December 1956 Popular Electronics[Table of Contents]
People old and young enjoy waxing nostalgic about and learning some of the history of early electronics. Popular Electronics was published from October 1954 through April 1985. All copyrights are hereby acknowledged. See all articles from Popular Electronics.s from Popular Electronics.
McWatts was an electronics-themed comic that appeared in Popular Electronics back in the 1950s. Artist Carl Kohler's main character is a stereotypical Joe Sixpack (actually a Joe McWatts)electronics hobbyist who dreams up unique ways to deal with situations. This edition shows McWatts in a scenario where, presciently enough, he experiences having his radio controlled airplane treated to what modern day 'drone' pilots are experiencing on a more and more frequent basis - being shot down. In this case the hostile fire came from some kids with slingshots. Fast-forward to 2015 and we are now seeing reports of people using shotguns and rifles to down the privacy-invading craft being piloted by unqualified pranksters. Back in the McWatts era, getting 'shot down' was much more likely to occur when non-protected frequency usage (27 MHz band) caused death-inducing interference that resulted in loss of control. Nearly all modern systems use bullet-proof spread spectrum modulation in the 2.4 GHz ISM band.
See Kohler's "I Married a Superheterodyne," "Unpopular Electronics," and "Operation Chaos," "Thin Air, My Foot," "High Tide in the Tweeter," "Hi-Fi Guest List," "The R/C Cloud," "Kool-Keeping Kwiz ," and "McWatts."
By Carl Kohler
Posted March 30, 2015