Paths of invention
by Ruud Broens

Well I was working my accounts late one night
In comes the neighbour's son, face all bright
"Uncle Ned", he said - we call him Al - and :)
"You've gotta come join in an experiment"

Into the young lad's lab we stepped with pace
While he told me all about KT^4 and space
Now here's the setup Al devised down there in 'the base'
"A modulated beam of light, an LDR and amp" was his phrase

"Now what hath this tale of a 15 year old to do with tubes" you say
A tube amp, a battery, a car's headlight running in a serial way
hooked up to a taperecorder formed his transmitter for the day
Well, dear reader, I'd say, now you're likely to stay

OK, now I'm no physics buff, but heck, this stuff will surely hit the deck
When experience tells me merely switchin' on the headlights takes half a sec
Undaunted clever Al graciously stood and reminded me of KT^4
"You see, the battery is biasing at 13 Volts or so - this is the floor with the amp's secondary we will be 'flappin the door' "

-Of course that's not how it was said, merely a crummy writer's way of rhyme-
I was highly sceptical, but readily picked up the receiver on Al's cue "Time!"
I was positioned 40 feet away from the lad
aligning the LDR's reflector
    another headlight - emptied for that
with the beam bright
this late June knight
proved to be right!

With a sound somewhat like AM radio coming through a little speaker
My believes in extrapolation from common sense instantly grew weaker
The little transistor amp obviously amplified that LDR's modulation
Just directing it to a fluorescent tube gave me dire sonic aggravation

Many times since have I visited Al's basement
Often there was astounishment and excitement
But now we come to the inevitable 'morale' of this -a true- story
Study, then test, experiment / then believe / for the rest: don't worry


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