Friday, March 18, 2011

Hedy Lamarr

Hedy Lamarr

"Any girl can be glamorous, all you have to do is stand still and look stupid," said Hedy Lamarr, the beautiful scientist whose inventions make your cell phone possible!  

In 1942, Ms Lamarr, whose birth name was Hedwig Eva Maria Keisler, and her endocrinologist/composer friend, George Anthiel, patented a torpedo guidance system.  This new radio control system with alternating signal could be controlled by a plane overhead and not heard or intercepted by others.  This technology is what makes cell phone calls private and able to roam.

In this article, learn how Ms Lamarr almost left acting to persue a career in inventing, how her first husband, an arms maker, (Jewish but made  Ehrenarier,) cavorted with the like of Hitler, and how her invention was shunned by the US military until the blockade of Cuba.  
5 Degrees
Fifth Degree: Hedy Lamarr

In this clip, we learn about German and Austrian people who fled to the United States in the 1930s.  Hedy Lamarr was among them.  This film is in French with English subtitles.  Very interesting.

Fourth Degree: Mel Brooks
Ms Lamarr was not thrilled with the character, Hedley Lamarr in the film, Blazing Saddles.  She sued the producers of the film and they settled out of court.  For an excellent podcast about Ms. Lamar that mentions the lawsuit, click here. 
Third  Degree: Johnny Carson
Mel Brooks appeared many times on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson.  This is one of those appearances.  
Second Degree: Red Skelton
As mentioned in a previous post, Red Skelton had Johnny Carson fill in for him on his show when Red was off in Europe meeting Pope Pius XII.  Red honored Johnny by inducting him into the Television Hall of Fame.
First Degree: Pope Pius XII

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