@Max - One of your pictures of Mock's shelves had some old turntables and that brought back some memories. Probably late 60's I had a nice big old valve radio, it had a Crystal Pickup input at the back, and I bought an old "record changer" turntable that worked with it. Cost me peanuts.
You could pick up old classical '78s for 10c each, so a whole symphony cost $1 or less. The sound was surprisingly good, if noisy by today's standards. I once got an old record of Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata by a then famous pianist called "Solomon" and when I played it my mom came into my room with tears in ehr eyes - she had had exactly the same record when she was a kid and had also loved it.
Of course I junked it as soon as I started earning money and could afford proper LPs and a decent turntable. Wish I still had it now. The ignorance of youth....
Reminds me of this famous painting: http://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Glorification_of_the_Eucharist_-_Salimbeni.JPG where a couple famous blokes rule the world, sun and moon but if you don't look carefully, looks like Sputnik. What other retro-futuristic consumer electronic product ideas are hiding in 300 year old paintings?
Seriously, the whole 1950s-1960s era fascinates me. Atomic age, space age/race, Jetsons, Googie architecture and all that. If we ignore the bad things, there was a lot of optimism, energy and playfulness as designers brought forward-thinking scientific ideas symbolically into products for the masses - atom symbols, spheres with rings like Saturn. There was a high "cool factor" in many mundane businesses, just because of being a third tier supplier to NASA. Educational science toys hyped up as relevant to the space program.
While not mainstream, there is seemingly growing interest in that era, perhaps because today's world doesn't have any grand adventure. Perhaps businesses like Mock Electronics will allow people to explore actual working products (maybe with a little contemporary cheating) from back then, will stir up a push for a new grand adventure, something that will make many currently mundane unrelated things cool.
Or maybe not. At least enjoy the coolness of creativity of other decades.
When I was about 12 my folks gave me a Panasonic ball radio - very cool....
Unfortunately a "friend" once "borrowed" it and I never saw it again. Memo to self - neither a borrower nor a lender be.....
My father had one of those, it was yellow. In the mid 70s he was going to throw it out so I took it. I took the case off and used it to make the 'glass teletype' from Don Lancaster's article in Radio Electronics.
Hi Karen -- I'm afraid to say that it's barely limping along -- it's really sad -- the owner is a real nice guy but very (painfully) shy -- the first time I was in there (years ago now) I had a technical question and his wife (in the front) said that she'd try to get him out but he wouldn't talk much -- but we ended up getting on together really well.
All he knows is repairing TVs -- I think he learned most of it from his dad (now no longer with us) -- I don;t know what the/they will do as time goes by...
Replay available now: A handful of emerging network technologies are competing to be the preferred wide-area connection for the Internet of Things. All claim lower costs and power use than cellular but none have wide deployment yet. Listen in as proponents of leading contenders make their case to be the metro or national IoT network of the future. Rick Merritt, EE Times Silicon Valley Bureau Chief, moderators this discussion. Join in and ask his guests questions.