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Monday, Dec. 18, 2023
Good morning to you!

Rabbit ears. Most of you reading this know exactly what I am referring to. You likely had some version of this dipole antenna on a television set at one point or another. These, of course, were the days before cable TV or streaming. One had to patiently position the antenna to get just the right angle to pick up a local station. Some would touch it to a metal object or add tinfoil for additional strength. By today’s standards, that seems ridiculous. Antennas have come a long way.

But what is the origin of the antenna? According to antenna-theory.com, the first experiments that involved the coupling of electricity and magnetism — and showed a definitive relationship — were by English scientist Michael Faraday in the 1830s. The site says he slid a magnet around the coils of a wire attached to a galvanometer, creating a time-varying magnetic field. The coil acted as a loop antenna and received the electromagnetic radiation, which was detected by the galvanometer. Makes perfect sense, right?

All I know is that we had a big antenna on top of my childhood home, and that’s how we were able to get the four or five channels that were available at the time. Heavy windstorms wreaked havoc on that antenna, and it eventually came down, about the time that cable TV became mainstream.

I also recall those long CB radio whip antennas that were on many vehicles in the 1970s. In a nostalgic moment a few years back, and despite my wife’s pleas against it, I decided to install a CB radio in my truck. I didn’t want that big whip antenna, so I bought a magnetic version that mounted on top. That sounded like a great idea, until the wind blew it off and it banged against the side of my truck while driving down the interstate.

Not too many years ago, our cell phones used to have antennas. Many of you remember those flip phones with the retractable antennas. Do you ever wonder why today’s phones don't have these? The short answer, according to MIT School of Engineering, is that modern electronic devices communicate at frequencies that can be detected by smaller antennas. In 1993, the Federal Communications Commission began auctioning off a range of new carrier frequencies to wireless service providers. The first were a range of frequencies close to 900 megahertz and were typically used by early cordless phones. By the end of the 1990s, major providers had acquired many more communications bands at frequencies greater than 2 gigahertz.

Meanwhile, with the popularity of streaming today, some folks who still want local channels have been searching for rabbit ears as a solution. Today’s versions are a bit fancier, though, with longer ranges, tabletop designs, extendable dipoles and power adaptors. And they pick up a lot more than four or five channels. Sometimes.

Have a magnificent Monday, and thanks for reading.

Shane Goodman 

President and Publisher
Big Green Umbrella Media
515-953-4822, ext. 305

View Shane Goodman's archived columns from past issues here.

CITYVIEW's Best Of Des Moines®
The polls have closed and a record number of readers have cast their votes in the latest CITYVIEW'S Best Of Des Moines readers' poll — the metro's original and largest poll of its kind.
Winners will be announced in the February 2024 issue of CITYVIEW!

Your Clear Mortgage forecast

Windy conditions are ahead today, and the breezes stick around through Tuesday. We warm up after that again, with a slight rain chance Thursday night into Friday.

For help with pre-approvals or refinancing, get in touch with Originating Branch Manager Carrie Hansen at carrie.mortgage.

Featured home for sale
Attention, Realtors, post your listings here for $50. Contact jolene@iowalivingmagazines.com for details.
2000 N.E. Park Drive
Grimes, IA 50111
Welcome to this exceptional custom ranch walkout nestled within preferred Heritage at Grimes development. From the ground up, this home is a testament to thoughtful design and uncompromising attention to detail. From curb appeal to the long list of upgrades, youll find every corner of this beautiful build has been carefully considered and meticulously executed.
See More Homes For Sale

The Word Bank reported last week that $830 billion were transmitted across borders last year by immigrant workers world wide. That is up from $150 billion at the beginning of the century. Independent companies, like WISE, charge bargain fees compared to banking system members whose fees are exponentially higher.

Tahoe Valley ski resorts, particularly Heavenly, reported several incidences last week of bears playing on the slopes. California agencies explained that bears in Tahoe Valley no longer hibernate because there is so much good food to eat from the growing population of tourists and winter residents.

