Monthly Archives: July 2020

Jean Picard and his Love for Accuracy

Jean Picard and his Love for Accuracy

On July 21, 1620, French astronomer, cartographer and hydraulic engineer Jean-Félix Picard was born. He is regarded as the founder of modern astronomy in France. He introduced new methods, improved the old instruments, and added new devices, such as Huygens‘ pendulum clock to record times and time intervals. Background Jean Picard Jean-Félix Picard was born as a son of a bookseller and was allowed to study at the Jesuit Collège Royal Henry-Le-Grand, which…
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Sir John Reith and the Early Years of BBC

Sir John Reith and the Early Years of BBC

On July 20, 1889, John Charles Walsham Reith, 1st Baron Reith, was born. Sir John Reith was the first General-Director of the British Broadcasting Corporation and regarded as one of BBCs founding fathers. His concept of broadcasting as a way of educating the masses marked for a long time the BBC and similar organizations around the world. Background Sir John Reith John Reith was the founder of the BBC. He was its first general…
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The Dancers of Edgar Degas

The Dancers of Edgar Degas

On July 19, 1834, French artist Edgar Degas was born, famous for his paintings, sculptures, prints, and drawings. He is especially identified with the subject of dance; more than half of his works depict dancers. He is regarded as one of the founders of Impressionism, although he rejected the term, and preferred to be called a realist. “An artist is a deception.. ..an artist is only an artist at certain times, by…
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William Makepeace Thackeray’s deft Skewering of Human Foibles

William Makepeace Thackeray’s deft Skewering of Human Foibles

On July 18, 1811, English novelist William Makepeace Thackeray was born. He was famous for his satirical works, particularly Vanity Fair, a panoramic portrait of English society. During the Victorian era, Thackeray was ranked second only to Charles Dickens, but he is now much less read and is known almost exclusively for Vanity Fair, which has become a standard fixture in university courses and has been repeatedly adapted for movies and television. “Let the…
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The World of Lyonel Feininger

The World of Lyonel Feininger

On July 17, 1871, German-American painter Lyonel Charles Feininger was born. He became a leading exponent of Expressionism and especially Cubism. Lyonel Feininger Background Lyonel Feininger was born into a family of musicians. His father was the famous German violinist and composer Karl Feininger and his mother, Elizabeth Feininger was an American pianist and singer. Feininger himself visited Germany for the first time at the age of 16, when his parents gave several…
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How Dan Bricklin created VisiCalc, the first Spreadsheet Software

How Dan Bricklin created VisiCalc, the first Spreadsheet Software

On July 16, 1951, computer scientist Dan Bricklin was born. Together with Bob Frankston he created VisiCalc, the first spreadsheet computer program (1979) which created a market beyond hobbyists for the emerging personal computers. Today, everybody knows spreadsheet programs, no matter if you choose a desktop application or a web based application, spreadsheets are everywhere. And sometimes, we don’t have any idea, how we could possibly get along without them. Spreadsheets So,…
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Vilfredo Pareto and the Law of the Vital Few

Vilfredo Pareto and the Law of the Vital Few

On July 15, 1848, Italian engineer, sociologist, economist, political scientist and philosopher Vilfredo Federico Damaso Pareto was born. He made several important contributions to economics, particularly in the study of income distribution and in the analysis of individuals’ choices. The Pareto principle was named after him and built on observations of his such as that 80% of the land in Italy was owned by 20% of the population. “The assertion that men…
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Ingmar Bergman – the Best Film Director of all Times

Ingmar Bergman – the Best Film Director of all Times

On July 14, 1918, Swedish director, writer, and producer Ernst Ingmar Bergman was born. Since he often worked on theatre and film almost parallel in his development, both the stage and the film were reciprocally impulse generators for the respective other medium. In 1997, Bergman was honoured at the Cannes Film Festival as “Best Film Director of All Times”. “When we experience a film, we consciously prime ourselves for illusion. Putting aside…
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August Kekulé and the Carbon Ring Structure

August Kekulé and the Carbon Ring Structure

On July 13, 1896, German organic chemist Friedrich August Kekulé passed away. Being one of the world’s leading chemists of his time, he is best known for devising the ring structure of carbon atoms in organic molecules and became the principal founder of the theory of chemical structure. August Kekulé Background August Kekulé was born on September 7, 1829 in Darmstadt as son of a civil servant. After graduating from secondary school, in 1847…
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Pablo Picasso’s Guernica

Pablo Picasso’s Guernica

On July 12, 1937, Pablo Picasso presents his famous painting Guernica for the very first time at the Spanish Pavilion at the Paris International Exposition. It was created in response to the bombing of Guernica, a Basque Country village in northern Spain, by German and Italian warplanes at the behest of the Spanish Nationalist forces on 26 April 1937 during the Spanish Civil War. Guernica has become one of today’s most famous…
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