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THE PROBLEM OF INCEEASING PIUMAN ENERGY.

WITH SPECIAL REFERENCE TO THE HARNESSING


OF THE SUN'S ENERGY.

BY NIKOLA TESLA.
ILLUSTRATED BY THE WRITER'S ELECTRICAL EXPERIMENTS, NOW FIRST PUBLISHED.

THE ONWARD MOVEMENT OP MAN—THE make us measurably forgetful of the gloomy


ENERGY OF THE MOVEMENT —THE THREE future.
WAYS OP INCREASING HUMAN ENERGY. Though we may never be able to compre-
hend human life, we know certainly that it

O F all the endless variety of phenomena


which nature presents to our senses,
there is none that fills our minds with
is a movement, of whatever nature it be.
The existence of a movement unavoidably
implies a body which is being moved and a
greater wonder than that inconceivably com- force which is moving it. Hence, wherever
plex movement which, in its entirety, we there is life, there is a mass moved by a force.
designate as human life. Its mysterious All mass possesses inertia, all force tends to
origin is veiled in the forever impenetrable persist. Owing to this universal property
mist of the past, its character is rendered and condition, a body, be it at rest or in
incomprehensible by its infinite intricacy, motion, tends to remain in the same state,
and its destination is hidden in the unfathom- and a force, manifesting itself anywhere and
able depths of the future. Whence does it through whatever cause, produces an equiv-
come? What is it? Whither does it tend? alent opposing force, and as an absolute
are the great questions which the sages of necessity of this it follows that every move-
all times have endeavored to answer. ment in nature must be rhythmical. Long
Modern science says: The sun is the past, ago this simple truth was clearly pointed
the earth is the present, the moon is the out by Herbert Spencer, who arrived at it
future. From an incandescent mass we have through a somewhat different process of
originated, and into a frozen mass we shall reasoning. It is borne out in everything we
turn. Merciless is the law of nature, and perceive—in the movement of a planet, in
rapidly and irresistibly we are drawn to our the surging and ebbing of the tide, in the
doom. Lord Kelvin, in his profound medita- reverberations of the air, the swinging of a
tions, allows us only a short span of life, pendulum, the oscillations of an electric cur-
something like six million years, after which rent, and in the infinitely varied phenomena
time the sun's bright light will have ceased of organic life. Does not the whole of human
to shine, and its life-giving heat will have life attest it? Birth, growth, old age, and
ebbed away, and our own earth will be a lump death of an individual, family, race, or na-
of ice, hurrying on through the eternal tion, what is it all but a rhythm? All life-
night. But do not let us despair. There manifestation, then, even in its most intri-
will still be left on it a glimmering spark of cate form, as exemplified in man, however
life, and there will be a chance to kindle a involved and inscrutable, is only a move-
new fire on some distant star. This wonder- ment, to which the same general laws of
ful possibility seems, indeed, to exist, judg- movement which govern throughout the
ing from Professor Dewar's beautiful experi- physical universe must be applicable.
ments with liquid air, which show that germs When we speak of man, we have a concep-
of organic life are not destroyed by cold, no tion of humanity as a whole, and before ap-
matter how intense; consequently they may plying scientific methods to the investigation
be transmitted through the interstellar of his movement, we must accept this as a
space. Meanwhile the cheering lights of physical fact. But can any one doubt to-day
science and art, ever increasing in intensity, that all the millions of individuals and all
illuminate our path, and the marvels they the innumerable types and characters con-
disclose, and the enjoyments they offer, stitute an entity, a unit? Though free to

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NOTE TO FIG. 1.—This result is produced hy the discharge ol an electrical oscillator giving twelve
million volts. The electrical pressure, alternating one hundred thousand times per second, excites the
normally inert nitrogen, causing it to comhine with the oxygfcn. The flame-lilje discharge shown in the
photograph measures sixty-five feet across.

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THE PROBLEM OF INCREASING HUMAN ENERGY. 177
think and act, we are held together, like the an idea of the total heat-energy contained in
stars in the firmament, with ties inseparable. the ball, which is only seemingly at rest. In
These ties we cannot see, but we can feel this purely theoretical estimate this energy
them. I cut myself in the finger, and it may then be calculated by multiplying half
pains me: this finger is a part of me. I see of the total mass—that is, half of the sum of
a friend hurt, and it hurts me, too: my friend all the small masses—with the square of a
and I are one. And now I see stricken down velocity which is determined from the velo-
an enemy, a lump of matter which, of all the cities of the separate particles. In like man-
lumps of matter in the universe, I care least ner we may conceive of human energy being
for, and still it grieves me. Does this not measured by half the human mass multiplied
prove that each of us is only a part of a with the square of a velocity which we are
whole? not yet able to compute. But our deficiency
For ages this idea has been proclaimed in in this knowledge will not vitiate the truth
the consummately wise teachings of religion, of the deductions I shall draw, which rest
probably not alone as a means of insuring on the firm basis that the same laws of mass
peace and harmony among men, but as a and force govern throughout nature.
deeply founded truth. The Buddhist ex- Man, however, is not an ordinary mass,
presses it in one way, the Christian in an- consisting of spinning atoms and molecules,
other, but both say the same: We are all and containing merely heat-energy. He is
one. Metaphysical proofs are, however, not a mass possessed of certain higher qualities
the only ones which we are able to bring by reason of the creative principle of life
forth in support of this idea. Science, too, with which he is endowed. His mass, as the
recognizes this connectedness of separate water in an ocean wave, is being continu-
individuals, though not quite in the same ously exchanged, new taking the place of
sense as it admits that the suns, planets, the old. Not only this, but he grows, propa-
and moons of a constellation are one body, gates, and dies, thus altering his mass inde-
and there can be no doubt that it will be pendently, both in bulk and density. What
experimentally confirmed in times to come, is most wonderful of all, he is capable of
when our means and methods for investigat- increasing or diminishing his velocity of
ing psychical and other states and phe- movement by the mysterious power he pos-
nomena shall have been brought to great sesses of appropriating more or less energy
perfection. Still more: this one human from other substance, and turning it into
being lives on and on. The individual is motive energy. But in any given moment we
ephemeral, races and nations come and pass may ignore these slow changes and assume
away, but man remains. Therein lies the that human energy is measured by half the
profound difference between the individual product of man's mass with the square of
and the whole. Therein, too, is to be found a certain hypothetical velocity. However we
the partial explanation of many of those may compute this velocity, and whatever
marvelous phenomena of heredity which are we may take as the standard of its measure,
the result of countless centuries of feeble we must, in harmony with this conception,
but persistent influence. come to the conclusion that the great problem
Conceive, then, man as a mass urged on of science is, and always will be, to increase
by a force. Though this movement is not the energy thus defined. Many years ago,
of a translatory character, implying change stimulated by the perusal of that deeply in-
of place, yet the general laws of mechanical teresting work. Draper's "History of the
movement are applicable to it, and the energy Intellectual Development of Europe," de-
associated with this mass can be measured, picting so vividly human movement, I rec-
in accordance with well-known principles, by ognized that to solve this eternal problem
half the product of the mass with the square must ever be the chief task of the man of
of a certain velocity. So, for instance, a can- science. Some results of my own efforts
non-ball which is at rest possesses a certain to this end I shall endeavor briefly to de-
amount of energy in the form of heat, which scribe here.
we measure in a similar way. We imagine the Let, then, in diagram a, M represent the
ball to consist of innumerable minute par- mass of man. This mass is impelled in one
ticles, called atoms or molecules, which vi- direction by a force /, which is resisted by
brate or whirl around one another. We de- another partly frictional and partly negative
termine their masses and velocities, and from force B, acting in a direction exactly op-
them the energy of each of these minute sys- posite, and retarding the movement of the
tems, and adding them all together, we get mass. Such an antagonistic force is present
VOL. LX.-21.

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in every movement, and must be taken into THE FIRST PROBLEM: HOW TO INCREASE THE
consideration. The difl:erence between these HUMAN MASS—THE BURNING OP ATMO-
two forces is the effective force which im- SPHERIC NITROGEN.
parts a velocity V to the mass M in the
direction of the arrow on the line represent- VIEWED generally, there are obviously two
ing the force/. In accordance with the pre- ways of increasing the mass of mankind:
first, by aiding and maintaining those forces
and conditions which tend to increase it; and,
second,byopposing and reducingthose which
'septing
f
tend to diminish it. The mass will be in-
-^ creased by careful attention to health, by
substantial food, by moderation, by regularity
of habits, by the promotion of marriage, by
conscientious attention to the children, and,
generally stated, by the observance of all
the many precepts and laws of rehgion and
r hygiene. But in adding new mass to the old,
three cases again present themselves. Either
the mass added is of the same velocity as
the old, or it is of a smaller or of a higher
velocity. To gain an idea of the relative im-
of these cases, imagine a train
portance
composed of, say, one hundred
F
locomotives running on a track,
and suppose that, to increase the
energy of the moving mass, four
DIAGRAM a. THE THREE WAYS OF INCREASING more locomotives are added to the
HUMAN ENERGY. train. If these four move at the
same velocity at which the train is going, the
ceding, the human energy will then be given total energy will be increased four per cent.;
by the product i MV'^=iMVx V, in which if they are moving at only one half of that
M is the total mass of man in the ordinary velocity, the increase will amount to only one
interpretation of the term " mass," and V is per cent.; if they are moving at twice that ve-
a certain hypothetical velocity, which, in locity, the increase of energy will be sixteen
the present state of science, we are unable per cent. This simple illustration shows that
exactly to define and determine. To increase it is of the greatest importance to add mass of
the human energy is, therefore, equivalent a higher velocity. Stated more to the point,
to increasing this product, and there are, as if, for example, the children be of the same
will readily be seen, only three ways possible degree of enlightenment as the parents,—
to attain this result, which are illustrated in that is, mass of the "same velocity,"—the
the above diagram. The first way, shown energy will simply increase proportionately
in the top figure, is to increase the mass to the number added. If they are less in-
(as indicated by the dotted circle), leaving telligent or advanced, or mass of "smaller
the two opposing forces the same. The velocity," there will be a very slight gain in
second way is to reduce the retarding force the energy; but if they are further advanced,
B to a smaller value r, leaving the mass or mass of " higher velocity," then the new
and the impelling force the same, as dia- generation will add very considerably to the
grammatically shown in the middle figure. sum total of human energy. Any addition of
The third way, which is illustrated in the mass of " smaller velocity," beyond that in-
last figure, is to increase the impelling force dispensable amount required by the law ex-
/ t o a higher value F, while the mass and the pressed in the proverb, " Mens sana in cor-
retarding force R remain unaltered. Evi- pore sano," should be strenuously opposed.
dently fixed limits exist as regards increase For instance, the mere development of
of mass and reduction of retarding force, muscle, as aimed at in some of our col-
but the impelling force can be increased leges, I consider equivalent to adding mass
indefinitely. Each of these three possible of " smaller velocity," and I would not com-
solutions presents a difi:erent aspect of the mend it, although my views were difl:erent
main problem of increasing human energy, when I was a student myself. Moderate ex-
which is thus divided into three distinct ercise, insuring the right balance between
problems, to be successively considered.

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THE PROBLEM OP INCREASING HUMAN ENERGY. 179
mind and body, and the highest efficiency of fectant seems to offer a happy solution of
performance, is, of course, a prime require- the important question.
ment. The above example shows that the Gambling, business rush, and excitement,
most important result to be attained is the particularly on the exchanges, are causes
education, or the increase of the " velocity," of much mass-reduction, all the more so be-
of the mass newly added. cause the individuals concerned represent
Conversely, it scarcely need be stated that units of higher value. Incapacity of observ-
everything that is against the teachings of ing the first symptoms of an illness, and
religion and the laws of hygiene is tending careless neglect of the same, are important
to decrease the mass. Whisky, wine, tea, factors of mortality. In noting carefully
coffee, tobacco, and other such stimulants are every new sign of approaching danger, and
responsible for the shortening of the lives of making conscientiously every possible effort
many, and ought to be used with moderation. to avert it, we are not only following wise
But I do not think that rigorous measures laws of hygiene in the interest of our well-
of suppression of habits followed through being and the success of our labors, but we
many generations are commendable. It is are also complying with a higher moral duty.
wiser to preach moderation than abstinence. Every one should consider his body as a
We have become accustomed to these stimu- priceless gift from one whom he loves above
lants, and if such reforms are to be effected, all, as a marvelous work of art, of unde-
they must be slow and gradual. Those who scribable beauty and mastery beyond human
are devoting their energies to such ends conception, and so delicate and frail that a
could make themselves far more useful by word, a breath, a look, nay, a thought, may
turning their efforts in other directions, as, injure it. Uncleanliness, which breeds dis-
for instance, toward providing pure water. ease and death, is not only a self-destructive
For every person who perishes from the but a highly immoral habit. In keeping our
effects of a stimulant, at least a thousand bodies free from infection, healthful, and
die from the consequences of drinking im- pure, we are expressing our reverence for
pure water. This precious fluid, which daily the high principle with which they are en-
infuses new life into us, is likewise the chief dowed. He who follows the precepts of hy-
vehicle through which disease and death giene in this spirit is proving himself, so far,
enter our bodies. The germs of destruction truly religious. Laxity of morals is a ter-
it conveys are enemies all the more terrible rible evil, which poisons both mind and body,
as they perform their fatal work unper- and which is responsible for a great reduc-
ceived. They seal our doom while we live tion of the human mass in some countries.
and enjoy. The majority of people are so Many of the present customs and tenden-
ignorant or careless in drinking water, and cies are productive of similar hurtful re-
the consequences of this are so disastrous, sults. For example, the society life, modern
that a philanthropist can scarcely use his ef- education and pursuits of women, tend-
forts better than by endeavoring to enlighten ing to draw them away from their house-
those who are thus injuring themselves. hold duties and make men out of them, must
By systematic puriiication and steriliza- needs detract from the elevating ideal they
tion of the drinking-water the human mass represent, diminish the artistic creative
would be very considerably increased. It power, and cause sterility and a general weak-
should be made a rigid rule—which might be ening of the race. A thousand other evils
enforced by law—to boil or to sterilize other- might be mentioned, but all put together, in
wise the drinking-water in every household their bearing upon the problem under discus-
and public place. The mere filtering does sion, they would not equal a single one, the
not afford sufficient security against infec- want of food, brought on by poverty, desti-
tion. All ice for internal uses should be tution, and famine. Millions of individualsdie
artificially prepared from water thoroughly yearly for want of food, thus keeping down
sterilized. The importance of eliminating the mass. Even in our enlightened communi-
germs of disease from the city water is gen- ties, and notwithstanding the many charita-
erally recognized, but little is being done to ble efforts, this is still, in all probability, the
improve the existing conditions, as no sat- chief evil. I do not mean here absolute want
isfactory method of sterilizing great quan- of food, but want of healthful nutriment.
tities of water has as yet been brought for-
ward. By improved electrical appliances we How to provide good and plentiful food
are now enabled to produce ozone cheaply is, therefore, a most important question of
and in large amounts, and this ideal disin- the day. On general principles the raising
of cattle as a means of providing food is

