history stories

 
Between 1942 and 1946, the U.S., Great Britain, and Canada spent the equivalent of $26 billion and employed 130,000 people to create the very first atomic weapon. The Manhattan Project changed the world, and three of the major sites involved may be about to get turned into national parks that you can go visit.
 
Here at DVICE, we sometimes like to take our eyes away from the cutting edge of technology and reminisce about what was and might have been. Often as not, things are invented that could have altered the course of history (for instance: the Tesla Coil), yet these attempts fall by the wayside. Whether that's because of an insane competitor (I'm looking at you, Edison!), lack of funding or just not reaching the tipping point of public approval, these inventions languish in the forgotten corners of history. Until, that is, we unearth them! Now — I could run on about Tesla, or the numerous failed flying contraptions we see every year in the Flugtag — and sure those are interesting — but why not take a gander at a subject with a bit more firepower?! I'm talkin' boomsticks, folks! These 12 maligned peashooters could have done things, they coulda been contenders! Yet here they are: 12 forgotten firearms with designs that are truly bizarre.
 
Some sad news: Ars Technica Senior Gaming Editor Kyle Orland reports that Nintendo Power is getting ready to shutter its pages forever. If Orland's source is correct — and a wealth of evidence suggests he is — Nintendo Power will start winding down toward a final issue after 24 years of asking everyone to join the gosh-dang Fun Club already.
 
About three billion years ago, Greenland got in a fight with some massive celestial body. From what we can tell, Greenland got its butt handed to it. That's the finding (more or less) of a research team which claims to have discovered a 62-mile-wide crater near the Maniitsoq region of western Greenland.
 
"This is a stickup, see? Now turn over all your valuables and no one needs to get hurt." Back in 1928, a line like that would have been met with chattering teeth and shaking, raised arms. In 1929, however, Chicagoan inventor Sammy Schwarz would see it answered with "a stream of lead bullets in his face."
 
Back in the day, electronics were made with vacuum tubes, which are like little light bulbs that function as amplifiers or switches. In the present, electronics use transistors instead, which do the same thing but can be made tiny and for cheap. NASA researchers have now figured out how to make vacuum tubes on the nanoscale, which could mean faster, more reliable computers.
 
Five of the most powerful rocket engines ever constructed have been lying at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean, ever since they were cast off approximately 2 minutes and 41 seconds after doing their part to send Apollo 11 to the moon. Jeff Bezos (that Jeff Bezos) has managed to find them again, and he's planning to bring them back to the surface.

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