Monday at Barntown (9500 S.E. University, West Des Moines) brings a special of burger, fries and a pint for $12. These are top notch burgers with double patties, and the fries are hand cut.

— Jim Duncan, jd91446@aol.com


FROM KCCI: Wreaths Across America ceremonies honor veterans all across the country

Urbandale city council member Larry McBurney said it's a way of remembering those who gave it all to protect our freedom today... READ MORE FROM KCCI

FROM WHO-TV: Autism & the Holidays: Cheesy Potato Bites

DES MOINES, IOWA — What is like to travel with a child with autism? Erin Kiernan can sum it up in three words: cheesy potato bites. In the next part of her continuing series on how families of children with autism handle the holiday stress, Erin and Cari Ebert talk about replacing the comforts of home when you are far from home...READ MORE FROM WHO-TV

FROM WOI-DT Local 5: 'It was beautiful': Local server surprised with huge holiday tip

A group of friends, called Shock and Claus, surprised local waitress Carissa Kuehl with a more than 500% tip....READ MORE FROM WOI-DT Local 5

Sports notes
NCAA Volleyball Finals: Texas dominates Nebraska en route to back-to-back volleyball titles.
UFC 296 - Welterweight - Main Event - Title Fight: Leon Edwards retains title with dominant win over Colby Covington



Holiday Hullabaloo

Jackie Wilson took these photos at the Holiday Hullabaloo. At left, The Sugar Plum Fairy, portrayed by Malia Cullenward, wears a holiday dress made from coffee filters. Center, Mrs. Claus, portrayed by Ophelia Lopez, is happy to visit with customers who stop in at her North Pole kitchen. At right, Parker, Derek and Maddy of Huxley stop for a photo opportunity at a cut-out. For tickets, visit https://www.holidayhullabaloo.com

From the Iowa Living magazines


Cards through the years
By Ashley Rullestad

Lynne Schoop has been sending photo Christmas cards for more than 40 years. She sends approximately 75-90 each year, and the biggest change is the ease of photography today.

“In the past, I would have to take the pictures with a camera and get the film developed,” she says. “It would take at least 24 hours to develop. I would hope out of those 12 to 24 pictures that one was good enough to be sent as our Christmas greeting. With three young children, it was not easy to get a perfect picture.”

Now, with a camera on one’s phone and the ability to see and send pictures immediately, technology has made the picture card a breeze. Before Schoop had a social media account, Christmas cards and photos were the primary way she kept in touch with family and friends she didn’t see often. Her mother sent cards out, and it has been a tradition that Schoop has wanted to keep alive.

Read more in the Johnston Living magazine.

Birthdays and notables!

Happy Birthday Kristine McDonald!

These celebrities were born on this date: Billie Eilish, Brad Pitt,Christina Aguilera,Bridgit Mendler, Ashley Benson, YBN Nahmir,Steven Spielberg, Katie Holmes, Ronald Acuna Jr., Lyrica Anderson, Keith Richards

SUBMIT: Send your birthday greetings and congratulatory notes to: tammy@iowalivingmagazines.com

Morning chuckle

The answer to yesterday's riddle:

WHAT HAPPENED TO THE SHARK THAT SWALLOWED KEYS? HE GOT LOCK JAW! - Jayde Vogeler, Nick Noah, Dennis Porter, Gail Tomlinson. He had no trouble getting through the locks! - Carolyn Rogers. He opened Davey Jones Locker! - Rex Post. He sang the National Anthem! - John Zeitler. He went on to unlock the secrets of the depths! - William Snyder.

Today's riddle

What happened after the cops arrested the guy who beat his victims with lunch meat?

Have a guess? Email tammy@iowalivingmagazines.com


To advertise in this daily newsletter, contact Jolene Goodman at jolene@iowalivingmagazines.com, or call 515-953-4822 ext. 319.

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