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Things That Are Older Than Brett
-A contest and gift for the Birthday Boy

 5:46 pm on Jun 13, 2002 (gmt 0)

OK, MacGuru and I were going to save this until next Monday, but Mivox sort of brought this subject up in this thread when she said she was younger than Brett… [webmasterworld.com...]

I had the opportunity to talk to Brett for some time at Bar Conference last February. He seemed kind of down, and I asked what the matter was.

“G,” he said, looking down at his feet “I’m getting old. I’m going to be 40 this year.”

“Aawwhh B,”I replied “You’re not old. I mean, in the whole scheme of things, even Mackin [webmasterworld.com] is a pup.”

While that did bring a small smile, I could not convince Brett that 40 is not ‘old’. Since he turns 40 on June 17th, I figure, he’s feeling really down right about now.

To make him feel better, I think we should show him all the things that are older than he is.

And hey, since MacGuru loves having contests in Foo, it seems appropriate to make it a contest. When it is all over, we can arrange the posts in chronological order for a timeline to present to Brett as a birthday gift. (What better gift than themed content for his site?) MacGuru will hand out awards.

Here are the rules:

1.Your post must be about an item that is older than Brett_Tabke. That is, invented before June 17, 1962 4:23 PM Central Daylight Time. (-6 hours from GMT)

2.Since Brett is a geek – and we want to give him themed content for his site – the item must be something from the Information Technology or Mathematics fields.

3.The item or one of its later derivatives must still be used in the field of Information Technology today.

4.You must have a link to a web page which proves the date the item was first invented.

5.Additional rule for Mivox, NFFC, Oilman only: Since you three find these contests so easy, you need more of a challenge. In addition to the first 4 rules, you must also link the inventor of your item to Brett’s home state of Iowa, or preferably, to Brett’s favorite college of Iowa State University.
Good luck

<added>The contest will end on Brett's Birthday: June 17.</added>

[edited by: grnidone at 5:52 pm (utc) on June 13, 2002]



 8:41 pm on Jun 13, 2002 (gmt 0)

No deletes. :) You posted a different source than mine.

brotherhood of LAN

 8:47 pm on Jun 13, 2002 (gmt 0)

ahhhhh themed content :)

>>>Alexander Graham Bell a Canadian

Anyone in Scotland would disagree!


May I suggest that the website should have Alexander-Graham-Bell in their URL to gain ranking :)

The Contractor

 8:53 pm on Jun 13, 2002 (gmt 0)


Oldest binary computer (1936 - Konrad Zuse):

Mivox this is not the same as Message #23 by webrookie.

This was before Bretts time :)

sorry again The_Contractor, WebRookie got it covered on #24. Please try again!

[edited by: Macguru at 11:15 pm (utc) on June 13, 2002]


 8:56 pm on Jun 13, 2002 (gmt 0)

The first COBOL specification was released in 1959, making COBOL older than Brett.

Fortran apparently dates back to 1954.

And only slightly off-topic BASIC dates back to 1964 making it almost as old as Brett.

olwen that was quality! Your rightfully deserve THE VINTAGE PROGRAMMING LANGUAGE GEEK AWARD [vitrailquebec.org]. Congrats!

[edited by: Macguru at 11:18 pm (utc) on June 13, 2002]


 8:59 pm on Jun 13, 2002 (gmt 0)

>>Anyone in Scotland would disagree!

fair enough but he moved here when he was 23
timeline [fortress.uccb.ns.ca]


 9:06 pm on Jun 13, 2002 (gmt 0)

OK, how about "The Wheel"

No way he's that old! BTW Tabke, if the average life span is 80 yrs, @ 40 you're a baby dude

Happy B'Day dude!

and on 1..for he's a jolly good fellow.................... :-)

The Wheel??? On About.com??? Please think hard [vitrailquebec.org] WebSpinner!:)

[edited by: Macguru at 11:24 pm (utc) on June 13, 2002]


 9:27 pm on Jun 13, 2002 (gmt 0)

electric battery [ideafinder.com] - 1799
Alessandro Volta [ideafinder.com]

no cpus/laptops without batteries

No problem jatar_k, the way Brett eats up power supplies in Iowa, he can use batteries too. Here is your Geek Solid Gold Award [vitrailquebec.org].

[edited by: Macguru at 11:13 am (utc) on June 14, 2002]


 9:27 pm on Jun 13, 2002 (gmt 0)

The Logical AND Circuit.

"Inventors of the modern computer have repeatedly been surprised, when seeking patents, to encounter Tesla's basic ones already on file," noted Tesla historian Leland Anderson, a former EE and a board member of the Wardenclyffe project. Indeed, two of Tesla's patents from 1903 contain the basic principles of the logical AND circuit element.


Pierre-Marie Robitaille, a Ph.D. from Iowa State University is using technology invented by Tesla in his MRI research. [molspect.mps.ohio-state.edu...]

That's is not the only connection to Tesla and Iowa of course: Iowa State in Ames, IA, where the first
digital computer (Atanasoff/Berry) was created. Using of course, logic circuits. If you read past Atanasoff/Berry you'll find another reference to Tesla. [bootstrap.org...]