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objectionable, because, in the sense inter- on such food is very doubtful. We are the
preted above, it must undoubtedly tend to result of ages of continuous adaptation, and
the addition of mass of a " smaller velocity." we cannot radically change without unfore-
It is certainly preferable to raise vegeta- seen and, in all probability, disastrous con-
bles, and I think, therefore, that vegetarian- sequences. So uncertain an experiment
ism is a commendable departure from the should not be tried. By far the best way, it
established barbarous habit. That we can seems to me, to meet the ravages of the evil,
subsist on plant food and perform our work would be to find ways of increasing the pro-
even to advantage is not a theory, but a well- ductivity of the soil. With this object the
demonstrated fact. Many races living al- preservation of forests is of an importance
most exclusively on vegetables are of supe- which cannot be overestimated, and in this
rior physique and strength. There is no connection, also, the utilization of water-
doubt that some plant food, such as oat- power for purposes of electrical transmis-
meal, is more economical than meat, and su- sion, dispensing in many ways with the ne-
perior to it in regard to both mechanical and cessity of burning wood, and tending thereby
mental performance. Such food, moreover, to forest preservation, is to be strongly ad-
taxes our digestive organs decidedlyless, and, vocated. But there are limits in the improve-
in making us more contented and sociable, ment to be effected in this and similar ways.
produces an amount of good difficult to es- To increase materially the productivity
timate. In view of these facts every effort of the soil, it must be more effectively
should be made to stop the wanton and cruel fertilized by artificial means. The question
slaughter of animals, which must be de- of food-production resolves itself, then, into
structive to our morals. To free ourselves the question how best to fertilize the soil.
from animal instincts and appetites, which What it is that made the soil is still a
keep us down, we should begin at the very mystery. To explain its origin is proba-
root from which they spring: we should bly equivalent to explaining the origin
effect a radical reform in the character of of life itself. The rocks, disintegrated by
the food. moisture and heat and wind and weather,
There seems to be no philosophical neces- were in themselves not capable of maintain-
sity for food. We can conceive of organized ing life. Some unexplained condition arose,
beings living without nourishment, and de- and some new principle came into effect, and
riving all the energy they need for the per- the first layer capable of sustaining low or-
formance of their life-functions from the ganisms, like mosses, was formed. These,
ambient medium. In a crystal we have the by their life and death, added more of the
clear evidence of the existence of a forma- life-sustaining quality to the soil, and higher
tive life-principle, and though we cannot organisms could then subsist, and so on and
understand the life of a crystal, it is none on, until at last highly developed plant and
the less a living being. There may be, be- animal life could flourish. But though the
sides crystals, other such individualized, theories are, even now, not in agreement as
material systems of beings, perhaps of gase- to how fertilization is effected, it is a fact,
ous constitution, or composed of substance only too well ascertained, that the soil can-
still more tenuous. In view of this possi- not indefinitely sustain life, and some way
bility,—nay, probability,—we cannot apo- must be found to supply it with the sub-
dictically deny the existence of organized stances which have been abstracted from it
beings on a planet merely because the condi- by the plants. The chief and most valuable
tions on the same are unsuitable for the among these substances are compounds of
existence of life as we conceive it. We nitrogen, and the cheap production of these
cannot even, with positive assurance, assert is, therefore, the key for the solution of the
that some of them might not be present all-important food problem. Our atmosphere
here, in this our world, in the very midst of contains an inexhaustible amount of nitro-
us, for their constitution and life-manifes- gen, and could we but oxidize it and produce
tation may be such that we are unable to these compounds, an incalculable benefit for
perceive them. mankind would follow.
The production of artificial food as a Long ago this idea took a powerful hold
means for causing an increase of the human on the imagination of scientific men, but an
mass naturally suggests itself, but a direct efficient means for accomplishing this result
attempt of this kind to provide nourishment could not be devised. The problem was ren-
does not appear to me rational, at least not dered extremely difficult by the extraordinary
for the present. Whether we could thrive inertness of the nitrogen, which refuses to

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THE PROBLEM OF INCREASING HUMAN ENERGY. 181
combine even with oxygen. But here elec- charge visible is produced by the intense elec-
tricity comes to our aid: the dormant affini- trical oscillations which pass through the
ties of the element are awakened by an elec- coil shown, and violently agitate the electri-
tric current of the proper quality. As a lump fied molecules of the air. By this means a
of coal which has beenin contact with oxygen strong affinity is created between the two
for centuries without burning will combine normally indifferent constituents of the at-
with it when once ignited, so nitrogen, excited mosphere, and they combine readily, even if
by electricity, will burn. I did not succeed, no further provision is made for intensifying
however, in producing electrical discharges the chemical action of the discharge. In the
exciting very effectively the atmospheric manufacture of nitrogen compounds by this
nitrogen until a comparatively recent date, method, of course, every possible means
although I showed, in May, 1891, in a scien- bearing upon the intensity of this action
tific lecture, a novel form of discharge or and the efficiency of the process will be taken
electrical flame named " St. Elmo's hotfire," advantage of, and, besides, special arrange-
which, besides being capable Of generating ments will be provided for the fixation of
ozone in abundance, also possessed, as I the compounds formed, as they are gener-
pointed out on that occasion, distinctly the ally unstable, the nitrogen becoming again
quality of exciting chemical affinities. This inert after a little lapse of time. Steam is
discharge orflamewas then only three or four a simple and effective means for fixing per-
inches long, its chemical action was likewise manently the compounds. The result illus-
very feeble, and consequently the process of trated makes it practicable to oxidize the
oxidation of the nitrogen was wasteful. How atmospheric nitrogen in unlimited quanti-
to intensify this action was the question. ties, merely by the use of cheap mechanical
Evidently electric currents of a peculiar kind power and simple electrical apparatus. In
had to be produced in order to render the pro- this manner many compounds of nitrogen
cess of nitrogen combustion more efficient. may be manufactured all over the world, at
a small cost, and in any desired amount,
The first advance was made in ascer- and by means of these compounds the soil
taining that the chemical activity of the can be fertilized and its productiveness indefi-
discharge was very considerably increased nitely increased. An abundance of cheap
by using currents of extremely high fre- and healthful food, not artificial, but such as
quency or rate of vibration. This was an we are accustomed to, may thus be obtained.
important improvement, but practical con- This new and inexhaustible source of food-
siderations soon set a definite limit to the supply will be of incalculable benefit to man-
progress in this direction. Next, the ef- kind, for it will enormously contribute to the
fects of the electrical pressure of the cur- increase of the human mass, and thus add
rent impulses, of their wave-form and other immensely to human energy. Soon, I hope,
characteristic features, were investigated. the world will see the beginning of an indus-
Then the influence of the atmospheric pres- try which, in time to come, will, I believe, be
sure and temperature and of the presence in importance next to that of iron.
of water and other bodies was studied, and
thus the best conditions for causing the
most intense chemical action of the dis-
charge and securing the highest efficiency of THE SECOND PROBLEM: HOW TO REDUCE THE
the process were gradually ascertained. Nat- FORCE RETARDING THE HUMAN MASS—THE
urally, the improvements were not quick in ART OF TELAUTOMATICS.
coming; still, little by little, I advanced. The As before stated, the force which retards
flame grew larger and larger, and its oxidizing the onward movement of man is partly fric-
action more and more intense. From an in- tional and partly negative. To illustrate
significant brush-discharge a few inches long this distinction I may name, for example,
it developed into a marvelous electrical phe- ignorance, stupidity, and imbecility as some
nomenon, a roaring blaze, devouring the ni- of the purely frictional forces, or resistances
trogen of the atmosphere and measuring devoid of any directive tendency. On the
sixty or seventy feet across. Thus slowly, other hand, visionariness, insanity, self-de-
almost imperceptibly, possibility became ac- structive tendency, religious fanaticism, and
complishment. All is not yet done, by any
the like, are all forces of a negative character,
means, but to what a degree my efl'orts have
been rewarded an idea may be gained from acting in definite directions. To reduce or
an inspection of Pig. 1 (p. 176), which, with its entirely to overcome these dissimilar retard-
title, is self-explanatory. The flame-like dis- ing forces, radically different methods must
be employed. One knows, for instance, what

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a fanatic may do, and one can take preven- Universal peace is a beautiful dream, but
tive measures, can enlighten, convince, and not at once realizable. We have seen re-
possibly direct him, turn his vice into vir- cently that even the noble efliort of the man
tue; but one does not know, and never can invested with the greatest worldly power
know, what a brute or an imbecile may do, and has been virtually without effect. And no
one must deal with him as with a mass, wonder, for the establishment of universal
inert, without mind, let loose by the mad peace is, for the time being, a physical im-
elements. A negative force always implies possibility. War is a negative force, and
some quality, not infrequently a high one, cannot be turned in a positive direction
though badly directqd, which it is possible to without passing through the intermediate
turn to good advantage; but a directionless, phases. It is the problem of making a wheel,
frictional force involves unavoidable loss. rotating one way, turn in the opposite direc-
Evidently, then, the first and general answer tion without slowing it down, stopping it,
to the aljove question is: turn all negative and speeding it up again the other way.
force in the right direction and reduce all It has been argued that the perfection of
frictional force. guns of great destructive power will stop
There can be no doubt that, of all the warfare. So I myself thought for a long
frictional resistances, the one that most time, but now I believe this to be a profound
retards human movement is ignorance. Not mistake. Such developments will greatly
without reason said that man of wisdom, modify, but not arrest it. On the contrary,
Buddha: "Ignorance is the greatest evil in I think that every new arm that is invented,
the world." The friction which results from every new departure that is made in this
ignorance, and which is greatly increased direction, merely invites new talent and skill,
owingto the numerous languages andnation- engages new effort, offers a new incentive,
alities, can be reduced only by the spread and so only gives a fresh impetus to further
of knowledge and the unification of the het- development. Think of the discovery of gun-
erogeneous elements of humanity. No effort powder. Can we conceive of any more radical
could be better spent. But however igno- departure than was effected by this innova-
rance may have retarded the onward move- tion? Let us imagine ourselves living in
ment of man in times past, it is certain that, that period: would we not have thought then
nowadays, negative forces have become of that warfare was at an end, when the armor
greater importance. Among these there is of the knight became an object of ridicule,
one of far greater moment than any other. when bodily strength and slill, meaning so
It is called organized warfare. When we much before, became of comparatively little
consider the milHons of individuals, often value ? Yet gunpowder did not stop warfare;
the ablest in mind and body, the flower of quite the opposite—it acted as a most pow-
humanity, who are compelled to a life of erful incentive. Nor do I believe'that war-
inactivity and unproductiveness, the im- fare can ever be arrested by any scientific
mense sums of money daily required for the or ideal development, so long as similar con-
maintenance of armies and war apparatus, ditions to those now prevailing exist, because
representing ever so much of human energy, war has itself become a science, and be-
all the efiiort uselessly spent in the produc- cause war involves some of the most sacred
tion of arms and implements of destruction, sentiments of which man is capable. In fact,
the loss of life and the fostering of a bar- it is doubtful whether men who would not
barous spirit, we are appalled at the ines- be ready to fight for a high principle would
timable loss to mankind which the existence be good for anything at all. It is not the
of these deplorable conditions must involve. mind which makes man, nor is it the body;
What can we do to combat best this great it is mind and body. Our virtues and our
evil? failings are inseparable, like force and mat-
ter. When they separate, man is no more.
Law and order absolutely require the
maintenance of organized force. No com- Another argument, which carries consid-
munity can exist and prosper without rigid erable force, is frequently made, namely,
discipline. Every country must be able to that war must soon become impossible be-
defend itself, should the necessity arise. The cause the means of defense are outstripping
conditions of to-day are not the result of the means of attack. This is only in accor-
yesterday, and a radical change cannot be dance with a fundamental law which may be
effected to-morrow. If the nations would at expressed by the statement that it is easier
once disarm, it is more than likely that a state to destroy than to build. This law defines
of things worse than war itself would follow. human capacities and human conditions.

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THE PROBLEM OP INCREASING HUMAN ENERGY. 183
Were these such that it would be easier to therefore, seem to be the first rational step
build than to destroy, man would go on unre- to take toward diminishing the force retard-
sisted, creating and accumulating without ing human movement.
limit. Such conditions are not of this earth. Fortunately, the existing conditions can-
A being which could do this would not be a not continue indefinitely, for a new element
man; it might be a god. Defense will always is beginning to assert itself. A change
have the advantage over attack, but this for the better is imminent, and I shall now.
alone, it seems to me, can never stop war. endeavor to show what, according to my
By the use of new principles of defense we ideas, will be the first advance toward the
can render harbors impregnable against establishment of peaceful relations between
attack, but we cannot by such means pre- nations, and by what means it will eventually
vent two war-ships meeting in battle on the be accomplished.
high sea. And then, if we follow this idea Let us go back to the early beginning,
to its ultimate development, we are led to when the law of the stronger was the only
the conclusion that it would be better for law. The light of reason was not yet kindled,
mankind if attack and defense were just and the weak was entirely at the mercy
oppositely related; for if every country, of the strong. The weak individual then
even the smallest, could surround itself with began to learn how to defend himself. He
a wall absolutely impenetrable, and could made use of a club, stone, spear, sling, or
defy the rest of the world, a state of things bow and arrow, and in the course of time,
would surely be brought on which would be instead of physical strength, intelligence be-
extremely unfavorable to human progress. It came the chief deciding factor in the battle.
is by abolishing all the barriers which sepa- The wild character was gradually softened
rate nations and countries that civilization by the awakening of noble sentiments, and
is best furthered. so, imperceptibly, after ages of continued
Again, it is contended by some that the progress, we have come from the brutal fight
advent of the flying-machine must bring on of the unreasoning animal to what we call
universal peace. This, too, I believe to be an the " civilized warfare " of to-day, in which
entirely erroneous view. The flying-machine the combatants shake hands, talk in a
is certainly coming, and very soon, but the friendly way, and smoke cigars in the en-
conditions will remain the same as before. tr'actes, ready to engage again in deadly
In fact, I see no reason why a ruling power, conflict at a signal. Let pessimists say what
like Great Britain, might not govern the they like, here is an absolute evidence of
air as well as the sea. Without wishing great and gratifying advance.
to put myself on record as a prophet, I do But now, what is the next phase in this
not hesitate to say that the next years will evolution? Not peace as yet, by any means.
see the establishment of an "air-power," and The next change which should naturally fol-
its center may not be far from New York. low from modern developments should be
But, for all that, men will fight on merrily. the continuous diminution of the number of
The ideal development of the war princi- individuals engaged in battle. The apparatus
ple would ultimately lead to the transforma- will be one of specifically great power, but
tion of the whole energy of war into purely only a few individuals will be required to
potential, explosive energy, like that of an operate it. This evolution will bring more
electrical condenser. In this form the war- and more into prominence a machine or
energy could be maintained without efi'ort; mechanism with the fewest individuals as an
it would need to be much smaller in amount, element of warfare, and the absolutely un-
while incomparably more efi'ective. avoidable consequence of this will be the
As regards the security of a country abandonment of large, clumsy, slowly moving,
against foreign invasion, it is interesting to and unmanageable units. Greatest possible
note that it depends only on the relative, speed and maximum rate of energy-delivery
and not on the absolute, number of the in- by the war apparatus will be the main object.
dividuals or magnitude of the forces, and The loss of life will become smaller and
that, if every country should reduce the smaller, and finally, the number of the in-
war-force in the same ratio, the security dividuals continuously diminishing, merely
would remain unaltered. An international machines will meet in a contest without blood-
agreement with the object of reducing to a shed, the nations being simply interested,
minimum the war-force which, in view of ambitious spectators. When this happy con-
the present still imperfect education of the dition is realized, peace will be assured. But,
masses, is absolutely indispensable, would, no matter to what degree of perfection rapid-

