August 11 in Sci-Fi History: Hedy Lamarr Invents Wi-Fi

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Aug 11, 2017

Let's talk about Hedy Lamarr, one of the most sought-after movie stars of the 1940s.

And also? A self-taught inventor who created technology for chemicals and traffic lights and then, with a composer friend named George Anthiel, created a player piano that could synchronize with radio signals.

That technology would eventually become Wi-Fi. The thing you are likely using right now.

On this day in 1942, Lamar and Anthiel were granted the patent to that technology. This video has weird sexist ("a bombshell with a brain"?!) overtones, but:

The U.S. Navy started using the technology during the Cuban missile crisis for other purposes, more people innovated on it, and eventually ... that's how we got Wi-Fi.

So. Get cracking, Hollywood.

Here's an insane interview with Lamar from 1969 where she puts up with some dudes being gross to her with Leslie Uggams and Moms Mabley:

Today is also the 53rd birthday of Jim Lee. The Co-Publisher of DC Entertainment, Lee became an artist for Marvel Comics in 1987. He's been an artist on Batman: Hush and X-Men, and he formed Image Comics and published titles like WildC.A.T.s and Gen13. He's an all-around comics badass.


If you get a chance, send him some well-wishes on Twitter. 53 is the New 52!

Tomorrow: Peter Krause and Cara Delevigne.

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