Kirt's Cogitations™ #1
These original Kirt's Cogitations™ may be reproduced (no more than
5, please) provided proper credit is given to me, Kirt Blattenberger.
Please click here
to return to the Table of Contents.
Cog·i·ta·tion [koj-i-tey'-shun] – noun: Concerted thought or
reflection; meditation; contemplation.
Kirt [kert] – proper noun: RF Cafe webmaster.
2000 was the first year that there were more cellular subscribers than landline subscribers in Japan.
FR-4 is a Fire Retardant version of G10 fiberglass substrate
When asked if he ever got any exercise, Thomas Edison replied, "I only use my body to
carry my brain around."
The DIN connector designation comes from Deutsche Industrie
The smallest anything can possibly be is the Planck length, or about
$93,100 - that's the median base salary for EE's in the U.S. according to
IEEE's new study. Total compensation median is $99,000.
A blank 300-mm silicon wafer costs about $40,000 to manufacture.
More than 100 million
miles of optical fiber has been laid in the last two years, but today only 5% of it is "lit."
cell phone industry made about 400,000,000 phones last year - about 60,000,000 more than needed. How's that for
Some SMT capacitor vendors are moving away from the use of palladium. The cost has tripled over the past two
years - to about $1,000 per ounce. Gold sells for about $270 per ounce.
The calibrated sweep time for a spectrum analyzer is proportional to the square of the RBW ratios, due
to the settling time of the IF filter.
The recognized rule-of-thumb for test accuracy/uncertainty
ratio (TA/UR) is 4:1 per Mil-Std 45662A, ANSI/NCSL-Z540; and 3:1 per ISO10012. This relates the accuracy of
successive instruments when one is used to calibrate the other.
"Journal of the American Medical
Association" (JAMA) targets guns as a top priority safety issue, when the medical profession has the highest
number of accidental deaths in the nation.
WD-40 literally stands for Water Displacement,
40th attempt. No kidding! That's the name straight out of the lab book used by the
chemist who developed WD-40 back in 1953.
The "Dog Days of Summer" are so named not due to the oppressive heat, rather, it describes the 20 days before and
after the conjunction of Sirius with the sun, around July 23rd.
VersaModule Eurocard (VME) bus
and its subset, the VME eXtensions for
August 12, 2001, marks the 20th anniversary of the introduction of the IBM PC - it listed for a $3,005
base price. Windows™ first appeared in 1983.
The direct flight that American Airline operates
between Austin, TX, and San Jose, CA, (four each weekday) is nicknamed the "Nerd Bird," because nearly everyone
that flies on it works in high-tech.
The Pony Express was only in service from April 1860 to November 1861. Mr. Morse's telegraph put it
out of business (-2G superseded by -1G?)
Aluminum used to manufacture airplane wings is capable of
withstanding loads of more than 90,000 pounds per square inch. Aluminum can be spun into a filament so fine that
1.5 pounds of it could encircle the world.
The human race as we know it has existed for approximately 50,000 years. This makes it approximately 800
lifetimes old. Of these 800 lifetimes, about 650 were passed by cave dwellers. Nearly all the manufactured
products, luxury items, and technological conveniences we enjoy today were invented or perfected within only the
past 5 to 7 lifetimes.
Alexander Graham Bell thought that controllable, powered flight might be
possible with a kite composed of thousands of tetrahedral shaped cells.
As of August, 2001, the
Accelerated Strategic Computing Initiative White (ASCI White) is the world's most powerful computer, containing
8,192 microprocessors, 160 TBytes of disk drive and using 1.3 MW of power. Built by IBM and located at the
Lawrence Livermore National Lab, it is being used to run 3-D nuclear weapon fusion simulations. For just 900
atoms, it will take 3-4 months. In 1994, the simulations would have taken 60,000 years!
The number of U.S. Internet users skyrocketed to an all-time high, rising 15 percent from 100.3 million
surfers in October 2000 to more than 115.2 million in October 2001, according to a report released by
Nielsen/NetRatings. The Internet measurement service said people accessing the Web from home contributed
significantly to the increase, rising 14 percent from the previous year to more than 103.7 million surfers.
Each month in the UK, approximately 15,000 mobile phones are stolen. The monthly average for London is 1,600. In
London's Westminster borough, about half of all street robberies concern theft of mobile phones.
Simulation Program with Integrated Circuit Emphasis (SPICE) was developed in the early 1970's at the University of
California at Berkeley. SPICE software was originally written in FORTRAN. PSPICE, developed by MicroSim, was the
first commercial PC-based SPICE program to gain wide acceptance in both industry and academia.
Code-named "MetaPad", IBM unveiled a micro PC that features 128 MB of DRAM, a 10 GB hard drive and a 800 MHz CPU.
The module is 5" long, 3" wide and about 3/4" thick. The module fits into a larger accessory piece that includes
a small, flat screen on front and is about 6 " long, 4" wide and 1".
The IEEE publishes nearly 30% of the world's literature in electrical, electronics and computer engineering
When a candle burns on the space shuttle, the heat radiates evenly in all directions,
so the flame forms a small blue sphere around the wick. The candle burns more slowly and coolly than it would on
Earth, but it melts faster because an updraft isn't carrying away the heat.
In 1955, then Soviet
Premier, Nikita Krushchev, ordered that April 22nd be designated a day to celebrate Communism. In 1970, it was
chosen to be designated Earth Day by Gaylord Nelson, one of the founders of the event. Those founders had 365 days
from which to choose. They chose Lenin's birthday.
A company called Power Paper has developed a
power source technology that, at just 0.5 mm thick, allows ultra-thin flexible batteries to be embedded into
labels, paper, fabric, and many other materials. Composed of zinc and magnesium oxide pastes, it can be screened
on, pasted or laminated, and is environmentally friendly.