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184 THE CENTURY MAGAZINE.
fire guns, high-power cannon, explosive pro- I noted, namely, that whenever the image of
jectiles, torpedo-boats, or other implements an object appeared before my eyes I had
of war may be brought, no matter how de- seen something which reminded me of it. In
structive they may be made, that condition the first instances I thought this to be purely
can never be reached through any such de- accidental, but soon I convinced myself
velopment. All such implements require men that it was not so. A visual impression, con-
for their operation; men are indispensable sciously or unconsciously received, invariably
parts of the machinery. Their object is to preceded the appearance of the image. Grad-
kill and to destroy. Their power resides in ually the desire.arose in me to find out, every
their capacity for doing evil. So long as men time, what caused the images to appear, and
meet in battle, there will be bloodshed. the satisfaction of this desire soon became a
Bloodshed will ever keep up barbarous pas- necessity. The next observation I made was
sion. To break this fierce spirit, a radical that, just as these images followed as a result
departure must be made, an entirely new of something I had seen, so also the thoughts
principle must be introduced, something that which I conceived were suggested in like
never existed before in warfare—a principle manner. Again, I experienced the same de-
which will forcibly, unavoidably, turn the sire to locate the image which caused the
battle into a mere spectacle, a play, a con- thought, and this search for the original
test without loss of blood. To bring on this visual impression soon grew to be a second
result men must be dispensed with: machine nature. My mind became automatic, as it
must fight machine. But how accomplish were, and in the course of years of continued,
that which seems impossible? The answer almost unconscious performance, I acquired
is simple enough: produce a machine capable the ability of locating every time and, as a
of acting as though it were part of a human rule, instantly the visual impression which
being—no mere mechanical contrivance, started the thought. Nor is this all. It was
comprising levers, screws, wheels, clutches, not long before I was aware that also all my
and nothing more, but a machine embodying movements were prompted in the same way,
a higher principle, which will enable it to per- and so, searching, observing, and verifying
form its duties as though it had intelligence, continuously, year after year, I have, by
experience, reason, judgment, a mind! This every thought and every act of mine, de-
conclusion is the result of my thoughts and monstrated, and do so daily, to my absolute
observations which have extended through satisfaction, that I am an automaton en-
virtually my whole life, and I shall now dowed with power of movement, which merely
briefly describe how I came to accomplish responds to external stimuli beating upon
that which at first seemed an unrealizable my sense organs, and thinks and acts and
dream. moves accordingly. I remember only one or
two cases in all my life in which I was unable
A long time ago, when 1 was a boy, I was to locate the first impression which prompted
afilicted with a singular trouble, which seems a movement or a thought, or even a dream.
to have been due to an extraordinary excita- With these experiences it was only natural
bility of the retina. It was the appearance that, long ago, I conceived the idea of con-
of images which, by their persistence, marred structing an automaton which would me-
the vision of real objects and interfered chanically represent me, and which would
with thought. When a word was said to me, respond, as I do myself, but, of course, in a
the image of the object which it designated much more primitive manner, to external
would appear vividly before my eyes, and influences. Such an automaton evidently
many times it was impossible for me to tell had to have motive power, organs for loco-
whether the object I saw was real or not. motion, directive organs, and one or more
This caused me great discomfort and anxi- sensitive organs so adapted as to be excited
ety, and I tried hard to free myself of the by external stimuli. This machine would, I
spell. But for a long time I tried in vain, reasoned, perform its movements in the
and it was not, as I still clearly recollect, manner of a living being, for it would have
until I was about twelve years old that I all the chief mechanical characteristics or
succeeded for the first time, by an effort of elements of the same. There was still the
the will, in banishing an image which pre- capacity for growth, propagation, and, above
sented itself. My happiness will never be as all, the mind which would be wanting to
complete as it was then, but, unfortunately make the model complete. But growth was
(as I thought at that time), the old trouble not necessary in this case, since a machine
returned, and with it my anxiety. Here it was could be manufactured full-grown, so to
that the observations to which I refer began.

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mI'll
M

PIG. 2. THE FIRST PRACTICAL TELAUTOMATON.

A macUijie liaving all its bodily or translatory movements aud the operations of the interior
meeliauisiu controlled from a distance without wires. Tlie crewless boat sliown in the photograph
contains its own motive power, propelling- and steei'ing-machinory, aud numerous other acces-
sories, all of which are controlled by transmitting from a distance, "without wires, electrical oscil-
lations to a circuit carried by the boat aud adjnstecl to respond only to tliese oscillations.

speak. As to the capacity for propagation, would effect the control of all its movements
it could likewise be left out of considera- and operations, and cause it to act, in any
tion, for in the mechanical model it merely unforeseen case that might present itself,
signiiied a process of manufacture. Whether with knowledge, reason, judgment, and ex-
the automaton be offlesh and bone, or of wood perience. But this element I could easily
and steel, it mattered little, provided it could embody in it by conveying to it my own in-
perform all the duties required of it like an telligence, my own understanding. So this
intelligent being. To do so, it had to have invention was evolved, and so a new art
an element corresponding to the mind, which came into existence, for which the name
VOL. LX.-22.

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186 THE CENTURY MAGAZINE.
correspond to the ear rather than to the eye
of a human being, for in this case its actions
could be controlled irrespective of interven-
ing obstacles, regardless of its position rela-
tive to the distant controlling apparatus,
and, last, but not least, it would remain deaf

17111 and unresponsive, like a faithful servant, to


all calls but that of its master. These re-
quirements made it imperative to use, in
the control of the automaton, instead of
IllHiiii
FIG. 3 . EXPERIMENT TO ILLUSTRATE THE SUPPLYING
OP ELECTRICAL ENERGY THROUGH A SINGLE
light- or other rays, waves or disturbances
which propagate in all directions through
space, like sound, or which follow a path of
WIRE WITHOUT RETURN.
least resistance, however curved. I attained
An ordinary incandescent lamp, connected with one
orhoth of Its terminals to the wire forming the upper the result aimed at by means of an electric
free end of the coil shown in the photograph, is lighted circuit placed within the boat, and adjusted,
by electrical vihrations conveyed to it through the coil
from an electrical oscillator, which Is worked only to or " tuned," exactly to electrical vibrations
one fifth of one ]per cent, of its full capacity. of the proper kind transmitted to it from a
" telautomatics " has been suggested, which
means the art of controlling the move-
ments and operations of distant automatons.
This principle evidently was applicable to
any kind of machine that moves on land or in
the water or in the air. In applying it prac-
tically for the iirst time, I selected a boat (see
Fig. 2). A storage battery placed within it
furnished the motive power. The propeller,
driven by a motor, represented the locomo-
tive organs. The rudder, controlled by an-
other motor likewise driven by the battery,
took the place of the directive organs. As
to the sensitive organ, obviously the first
thought was to utilize a device responsive
to rays of light, like a selenium cell, to repre-
sent the human eye. But upon cioser in-
quiry I found that, owing to experimental
and other difficulties, no thoroughly satis-
factory control of the automaton could be
mm. '-**s': J^i^fi^w**!; - '.\- 7''
s'SiUfcii-r.;'; " ; *
.HHiJ'.v/'.^?**;'''
effected by light, radiant heat, Hertzian
radiations, or by rays in general, that is,
disturbances which pass in straight lines
through space. One of the reasons was
that any obstacle coming between the opera-
tor and the distant automaton would place
it beyond his control. Another reason was
that the sensitive device representing the
eye would have to be in a definite position
with respect to the distant controlling ap-
paratus, and this necessity would impose
great limitations in the control. Still an-
other and very important reason was that,
in using rays, it would be difficult, if not im- H G . 4., EXPERIMENT TO ILLUSTRATE THE TRANSMIS-
possible, to give to the automaton individual SION OP ELECTRICAL ENERGY THROUGH THE
features or characteristics distinguishing it EARTH WITHOUT WIRE.

from other machines of this kind. Evidently The coil shown in the photograph has its lower end or
terminal connected to the ground, and is exactly attuned
the automaton should respond only to an in- to the vibrations of a distant oleotrical oscillator. ;a;iie
lamplightedlsin auindependentVireloop, energized bj-
dividual call, as a person responds to a name. Induction from the coil excited by the electrical vibra-
Such considerations led me to conclude that tions transmitted to it through the ground from the
oscillator, which is worked only to five per cent, of its
the sensitive device of the machine should full capacity.

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FIG. PHOTOGRAPHIC VIEW OF COILS RESPONDING TO ELECTRICAL OSCILLATIONS.
The picture shows a nnniher of coils, dilferently a t t u n e d and responding t o t h e vlhrations t r a n s m i t t e d t o
t h e m t h r o u g h t h e e a r t h trom a n electrical oscillator. The large coll on the right, discharging strongly, Is t u n e d
to the fundamental vihration, which is fifty t h o u s a n d per second; t h e two larger vertical colls t o twice t h a t
n u m b e r ; t h e smaller white w i r e coil t o four t i m e s t h a t number, and t h e r e m a i n i n g small coils to higher tones.
The vibrations produced hy the oscillator were so intense t h a t t h e y affected perceptibly a small coil t u n e d to t h e
twenty-sixth higher tone.

distant " electrical oscillator." This circuit, influences affecting its sensitive organs, a
in responding, however feebly, to the trans- great variety of acts and operations as if it
mitted vibrations, affected magnets and had intelligence. It will be able to follow a
other contrivances, through the medium of course laid out or to obey orders given far
which were controlled the movements of the in advance; it will be capable of distinguish-
propeller and rudder, and also the operations ing between what it ought and what it ought
of numerous other appliances. not to do, and of making experiences or,
By the simple means described the know- otherwise stated, of recording impressions
ledge, experience, judgment—the mind, so to which will definitely affect its subsequent
speak—of the distant operator were embod- actions. In fact, I have already conceived
ied in that machine, which was thus enabled such a plan.
to move and to perform all its operations Although I evolved this invention many
with reason and intelligence. It behaved just years ago and explained it to my visitors
like a blindfolded person obeying directions very frequently in my laboratory demonstra-
received through the ear. tions, it was not until much later, long after
The automatons so far constructed had I had perfected it, that it became known,
"borrowed minds," so to speak, as each when, naturally enough, it gave rise to much
merely formed part of the distant operator discussion and to sensational reports. But
who conveyed to it his intelligent orders; the true significance of this new art was not
but this art is only in the beginning. I pur- grasped by the majority, nor was the great
pose to show that, however impossible it force of the underlying principle recognized.
may now seem, an automaton may be con- As nearly as I could judge from the nu-
trived which will have its " own mind," merous comments which then appeared, the
and by this I mean that it will be able, in- results I had obtained were considered as
dependent of any operator, left entirely to entirely impossible. Even the few who were
itself, to perform, in response to external disposed to admit the practicabihty of the
187

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r i G . 6. PHOTOGRAPHIC VIEW OP THE ESSENTIAL PARTS OP THE ELECTRICAL OSCILLATOR USED
IN THE EXPERIMENTS DESCRIBED.

invention saw in it merely an automobile to submarine and aerial vessels. There is vir-
torpedo, which was to be used for the pur- tually no restriction as to the amount of ex-
pose of blowing up battle-ships, with doubtful plosive it can carry, or as to the distance at
success. The general impression was that I which it can strike, and failure is almost im-
contemplated simply the steering of such a possible. But the force of this new principle
vessel by means of Hertzian or other rays. does not wholly reside in its destructiveness.
There are torpedoes steered electrically by Its advent introduces into warfare an ele-
wires, and there are means of communicat- ment which never existed before—a fighting-
ing without wires, and the above was, of machine without men as a means of attack
course, an obvious inference. Had I accom- and defense. The continuous development in
plished nothing more than this, I should have this direction must ultimately make war a
made a small advance indeed. But the art mere contest of machines without men and
I have evolved does not contemplate merely without loss of life—a condition which would
the change of direction of a moving vessel; have been impossible without this new depar-
it affords a means of absolutely controlling, ture, and which, in my opinion, must be
in every respect, all the innumerable trans- reached as preliminary to permanent peace.
latory movements, as well as the operations The future will either bear out or disprove
of all the internal organs, no matter how these views. My ideas on this subject have
many, of an individualized automaton. Criti- been put forth with deep conviction, but in
cisms to the effect that the control of the a humble spirit.
automaton could be interfered with were The establishment of permanent peaceful
made by people who do not even dream of relations between nations would most effec-
the wonderful results which can be accom- tively reduce the force retarding the human
plished by the use of electrical vibrations. mass, and would be the best solution of this
The world moves slowly, and new truths are great human problem. But will the dream
difficult to see. Certainly, by the use of this of universal peace ever be realized? Let us
principle, an arm for attack as well as de- hope that it will. When all darkness shall
fense may be provided, of a destructiveness be dissipated by the light of science, when
all the greater as the principle is applicable all nations shall be merged into one, and
188

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THE PROBLEM OF INCREASING HUMAN ENERGY. 189
patriotism shall be identical with religion, ment, would be of advantage, particularly in
when there shall be one language, one coun- conveying an idea of that hypothetical " ve-
try, one end, then the dream will have be- locity " which, as explained in the beginning,
come reality. is a measure of human energy; but to deal
with this specifically here, as I would desire,
THE THIRD PROBLEM: HOW TO INCREASE THE would lead me far beyond the scope of the
FORCE ACCELERATING THE HUMAN MASS — present subject. Suffice it to state that the
THE HARNESSING OF THE S U N ' S ENERGY.
resultant of all these forces is always in
the direction of reason, which, therefore, de-
OP the three possible solutions of the main termines, at any time, the direction of human
problem of increasing human energy, this is movement. This is to say that every effort
by far the most important to consider, not which is scientifically applied, rational, use-
only because of its intrinsic significance, but ful, or practical, must be in the direction in
also because of its intimate bearing on all which the mass is moving. The practical,
the many elements and conditions which de- rational man, the observer, the man of busi-
termine the movement of humanity. In order ness, he who reasons, calculates, or deter-
to proceed systematically, it would be neces- mines in advance, carefully applies his effort
sary for me to dwell on all those considera- so that when coming into effect it will be in
tions which have guided me from the outset the direction of the movement, making it
in my efforts to arrive at a solution, and thus most efficient, and in this knowledge
which have led me, step by step, to the re- and ability lies the secret of his success.
sults I shall now describe. As a preliminary Every new fact discovered, every new ex-
study of the problem an analytical investi- perience or new element added to our know-
gation, such as I have made, of the chief ledge and entering into the domain of rea-
forces which determine the onward move- son, affects the same and, therefore, changes

iiliil

FIG. 7. EXPERIMENT TO ILLUSTRATE AN INDUCTIVE EFFECT OF AN ELECTRICAL


OSCILLATOR OP GREAT POWER.
Tlie photograpti shows three ordinary incandescent lamps lighted t o full candle-power h y c u r r e n t s in-
duced m a local loop consisting of a single wire forming a s q u a r e of fifty feet each side, which includes t h e
lamps, a n d which is a t a distance of one hundred feet from the p r i m a r y circuit energized b y t h e oscillator.
The I09P hkewise includes a n electrical condenser, a n d is exactly a t t u n e d t o t h e vibrations of t h e oscillator,
w h i c h 18 worked a t less t h a n five p e r cent, of i t s t o t a l capacity.