It also seems that people in Iowa aren't always in awe of Tesla's achievements:


Impressive job digitalghost! You can be proud of your award [vitrailquebec.org].

[edited by: Macguru at 11:16 am (utc) on June 14, 2002]


 10:42 pm on Jun 13, 2002 (gmt 0)

Sorry jatar_k, batteries have been around a little longer than that. ;)


That's right Key_Master, this battery was even used in some Gizmo Quiz before. You get the Fat Head Award [vitrailquebec.org]. (but dont click for details).

[edited by: Macguru at 11:22 am (utc) on June 14, 2002]


 10:47 pm on Jun 13, 2002 (gmt 0)

interesting stuff Key_Master

damn and double damn


 1:03 am on Jun 14, 2002 (gmt 0)

Okay, I've struggled to find a link that is accurate on the Olmec/Maya discovering the zero, other than a link to one of my own sites (I contemplated just creating a page with exactly what I wanted it to say, but thought that would be cheating). There are books and papers that I have, but web sites seems to be another matter. The best link I can find that isn't full of bull is [geocities.com ], cross-referenced with this site: [historytoday.com ]. Mike Coe is a well respected Princeton professor who writes about the Maya.

However neither site comes out and just says it. You have to understand that the Long Count [halfmoon.org] date system requires a zero. The Olmec used it. Second site says that their society disolved by 400 BCE. (more like 200 BCE at some archeological sites in the latest research). So by inference, the Olmec had a zero by at least 200 BCE.

Michael Coe writes that the Olmec likely invented writing and the Long Count Calendar

The decline of Olmec civilization and the destruction of its ceremonial centers took place between about 600 and 400 BC

Very nice effort Xoc! Where yould we be without the "0"? I had something ready just for you : The Microsoft Geek Award [vitrailquebec.org]! Congrats!

[edited by: Macguru at 11:28 am (utc) on June 14, 2002]


 1:11 am on Jun 14, 2002 (gmt 0)

How bout Math Class????? I dont know when it started and I am a little lazy to look it up but I am sure it would be older than Brett. Plus I just really wanted to post so I could say man I wish I had that mac in WebSpinner award!

Sorry Knowles! You have to make an effort [darryl.com]!

[edited by: Macguru at 11:38 am (utc) on June 14, 2002]


 1:18 am on Jun 14, 2002 (gmt 0)

How bout Math Class????? I dont know when it started and I am a little lazy to look it up but I am sure it would be older than Brett.

Pythagorus was about 580 BC. Maths classes have to be at least that old. [norfacad.pvt.k12.va.us...]

Math class is good olwen! You deserve the Geek Force Award [vitrailquebec.org] in your effort to erradicate know-nothings. Bravo!

[edited by: Macguru at 11:43 am (utc) on June 14, 2002]


 1:21 am on Jun 14, 2002 (gmt 0)

Thanks Olwen! Does that mean I win that shiney Mac? even thought I made Olwen do my research?

No shiney Mac! But you can get a chia mac [vitrailquebec.org] any time! (ask NFFC [webmasterworld.com] for proper maintenance) :)

[edited by: Macguru at 11:49 am (utc) on June 14, 2002]


 1:25 am on Jun 14, 2002 (gmt 0)

Sorry Xoc, the Babylonians [coe.unco.edu] are generally credited for discovering the zero when used as a placeholder. The Mayans [math.twsu.edu] can be credited for having one of the first symbols for zero.

Geeky! :)

Geeky indeed! You won The Geek Throne [vitrailquebec.org] for this one!

[edited by: Macguru at 11:55 am (utc) on June 14, 2002]


 1:33 am on Jun 14, 2002 (gmt 0)

Well, if you want to count place holders, we're back to the abacus, which, in essence has a place holder for zero. That would probably predate the Babylonians. I'm talking about a Zero!


 1:36 am on Jun 14, 2002 (gmt 0)

If you're referring to a literal "0" then that would be the Greek astronomer Ptolemy.

The Greek astronomer Ptolemy (ca. A.D. 150) was the first to write a zero at the end of a number. For this he used a circular symbol.


How prolefic! Here is your prize [vitrailquebec.org] once again!

[edited by: Macguru at 11:58 am (utc) on June 14, 2002]


 1:43 am on Jun 14, 2002 (gmt 0)

The first Canadian Oberon class submarine "Ojibwa" (aka Onyx) was launched just a few days before Brett!

Sorry fanthom, but you sank this one, no link... :)

[edited by: Macguru at 12:00 pm (utc) on June 14, 2002]


 1:57 am on Jun 14, 2002 (gmt 0)

The first computer manual is written by Fred Gruenberger in 1952.

Preface by d'Uzjian describes future where pornography and computer technology are seamlessly melded into an appliance that looks and feels remarkably like today's modern microwave oven.


By the way Xoc (not picking on you), you'll also note that the dust abacus was invented sometime around 3000 BC in Babylonia.

