In ye olden days, a telephone user had to ask the operator to call the desired party and make the connection. Then the dial telephone empowered us all to, er, reach out and touch someone. This 1927 instructional film from the telephone company explains the basics: "The ringing signal is an intermittent burring sound telling you the bell of the called telephone is ringing." (via /r/obscuremedia)
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A tour of old technology user manuals
. Highlight: A Volkswagen repair guide that urges you to bond spiritually with your vehicle. Read the rest
Photo by Ian Norman
My friend John Mills has been integral in running the Duck Pond – one of the larger and more well-organized Burning Man theme camps – since 2005. Those who have been to Burning Man probably know this camp as the one with the giant slip 'n' slide and the radio tower with a yellow duck on top.
This year John is unable to attend, so he's focused his energy into helping the community by writing an extremely detailed account of how their camp works and how to run your own. I helped John edit this post, and as a total Burning Man outsider I was amazed at how much work and thought goes into throwing a week-long party in the desert. Even if you're not interested in Burning Man, I think you'll find this insider's perspective on the culture and innovation behind the event extremely interesting.
Building a Burning Man theme camp Read the rest