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Noiu TO PIG. 8.—The coil, partly shown In the photograph, creates an alternative movement of electricity
from the earth into a large reservoir and hack at the rate of one Hundred thousand alternations per second.
The adjustments are such that the reservoir is filled full and hursts at each alternation just at the moment
when the electrical pressure reaches the maximum. The discharge escapes with a deafening noise, striking an
unconnected coil twenty-two feet away, and creating such a commotion of electricity in the earth that sparks
an inch long can be drawn from a water-main at a distance of three hundred feet from the laboratory.

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FIG. 9. EXPERIMENT TO ILLUSTRATE THE CAPACITY OF THE OSCILLATOR FOE CREATING
A GREAT ELECTRICAL MOVEMENT.
The baU shown In t h e photograph, covered with a polished metallic coating of t w e n t y square feet of
surface, represents a large reservoir of electricity, and the inverted tin p a n underneath, with a sharp
rim, a big opening through which t h e electricity can escape before filling the reservoir. The quantity
of electricity set in movement is so great t h a t , although most of it escapes t h r o u g h t h e rim of t h e
p a n or opening provided, t h e ball or reservoir is nevertheless alternately emptied and filled to over-
flowing (as IS evident from t h e discharge escaping on t h e top of t h e ball) one hundred and fifty thou-
sand times x>er second.

the direction of the movement, which, how- steam-power; the trains bring our breakfast
ever, must always take place along the re- from distant localities; the elevators in our
sultant of all those efforts which, at that dwelling and in our office building, the cars
time,,we designate as reasonable, that is, that carry us there, are all driven by power;
self-preserving, useful, profitable, or practi- in all our daily errands, and in our very life-
cal. These efforts concern our daily life, our pursuit, we depend upon it; all the objects
necessities and comforts, our work and busi- we see tell us of it; and when we return to
ness, and it is these which drive man onward. our machine-made dwelling at night, lest we
But looking at all this busy world about should forget it, all the material comforts of
us, on all this complex mass as it daily throbs our home, our cheering stove and lamp, re-
and moves, what is it but an immense clock- mind us how much we depend on power. And
work driven by a spring? In the morning, when there is an accidental stoppage of the
when we rise, we cannot fail to note that all machinery, when the city is snow-bound, or
the objects about us are manufactured by the life-sustaining movement otherwise tem-
machinery: the water we use is lifted by porarily arrested, we are affrighted to realize

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PIG. 10. PHOTOGRAPHIC VIEW OF AN EXPERIMENT TO ILLUSTRATE AN EFFECT OF AN ELECTRICAL OSCILLATOR
DELIVERING ENERGY AT A RATE OP SEVENTY-FIVE THOUSAND HORSE-POWER.

The discharge, creating a strong draft owing to the heating of the air, is carried upward through the open
roof of the hullding. The greatest width across is nearly seventy feet. The pressure is over twelve million
volts, and the current alternates one hundred and thirty thousand times per second.

how impossible it would be for us to live the So we find that the three possible solu-
life we live without motive power. Motive tions of the great problem of increasing
power means work. To increase the force human energy are answered by the three
accelerating human movement means, there- words: food, peace, work. Many a year I
fore, to perform more work. have thought and pondered, lost myself in

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THE PROBLEM OF INCREASING HUMAN ENERGY. 193
speculations and theories, considering man of man more of the sun's energy. We honor
as a mass moved by a force, viewing his and revere those great men of bygone times
inexplicable movement in the light of a whose • names are linked with immortal
mechanical one, and applying the simple achievements, who have proved themselves
principles of mechanics to the analysis of benefactors of humanity—the religious re-
the same until I arrived at these solutions, former with his wise maxims of life, the
only to realize that they were taught to m.e philosopher with his deep truths, the mathe-
in my early childhood. These three words matician with his formulse, the physicist
sound the key-notes of the Christian religion. with his laws, the discoverer with his prin-
Their scientific meaning and purpose are now ciples and secrets wrested from nature, the
clear to me: food to increase the mass, peace artist with his forms of the beautiful; but
to diminish the retarding force, and work to who honors him, the greatest of all,—who
increase the force accelerating human move- can tell the name of him,—who first turned
ment. These are the only three solutions to use the sun's energy to save the effort of
which are possible of that great problem, a weak fellow-creature ? That was man's first
and all of them have one object, one end, act of scientific philanthropy, and its con-
namely, to increase human energy. When sequences have been incalculable.
we recognize this, we cannot help wonder- Prom the very beginning three ways of
ing how profoundly wise and scientific drawing energy from the sun were open to
and how immensely practical the Christian man. The savage, when he warmed his frozen
religion is, and in what a marked contrast it limbs at a fire kindled in some way, availed
stands in this respect to other religions. himself of the energy of the sun stored
It is unmistakably the result of practical in the burning material. When he carried
experiment and scientific observation which a bundle of branches to his cave and burned
have extended through ages, while other them there, he made use of the sun's stored
religions seem to be the outcome of merely energy transported from one to another
abstract reasoning. Work, untiring effort, locality. When he set sail to his canoe,
useful and accumulative, with periods of rest he utilized the energy of the sun supplied to
and recuperation aiming at higher efficiency, the atmosphere or ambient medium. There
is its chief and ever-recurring command. can be no doubt that the first is the oldest
Thus we are inspired both by Christianity way. A fire, found accidentally, taught
and Science to do our utmost toward in- the savage to appreciate its beneficial heat.
creasing the performance of mankind. This He then very likely conceived the idea of
most important of human problems I shall carrying the glowing embers to his abode.
now specifically consider. Finally he learned to use the force of a
swift current of water or air. It is char-
acteristic of modern development that prog-
THE SODECE OF HUMAN ENERGY—THE ress has been effected in the same order.
THREE WAYS OF DRAWING ENERGY PROM The utilization of the energy stored in wood
THE SUN. or coal, or, generally speaking, fuel, led to
FIRST let us ask: Whence comes all the the steam-engine. Next a great stride in
motive power? What is the spring that advance was made in energy-transportation
drives all? We see the ocean rise and fall, by the use of electricity, which permitted the
the riversflow,the wind, rain, hail, and snow transfer of energy from one locality to an-
beat on our windows, the trains and steamers other without transporting the material.
come and go; we hear the rattling noise of But as to the utilization of the energy of
carriages, the voices from the street; we the ambient medium, no radical step for-
feel, smell, and taste; and we think of all ward has as yet been made known.
this. And all this movement, from the surg- The ultimate results of development in these
ing of the mighty ocean to that subtle move- three directions are: first, the burning of
ment concerned in our thought, has but one coal by a cold process in a battery; second,
common cause. All this energy emanates the efficient utilization of the energy of the
from one single center, one single source— ambient medium; and, third, the transmission
the sun. The sun is the spring that drives without wires of electrical energy to any dis-
all. The sun maintains all human life and tance. In whatever way these results may
supplies all human energy. Another answer be arrived at, their practical application will
we have now found to the above great ques- necessarily involve an extensive use of iron,
tion: To increase the force accelerating and this invaluable metal will undoubtedly
human movement means to turn to the uses be an essential element in the further de-
VOL. L X . - 2 3 .

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velopment along these three lines. If we of iron be represented by ten, for instance, I
succeed in burning coal by a cold process should not think it exaggeration to estimate
and thus obtaining electrical energy in an the negative force of war, with due consid-
efficient and inexpensive manner, we shall eration of all its retarding influences and
require in many practical uses of this energy results, at, say, six. Gn the basis of this
electric motors—that is, iron. If we are estimate the effective impelling force of iron
successful in deriving energy from the am- in the positive direction would be measured
bient medium, we shall need, both in the by the diflierence of these two numbers,
obtainment and utilization of the energy, which is four. But if, through the establish-
machinery—again, iron. If we realize the ment of universal peace, the manufacture of
transmission of electrical energy without war machinery should cease, and all struggle
wires on an industrial scale, we shall be for supremacy between nations should be
compelled to use extensively electric gene- turned into healthful, ever active and pro-
rators—once more, iron. Whatever we may ductive commercial competition, then the
do, iron will probalsly be the chief means of positive impelling force due to iron would be
accomplishment in the near future, possibly measured by the sum of those two numbers,
more so than in the past. How long its reign which is sixteen—that is, this force would
will last is difficult to tell, for even now alu- have four times its present value. This ex-
minium is looming up as a threatening com- ample is, of course, merely intended to give
petitor. But for the time being, next to an idea of the immense increase in the useful
providing new resources of energy, it is of performance of mankind which would result
the greatest importance to make improve- from a radical reform of the iron industries
supplying the implements of warfare.
ments in the manufacture and utihzation of
iron. Great advances are possible in these A similar inestimable advantage in the
latter directions, which, if brought about, saving of energy available to man would
would enormously increase the useful per- be secured by obviating the great waste of
formance of mankind. coal which is inseparably connected with the
present methods of manufacturing iron. In
some countries, as in Great Britain, the
GREAT POSSIBILITIES OFFERED BY IRON FOR
hurtful effects of this squandering of fuel
INCREASING HUMAN PERFORMANCE—ENOR-
are beginning to be felt. The price of coal
MOUS WASTE IN IRON MANUFACTURE.
is constantly rising, and the poor are made
IRON is by far the most important factor in to suffer more and more. Though v^ are
modern progress. It contributes more than still far from the dreaded " exhaustion of the
any other industrial product to the force coal-fields," philanthropy commands us to
accelerating human movement. So general invent novel methods of manufacturing iron,
is the use of this metal, and so intimately is which will not involve such barbarous waste
it connected with all that concerns our life, of this valuable material from which we de-
that it has become as indispensable to us as rive at present most of our energy. It is our
the very air we breathe. Its name is synony- duty to coming generations to leave this
mous with usefulness. But, however great store of energy intact for them, or at least
the influence of iron may be on the present not to touch it until we shall have perfected
human development, it does not add to the processes for burning coal more efficiently.
force urging man onward nearly as much as Those who are to come after us will need
it might. First of all, its manufacture as fuel more than we do. We should be able
now carried on is connected with an appalling to manufacture the iron we require by using
wasteof fuel—thatis, waste of energy. Then, the sun's energy, without wasting any coal at
again, only a part of all the iron produced is all. As an effort to this end the idea of smelt-
applied for useful purposes. A good part of ing iron ores by electric currents obtained
it goes to create frictional resistances, while from the energy of falling water has natu-
still another large part is the means of de- rally suggested itself to many. I have myself
veloping negative forces greatly retarding spent much time in endeavoring to evolve
human movement. Thus the negative force such a practical process, which would enable
of war is almost wholly represented in iron. iron to be manufactured at small cost. After
It is impossible to estimate with any degree a prolonged investigation of the subject,
of accuracy the magnitude of this greatest finding that it was unprofitable to use the
of all retarding forces, but it is certainly currents generated directly for smelting the
very considerable. If the present positive ore, I devised a method which is far more
impelling force due to all useful applications economical.

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ECONOMICAL PRODUCTION OF IRON BY A should be more profitably employed. Any
NEW PROCESS. new demand for this gas would secure a
higher revenue from the plant, thus cheap-
THE industrial project, as I worked it ening the iron. This project was advanced
out six years ago, contemplated the em- merely in the interest of industry. Some day,
ployment of the electric currents derived I hope, a beautiful industrial butterfly will
from the energy of a waterfall, not directly come out of the dusty and shriveled chrys-
for smelting the ore, but for decomposing alis.
water, as a preliminary step. To lessen The production of iron from sand ores by
the cost of the plant, I proposed to gene- a process of magnetic separation is highly
rate the currents in exceptionally cheap and commendable in principle, since it involves
simple dynamos, which I designed for this no waste of coal; but the usefulness of this
sole purpose. The hydrogen liberated in the method is largely reduced by the necessity of
electrolytic decomposition was to be burned melting the iron afterward. As to the crush-
or recombined with oxygen, not with that ing of iron ore, I would consider it rational
from which it was separated, but with that only if done by water-power, or by energy
of the atmosphere. Thus very nearly the otherwise obtained without consumption of
total electrical energy used up in the decom- fuel. An electrolytic cold process, which
position of the water would be recovered in would make it possible to extract iron
the form of heat resulting from the recom- cheaply, and also to mold it into the required
bination of the hydrogen. This heat was to forms without any fuel consumption, would,
be applied to the smelting of the ore. The in my opinion, be a very great advance
oxygen gained as a by-product in the decom- in iron manufacture. In common with
position of the water I intended to use for some other metals, iron has so far resisted
certain other industrial purposes, which electrolytic treatment, but there can be no
would probably yield good financial returns, doubt that such a cold process will ulti-
inasmuch as this is the cheapest way of ob- mately replace in metallurgy the present
taining this gas in large quantities. In any crude method of casting, and thus obviate
event, it could be employed to burn all kinds the enormous waste of fuel necessitated by
of refuie, cheap hydrocarbon, or coal of the the repeated heating of metal in the foun-
most inferior quality which could not be dries.
burned in air or be otherwise utilized to ad-
vantage, and thus again a considerable Up to a few decades ago the usefulness
amount of heat would be made available for of iron was based almost wholly on its re-
the smelting of the ore. To increase the markable mechanical properties, but since
economy of the process I contemplated, fur- the advent of the commercial dynamo and
thermore, using an arrangement such that electric motor its value to mankind has
the hot metal and the products of combus- been greatly increased by its unique mag-
tion, coming out of the furnace, would give netic qualities. As regards the latter, iron
up their heat upon the cold ore going into has been greatly improved of late. The
the furnace, so that comparatively little signal progress began about thirteen years
of the heat-energy would be lost in the ago, when I discovered that in using soft
smelting. I calculated that probably forty Bessemer steel instead of wrought iron, as
thousand pounds of iron could be produced then customary, in an alternating motor, the
per horse-power per annum by this method. performance of the machine was doubled. I
Liberal allowances were made for those brought this fact to the attention of Mr.
losses which are unavoidable, the above Albert Schmid, to whose untiring efforts
quantity being about half of that theoreti- and ability is largely due the supremacy of
cally obtainable. Relying on this estimate American electrical machinery, and who
and on practical data with reference to a was then superintendent of an industrial
certain kind of sand ore existing in abun- corporation engaged in this field. Following
dance in the region of the Great Lakes, my suggestion, he constructed transformers
including cost of transportation and labor, of steel, and they showed the same marked
I found that in some localities iron could be improvement. The investigation was then
manufactured in this manner cheaper than systematically continued under Mr. Schmid's
by any of the adopted methods. This result guidance, the impurities being gradually
would be attained all the more surely if the eliminated from the "steel" (which was
oxygen obtained from the water, instead of only such in name, for in reality it was pure
being used for smelting the ore, as assumed, soft iron), and soon a product resulted which
admitted of little further improvement.