Key_Master picks the Geek Of The Class [vitrailquebec.org] award!

[edited by: Macguru at 12:05 pm (utc) on June 14, 2002]


 3:52 am on Jun 14, 2002 (gmt 0)

Stonehenge, you said Stonehenge? Too bad I got this one handy! Please give me some accurate 'Astronomical reason' (or a bribe) and I might review.

Stonehenge is an implementation of a system for showing information of where the sun rose and set at key times of the year. Information Systems are still used today!!!

In all honesty I just pulled stonehenge out of the air and didn't research it. I just wanted the oldest thing possible. ;)

Thanks for your astronomical effort. Now we know all about Stonehenge. (But I would liked the bribe better.) Here is your prize: The Geek On The Roof Installing Whatherver That Gizmo Can Be Award [vitrailquebec.org].

[edited by: Macguru at 12:15 pm (utc) on June 14, 2002]


 4:08 am on Jun 14, 2002 (gmt 0)

It's a good bet though satanclaus!


 4:21 am on Jun 14, 2002 (gmt 0)

Even web server software is older than Brett .. Take Apache for example .. Still in use too :)

"The Apaches arrived in the Southwest between A.D. 1000 and 1400."


Hmm .. I wonder if the Apache Indians speak HTML? ;)

Sorry DrDoc, but you get this one [vitrailquebec.org] for the joke.

[edited by: Macguru at 12:59 pm (utc) on June 14, 2002]


 5:40 am on Jun 14, 2002 (gmt 0)

Well, in honor of Brett's b-day and the recent WebmasterWorld overhaul I found this...

The Computer Bug [computer.org] first discovered September 9th, 1945 we still have a few of them around...;)

bill took some image I was going to use as an award. Here is something BIGGER [vitrailquebec.org] for him!

[edited by: Macguru at 1:02 pm (utc) on June 14, 2002]


 12:56 pm on Jun 14, 2002 (gmt 0)

ACK! I am beginning to run out of awards! Please StickyMail me good places to find some if you know of any.



 1:10 pm on Jun 14, 2002 (gmt 0)

do I count?...I'm still used in IT...and I'm exactly 5 years and a day older than Brett...though I'm not going to post a link to the web site that proves it

Happy B-Day to you too Eric_Jarvis! Here is your present [vitrailquebec.org].

[edited by: Macguru at 3:03 pm (utc) on June 14, 2002]


 1:24 pm on Jun 14, 2002 (gmt 0)

Laszlo Kalmar - Developer of a 1956 logical machine and the design of the MIR computer in Hungary

See here! Do find: Laszlo Kalmar on the page. [computer.org]

Nice going backus! I had something ready [vitrailquebec.org] just for you!;)

[edited by: Macguru at 2:58 pm (utc) on June 14, 2002]


 2:52 pm on Jun 14, 2002 (gmt 0)

In 1455 Johann Gutenberg printed the first book in Europe on his new invention: the printing press.


The printing press, still used to publish newspapers, books and magazines is 547 years old.

Much much older than Brett.


 6:14 pm on Jun 14, 2002 (gmt 0)

awe shucks. Since I learned about most of this stuff in grammer school, and now can't remember half of it - man is this making me feel old! ha! :~) j/k

Thanks Grnidone.


 9:11 pm on Jun 14, 2002 (gmt 0)

Geometry! Without which we wouldn't have nice clean layouts for our web sites nor motherboards and computer chips. Geometry has been around since about 2000BC! You can all rest easy now...


Oh look, I found another link that says Geometry was around at 3000 BC:


Hey Brett - Happy b-day. I'll be gone when the celebration occurs but I trust you'll enjoy it in my absence. ;)


 1:31 pm on Jun 15, 2002 (gmt 0)

Rivets The Dog is a comic strip character authored by artist George Sixta from 1953-19861. On several occasions, the Sunday weekly strip was published in comic book length form2

Later derivatives of Rivets live on in cyberspace.3

Rivets, documentation4


Ah, but here is the hook . . .ONE day before Brett was born, June 16, 1962, a Rivets weekly comic strip was published. It was titled, "Brains Beat Brawn Every Time" and its summary story is: "Rivets gets the big dog to chase him around the tree until he's tied himself up, and then takes his bone." Link here, [lib.msu.edu] then scroll down alphabetically and then by date June 16, 1962 to Rivets.

Happy Birthday, Brett!

1 Rivets is older than Brett.
2Illustrations and a weekly publication schedule continue to be an important part of information technology. See recent ebay auction [cgi.ebay.com].
3See Dokie the Dog [dokiethedog.com], with his own website and DirectTV Satellite. Or for more fun, [url=detnews.com/metro/hobbies/comix/opinions/west/]Dog Zero[/url], who oversees a specially trained pack of canines known as SpyDogs and are specialy trained to protect us humans from "really bad stuff." His voice booms from a computer where he delivers orders to his troops.
4The Library at Michigan State University. [lib.msu.edu]
5I am none of those fine folks, though I'm sure Rivets reached Iowa.

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