During the World War II years, Percy Spencer, a self-taught engineer leading the power tube division at defense contractor Raytheon, focused his efforts on the magnetron—the core tube that made radars so powerful they enabled U.S. bombers to spot periscopes on German submarines. Standing next to a magnetron one day, Spencer noticed that a candy bar in his pocket had melted. He then wondered, Could the energy from the radio waves be used to actually cook food? He placed some popcorn kernels near the tube and soon was munching on the world’s first microwave popcorn. In 1947, Raytheon put the first Radarange microwave ovens on the market—but it took another 20 years before the appliances were small enough to fit on a countertop.
A few Question quotes
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Want to be a better critical thinker? Questions can be a powerful way to spot false narratives and “weaponized lies.” Read more about it in this article I wrote for The Atlantic’s Quartz.com.
The following eight questions—shared by a noteworthy lineup of entrepreneurs, innovators, consultants, and creative thinkers—can help you figure out where your heart lies and what you really ought to be doing.
I don’t know if they qualify as “beautiful questions” but there’s something oddly fascinating about the imaginative questions that band leader Reggie Watts asks the guests of James Corden’s The Late Late Show.
At the 2016 Capital Coaches Conference I’ll be discussing my belief that coaches, who already know the power of great questions, should teach their clients how to become beautiful questioners themselves.
In The Coaching Habit: Say Less, Ask More & Change the Way You Lead Forever, by Michael Bungay Stanier, Michael shares 7 powerful questions that can make someone a better leader or manager.