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THE COMING AGE OF ALUMINIUM—DOOM OP The absolutely unavoidable consequence
THE COPPEK INDUSTRY—THE GREAT CIVI- of the advance of the aluminium industry
LIZING POTENCY OP THE NEW ^METAL. will be the annihilation of the copper in-
dustry. They cannot exist and prosper to-
WITH the advances made in iron of late gether, and the latter is doomed beyond any
years we have arrived virtually at the limits hope of recovery. Even now it is cheaper to
of improvement. We cannot hope to in- convey an electric current through alumin-
crease very materially its tensile strength, ium wires than through copper wires; alu-
elasticity, hardness, or malleability, nor can minium castings cost less, and in many
we expect to make it much better as regards domestic and other uses copper has no
its magnetic qualities. More recently a no- chance of successfully competing. A fur-
table gain was secured by the mixture of a ther material reduction of the price of alu-
small percentage of nickel with the iron, but minium cannot but be fatal to copper. But
there is not much room for further advance the progress of the former will not go on
in this direction. New discoveries may be unchecked, for, as it ever happens in such
expected, but they cannot greatly add to cases, the larger industry will absorb the
the valuable properties of the metal, though smaller one: the giant copper interests will
they may considerably reduce the cost of control the pygmy aluminium interests, and
manufacture. The immediate future of iron the slow-pacing copper will reduce the lively
is assured by its cheapness and its unrivaled gait of aluminium. This will only delay, not
mechanical and magnetic qualities. These avoid, the impending catastrophe.
are such that no other product can compete Aluminium, however, will not stop at
with it now. But there can be no doubt that, downing copper. Before many years have
at a time not very distant, iron, in many of passed it will be engaged in a fierce struggle
its now uncontested domains, will have to with iron, and in the latter it will find an
pass the scepter to another: the coming age adversary not easy to conquer. The issue of
will be the age of aluminium. It is only sev- the contest will largely depend on whether
enty years since this wonderful metal was iron shall be indispensable in electric ma-
discovered by Woehler, and the aluminium chinery. This the future alone can de-
industry, scarcely forty years old, commands cide. The magnetism as exhibited in iron
already the attention of the entire world. is an isolated phenomenon in nature. What
Such rapid growth has not been recorded in it is that makes this metal behave so radi-
the history of civilization before. Not long cally different from all other materials in
ago aluminium was sold at the fanciful price this respect has not yet been ascertained,
of thirty or forty dollars per pound; to-day though many theories have been suggested.
it can be had in any desired amount for as As regards magnetism, the molecules of the
many cents. What is more, the time is not various bodies behave like hollow beams
far off when this price, too, will be consid- partly filled with a heavy fluid and balanced
ered fanciful, for great improvements are in the middle in the manner of a see-saw.
possible in the methods of its manufacture. Evidently some disturbing influence exists in
Most of the metal is now produced in the nature which causes each molecule, like such
electric furnace by a process combining a beam, to tilt either one or the other way.
fusion and electrolysis, which offers a num- If the molecules are tilted one way, the body
ber of advantageous features, but involves is magnetic; if they are tilted the other way,
naturally a great waste of the electrical the body is non-magnetic; but both positions
energy of the current. My estimates show are stable, as they would be in the case of
that the price of aluminium could be con- the hollow beam, owing to the rushing of the
siderably reduced by adopting in its manu- fluid to the lower end. Now, the wonderful
facture a method similar to that proposed by thing is that the molecules of all known
me for the production of iron. A pound of bodies went one way, while those of iron
aluminium requires for fusion only about went the other way. This metal, it would
seventy per cent, of the heat needed for seem, has an origin entirely diflterent from
melting a pound of iron, and inasmuch as that of the rest of the globe. It is highly
its weight is only about one third of that of improbable that we shall discover some
the latter, a volume of aluminium four times other and cheaper material which will equal
that of iron could be obtained from a given or surpass iron in magnetic qualities.
amount of heat-energy. But a cold elec-
trolytic process of manufacture is the ideal Unless we should make a radical depar-
solution, and on this I have placed my hope. ture in the character of the electric currents
employed, iron will be indispensable. Yet

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the advantages it offers are only apparent. important factors in future human progress.
So long as we use feeble magnetic forces it Its extreme lightness makes it far more easy
is by far superior to any other material; but to transport the objects manufactured. By
if we find ways of producing great magnetic virtue of this property it will revolutionize
forces, then better results will be obtainable naval construction, and in facilitating trans-
without it. In fact, I have already produced port and travel it will add enormously to
electric transformers in which no iron is the useful performance of mankind. But its
employed, and which are capable of per- greatest civilizing potency will be, I believe,
forming ten times as much work per pound in aerial travel, which is sure to be brought
of weight as those with iron. This result is about by means of it. Telegraphic instru-
attained by using electric currents of a very ments will slowly enlighten the barbarian.
high rate of vibration, produced in novel Electric motors and lamps will do it more
ways, instead of the ordinary currents now quickly, but quicker than anything else the
employed in the industries. I have also suc- flying-machine will do it. By rendering
ceeded in operating electric motors without travel ideally easy it will be the best means
iron by such rapidly vibrating currents, but for unifying the heterogeneous elements of
the results, so far, have been inferior to those humanity. As the first step toward this
obtained with ordinary motors constructed realization we should produce a lighter stor-
of iron, although theoretically the former age-battery or get more energy from coal.
should be capable of performing incompa-
rably more work per unit of weight than the EFFORTS TOWARD OBTAINING MORE ENERGY
latter. But the seemingly insuperable diffi- FROM COAL—THE ELECTRIC TRANSMIS-
culties which are now in the way may be SION—THE GAS-ENGINE—THE COLD-COAL
overcome in the end, and then iron will be BATTERY.
done away with, and all electric machinery I REMEMBER that at One time I considered
will be manufactured of aluminium, in all the production of electricity by burning coal
probability, at prices ridiculously low. This in a battery as the greatest achievement to-
would be a severe, if not a fatal, blow to ward advancing civilization, and I am sur-
iron. In many other branches of industry, prised to find how much the continuous study
as ship-building, or wherever lightness of of these subjects has modified my views. It
structure is required, the progress of the now seems to me that to burn coal, however
new metal will be much quicker. For such efficiently, in a battery would be a mere
uses it is eminently suitable, and is sure to makeshift, a phase in the evolution toward
supersede iron sooner or later. It is highly something much more perfect. After all, in
probable that in the course of time we shall generating electricity in this manner, we
be able to give it many of those qualities should be destroying material, and this would
which make iron so valuable. be a barbarous process. We ought to be
While it is impossible to tell when this able to obtain the energy we need without
industrial revolution will be consummated, consumption of material. But I am far from
there can be no doubt that the future be- underrating the value of such an efficient
longs to aluminium, and that in times to method of burning fuel. At the present
come it will be the chief means of increasing time most motive power comes from coal,
human performance. It has in this respect and, either directly or by its products, it
capacities greater by far than those of any adds vastly to human energy. Unfortunately,
other metal. I should estimate its civilizing in all the processes now adopted, the larger
potency at fully one hundred times that of portion of the energy of the coal is uselessly
iron. This estimate, though it may astonish, dissipated. The best steam-engines utilize
is not at all exaggerated. First of all, we only a small part of the total energy. Even
must remember that there is thirty times as in gas-engines, in which, particularly of late,
much aluminium as iron in bulk, available for better results are obtainable, there is still a
the uses of man. This in itself offers great barbarous waste going on. In our electric-
possibilities. Then, again, the new metal is lighting systems we scarcely utilize one third
much more easily workable, which adds to of one per cent., and in lighting by gas a
its value. In many of its properties it par- much smaller fraction, of the total energy of
takes of the character of a precious metal, the coal. Considering the various uses of coal
which gives it additional worth. Its electric throughout the world, we certainly do not
conductivity, which, for a given weight, is utilize more than two per cent, of its energy
greater than that of any other metal, would theoretically available. The man who should
be alone sufficient to make it one of the most stop this senseless waste would be a great
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benefactor of humanity, though the solution would do away with noise and increase ma-
he would offer could not be a permanent one, terially the speed and the carrying capacity
since it would ultimately lead to the exhaus- of the liners.
tion of the store of material. Efforts to- Still more energy is now being obtained
ward obtaining more energy from coal are from coal by the latest improved gas-engine,
now being made chiefly in two directions— the economy of which is, on the average,
by generating electricity and by producing probably twice that of the best steam-engine.
gas for motive-power purposes. In both of The introduction of the gas-engine is very
these lines notable success has already been much facilitated by the importance of the
achieved. gas industry. With the increasing use of the
The advent of the alternating-current electric light more and more of the gas is
system of electric power-transmission marks utilized for heating and motive-power pur-
an epoch in the economy of energy available poses. In many instances gas is manufac-
to man from coal. Evidently all electrical tured close to the coal-mine and conveyed
energy obtained from a waterfall, saving so to distant places of consumption, a consider-
much fuel, is a net gain to mankind, which able saving both in the cost of transportation
is all the more effective as it is secured with and in utilization of the energy of the fuel
little expenditure of human effort, and as being thus effected. In the present state of
this most perfect of all known methods of the mechanical and electrical arts the most
deriving energy from the sun contributes in rational way of deriving energy from coal is
many ways to the advancement of civiliza- evidently to manufacture gas close to the
tion. But electricity enables us also to get coal store, and to utilize it, either on the spot
from coal much more energy than was or elsewhere, to generate electricity for in-
practicable in the old ways. Instead of dustrial uses in dynamos driven by gas-
transporting the coal to distant places of engines. The commercial success of such a
consumption, we burn it near the mine, de- plant is largely dependent upon the produc-
velop electricity in the dynamos, and trans- tion of gas-engines of great nominal horse-
mit the current to remote localities, thus power, which, judging from the keen activity
effecting a considerable saving. Instead of in this field, will soon be forthcoming. In-
driving the machinery in a factory in the stead of consuming coal directly, as usual,
old wasteful way by belts and shafting, we gas should be manufactured from it and
generate electricity by steam-power and burned to economize energy.
operate electric motors. In this manner it But all such improvements cannot be more
is not uncommon to obtain two or three than passing phases in the evolution toward
times as much effective motive power from something far more perfect, for ultimately
the fuel, besides securing many other im- we must succeed in obtaining electricity
portant advantages. It is in this field as from coal in a more direct way, involving no
much as in the transmission of energy to great loss of its heat-energy. Whether coal
great distances that the alternating system, can be oxidized by a cold process is still a
with its ideally simple machinery, is bringing question. Its combination with oxygen al-
about an industrial revolution. But in many ways evolves heat, and whether the energy
lines this progress has not yet been felt. of the combination of the carbon with an-
For example, steamers and trains are still other element can be turned directly into
being propelled by the direct application of electrical energy has not yet been deter-
steam-power to shafts or axles. A much mined. Under certain conditions nitric acid
greater percentage of the heat-energy of will burn the carbon, generating an electric
the fuel could be transformed in motive en- current, but the solution does not remain
ergy by using, in place of the adopted cold. Other means of oxidizing coal have
marine engines and locomotives, dynamos been proposed, but they have offered no
driven by specially designed high-pressure promise of leading to an efficient process.
steam- or gas-engines and by utilizing the My own lack of success has been complete,
electricity generated for the propulsion. A though perhaps not quite so complete as that
gain of fifty to one hundred per cent, in the of some who have " perfected " the cold-coal
effective energy derived from the coal could battery. This problem is essentially one for
be secured in this manner. It is difficult to the chemist to solve. It is not for the phys-
understand why a fact so plain and obvious icist, who determines all his results in ad-
is not receiving more attention from engi- vance, so that, when the experiment is tried,
neers. In ocean steamers such an improve- it cannot fail. Chemistry, though a positive
ment would be particularly desirable, as it science, does not yet admit of a solution by

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such positive methods as those which are sorrowfully waved its arms about and bade
available in the treatment of many physical them stop. The fact is that a wave- or
problems. The result, if possible, will be tide-motor would have, as a rule, but a small
arrived at through patient trying rather than chance of competing commercially with the
through deduction or calculation. The time windmill, which is by far the better ma-
will soon come, however, when the chemist chine, allowing a much greater amount
will be able to follow a course clearly mapped of energy to be obtained in a simpler way.
out beforehand, and when the process of his Wind-power has been, in old times, of in-
arriving at a desired result will be purely con- estimable value to man, if for nothing else
structive. The cold-coal battery would give but for enabling him to cross the seas, and
a great impetus to electrical development; it is even now a very important factor in
it would lead very shortly to a practical iiy- travel and transportation. But there are
ing-machine, and would enormously enhance great limitations in this ideally simple
the introduction of the automobile. But method of utilizing the sun's energy. The
these and many other problems will be bet- machines are large for a given output, and
ter solved, and in a more scientific manner, the power is intermittent, thus necessitating
by a light-storage battery. the storage of energy and increasing the
cost of the plant.
ENERGY PROM THE MEDIUM—THE WINDMILL
A far better way, however, to obtain
AND THE SOLAR ENGINE—MOTIVE POWER
power would be to avail ourselves of the
PROM TERRESTRIAL HEAT—ELECTRICITY
sun's rays, which beat the earth incessantly
FROM NATURAL SOURCES.
and supply energy at a maximum rate of over
four million horse-power per square mile.
BESIDES fuel, there is abundant material Although the average energy received per
from which we might eventually derive square mile in any locality during the year
power. An immense amount of energy is is only a small fraction of that amount, yet
locked up in limestone, for instance, and an inexhaustible source of power would be
machines can be driven by liberating the opened up by the discovery of some efficient
carbonic acid through sulphuric acid or method of utilizing the energy of the rays.
otherwise. I once constructed such an en- The only rational way known to me at the
gine, and it operated satisfactorily. time when I began the study of this subject
But, whatever our resources of primary was to employ some kind of heat- or ther-
energy may be in the future, we must, to modynamic engine, driven by a volatile fluid
be rational, obtain it without consumption evaporated in a boiler by the heat of the
of any material. Long ago I came to this rays. But closer investigation of this method,
conclusion, and to arrive at this result only and calculation, showed that, notwithstand-
two ways, as before indicated, appeared pos- ing the apparently vast amount of energy
sible—either to turn to use the energy of received from the sun's rays, only a small
the sun stored in the ambient medium, or fraction of that energy could be actually
to transmit, through the medium, the sun's utilized in this manner. Furthermore, the
energy to distant places from some locality energy supplied through the sun's radiations
where it was obtainable without consump- is periodical, and the same limitations as
tion of material. At that time I at once in the use of the windmill I found to exist
rejected the latter method as entirely im- here also. After a long study of this mode
practicable, and turned to examine the pos- of obtaining motive power from the sun,
sibilities of the former. taking into account the necessarily large
It is difficult to believe, but it is, never- bulk of the boiler, the low efficiency of the
theless, a fact, that since time immemorial heat-engine, the additional cost of storing
man has had at his disposal a fairly good ma- the energy, and other drawbacks, I came to
chine which has enabled him to utilize the en- the conclusion that the " solar engine," a few
ergy of the ambient medium. This machine instances excepted, could not be industrially
is the windmill. Contrary to popular belief, exploited with success.
the power obtainable from wind is very con- Another way of getting motive power
siderable. Many a deluded inventor has spent from the medium without consuming any
years of his life in endeavoring to " harness material would be to utilize the heat con-
the tides," and some have even proposed to tained in the earth, the water, or the air
compress air by tide- or wave-power for sup- for driving an engine. It is a well-known fact
plying energy, never understanding the that the interior portions of the globe are
signs of the old windmill on the hill, as it very hot, the temperature rising, as observa-

