Originally published on Mon December 26, 2011 8:15 pm
1948 The Electronic Sackbut The history of touch technology begins with touch-sensitive music synthesizers. According to the Canada Science and Technology Museum, Hugh Le Caine's Electronic Sackbut, completed in 1948, is widely considered to be the first musical synthesizer. The Sackbut is played with the right hand on the keyboard and the left hand on control board above the keyboard. The right hand controls volume by applying more or less pressure on the keys, while the left hand controls four different sound texture options.
A supporter takes a photo with a cell phone as former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich greets supporters Dec. 22 in Richmond. Gingrich said then that he would gather enough signatures to make the Virginia ballot, but over the weekend he failed to qualify.
Every four years, a small subset of political junkies starts salivating over the prospect that no one candidate will garner enough delegates to win his or her party's nomination for the presidency. That would lead to the junkie's greatest fantasy: a brokered convention.
NBA Commissioner David Stern visited Dallas to start the lockout-shortened season on Christmas Day. The Mavericks were raising their banner from last season's championship. But when Stern spoke, people booed. The lockout wasn't popular, and Mavericks owner Mark Cuban didn't like the settlement. Stern won over the home crowd though, praising Cuban and turning boos to cheers.
The North American Aerospace Defense Command keeps an eye on Saint Nick's progress from an Air Force Base in Colorado Springs, Colo. NORAD volunteers in elf hats fielded more than 100,000 calls from kids checking on Santa.
The Milwaukee VA is shortening its residential mental health treatment programs. Doctors there say the shortened stay from 90 to 45 days will mean more intense treatment and will make it easier for veterans to transition back into society sooner. Some patients say getting clean and sober is just the first step in their recovery, and they worry about being pushed out too soon.
Perhaps more than any other major professional sports league in this country, the National Basketball Association is star-driven. A Christmas slate of season-opening games featured the electric play of the league's Most Valuable Player Derrick Rose, the NBA's top scorer Kevin Durant and LeBron James, too.
Over the weekend, tens of thousands of people gathered in the streets of Moscow. They disagree with elections allegedly rigged in favor of Vladimir Putin's party. Lilia Shevtsova, senior Russia analyst at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, talks to Steve Inskeep about the demonstrations.