Sunday, August 27, 2017

Bell & Howell Robomatic

Aaron Sussman.  The Amateur Photographer's Handbook.  Seventh Revised Edition.
New York:  Thomas Y. Crowell Company, 1941, 1965, 1967.

Introduced in the mid-1950's, it was apparently still on the market 10 years later.  I can well remember having to endure long slide shows of acquaintance's vacation trips, especially if they brought out several carousels.  Groan!

The term "robot" was first used in 1920 in Karel Čapek's play R.U.R. ‘Rossum's Universal Robots.’  Karel's brother Josef actually came up with the word, which originated in an old Slavonic word "rabota" meaning servitude or forced labour, the method through which serfs paid their rent.  The play itself is a fascinating piece for its time.  Read The Origin of the Word 'Robot'.  Because of his views, Hitler hated Karel Čapek and he was No. 2 on the Gestapo's most-wanted list.

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