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tions show, with the approach to the center the earth. So, at least, I have interpreted
at the rate of approximately 1° C. for every my observations, from which it appears
hundred feet of depth. The difficulties of that the earth, with its adjacent insulating
sinking shafts and placing boilers at depths and outer conducting envelop, constitutes
of, say, twelve thousand feet, corresponding a highly charged electrical condenser con-
to an increase in temperature of about 120° C, taining, in all probability, a great amount
are not insuperable, and we could certainly of electrical energy which might be turned
avail ourselves in this way of the internal heat to the uses of man, if it were possible to
of the globe. In fact, it would not be neces- reach with a wire to great altitudes.
sary to go to any depth at all in order to de- It is possible, and even probable, that there
rive energy from the stored terrestrial heat. will be, in time, other resources of energy
The superficial layers of the earth and the opened up, of which we have no knowledge
air strata close to the same are at a tempera- now. We may even find ways of applying
ture sufficiently high to evaporate some ex- forces such as magnetism or gravity for
tremely volatile substances, which we might driving machinery without using any other
use in our boilers instead of water. There is means. Such realizations, though highly im-
no doubt that a vessel might be propelled probable, are not impossible. An example
on the ocean by an engine driven by such a will best convey an idea of what we can hope
volatile fluid, no other energy being used but to attain and what we can never attain.
the heat abstracted from the water. But the Imagine a disk of some homogeneous mate-
amount of power which could be obtained in rial turned perfectly true and arranged to
this manner would be, without further pro- turn in frictionless bearings on a horizontal
vision, very small. shaft above the ground. This disk, being un-
Electricity produced by natural causes is der the above conditions perfectly balanced,
another source of energy which might be would rest in any position. Now, it is possi-
rendered available. Lightning discharges ble that we may learn how to make such a
involve great amounts of electrical energy, disk rotate continuously and perform work
which we could utilize by transforming and by the force of gravity without any further
storing it. Some years ago I made known a efl^ort on our part; but it is perfectly im-
method of electrical transformation which possible for the disk to turn and to do work
renders the first part of this task easy, but without any force from the outside. If it
the storing of the energy of lightning dis- could do so, it would be what is designated
charges will be difficult to accomplish. It is scientifically as a " perpetuum mobile," a ma-
well known, furthermore, that electric cur- chine creatingits own motive power. To make
rents circulate constantly through the earth, the disk rotate by the force of gravity we have
and that there exists between the earth and only to invent a screen against this force.
any air stratum a difference of electrical By such a screen we could prevent this force
pressure, which varies in proportion to the from acting on one half of the disk, and
height. the rotation of the latter would follow. At
least, we cannot deny such a possibility until
In recent experiments I have discovered two we know exactly the nature of the force of
novel facts of importance in this connection. gravity. Suppose that this force were due to
One of these facets is that an electric current a movement comparable to that of a stream
is generated in a wire extending from the of air passing from above toward the center
ground to a great height by the axial, and of the earth. The effect of such a stream
probably also by the translatory, movement upon both halves of the disk would be equal,
of the earth. No appreciable current, how- and the latter would not rotate ordinarily;
ever, will flow continuously in the wire unless but if one half should be guarded by a plate
the electricity is allowed to leak out into the arresting the movement, then it would turn.
air. Its escape is greatly facilitated by pro-
viding at the elevated end of the wire a con-
ducting terminal of great surface, with many A DEPARTURE PROM KNOWN METHODS—POS-
sharp edges or points. We are thus enabled SIBILITY OP A "SELF-ACTING" ENGINE OR
to get a continuous supply of electrical MACHINE, I N A N I M A T E , YET CAPABLE, LIKE
energy by merely supporting a wire at a A LIVING BEING, OP DERIVING ENERGY
height, but, unfortunately, the amount of P R O M THE MEDIUM—THE IDEAL WAY OP
electricity which can be so obtained is small. OBTAINING MOTIVE POWER.
The second fact which I have ascertained WHEN T began the investigation of the sub-
is that the upper air strata are permanently ject under consideration, and when the pre-
charged with electricity opposite to that of ceding or similar ideas presented themselves

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to me for the first time, though I was then But was it not possible to realize a similar
unacquainted with a number of the facts condition without necessarily going to a
mentioned, a survey of the various ways of height? Conceive, for the sake of illustra-
utilizing the energy of the medium convinced
me, nevertheless, that to arrive at a thor-
oughly satisfactory practical solution a rad-
ical departure from the methods then known
had to be made. The windmill, the solar en-
gine, the engine driven by terrestrial heat,
had their limitations in the amount of power
obtainable. Some new way had to be discov-
ered which would enable us to get more
energy. There was enough heat-energy in
the medium, but only a small part of it was
available for the operation of an engine in
the ways then known. Besides, the energy DIAGEAM b. OBTAINING ENERGY PROM THE
was obtainable only at a very slow rate. AMBIENT MEDIUM.
Clearly, then, the problem was to discover A, medium witli llttlo energy; B, B, ambient medium
with m n c b e n e r g y ; O, p a t h of t h e energy.
some new method which would make it possi-
ble both to utilize more of the heat-energy tion, an inclosure T, as illustrated in dia-
of the medium and also to draw it away gram h, such that energy could not be
from the same at a more rapid rate. transferred across it except through a chan-
I was vainly endeavoring to form an idea nel or path 0, and that, by some means or
of how this might be accomplished, when I other, in this inclosure a medium were main-
read some statements from Carnot and Lord tained which would have little energy, and
Kelvin (then Sir Wilham Thomson) which that on the outer side of the same there
meant virtually that it is impossible for an would be the ordinary ambient medium with
inanimate mechanism or self-acting machine much energy. Under these assumptions the
to cool a portion of the medium below the energy would flow through the path 0, as in-
temperature of the surrounding, and operate dicated by the arrow, and might then be con-
by the heat abstracted. These statements verted on its passage into some other form
interested me intensely. Evidently a living of energy. The question was. Could such a
being could do this very thing, and since the condition be attained? Could we produce
experiences of my early life which I have artificially such a "sink" for the energy of
related had convinced me that a living the ambient medium to flow in? Suppose
being is only an automaton, or, otherwise that an extremely low temperature could be
stated, a " self-acting engine," I came to maintained by some process in a given space;
the conclusion that it was possible to con- the surrounding medium would then be com-
struct a machine which would do the same. pelled to give off heat, which could be con-
As the first step toward this realization I con- verted into mechanical or other form of en-
ceived the following mechanism. Imagine ergy, and utilized. By realizing such a plan,
a thermopile consisting of a number of bars we should be enabled to get at any point of
of metal extending from the earth to the the globe a continuous supply of energy,
outer space beyond the atmosphere. The day and night. More than this, reasoning
heat from below, conducted upward along in the abstract, it would seem possible to
these metal bars, would cool the earth or cause a quick circulation of the medium,
the sea or the air, according to the location and thus draw the energy at a very rapid
of the lower parts of the bars, and the result, rate.
as is well known, would be an electric current Here, then, was an idea which, if realizable,
circulating in these bars. The two terminals afforded a happy solution of the problem of
of the thermopile could no w be joined through getting energy from the medium. But was
an electric motor, and, theoretically, this it realizable ? I convinced myself that it was
motor would run on and on, until the media so in a number of ways, of which one is the
below would be cooled down to the tempera- following. As regards heat, we are at a high
ture of the outer space. This would be an level, which may be represented by the sur-
inanimate engine which, to all evidence, face of a mountain lake considerably above
would be cooling a portion of the medium the sea, the level of which may mark the
below the temperature of the surrounding, ^ absolute zero of temperature existing in the
and operating by the heat abstracted. interstellar space. Heat, like water, flows
VOL. LX.-24-25.

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from high to low level, and, consequently, This would be an ideal way of obtaining mo-
just as we can let the water of the lake run tive power. We do not know of any such
down to the sea, so we are able to let heat absolutely perfect process of heat-conver-
from the earth's surface travel up into the sion, and consequently some heat will gen-
cold region above. Heat, like water, can erally reach the low level, which means to
perform work in flowing down, and if we had say, in our mechanical analogue, that some
any doubt as to whether we could derive water will arrive at the bottom of the tank,
energy from the medium by means of a ther- and a gradual and slow fllling of the latter
mopile, as before described, it would be dis- will take place, necessitating continuous
pelled by this analogue. But can we produce pumping out. But evidently there will be
cold in a given portion of the space and less to pump out than flows in, or, in other
cause the heat to flow in continually? To words, less energy will be needed to main-
create such a " sink," or " cold hole," as we tain the initial condition than is developed
might say, in the medium, would be equiva- by the fall, and this is to say that some
lent to producing in the lake a space either energy will be gained from the medium.
empty or filled with something much lighter What is not converted in flowing down can
than water. This we could do by placing in just be raised up with its own energy, and
the lake a tank, and pumping all the water what is converted is clear gain. Thus the
out of the latter. We know, then, that the virtue of the principle I have discovered re-
water, if allowed toflowback into the tank, sides wholly in the. conversion of the energy
would, theoretically, be able to perform ex- on the downward flow.
actly the same amount of work which was
used in pumping it out, but not a bit more.
Consequently nothing could be gained in this PIEST EFFORTS TO PRODUCE THE SELF-ACT-
double operation of first raising the water ING ENGINE—THE MECHANICAL OSCILLA-
and then letting it fall down. This would TOR—WORK OF DEWAR AND LINDE—
mean that it is impossible to create such a LIQUID AIR.
sink in the medium. But let us reflect a
moment. Heat, though following certain HAVING recognized this truth, I began to
general laws of mechanics, like a fluid, is devise means for carrying out my idea,
not such; it is energy which may be con- and, after long thought, I finally conceived
verted into other forms of energy as it a combination of apparatus which should
passes from a high to a low level. To make make possible the obtaining of power from
our mechanical analogy complete and true, the medium by a process of continuous cool-
we must, therefore, assume that the water, ing of atmospheric air. This apparatus, by
in its passage into the tank, is converted into continually transforming heat into mechan-
something else, which may be taken out of it ical work, tendedto become colder and colder,
without using any, or by using very little, and if it only were practicable to reach a very
power. For example, if heat be represented low temperature in this manner, then a sink
in this analogue by the water of the lake, for the heat could be produced, and energy
the oxygen and hydrogen composing the could be derived from the medium. This
water may illustrate other forms of energy seemed to be contrary to the statements
into which the heat is transformed in pass- of Carnot and Lord Kelvin before re-
ing from hot to cold. If the process of heat- ferred to, but I concluded from the theory
transformation were absolutely perfect, no of the process that such a, result could be at-
heat at all would arrive at the low level, tained. This conclusion I reached, I think, in
since all of it would be converted into other the latter part of 1883, when I was in Paris,
forms of energy. Corresponding to this and it was at a time when my mind was being
ideal case, all the water flowing into the tank more and more dominated by an invention
would be decomposed into oxygen and hy- which I had evolved during the preceding
drogen before reaching the bottom, and the year, and which has since become known
result would be that water would continually under the name of the " rotating magnetic
flow in, and yet the tank would remain en- field." During the few years which followed
tirely empty, the gases formed escaping. I elaborated further the plan I had ima-
We would thus produce, by expending ini- gined, and studied the working conditions,
tially a certain amount of work to create a but made little headway. The commercial
sink for the heat or, respectively, the water introduction in this country of the invention
to flow in, a condition enabling us to get any before referred to required most of my en-
amount of energy without further effort. ergies until 1889, when I again took up the
idea of the self-acting machine. A closer in-

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vestigation of the principles involved, and account of other pressing work, I was un-
calculation, now showed that the result I able to prepare for publication. On that
aimed at could not be reached in a practi- occasion I exposed the principles of the
cal manner by ordinary machinery, as I had mechanical oscillator, but the original pur-
in the beginning expected. This led me, as pose of this machine is explained here for
a next step, to the study of a type of engine the first time.
generally designated as " turbine," which at In the process, as I had primarily con-
first seemed to offer better chances for a ceived it, for the utilization of the energy
realization of the idea. Soon I found, how- of the ambient medium, there were five
ever, that the turbine, too, was unsuitable. essential elements in combination, and each
But my conclusions showed that if an engine of these had to be newly designed and per-
of a peculiar kind could be brought to a fected, as no such machines existed. The
high degree of perfection, the plan I had con- mechanical oscillator was the first ele-
ceived was realizable, and I resolved to pro- ment of this combination, and having per-
ceed with the development of such an engine, fected this, I turned to the next, which was
the primary object of which was to secure an air-compressor of a design in certain re-
the greatest economy of transformation spects resembling that of the mechanical
of heat into mechanical energy. A charac- oscillator. Similar difficulties in the con-
teristic feature of the engine was that the struction were again encountered, but the
work-performing piston was not connected work was pushed vigorously, and at the
with anything else, but was perfectly free to close of 1894 I had completed these two
vibrate at an enormous rate. The mechan- elements of the combination, and thus pro-
ical difficulties encountered in the construc- duced an apparatus for compressing air,
tion of this engine were greater than I had virtually to any desired pressure, incom-
anticipated, and I made slow progress. This parably simpler, smaller, and more efficient
work was continued until early in 1892, when than the ordinary. I was just beginning
I went to London, where I saw Professor work on the third element, which together
Dewar's admirable experiments with liquefied with the first two would give a refrigerating
gases. Others had liquefied gases before, and machine of exceptional efficiency and sim-
notably Ozlewski and Pictet had performed plicity, when a misfortune befell me in the
creditable early experiments in this line, but burning of my laboratory, which crippled my
there was such a vigor about the work of labors and delayed me. Shortly afterward
Dewar that even the old appeared new. His Dr. Carl Linde announced the liquefaction
experiments showed, though in a way difi'er- of air by a self-cooling process, demonstrat-
ent from that I had imagined, that it was ing that it was practicable to proceed with
possible to reach a very low temperature by the cooling until liquefaction of the air took
transforming heat into mechanical work, and place. This was the only experimentaj proof
I returned, deeply impressed with what 1 had which I was still wanting that energy was
seen, and more than ever convinced that my obtainable from the medium in the manner
plan was practicable. The work temporarily contemplated by me.
interrupted was taken up anew, and soon I
had in a fair state of perfection the engine The liquefactionof airbya self-coolingpro-
which I have named " the mechanical oscil- cess was not, as popularly believed, an acci-
lator." In this machine I succeeded in doing dental discovery, but a scientific result which
away with all packings, valves, and lubri- could not have been delayed much longer,
cation, and in producing so rapid a vibration and which, in all probability, could not have
of the piston that shafts of tough steel, fas- escaped Dewar. This fascinating advance, I
tened to the same and vibrated longitudinally, believe, is largely due to the powerful work
were torn asunder. By combining this en- of this great Scotchman. Nevertheless,
gine with a dynamo of special design I pro- Linde's is an immortal achievement. The
duced a highly efiicient electrical generator, manufacture of liquid air has been carried
invaluable in measurements and determina- on for four years in Germany, on a scale
tions of physical quantities on account of much larger than in any other country, and
the unvarying rate of oscillation obtainable this strange product has been applied for a
by its means. I exhibited several types of variety of purposes. Much was expected of
this machine, named " mechanical and elec- it in the beginning, but so far it has been
trical oscillator," before the Electrical Con- an industrial ignis fatuus. By the use of
gress at the World's Fair in Chicago during such machinery as I am perfecting, its cost
the summer of 1893, in a lecture which, on will probably be greatly lessened, but even
then its commercial success will be ques-

