Sinusoidal Depleneration in Nofer Trunions

Last month, I tweeted a link to a very funny YouTube video, the Chrysler Turbo Encabulator. Anyone who has ever had to wade through technical jargon will likely find it funny, but to an engineer like me, it was hilarious.

Today, my dad sent me a link to a very similar video, the Rockwell Retro Encabulator. It seems to be somewhat more recent than the Chrysler version, but other than a few minor changes, the script is substantially identical. Interesting. So which came first, Rockwell or Chrysler? Or was there a Proto Encabulator that predated them both?

Wikipedia to the rescue! It turns out the Chrysler video was created in 1988 and the Rockwell one in 1997. But the term “Turbo Encabulator” and much of the script dates back to at least 1946, when it appeared in a Time Magazine article, Science: For Nofer Trunnions. It appeared again in a General Electric data sheet (PDF) in 1962. The classics never go out of style, do they?