Andrew James John Mackenzie
an historiography
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A-dvertising-Bomb; Hiroshima and the Mosler Safe Company
8/18/2012 11:48:18 AM

Across the years, marketing departments and advertising agencies have always tried to formulate ever more varied and outlandish strategies for maximum effect in the marketplace. Unscrupulous, annoying and weird some may be, but none quite so unique as the campaign launched by the Mosler Safe Company in the aftermath of the Second World War. Only one year after the apocalyptic event of 6 August 1945, Mosler stepped up its campaign for their premium, apparently unbreakable vault products, citing the nuclear fallout of Hiroshima in its product placement strategy. Mosler safes found in the Teikoku Bank were, according to the bank manager, “stronger than the atomic bomb.” This was an unparalleled testimony to be sure, certainly not one to be left under utilised by Mosler marketers – particularly at the beginning of the ‘Atomic Age’.
Welcome to Dachau and welcome to McDonald’s
8/13/2012 5:08:24 PM

On a recent trip to München, Germany, I took the opportunity to visit the place synonymous with cruelty and human degradation, a place which has come to define the crimes of National Socialism. The concentration camp of Dachau was the first instrument of terror used by the Nazis and was the only camp to remain operational up to the very end of the Second World War, murdering more than 31,000 people and brutalising many thousands more. Its history and its significance in modern day democratic societies are of the utmost importance therefore. How then did it seem appropriate, opening a McDonald’s restaurant barely a mile away from the camp and adjacent to the S-Bahn station? Offering customers the option of ‘supersizing’ can only have been a catastrophic oversight considering the thousands that suffered and starved over half a century ago.
In Event of Moon Disaster; the contingent epitaph
8/5/2012 8:47:31 PM

It has been more than forty years since man first walked on the moon. In less than ten years, NASA hopes to repeat the mission and deploy astronauts on the lunar surface once more. The risks today are no less substantial than they were in July 1969 when Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin first landed. Although technology has improved, there is still the ever present danger of being stranded on the moon, cut off from civilisation and rescue. In 1969, contingencies were made in response to this possible situation. On 20 July 1969, in the event of such an appalling tragedy, the President of the United States, Richard Nixon, would himself address the nation and broadcast an epitaph in congratulation. Although the speech was never used, the document serves as a fascinating reminder of the ever present danger posed on those wishing to explore the astrological limits of our world and the frightening possibilities to befall those that dare to try.
Augmented Reality; the Trial and Execution of Giordano Bruno for iPhone
8/3/2012 9:06:34 AM

The challenge for many institutions, centres of education and historians alike has been one of trying to produce material that is both enlightening and engaging enough to suit the general public. Smartphone technology and multimedia applications have allowed for the dissemination of material en masse, making it both informative and fun to connect with. Contrary to its existing theological and evangelical material, the Vatican has made an unprecedented effort to produce a smartphone app which explores the trail of Giordano Bruno and his subsequent execution by burning at the stake more than four hundred years ago. Utilising augmented reality, the Lux In Arcana app allows users to observe the statue of Giordano in a way never seen before. Witness Giordano’s execution on your smartphone as his effigy bursts into a digitally rendered inferno.
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