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tionable. When used as a refrigerant it is industrial scale could never be realized,
uneconomical, as its temperature is un- but a discovery which I made changed my
necessarily low. It is as expensive to view. I observed that under certain con-
maintain a body at a very low temperature ditions the atmosphere, which is normally
as it is to keep it very hot; it takes coal to a high insulator, assumes conducting proper-
keep air cold. In oxygen manufacture it ties, and so becomes capable of conveying
cannot yet compete with the electrolytic any' amount of electrical energy. But the
method. For use as an explosive it is un- difficulties in the way of a practical utiliza-
suitable, because its low temperature again tion of this discovery for the .purpose of
condemns it to a small efficiency, and fo* transmitting electrical energy without wires
motive-power purposes its cost is still by far were seemingly insuperable. Electrical pres-
too high. It is of interest to note, how- sures of many millions of volts had to be
ever, that in driving an engine by liquid air produced and handled; generating apparatus
a certain amount of energy may be gained of a novel kind, capable of withstanding the
from the engine, or, stated otherwise, from immense electrical stresses, had to be in-
the ambient medium which keeps the engine vented and perfected, and a complete safety
warm, each two hundred pounds of iron- against the dangers of the high-tension cur-
casting of the latter contributing energy at rents had to be attained in the system before
the rate of about one effective, horse-power its practical introduction could be even
during one hour. But this gain of the con- thought of. All this could not be done in a
sumer is offset by an equal loss of the few weeks or months, or even years. The
producer. work required patience and constant appli-
Much of this task on which I have labored cation, but the improvements came, though
so long remains to be done. A number of slowly. Other valuable results were, how-
mechanical details are still to be perfected ever, arrived at in the course of this long-
and some difficulties of a different nature to continued work, of which I shall endeavor to
be mastered, and I cannot hope to produce give a brief account, enumerating the chief
a self-acting machine deriving energy from advances as they were successively effected.
the ambient medium for a long time yet, The discovery of the conducting proper-
even if all my expectations should material- ties of the air, though unexpected, was only
ize. Many circumstances have occurred a natural result of experiments in a special
which have retarded my work of late, but field which I had carried on for somie years
for several reasons the delay was beneficial. before. It was, I believe, during 1889 that
certain possibilities offered by extremely
One of these reasons was that I had ample rapid electrical oscillations determined me
time to consider what the ultimate possibili- to design a number of special machines
ties of this development might be. I worked adapted for their investigation. Owing to
for a long time fully convinced that the the peculiar requirements, the construction
practical realization of this method of ob- of these machines was very difficult, and
taining energy from the sun would be of in- consumed much time and effort; but my
calculable industrial value, but the contin- work on them was generously rewarded, for
ued study of the subject revealed the fact I reached by their means several novel and
that while it will be commercially profitable important results. One of the earliest ob-
if my expectations are well founded, it will servations I made with these new machines
not be so to an extraordinary degree. was that electrical oscillations of an ex-
tremely high rate act in an extraordinary
DISCOVERY OF UNEXPECTED PROPERTIES OP manner upon the human organism. Thus,
THE ATMOSPHERE—STRANGE EXPERIMENTS for instance, I demonstrated that powerful
—TRANSMISSION OP ELECTRICAL ENERGY electrical discharges of several hundred
THROUGH ONE WIRE WITHOUT R E T U R N - thousand volts, which at that time were
TRANSMISSION THROUGH THE EARTH WITH- considered absolutely deadly, could be passed
OUT ANY WIRE. through the body without inconvenience or
hurtful consequences. These oscillations
ANOTHER of these reasons was that I was produced other specific physiological effects,
led to recognize the transmission of electri- which, upon my announcement, were eagerly
cal energy to any distance through the media taken up by skilled physicians and further
as by far the best solution of the great investigated. This newfieldhas proved itself
problem of harnessing the sun's energy fruitful beyond expectation, and in the few
for the uses of man. For a long time I was years which have passed since, it has been
convinced that such a transmission on an

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developed to such an extent that it now manner only very small amounts of electri-
forms a legitimate and important department cal energy, but in this line also my efforts
of medical science. Many results, thought have been rewarded with similar success.
impossible at that time, are now readily ob- The photograph shownjn Fig.3 (see p. 186)
tainable with these oscillations, and many illustrates, as its title explains, an actual
experiments undreamed of then can now be transmission of this kind effected with ap-
readily performed by their means. I still re- paratus used in other experiments here de-
member with pleasure how, nine years ago, scribed. To what a degree the appliances
I passed the discharge of a powerful induc- have been perfected since my first demon-
tion-coil through my body to demonstrate strations early in 1891 before a scientific
before a scientiiic society the comparative society, when my apparatus was barely capa-
harmlessness of very rapidly vibrating elec- ble of lighting one lamp (which result was
tric currents, and I can still recall the as- considered wonderful), will appear when I
tonishment of my audience. I would now state that I have now no diflBculty in lighting
undertake, with much less apprehension than in this manner four or five hundred lamps,
I had in that experiment, to transmit through and could light many more. In fact, there
my body with such currents the entire elec- is no limit to the amount of energy which
trical energy of the dynamos now working may in this way be supplied to operate any
at Niagara—forty or fifty thousand horse- kind of electrical device.
power. I have produced electrical oscilla- After demonstrating the practicability of
tions which were of such intensity that this method of transmission, the thought
when circulating through my arms and chest naturally occurred to me to use the earth as
they have melted wires which joined my a conductor, thus dispensing with all wires.
hands, and still I felt no inconvenience. I Whatever electricity may be, it is a fact
have energized with such oscillations a loop of that it behaves like an incompressible fluid,
heavy copper wire so powerfully that masses and the earth may be looked upon as an
of metal, and even objects of an electrical immense reservoir of electricity, which, I
resistance specifically greater than that of thought, could be disturbed effectively by a
human tissue, brought close to or placed properly designed electrical machine. Ac-
within the loop, were heated to a high tem- cordingly, my next efl:orts were directed to-
perature and melted, often with the violence ward perfecting a special apparatus which
of an explosion, and yet into this very space in would be highly effective in creating a dis-
which this terribly destructive turmoil was turbance of electricity in the earth. The
going on I have repeatedly thrust my head progress in this new direction was neces-
without feeling anything or experiencing in- sarily very slow and the work discouraging,
jurious after-effects. until I finally succeeded in perfecting a novel
Another observation was that by means of kind of transformer or induction-coil, particu-
such oscillations light could be produced in larly suited for this special purpose. That it
a novel and more economical manner, which is practicable, in this manner, not only to
promised to lead to an ideal system of elec- transmit minute amounts of electrical energy
tric illumination by vacuum-tubes, dispens- for operating delicate electrical devices, as I
ing with the necessity of renewal of lamps contemplated at first, but also electrical en-
or incandescent filaments, and possibly ergy in appreciable quantities, will appear
also with the use of wires in the interior from an inspection of Fig. 4 (see p. 186),
of buildings. The eificienCy of this light which illustrates an actual experiment of
increases in proportion to the rate of the this kind performed with the same apparatus.
oscillations, and its commercial success is, The result obtained was all the more re-
therefore, dependent on the economical pro- markable as the top end of the coil was not
duction of electrical vibrations of transcend- connected to a wire or plate for magnifying
ing rates. In this direction I have met with the efl'ect.
gratifying success of late, and the practical
introduction of this new system of illumina-
"WIRELESS" TELEGRAPHY—THE SECRET OP
tion is not far oif.
TUNING—ERRORS IN THE HERTZIAN INVES-
The investigations led to many other valu- TIGATIONS—A RECEIVER OF WONDERFUL
able observations andresults,one of the more SENSITIVENESS.
important of which was the demonstration
of the practicability of supplying electrical As the first valuable result of my experiments
energy through one wire without return. At in this latter line a system of telegraphy with-
first I was able to transmit in this novel out wires resulted, which I described in two

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scientific lectures in February
and March, 1893. It is me-
chanically illustrated in dia-
gram c, the upper part of which As OS,
shows the electrical arrange-
ment as I described it then,
while the lower part illustrates
its mechanical analogue. The
system is extremely simple in
principle. Imagine two tuning-
forks P, F„ one at the sending- J
^ c
and the other at the receiving-
station respectively, each hav-
ing attached to its lower prong UML WL
a minute piston p, fitting in a
cylinder. Both the cylinders DIAGRAM C. WIRELESS TELEGRAPHY MECHANICALLY ILLUSTRATED.
communicate with a large reservoir R, with spread through the ground and reach
elastic walls, which is supposed to be closed the distant vertical receiving-wire E,S,Pi,
and filled with a light and incompressible exciting corresponding electrical oscillations
fluid. By striking repeatedly one of the in the same. In the latter wire or circuit is
prongs of the tuning-fork F, the small piston included a sensitive device or receiver S/,
p below would be vibrated, and its vibrations, which is thus set in action and made to op-
transmitted through the fluid, would reach erate a relay or other appliance. Each sta-
the distant fork F„ which is "tuned" to the tion is, of course, provided both with a source
fork F, or, stated otherwise, of exactly the of electrical oscillations S and a sensitive
same note as the latter. The fork F, would receiver S„ and a simple provision is made
now be set vibrating, and its vibration would for using each of the two wires alternately
be intensified by the continued action of the to send and to receive the messages.
distant fork F until its upper prong, swing-
ing far out, would make an electrical connec- The exact attunement of the two circuits
tion with a stationary contact c", starting secures great advantages, and, in fact, it is
in this manner some electrical or other ap- essential in the practical use of the system.
pliances which may be used for recording In this respect many popular errors exist,
the signals. In this simple way messages and, as a rule, in the technical reports on
could be exchanged between the two stations, this subject circuits and appliances are de-
a similar.contact c' being provided for this scribed as affording these advantages when
purpose, close to the upper prong of the from their very nature it is evident that
fork F, so that the apparatus at each station this is impossible. In order to attain the
could be employed in turn as receiver and best results it is essential that the length of
transmitter. each wire or circuit, from the ground con-
nection to the top, should be equal to one
The electrical system illustrated in the quarter of the wave-length of the electrical
upper figure of diagram c is exactly the same vibration in the wire, or else equal to that
in principle, the two wires or circuits ESP length multiplied by an odd number. With-
and E/S,P,, which extend vertically to a out the observation of this rule it is virtually
height, representing the two tuning-forks impossible to prevent the interference and
with the pistons attached to them. These insure the privacy of messages. Therein lies
circuits are connected with the ground by the secret of tuning. To obtain the most sat-
plates E, E,, and to two elevated metal sheets isfactory results it is, however, necessary to
P, PI, which store electricity and thus mag- resort to electrical vibrations of low pitch.
nify considerably the effect. The closed The Hertzian spark apparatus, used generally
reservoir R, with elastic walls, is in this by experimenters, which produces oscilla-
case replaced by the earth, and the fluid tions of a very high rate, permits no effective
by electricity. Both of these circuits tuning, and slight disturbances are sufficient
are "tuned" and operate just like the two to render an exchange of messages impracti-
tuning-forks. Instead of striking the fork F cable. But scientifically designed, efficient
at the sending-station, electrical oscillations appliances allow nearly perfect adjustment.
are produced in the vertical sending- or An experiment performed with the improved
transmitting-wire ESP, as by the action apparatus repeatedly referred to, and in-
of a source S, included in this wire, which tended to convey an idea of this feature, is

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illustrated in Fig. 5 (p.. 187), which is suffi- effecting communication to any distance
ciently explained by its note. through the earth or environing medium, the
Since I described these simple principles practical consummation of which I consid-
of telegraphy without wires I have had fre- ered of transcendent importance, chiefly on
quent occasion to note that the identical account of the moral effect which it could
features and elements have been used, in not fail to produce universally. As the
the evident belief that the signals are be- first effort to this end I proposed, at that
ing transmitted to considerable distances time, to employ relay-stations with tuned
by " Hertzian " radiations. This is only one circuits, in the hope of making thus practi-
of many misapprehensions to which the in- cable signaling over vast distances, even
vestigations of the lamented physicist have with apparatus of very moderate power
given rise. About thirty-three years ago then at my command. I was confident, how-
Maxwell, following up a suggestive ex- ever, that with properly designed machinery
periment made by Faraday in 1845, evolved signals could be transmitted to any point
an ideally simple theory which intimately of the globe, no matter what the distance,
connected light, radiant heat, and electri- without the necessity of using such inter-
cal phenomena, interpreting them as being- mediate stations. I gained this conviction
all due to vibrations of a hypothetical through the discovery of a singular electri-
fluid of inconceivable tenuity, called the cal phenomenon, which I described early
ether. No experimental verification was ar- in 1892, in lectures delivered before some
rived at until Hertz, at the suggestion of scientific societies abroad, and which I
Helmholtz, undertook a series of experiments have called a "rotating brush." This is
to this effect. Hertz proceeded with extraor- a bundle of light which is formed, under
dinary ingenuity and insight, but devoted certain conditions, in a vacuum-bulb, and
little energy to the perfection of his old- which is of a sensitiveness to magnetic
fashioned apparatus. The consequence was and electric influences bordering, so to
that he failed to observe the important speak, on the supernatural. This light-
function which the air played in his experi- bundle is rapidly rotated by the earth's
ments, and which I subsequently discovered. magnetism as many as twenty thousand
Repeating his experiments and reaching times per second, the rotation in these
different results, I ventured to point out parts being opposite to what it would be in
this oversight. The strength of the proofs the southern hemisphere, while in the region
brought forward by Hertz in support of of the magnetic equator it should not rotate
Maxwell's theory resided in the correct esti- at all. In its most sensitive state, which is
mate of the rates of vibration of the circuits difficult to attain, it is responsive to electric
he used. But I ascertained that he could or magnetic influences to an incredible de-
not have obtained the rates he thought he gree. The mere stiffening of the muscles of
was getting. The vibrations with identical the arm and consequent slight electrical
apparatus he employed are, as a rule, much change in the body of an observer standing
slower, this being due to the presence of air, at some distance from it, will perceptibly
which produces a dampening effect upon a affect it. When in this highly sensitive state
rapidly vibrating electric circuit of high it is capable of indicating the slightest mag-
pressure, as a fluid does upon a vibrating netic and electric changes taking place in
tuning-fork. I have, however, discovered the earth. The observation of this wonder-
since that time other causes of error, ful phenomenon impressed me strongly that
and I have long ago ceased to look upon communication at any distance could be
his results as being an experimental veri- easily effected by its means, provided that
fication of the poetical conceptions of apparatus could be perfected capable of
Maxwell. The work of the great German producing an electric or magnetic change
physicist has acted as an immense stimulus of state, however small, in the terrestrial
to contemporary electrical research, but it globe or environing medium.
has likewise, in a measure, by its fascination,
paralyzed the scientific mind, and thus ham-
pered independent inquiry. Every new phe- DEVELOPMENT OP A NEW PRINCIPLE—THE
nomenon which was discovered was made to ELECTRICAL OSCILLATOR—PRODUCTION OF
fit the theory, and so very often the truth IMMENSE ELECTRICAL MOVEMENTS—THE
has been unconsciously distorted. EARTH RESPONDS TO MAN—INTERPLANE-
TARY COMMUNICATION NOW PROBABLE.
When I advanced this system of telegra- I RESOLVED to concentrate my efforts upon
phy, my mind was dominated by the idea of this venturesome task, though it involved

