Tony Sartain, MBA, NE

niche programming and web development

Good afternoon. Today is Tuesday, the 17th day of July. It's the 198th day of the year. We're not in a leap year, so there are 167 days remaining in 2018. On the Jewish calendar, today is the 5th day of Av in the year 5778. On this day in 1955, Disneyland was dedicated and opened by Walt Disney in Anaheim, California.

This website is a demonstration of smart content rendering. The content updates continuously without the help of Internet monkeys. All the information was current at the time you arrived here. If you're looking for information on the technology, it's at the bottom of this page.

Today in History: Calculating the Current Consumed Current

It was on this day in 1888 that Oliver B. Shallenberger of Rochester, Pennsylvania was issued US Patent No. 388,004 for the first practical electric meter.

As soon as electricity was recognized as a useful resource, the early pioneers were quick to develop a means of measuring its use. The earliest applications were in commercial settings where electricity suppliers could personally monitor the working of the meters, but residential use soon followed, so a precise, standardized method was needed. Hence, the Shallengerger meter was a significant breakthrough in the electrifying of the world.

After telegraphy, the earliest use of electricity for power was to operate strings of arc lamps connected in series. Since the current was constant and the voltage required for each lamp was known, and all of the lamps were controlled by one switch, it was adequate to measure only the time current flowed in the circuit (lamp-hours). The earliest patent for a meter did just that. In 1872, Samuel Gardiner patented an electric meter that was a DC lamp-hour meter that used a clock with an electromagnet that started and stopped the mechanism when the current flowed and stopped. By multiplying the current by the time, a fee could be easily calculated. However, electrical applications grew at a tremendous rate, so it was necessary to record usage, whether constant or fluctuating. Prior to the Shallenberger meter, several others had developed meters to measure actual current usage, but none of the techniques proved accurate enough to be practical. Much like previous designers, Shallenberger employed a revolving disk which turned at a rate directly proportional to the current being consumed. His patent sets the fundamental principals, but includes the specifics for the arrangement of the coiling to drive the disk, and even provides for seven specific modifications to cover various uses.

The vast majority of meters in use today draw from the principals developed in the 1888 patent. And for whatever it's worth, in the diagram from the original patent document, you'll see paddles extending from the shaft of the driving mechanism of the counting wheels. The paddles provide air resistance as a stabilizing force to give the meter a governing capacity. In plain English, the paddles keep the mechanism from spinning out of control.

Today's Birthday Boys and Girls

Today is the birthday of Isaac Watts (1674), John Jacob Astor (1763), Erle Stanley Gardner (1889), James Cagney (1899), Art Linkletter (1912), Phyllis Diller (1917), Donald Sutherland (1934), Diahann Carroll (1935), Camilla Parker Bowles (1947), Luc Bondy (1948), Lucie Arnaz (1951), David Hasselhoff (1952), Phoebe Snow (1952), J. Michael Straczynski (1954), and Tash Hamilton (1982).

On Wall Street

About the stock numbers: There's no current stock market reporting at the moment because of a snag in the link that retrieves the data and gets it to the screen. The stock market stuff is on the work bench until it's working again.

The New York Stock Exchange is open and trading. Currently, The S&P500 index is at , up by . The NASDAQ is up by to . The link to the Dow Jones Industrial Average is not working.

Note: During trading hours all data is in real time. The data is preserved at the end of the trading day. It remains until the next opening bell. The process of retrieving stock info involves many links between the sources and what you're reading on the screen. At the moment, there's a technical issue up the line with the DJ average. Occasionally, the data appears as random characters. If there's numerical data on the screen, it's accurate. The other indicies are working and accurate.

Earth and All Spheres

The overall weather conditions at Love Field were reported as a few clouds at 1:53 PM CDT. The temperature was 101F, and the relative humidity was 32%, pushing the heat index up to a sweltering 105F. It's way too hot outdoors.

Love Field's average high and low temperatures for today, July 17, are 96°F and 77°F respectively. In general, Dallas temperatures were much colder during the winter than usual, but that's history at this point, and it seems that spring will arrive in pretty much the usual fashion. The temperature on this day reached a record high of 109°F in 1954. An all-time evening low of 68°F was recorded in 1967. More [...]. For the seven-day forecast [click here].

We are under a waxing crescent moon. At the time you accessed this page, its exact age was 4 days, 18 hours, and 23 minutes. We will be under a new moon again on Saturday, August 11th at 8:30 AM CDT. The moon will reach full luminescence on Friday, July 27th at 2:08 PM. For now, Mars, Saturn and Jupiter are visible in the night sky. Mars, seen in the southern sky, is clearly visible and its red glow clearly identifies it. It can be seen beginning at nightfall; it moves slowly in a westerly fashion before disappearing. Mercury can be seen in the eastern sky just before dawn.

We are under the constellation of Cancer in the 27th day of summer, which arrived on Thursday, June 21st at 5:07 AM CDT with the occurrence of the Summer Solstice. On the day of the Solstice, the sun rose at 6:15 AM CDT and set at 8:26 PM CDT. For today, our sunrise and sunset times (at -96.852/32.847) are 6:26 AM and 8:23 PM, giving us 13 hours and 57 minutes of daylight. For now, we're on Daylight Saving Time. We will switch to Standard Time on Sunday, November 4th at 2:00 AM when our clocks will magically roll backward 1:00 AM, following the NIST standard.

The Technology

This site is a working demonstration of on-demand PHP scripting. The code tightly integrates computed and imported data with text, spewing forth natural-sounding narrative output with flawless grammar and syntax. The birthdays, history section and the text below--which all change daily--are from an in-house database. Raw data used in the financial and weather sections is imported at page generation time. All the other data, particularly the celestial stuff, is derived and rendered by several hundred lines of code at the time the page request reaches the server. THIS SITE IS SELF-MAINTAINING. The daily content updates at midnight CDT. The weather target is -96.852/32.847.

Today's vocabulary word is hypocrisy.

Well, Aimee Semple McPherson has written a book. And were you to call it a little peach, you would not be so much as scratching its surface. It is the story of her life, and it is called
In the Service of the King, which title is perhaps a bit dangerously suggestive of a romantic novel. It may be that this autobiography is set down in sincerity, frankness and simple effort. It may be, too, that the Statue of Liberty is situated in Lake Ontario.

Dorothy Parker
"Our Lady of the Loudspeaker"
The New Yorker, February 25, 1928





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