Archive for September, 1999

Simulators

Monday, September 27th, 1999


In the cockpit of a multi-million dollar jet fighter, a pilot makes a split second mistake that ends in disaster. After talking to his instructor, he takes off for a second “flight” in his simulator. SIMULATORS have made training for many professions far safer, more effective and less expensive than it would be if the students were in command of the real thing. MODERN MARVELS traces the history of these “synthetic reality” devices back to the 1929 Link Pilot Trainer, an open cockpit mounted to a universal joint and activated by pipe organ bellows. From this inauspicious beginning, simulators have developed into extraordinarily sophisticated devices that can emulate entire tank battles, the passage of supertankers through narrow, storm-tossed straits, and landing jet airliners in dangerous conditions. Climb inside some of the multi-million dollar devices that offer an invaluable substitute for on-the-job training.

The Atlantic Wall

Monday, September 13th, 1999


This episode uses captured Nazi documents, expert commentary, combat and archival footage and the recollections of the soldiers who lived through D-Day to tell the story of the most extensive defensive edifice erected since the Great Wall. The video visits the now-quiet coastlines where the remnants of the massive network remain and details the different defenses and weapons that were supposed to make the European coast impregnable. Then, see how the Allied commanders plotted their attack and hear from the soldiers who were charged with making their strategies work.

Jerry Lewis

Sunday, September 12th, 1999


James Lipton interviews entertainment legend Jerry Lewis about his life and career.

Fireworks

Monday, September 6th, 1999


Since the invention of gunpowder, fireworks have thrilled audiences around the world. We’ll review highlights of fireworks exhibitions throughout history, and go behind the scenes to explore how science and art mingle in this unique, ancient craft. The world’s preeminent fireworks families explain how they create their spectacles.