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great sacrifice, for the difficulties to be mas- poses a strong inductive efl'ect is required;
tered were such that I could hope to con- for others the greatest possible suddenness;
summate it only after years of labor. It for others again, an exceptionally high rate
meant delay of other work to which I would of vibration or extreme pressure; while for
have preferred to devote myself, but I certain other objects immense electrical
gained the conviction that my energies movements are necessary. The photographs
could not be more usefully employed; for I in Figs. 7, 8, 9, and 10, of experiments per-
recognized that an efficient apparatus for formed with such an oscillator, may serve to
the production of powerful electrical oscilla- illustrate some of these features and convey
tions, as was needed for that specific pur- an idea of the magnitude of the effects actu-
pose, was the key to the solution of other ally produced. The completeness of the titles
most important electrical and, in fact, human of the figures referred to makes a further
problems. Not only was communication, to description of them unnecessary.
any distance, without wires possible by its However extraordinary the results shown
means, but, likewise, the transmission of en- may appear, they are but trifling compared
ergy in great amounts, the burning of the with those which are attainable by apparatus
atmospheric nitrogen, the production of an designed on these same principles. I have
efficient illuminant, and many other results produced electrical discharges the actual
of inestimable scientific and industrial value. path of which, from end to end, was prob-
Finally, however, I had the satisfaction of ably more than one hundred feet long; but
accomplishing the task undertaken by the it would not be difficult to reach lengths one
use of a new principle, the virtue of which hundred times as great. I have produced
is based on the marvelous properties of the electrical movements occurring at the rate
electrical condenser. One of these is that of approximately one hundred thousand
it can discharge or explode its stored energy horse-power, but rates of one, five, or ten
in an inconceivably short time. Owing to million horse-power are easily practicable.
this it is unequaled in explosive violence. In these experiments effects were developed
The explosion of dynamite is only the breath incomparably greater than any ever pro-
of a consumptive compared with its dis- duced by human agencies, and yet these re-
charge. It is the means of producing the sults are but an embryo of what is to be.
strongest current, the highest electrical
pressure, the greatest commotion in the That communication without wires to any
medium. Another of its properties, equally point of the globe is practicable with such
valuable, is that its discharge may vibrate apparatus would need no demonstration,
at any rate desired up to many milhons per but through a discovery which I made I ob-
second. tained absolute certitude. Popularly ex-
plained, it is exactly this: When we raise
I had arrived at the limit of rates obtain- the voice and hear an echo in reply, we
able in other ways when the happy idea know that the sound of the voice must
presented itself to me to resort to the con- have reached a distant wall, or boundary,
denser. I arranged such an instrument so as and must have been reflected from the
to be charged and discharged alternately in same. Exactly as the sound, so an electrical
rapid succession through a coil with a few wave is reflected, and the same evidence
turns of stout wire, forming the primary of which is afforded hj an echo is offered by an
a transformer or induction-coil. Each time electrical phenomenon known as a " station-
the condenser was discharged the current ary " wave—that is, a wave with fixed nodal
would quiver in the primary wire and induce and ventral regions. Instead of sending
corresponding oscillations in the secondary. sound-vibrations toward a distant wall, I
Thus a transformer or induction-coil on new have sent electrical vibrations toward the
principles was evolved, which I have called remote boundaries of-the earth, and instead
"the electrical oscillator," partaking of of the wall the earth has replied. In place
those unique qualities which characterize of an echo I have obtained a stationary elec-
the condenser, and enabling results to be trical wave, a wave reflected from afar.
attained impossible by other means. Elec- Stationary waves in the earth mean some-
trical effects of any desired character and thing more than mere telegraphy without
of intensities undreamed of before are now wires to any distance. They will enable us
• easily producible by perfected apparatus of to attain many important specific results
this kind, to which frequent reference has impossible otherwise. For instance, by their
been made, and the essential parts of which use we may produce at will, from a sending-
are shown in Fig. 6 (p. 188). For certain pur- station, an electrical effect in any particular

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region of the globe; we may determine the in a reflector—could be utilized by the sup-
relative position or course of a moving ob- posed observer in his instrument. But by
ject, such as a vessel at sea, the distance the means I have developed he would be
traversed by the same, or its speed; or we enabled to concentrate the larger portion of
may send over the earth a wave of electricity the entire energy transmitted to the planet
traveling at any rate we desire, from the in his instrument, and the chances of affect-
pace of a turtle up to lightning speed. ing the latter are thereby increased many
With these developments we have every millionfold.
reason to anticipate that in a time not very Besides machinery for producing vibra-
distant most telegraphic messages across the tions of the required power, we must have
oceans will be transmitted without cables. delicate means capable of revealing the ef-
For short distances we need a "wireless" fects of feeble influences exerted upon the
telephone, which requires no expert opera- earth. For such purposes, too, I have per-
tors. The greater the spaces to be bridged, fected new methods. By their use we shall
the more rational becomes communication likewise be able, among other things, to
without wires. The cable is not only an easily detect at considerable distance the presence
damaged and costly instrument, but it limits of an iceberg or other object at sea. By
us in the speed of transmission by reason of a their use, also, I have discovered some ter-
certain electrical property inseparable from restrial phenomena still unexplained. That
its construction. A properly designed plant we can send a message to a planet is cer-
for effecting communication without wires tain, that we can get an answer is probable:
ought to have many times the working capa- man is not the only being in the Infinite
city of a cable, while it will involve incom- gifted with a mind.
parably less expense. Not a long time will
pass, I believe, before communication by cable TRANSMISSION OF ELECTRICAL ENERGY TO
will become obsolete, for not only will sig- ANY DISTANCE WITHOUT WIRES—NOW
naling by this new method be quicker and PRACTICABLE—THE BEST MEANS OF IN-
cheaper, but also much safer. By using CREASING THE FORCE ACCELERATING THE
some new means for isolating the messages HUMAN MASS.
which I have contrived, an almost perfect THE most valuable observation made in
privacy can be secured. the course of these investigations was the
I have observed the above effects so far extraordinary behavior of the atmosphere
only up to a limited distance of about six toward electric impulses of excessive elec-
hundred miles, but inasmuch as there is tromotive force. The experiments showed
virtually no limit to the power of the vi- that the air at the ordinary pressure be-
brations producible with such an oscillator, came distinctly conducting, and this opened
I feel quite confident of the success of up the wonderful prospect of transmit-
such a plant for effecting transoceanic ting large amounts of electrical energy
communication. Nor is this all. My mea- for industrial purposes to great distances
surements and calculations have shown that without wires, a possibility which, up to that
it is perfectly practicable to produce on our time, was thought of only as a scientific
globe, by the use of these principles, an dream. Further investigation revealed the
electrical movement of such magnitude important fact that the conductivity im-
that, without the slightest doubt, its effect parted to the air by these electrical impulses
will be perceptible on some of our nearer of many millions of volts increased very
planets, as Venus and Mars. Thus from rapidly with the degree of rarefaction, so
mere possibility interplanetary communi- that air strata at very moderate altitudes,
cation has entered the stage of proba- which are easily accessible, offer, to all ex-
bility. In fact, that we can produce a perimental evidence, a perfect conducting,
distinct effect on one of these planets in path, better than a copper wire, for currents
this novel manner, namely, by disturbing the of this character.
electrical condition of the earth, is beyond Thus the discovery of these new proper-
any doubt. This way of effecting such com- ties of the atmosphere not only opened up
munication is, however, essentially different the possibility of transmitting, without
from all others which have so far been wires, energy in large amounts, but, what
proposed by scientific men. In all the pre- was still more significant, it afforded the
vious instances only a minute fraction of certitude that energy could be transmitted
the total energy reaching the planet—as in this manner economically. In this new
much as it would be possible to concentrate system it matters little—in fact, almost

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nothing—whether the transmission is ef- mean that energy would be available for
fected at a distance of a few miles or of a the uses of man at any point of the globe,
few thousand miles. not in small amounts such as might be de-
While I have not, as yet, actually effected rived from the ambient medium by suitable
a transmission of a considerable amount of machinery, but in quantities v-irtually un-
energy, such as would be of industrial im-: limited, from waterfalls. Export of power
portance, to a great distance by this new would then become the chief source of in-
method, I have operated several model plants come for many happily situated countries, as
under exactly the same conditions which will the United States, Canada, Central and
exist in a large plant of this kind, and the South America, Switzerland, and Sweden.
practicability of the system is thoroughly Men could settle down everywhere, fertilize
demonstrated. The experiments have shown and irrigate the soil with little effort, and
conclusively that, with two terminals main- convert barren deserts into gardens, and
tained at an elevation of not more than thirty thus the entire globe could be transformed
thousand to thirty-five thousand feet above and made a fitter abode for mankind. It is
sea-level, and with an electrical pressure of highly probable that if there are intelligent
fifteen to twenty million volts, the energy of beings on Mars they have long ago realized
thousands of horse-power can be transmitted this very idea, which would explain the
over distances which may be hundreds and, changes on its surface noted by astronomers.
if necessary, thousands of miles. I am hope- The atmosphere on that planet, being of
ful, however, that I may be able to reduce considerably smaller density than that of the
very considerably the elevation of the termi- earth, would make the task much more easy.
nals now required, and with this object I am It is probable that we shall soon have a
following up an idea which promises such a self-acting heat-engine capable of deriving
realization. There is, of course, a popular moderate amounts of energy from the am-
prejudice against using an electrical pres- bient medium. There is also a possibility—
sure of millions of volts, which may cause though a small one—that we may obtain
sparks to fly at distances of hundreds of electrical energy direct from the sun. This
feet, but, paradoxical as it may seem, the might be the case if the Maxwellian theory
system, as I have described it in a technical is true, according to which electrical vibra-
publication, offers greater personal safety tions of all rates should emanate from the
than most of the ordinary distribution cir- sun. I am still investigating this subject.
cuits now used in the cities. This is, in a Sir William Crookes has shown in his beau-
measure, borne out by the fact that, although tiful invention known as the "radiometer"
I have carried on such experiments for a that rays may produce by impact a mechani-
number of years, no injury has been sustained cal effect, and this may lead to some impor-
either by me or any of my assistants. tant revelation as to the utilization of the
sun's rays in novel ways. Other sources of
But to enable a practical introduction of energy may be opened up, and new methods
the system, a number of essential require- of deriving energy from the sun discovered,
ments are still to be fulfilled. It is not enough but none of these or similar achieve-
to develop appliances by means of which such ments would equal in importance the trans-
a transmission can be effected. The ma- mission of power to any distance through
chinerymust be such as to allowthe transfor- the medium. I can conceive of no techni-
mation and transmission of electrical energy cal advance which would tend to unite the
under highly economical and practical con- various elements of humanity more effec-
ditions. Furthermore, an inducement must tively than this one, or of one which would
be offered to those who are engaged in the more add to and more economize human
industrial exploitation of natural sources of energy. It would be the best means of in-
power, as waterfalls, by guaranteeing greater creasing the force accelerating the human
returns on the capital invested than they can mass. The mere moral influence of such a
secure by local development of the property. radical departure would be incalculable. On
From that moment when it was observed the other hand, if at any point of the globe
that, contrary to the established opinion, low energy can be obtained in limited quantities
and easily accessible strata of the atmo- from the ambient medium by means of a
sphere are capable of conducting electricity, self-acting heat-engine or otherwise, the
the transmission of electrical energy without conditions will remain the same as before.
wires has become a rational task of the en- Human performance will be increased, but
gineer, and one surpassing all others in im- men will remain strangers as they were.
portance. Its practical consummation would

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I anticipate that many, unprepared for ideas will be readily taken up. His work is
these results, which, through long familiar- like that of the planter—for the future. His
ity, appear to me simple and obvious, will duty is to lay the foundation for those who
consider them still far from practical appli- are to come, and point the way. He lives and
cation. Such reserve, and even opposition, of labors and hopes with the poet who says:
some is as useful a quality and as necessary
an element in hurnan progress as the quick Schaff', das Tagwerk meiner Hande,
receptivity and enthusiasm of others. Thus, Hohes Gliick, dass ich's vollende!
a mass which resists the force at first, once Lass, 0 lass mich nicht ermatten!
set in movement, adds to the energy. The Nein, es sind nicht leere Traume:
scientific man does not aim at an immediate - Jetzt nur Stangen, diese Baume
result. He does not expect that his advanced Geben einst noch Fruclit und Schatten."^
1 Daily work—my hands' employment, Lo! these trees, hut bare poles seeming,
To complete is pure enjoyment! Tet wili.'yield both fruit and shelter!
Let, oh, let me never falter! Goethe's "Hope,"
No! there is no empty dreaming: Translated by William Gibson, Com. U. S. N.

LATITUDE AND LONGITUDE AMONG REFOEMERS.


BY THEODORE EOOSEVELT.

NE of Miss Mary E. Wilkins's cism, that they do not believe in the possibil-
delightful heroines remarks, in ity of making anything better, or do not care
speaking of certain would-be lead- to see things better. There are also men who
ers of social reform in her village: are slightly disordered mentally, or who are
" I don't know that I think they are so cursed with a moral twist which makes them
much above us as too far to one side. Some- champion reforms less from a desire to do
times it is longitude and sometimes it is good to others than as a kind of tribute to
latitude that separates people." This is their own righteousness, for the sake of
true, and the philosophy it teaches ap- emphasizing their own superiority. From
plies quite as much to those who would neither of these classes can we get any real
reform the politics of a large city, or, for help in the unending struggle for righteous-
that matter, of the whole country, as to ness. There remains the great body of the
those who would reform the society of a people, including the entire body of those
hamlet. through whom the salvation of the people
There is always danger of being misun- must ultimately be worked out. All these
derstood when one writes about such a sub- men combine or seek to combine in vary-
ject as this, because there are on each side ing degrees the quality of striving after the
unhealthy extremists who like to take half ideal, that is, the quality which makes
of any statement and twist it into an argu- men reformers, and the quality of so striv-
ment in favor of themselves or against their ing through practical methods—the quality
opponents. No single sentence or two is which makes men efiicient. Both qualities
sufiicient to explain a man's full meaning, are absolutely essential. The absence of
any more than in a sentence or two it would either makes the presence of the other
be possible to treat the question of the ne- worthless or worse.
cessity for, and the limitations of, proper If there is one tendency of the day which
party loyalty, with the thoroughness and more than any other is unhealthy and unde-
justice shown, for instance, by Mr. Lecky sirable, it is the tendency to deify mere
in his recent queerly named volume, "The "smartness," unaccompanied by a sense of
Map of Life." moral accountability. We shall never make
All men in whose character there is not our republic what it should be until as a
an element of hardened baseness must admit people we thoroughly understand and put in
the need in our public life of those qualities practice the doctrine that success is abhor-
which we somewhat vaguely group together rent if attained by the sacrifice of the funda-
when we speak of " reform," and all men of mental principles of morality. The success-
sound mind must also admit the need of effi- ful man, whether in business or in politics,
ciency. There are, of course, men of such who has risen by conscienceless swindling of
low moral type, or of such ingrained cyni- his neighbors, by deceit and chicanery, by

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