- Publisher: DOUBLEDAY & CO; 2ND edition (2011)
- ISBN-10: 0385534396
- ISBN-13: 978-0385534390
- Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars See all reviews (121 customer reviews)
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Hedy's Folly: The Life and Breakthrough Inventions of Hedy Lamarr, the Most Beautiful Woman in the World Hardcover – 2011
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Top Customer Reviews
As is the case with his other commanding works, Rhodes is most adept at creating sharp character portraits of the main protagonists and an evocative recreation of the times that they lived in. He also offers a characteristically lucid account of science and technology reminiscent of the accounts in his landmark "The Making of the Atomic Bomb". Wherever possible he lets the characters speak in their own voices. He starts by describing Hedy's childhood in 1920s Vienna, a city that was a mecca for the arts and a sort of dream world for the young and ambitious. Acting was in Hedy's blood and with the encouragement of a doting father, she never looked back. After starring in a variety of roles, some scandalous for the times, she had the misfortune to marry a charming but opportunistic arms dealer who was cozy with fascists and Nazis and who turned Hedy into a trophy wife trapped in a golden cage.Read more ›
It's amazing that a successful Hollywood Starlet--widely considered the most beautiful woman in the world at the time and who had been married to one of the world's most successful arms dealers could combine her talent for inventing things with the similar talents of George Antheil. He was an avant-garde composer of who had lived in Paris at the beginning of the 20th century, and who had moved to L.A. to compose music for the movie business, but who was also an amateur inventor.The two of them devised a system of radio control based on Antheil's production of his musical piece "Mechanisms." Working in their home workshops they devised and patented a radio controlled torpedo for the U.S. Navy. The technique remained secret for decades but their combined invention eventually resulted in today's wireless cell phones, Bluetooth networks and the various GPS systems. "Most military communications rely on Lamarr and Anthiel's breakthrough."
This is a wonderful and very uplifting true story. I don't know how any reader could fail to be mesmerized by it.
It was excellent and accurate on pages 112-114 where he describes my seminal role.
He was ALSO accurate and informative about 'Scibor Marchocki' ( pages 196-2040) the young Naval Technical Contractor who actually used her Patent in early 1950s to design the Naval 'Sonabuoy' to help detect hostile submarines - the VERY FIRST use of her 'frequency hopping' concept. When an old Scibor in 1996 read about the EFF award I got for her, he emailed me detailed information on when, how, and why he used her patent 50 years earlier. I provided that to Rhodes, who used it to accurately not not only describe the device, but also prove that her patent was actually used earlier than MANY try to claim.
So while I have been sent and seen many publications about her 'invention' Rhodes is both the most complete and accurate of them all.
By the way CBS did a March 4th 2012 8 minute 'Sunday Morning' program about her, the invention, Rhodes, and even her son Anthony. You can access [...]
Oh yeah, I might be a little biased, for when I was 13 years old in 1941, and she was 26 I was in love with her, from her pictures and movies.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I loved it from beginning to end. Very well researched. I've known about Hedy's contribution to frequency hopping for over a decade. Read morePublished 2 days ago by Roger A. Grimes
Most of the book sounds like a bunch of "fluff", "filler"... The better written and more definitive book on Hedy is "Beautiful, The Life of Hedy Lamarr".Published 1 month ago by CW Retired Reader
Enjoyed the book, especially personal history of both Heidi and composer, Antheil.Published 1 month ago by darlis simonton
Very good biography on Hedy Lamar. What a brilliant woman! A little too much content about her co-inventer George Antheil.Published 2 months ago by Carl H. Much
The idea behind this book was interesting, but it has slow chapters that drag and are rough to get through. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Lamar White
Rhodes spends a lot of time on her biography and that of her co-inventor, and very little time on the actual invention. Not his best effort.Published 7 months ago by Thomas Adams