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Fazlur Khan: The engineer who made it possible to live in the sky
Fazlur Rahman Khan (Bengali: ফজলুর রহমান খান, Fozlur Rôhman Khan) (3 April 1929 – 27 March 1982) was a Bangladeshi-American structural engineer and architect, who initiated important structural systems for skyscrapers. Considered the "father of tubular designs" for high-rises, Khan was also a pioneer in computer-aided design (CAD). He was the structural engineer of the Sears Tower working with Architect Bruce Graham, since renamed Willis Tower, the tallest building in the world from 1973 until 1998, and the 100-story John Hancock Center.
Khan, more than any other individual, ushered in a renaissance in skyscraper construction during the second half of the 20th century. He has been called the "Einstein of structural engineering" and the "Greatest Structural Engineer of the 20th Century" for his innovative use of structural systems that remain fundamental to modern skyscraper design and construction. In his honor, the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat established the Fazlur Khan Lifetime Achievement Medal, as one of their CTBUH Skyscraper Awards.
Although best known for skyscrapers, Khan was also an active designer of other kinds of structures, including the Hajj airport terminal, the McMath–Pierce solar telescope, and several stadium structures.
- "Fazlur Khan: The engineer who made it possible to live in the sky" | 2014-06-12 | 86 Upvotes 9 Comments
Max Headroom broadcast signal intrusion
A broadcast signal hijacking of two television stations in Chicago, Illinois was carried out on November 22, 1987, in an act of video piracy. The stations' broadcasts were interrupted by a video of an unknown person wearing a Max Headroom mask and costume, accompanied by distorted audio.
The first incident took place for 25 seconds during the sports segment of WGN-TV's 9:00 p.m. news broadcast; the second occurred around two hours later, for about 90 seconds during PBS affiliate WTTW's broadcast of Doctor Who.
The hacker made references to Max Headroom's endorsement of Coca-Cola, the TV series Clutch Cargo, WGN anchor Chuck Swirsky; and "all the greatest world newspaper nerds", a reference to WGN's call letters, which stand for "World's Greatest Newspaper". A corrugated panel swiveled back and forth mimicking Max Headroom's geometric background effect. The video ended with a pair of exposed buttocks being spanked with a flyswatter before normal programming resumed. The culprits were never caught or identified.
- "Max Headroom Signal Hijacking" | 2021-08-11 | 39 Upvotes 2 Comments
- "Max Headroom broadcast signal intrusion" | 2019-11-23 | 211 Upvotes 54 Comments
- "The 1987 Max Headroom Pirating Incident" | 2010-03-21 | 15 Upvotes 5 Comments
Chicago Tunnel and Reservoir Plan
The Tunnel and Reservoir Plan (abbreviated TARP and more commonly known as the Deep Tunnel Project or the Chicago Deep Tunnel) is a large civil engineering project that aims to reduce flooding in the metropolitan Chicago area, and to reduce the harmful effects of flushing raw sewage into Lake Michigan by diverting storm water and sewage into temporary holding reservoirs. The megaproject is one of the largest civil engineering projects ever undertaken in terms of scope, cost and timeframe. Commissioned in the mid-1970s, the project is managed by the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago. Completion of the system is not anticipated until 2029, but substantial portions of the system have already opened and are currently operational. Across 30 years of construction, over $3 billion has been spent on the project.
- "Chicago Tunnel and Reservoir Plan" | 2015-12-04 | 14 Upvotes 5 Comments
William Goldman, author and screenwriter of “The Princess Bride”, has died
William Goldman (August 12, 1931 – November 16, 2018) was an American novelist, playwright, and screenwriter. He first came to prominence in the 1950s as a novelist before turning to screenwriting. He won Academy Awards for his screenplays Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969) and All the President's Men (1976). His other works include his thriller novel Marathon Man and comedy/fantasy novel The Princess Bride, both of which he adapted for the film versions.
Author Sean Egan has described Goldman as "one of the late twentieth century's most popular storytellers."
- "William Goldman, author and screenwriter of “The Princess Bride”, has died" | 2018-11-16 | 32 Upvotes 3 Comments
Theodore John Kaczynski (; born May 22, 1942), also known as the Unabomber (), is an American domestic terrorist, anarchist, and former mathematics professor. He was a mathematics prodigy, but he abandoned his academic career in 1969 to pursue a more primitive lifestyle. Between 1978 and 1995, he killed three people and injured 23 others in an attempt to start a revolution by conducting a nationwide bombing campaign targeting people involved with modern technology.
In 1971, Kaczynski moved to a remote cabin without electricity or running water near Lincoln, Montana, where he lived as a recluse while learning survival skills in an attempt to become self-sufficient. He witnessed the destruction of the wilderness surrounding his cabin and concluded that living in nature was untenable; he began his bombing campaign in 1978. In 1995, he sent a letter to The New York Times and promised to "desist from terrorism" if the Times or The Washington Post published his essay Industrial Society and Its Future, in which he argued that his bombings were extreme but necessary to attract attention to the erosion of human freedom and dignity by modern technologies that require large-scale organization.
Kaczynski was the subject of the longest and most expensive investigation in the history of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Before his identity was known, the FBI used the case identifier UNABOM (University and Airline Bomber) to refer to his case, which resulted in the media naming him the "Unabomber." The FBI and Attorney General Janet Reno pushed for the publication of Industrial Society and Its Future, which led to a tip from Kaczynski's brother David, who recognized the writing style.
After his arrest in 1996, Kaczynski tried unsuccessfully to dismiss his court-appointed lawyers because they wanted him to plead insanity in order to avoid the death penalty, whereas he did not believe that he was insane. In 1998, a plea bargain was reached under which he pleaded guilty to all charges and was sentenced to life in prison without possibility of parole.
- "Ted Kaczynski" | 2020-06-04 | 24 Upvotes 6 Comments
Fredrick Allen Hampton (August 30, 1948 – December 4, 1969) was an American activist and revolutionary socialist. He came to prominence in Chicago as chairman of the Illinois chapter of the Black Panther Party (BPP), and deputy chairman of the national BPP. In this capacity, he founded a prominent multicultural political organization, the Rainbow Coalition that initially included the Black Panthers, Young Patriots and the Young Lords, and an alliance among major Chicago street gangs to help them end infighting, and work for social change.
In 1967, Hampton was identified by the Federal Bureau of Investigation as a radical threat. The FBI tried to subvert his activities in Chicago, sowing disinformation among these groups and placing a counterintelligence operative in the local Panthers. In December 1969, Hampton was shot and killed in his bed during a predawn raid at his Chicago apartment by a tactical unit of the Cook County State's Attorney's Office in conjunction with the Chicago Police Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation; during the raid, another Panther was killed and several seriously wounded. In January 1970, a coroner's jury held an inquest and ruled the deaths of Hampton and Mark Clark to be justifiable homicide.
A civil lawsuit was later filed on behalf of the survivors and the relatives of Hampton and Clark. It was resolved in 1982 by a settlement of $1.85 million; the City of Chicago, Cook County, and the federal government each paid one-third to a group of nine plaintiffs. Given revelations about the illegal COINTELPRO program and documents associated with the killings, scholars now widely consider Hampton's death an assassination under the FBI's initiative.
- "Fred Hampton" | 2020-06-05 | 20 Upvotes 2 Comments