. He was what they called a “baron of industry” at a time when manufacturing was exploding in Britain. Docker made his fortune in paint, motorcycles, arms manufacturing, railways, and banking.[...]
On this day, in 1938, listeners tuned in to CBS radio to hear a piece of radio theater (listen below or here) so frightening and, for its time, realistic, that people across New England and eastern Canada fled their homes to escape danger.[...]
They may be a little late to the MOOC party, but two newly-launched European open course platforms might still be able to carve out a niche.
Coursera and edX, the two main players in the US at this point, have been up and running for almost 18 months.
As famously studied as they are, the 18 Galapagos Islands haven’t been well mapped. And research in the Galapagos, situated more than 500 miles west of Ecuador, is expensive and difficult. Maybe that’s part of the islands’ allure—that and the stunning biodiversity.[...]
One of the treasures of our time, biologist E.O. Wilson, the folksy and brilliant author of two Pulitzer Prize-winning books and the world’s leading authority on ants, is 84 years old and retired from his professorship at Harvard.[...]
In 1972 the Earth Resources Technology Satellite, or Landsat, launched into space with a mission to circle the planet every 16 days and take pictures of the Earth. For more than forty years, the Landsat program has created the longest ever continuous record of Earth’s surface.
Now those images are available to everyone.
Click images for larger versions
Film buffs and scholars have a new cache at their fingertips. The Media History Digital Library has made hundreds of thousands of pages of film and broadcasting history available in a searchable digital archive they’ve called Lantern, an open access, interactive library.