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In advance of Nikola Tesla day on July 10, The Oatmeal has created a tribute to the many, many ways in which Tesla was great and Thomas Edison was a douchebag.

second industrial revolution

I’m not a Tesla expert, so in addition to Tesla’s wikipedia page, I’ll simply refer you to two other fairly recent and probably inadequate tributes to quite possibly the most brilliant man to ever live in the United States.

First, David Bowie’s performance as Tesla in Christopher Nolan’s 2006 film, The Prestige. In fairness, Nolan’s depiction of Tesla and his marginalization is based on the deeply faulty (and, in all honesty, nonsensical) premise that “the truly extraordinary is not permitted in science and industry,” but there is a way in which only a film about magic can really capture the way in which Tesla’s work seems to border on the supernatural, even today.

The second tribute is from Kate Beaton’s Hark, A Vagrant comic.

The Oatmeal touches (mmmm. . .) on Tesla’s desirability as well.

Tesla Celibacy

Seriously, look at that confident smirk. Somebody get me some bloomers so I can throw them into his machinery.

Tesla

So, in short, Tesla = awesomeness. In fact, we might just need to invent a new word to fully encompass his magnificence. It’s the least we can do. (Suggestions welcomed in the comments.)

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4 thoughts on “You knew Tesla was awesome, but a reminder is always useful

    • I’m tempted to use the way Edison treated Tesla AS the definition of douche bag behavior, but then I’m not sure that anyone else could ever live up to that level of self-serving arrogance, working to hold up one’s own public standing to the detriment of someone else AND society as a whole, mendacity, dishonesty, shady business practices, and just general ass-hattery. Bus: meet Edison.

      Did Edison do good things? Yeah. But he was a total jerk, and he gets remembered as the best thing since sliced bread. Tesla is probably the single best argument that Edison is long overdue to be brought down a peg or two. Or twenty.

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