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Juan de la Cierva

Born 21 Sep 1895; died 19 Dec 1936 at age 41.Juan de la Cierva (Codorniu) was a Spanish aeronautical engineer who invented the autogiro (1923), a predecessor to the helicopter. Its rotor, mounted on a mast, was not powered but provided lift by auto-rotation. Power was provided by a forward-mounted engine and a conventional propeller. Flight was controlled by elevators, a rudder, and usually ailerons, though some roll control could be achieved by adjusting the tilt of the rotor head. Unlike the later helicopters, it could not take off vertically nor hover though it could takeoff and land in a much shorter distance, it could. However, if an autogiro lost power, it could spin safely back down to earth like a maple seed. He died in a fixed-wing plane accident.«

A man in a hot air balloon rea...

A man in a hot air balloon realized he was lost. He reduced altitude and spotted a woman below. He descended a bit more and shouted, "Excuse me, can you help? I promised a friend I would meet him an hour ago, but I don't know where I am." The woman below replied, "You are in a hot air balloon hovering approximately 30 feet above the ground. You are between 40 and 41 degrees north latitude and between 59 and 60 degrees west longitude."
"You must be an engineer," said the balloonist.
"I am," replied the woman, "How did you know?"
"Well," answered the balloonist, "everything you told me is, technically correct, but I have no idea what to make of your information, and the fact is I am still lost. Frankly, you've not been much help so far."
The woman below responded, "You must be in Management."
"I am," replied the balloonist, "but how did you know?"
"Well," said the woman, "you don't know where you are or where you are going. You have risen to where you are, due to a large quantity of hot air. You made a promise which you have no idea how to keep, and you expect people beneath you to solve your problems. The fact is you are in exactly the same position you were in before we met, but now, somehow, it's my fault."
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