Good story. Compared with wireless charging, which is very short range (in spite of Nikola Tesla's multiple experiments attempting otherwise), RF comms provided a service that no wired telegraphy could.
I'll grant the lack of a physical connector, which can be delicate, would be an advantage of wireless charging. But as much as the amount of wasted energy by all those wired chargers left plugged in today is being hyped, imagine how much more energy these wireless charges will waste.
It is a cool story. I love reading about history. I asked the author Keith where he got this idea of writing about Marconi.
He wrote back to me:
A few years ago at NI Week one of the presenters told the Dr Crippen story. It fascinated the audience. I meant to write about it then but just got busy and forgot but always remembered the story.
Finally I had time and started researching it last week. Turns out there have been a few movies and documentaries about the Dr Crippen story and a book, Thunderstruck, written a few years ago. I read the book, and other articles and websites, and it occurred to me to check to see if it was same radio on Titanic. It was, so I tied it all together.
Great story! The ease of today's worldwide connectivity is taken for granted by most who use these everyday services, the result of much intensive engineering effort by many.
But I still remember back in the 60's when my ham radio licence finally arrived in the mail, and my first Morse code CQ on 40 meters from my home-brewed transmitter raised a QSO from Michigan. That was a real thrill, a home-built radio apparatus that could send electromagnetic waves all over the world.
The book "Thunderstruck" is definitely recommended reading. It focuses on the dual stories of the Crippen murder and Marconi's struggle to develop and commercialize his wireless telegraphy system. While written for a general audience, it will likely be especially appreciated by this site's technical audience.
Interestingly, regarding the murder and subsequent conviction and execution of Hawley Crippen, more recent evidence in the form of DNA analysis has some forensic experts suggesting that Crippen was in fact innocent.
Yes, I read about that too. The "human" remains that were found under Dr. Crippen's cellar floor were not readily identifiable - in fact, they weren't even sure if the remains were human. There were no bones, extremities, or organs. My understanding there was only "skin".
Dr. Crippen's wife had lost her baby years before while they lived in America and the procedure left a scar on the skin of her tummy. THAT SCAR was the PRIMARY evidence that the prosecution used to support their claim that it was his wife.
However, the defense argued that a scar can not have hair growing out of it, which it did, but somehow they lost this argument. I'd welcome any doctors comments about scar tissue and hair being able to grow out/thru scar tissue (why? why not?).
I think the strongest evidence that he did murder her, was the fact that she never showed up later in life. Where'd she go? Dr. Crippen said that she died while in the US and was cremated, but no crematorium ever acknoledged that! He said she was cremated somewhere in California. I'm would expect that experts have searched exhaustively for her death and cremation certificate and never found it.
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