I disagree with listing "Falling Down" as an engineering movie. The fact that Michael Douglas's character was an engineer is only relevant when used to describe his disillusionment with the world and how his character has been handling (or not) his stress level. It is easy to imagine him in the role when compared to a Hollywood envisioned engineer. My picks are movies that show some insight into the personal and professional work worlds of engineers. One is a slightly sophomoric "Real Genius" starring Val Kilmer as a college student used by his professor to work on a high powered laser system and the second is Christopher Walken in "Brainstorm". Both these movies show some of the politics and personal sacrifices engineers make to follow their dreams.
These are interesting definitions of an engineering movie. I never would have thought of Falling Down as one, although it's one of my all-time favorite movies (especially after living in LA). I think of it more as social commentary and assumed the fact that the main character is an engineer is due more to Hollywood's idea of a normal nebbish type Everyman. I think the title of this article should be "What's Your Pick for Best STEM Movie?" Anyway, I agree with Jenn, Flash of Genius is probably my pick.
I agree that October Sky was a wonderful movie about catching fire with science. Tucker -- A Man and His Dream was also a good story about a small company with innovative technology going up against a large industry.
I liked "October Sky," too. The book gave readers many more details in particular about Homer's teacher; the Laura Dern character in the movie. Homer's family life didn't get much attention in the movie, either. To anyone who wants to watch the movie I recommend you read the book first.
Alex: I looked at your story for Information Week. Good stuff. Two more great stories on that topic are about the late inventor Jerome Lemelson. One -- "Land of Wizards" -- was written by Tom Wolfe for Popular Mechanics in 1986. It is not on line, as far as I know. Another, titled "Lone Wolf of the Sierras," was written by our own Larry Maloney of Design News in 1995. Unfortunately, that ten-page article was written prior to our web presence, and the first paragraph is all that remains on our web site.
Based on your recommendation, Jon, I will watch Azorian. In the meantime, my favorite is still October Sky, which can only loosely be categorized as an engineering movie. It's about a high school student in the 1950s who is inspired by Sputnik and dreams of becoming a rocket engineer (it was based on the book "Rocket Boys"). Every time I see I can't help but think of the stories about the tired NASA engineers involved in the moon landing effort who, during their 16-hour days, would walk outside and look at the moon for inspiration. I like October Sky because it's one of the few movies that portrays a young, wannabe scientist as a normal person.
The canonical case of the inventor who's been screwed is the most important yet least recognized inventor of the Radio era. That would be Edwin Howard Armstrong, who inarguably was responsible for more, and more significant, inventors than any of his peers. He did the regenerative receiver, superheterodyne, super regenerative, and FM. He had a love-hate relationship with famed RCA head David Sarnoff, who, though he helped Armstrong many times, also screwed him out of money and credit. Though Armstrong was eventually vindicated by the courts, it was after he committed suicide. See a short bio here. I commend readers to a great, out of print biography, entitled "Man of High Fidelity." If you search enough, you can find a free pdf ebook version
Interesting post, Alex. It's a sad commentary on our times that so many people before Kearns, and I'm sure many more after, have to fight the big corporations to get the credit/compensation they deserve. While it's sad that these people are willing to lose everything for it, I have to admire their drive and passion for uncovering the truth and corruption.
Lantronix Inc. has expanded its line of controllers for sensor networks with the release of a rugged controller that improves management of automation systems used in a number of industries, including manufacturing, oil and gas, and chemicals.
Inspired by the hooks a parasitic worm uses to penetrate its host's intestines, the Karp Lab has invented a flexible adhesive patch covered with microneedles that adheres well to wet, soft tissues, but doesn't cause damage when removed.
A quick look into the merger of two powerhouse 3D printing OEMs and the new leader in rapid prototyping solutions, Stratasys. The industrial revolution is now led by 3D printing and engineers are given the opportunity to fully maximize their design capabilities, reduce their time-to-market and functionally test prototypes cheaper, faster and easier. Bruce Bradshaw, Director of Marketing in North America, will explore the large product offering and variety of materials that will help CAD designers articulate their product design with actual, physical prototypes. This broadcast will dive deep into technical information including application specific stories from real world customers and their experiences with 3D printing. 3D Printing is