Re: FoRK boys and their toys

Dave Long (
Thu, 26 Aug 1999 17:46:33 -0700

Koerner's Fourier Analysis has a couple of chapters on the early
transatlantic cables; a parenthetical comment in one shows the
similarity between the affluent victorian geek and the modern:

> Thomson's knowledge and instruments had contributed greatly to the
> new industry. In turn the patents which he held made him a wealthy
> man. He could now indulge his love of the sea from his own yacht.
> (Though even here he and his friend Helmholtz studied the theory of
> water waves, "which", [said] Helmholtz, "he loved to treat as a kind
> of race between us". When Thomson had to go ashore at Inverary for
> some hours, as he left he said: "Now, mind, Helmholtz, you're not to
> work at waves while I'm away".)