The United States of America known as the United States or America, is a country composed of 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is smaller than the entire continent of Europe's 3.9 million square miles. With a population of over 327 million people, the U. S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D. C. and the largest city by population is New York City. Forty-eight states and the capital's federal district are contiguous in North America between Canada and Mexico; the State of Alaska is in the northwest corner of North America, bordered by Canada to the east and across the Bering Strait from Russia to the west. The State of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific Ocean; the U. S. territories are scattered about the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, stretching across nine official time zones. The diverse geography and wildlife of the United States make it one of the world's 17 megadiverse countries.
Paleo-Indians migrated from Siberia to the North American mainland at least 12,000 years ago. European colonization began in the 16th century; the United States emerged from the thirteen British colonies established along the East Coast. Numerous disputes between Great Britain and the colonies following the French and Indian War led to the American Revolution, which began in 1775, the subsequent Declaration of Independence in 1776; the war ended in 1783 with the United States becoming the first country to gain independence from a European power. The current constitution was adopted in 1788, with the first ten amendments, collectively named the Bill of Rights, being ratified in 1791 to guarantee many fundamental civil liberties; the United States embarked on a vigorous expansion across North America throughout the 19th century, acquiring new territories, displacing Native American tribes, admitting new states until it spanned the continent by 1848. During the second half of the 19th century, the Civil War led to the abolition of slavery.
By the end of the century, the United States had extended into the Pacific Ocean, its economy, driven in large part by the Industrial Revolution, began to soar. The Spanish–American War and World War I confirmed the country's status as a global military power; the United States emerged from World War II as a global superpower, the first country to develop nuclear weapons, the only country to use them in warfare, a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council. Sweeping civil rights legislation, notably the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and the Fair Housing Act of 1968, outlawed discrimination based on race or color. During the Cold War, the United States and the Soviet Union competed in the Space Race, culminating with the 1969 U. S. Moon landing; the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 left the United States as the world's sole superpower. The United States is the world's oldest surviving federation, it is a representative democracy.
The United States is a founding member of the United Nations, World Bank, International Monetary Fund, Organization of American States, other international organizations. The United States is a developed country, with the world's largest economy by nominal GDP and second-largest economy by PPP, accounting for a quarter of global GDP; the U. S. economy is post-industrial, characterized by the dominance of services and knowledge-based activities, although the manufacturing sector remains the second-largest in the world. The United States is the world's largest importer and the second largest exporter of goods, by value. Although its population is only 4.3% of the world total, the U. S. holds 31% of the total wealth in the world, the largest share of global wealth concentrated in a single country. Despite wide income and wealth disparities, the United States continues to rank high in measures of socioeconomic performance, including average wage, human development, per capita GDP, worker productivity.
The United States is the foremost military power in the world, making up a third of global military spending, is a leading political and scientific force internationally. In 1507, the German cartographer Martin Waldseemüller produced a world map on which he named the lands of the Western Hemisphere America in honor of the Italian explorer and cartographer Amerigo Vespucci; the first documentary evidence of the phrase "United States of America" is from a letter dated January 2, 1776, written by Stephen Moylan, Esq. to George Washington's aide-de-camp and Muster-Master General of the Continental Army, Lt. Col. Joseph Reed. Moylan expressed his wish to go "with full and ample powers from the United States of America to Spain" to seek assistance in the revolutionary war effort; the first known publication of the phrase "United States of America" was in an anonymous essay in The Virginia Gazette newspaper in Williamsburg, Virginia, on April 6, 1776. The second draft of the Articles of Confederation, prepared by John Dickinson and completed by June 17, 1776, at the latest, declared "The name of this Confederation shall be the'United States of America'".
The final version of the Articles sent to the states for ratification in late 1777 contains the sentence "The Stile of this Confederacy shall be'The United States of America'". In June 1776, Thomas Jefferson wrote the phrase "UNITED STATES OF AMERICA" in all capitalized letters in the headline of his "original Rough draught" of the Declaration of Independence; this draft of the document did not surface unti
Christmas ornaments, baubles, "christmas bulbs" or "Christmas bubbles" are decorations that are used to festoon a Christmas tree. Ornaments take many different forms, from a simple round ball to artistic designs. Ornaments are always reused year after year rather than purchased annually, family collections contain a combination of commercially produced ornaments and decorations created by family members; such collections are passed on and augmented from generation to generation. Santa Claus is a used figure. Candy canes, animals, snowmen and snowflake images are popular choices. Lucretia P. Hale's story "The Peterkins' Christmas-Tree" offers a short catalog of the sorts of ornaments used in the 1870s: There was every kind of gilt hanging-thing, from gilt pea-pods to butterflies on springs. There were shining flags and lanterns, bird-cages, nests with birds sitting on them, baskets of fruit, gilt apples, bunches of grapes; the modern-day mold-blown colored glass Christmas ornament was invented in the small German town of Lauscha in the mid-16th century.
The first decorated trees were adorned with apples, white candy canes and pastries in the shapes of stars and flowers. Glass baubles were first made in Lauscha, Germany, by Hans Greiner, who produced garlands of glass beads and tin figures that could be hung on trees; the popularity of these decorations grew into the production of glass figures made by skilled artisans with clay molds. The artisans heated a glass tube over a flame inserted the tube into a clay mold, blowing the heated glass to expand into the shape of the mold; the original ornaments were only in the shape of nuts. After the glass cooled, a silver nitrate solution was swirled into it, a silvering technique developed in the 1850s by Justus von Liebig. After the nitrate solution dried, the ornament was topped with a cap and hook. Other glassblowers in Lauscha recognised the growing popularity of Christmas baubles and began producing them in a wide range of designs. Soon, the whole of Germany began buying Christmas glassware from Lauscha.
On Christmas Eve 1832, a young Victoria wrote about her delight at having a tree, hung with lights and presents placed round it. In the 1840s, after a picture of Victoria's Christmas tree was shown in a London newspaper decorated with glass ornaments and baubles from her husband Prince Albert's native Germany, Lauscha began exporting its products throughout Europe. In the 1880s, American F. W. Woolworth discovered Lauscha's baubles during a visit to Germany, he made a fortune by importing the German glass ornaments to the United States. The first American-made glass ornaments were created by William DeMuth in New York in 1870. In 1880, Woolworth's began selling Lauscha glass ornaments. Other stores began selling Christmas ornaments by the late 19th century and by 1910, Woolworth's had gone national with over 1000 stores bringing Christmas ornaments across America. New suppliers popped up everywhere including Dresden die-cut fiberboard ornaments which were popular among families with small children.
By the 20th century, Woolworth's had imported 200,000 ornaments and topped $25 million in sales from Christmas decorations alone. As of 2009, the Christmas decoration industry ranks second to gifts in seasonal sales. Many silver companies, such as Gorham, Towle and Reed & Barton, began manufacturing silver Christmas ornaments in 1970 and 1971. In 1973, Hallmark Cards started manufacturing Christmas ornaments; the first collection included 18 ornaments, including six glass ball ornaments. The Hallmark Keepsake Ornament collection is available for just one year. By 1998, 11 million American households collected Hallmark ornaments, 250,000 people were member of the Keepsake Ornament Collector's Club. There were as many as 400 local Keepsake Ornament Collector's Club chapters in the US. One noted Christmas ornament authority is Clara Johnson Scroggins who has written extensively on the topic and has one of the largest private collections of Christmas ornaments. In 1996, the ornament industry generated $2.4 billion in total annual sales, an increase of 25% over the previous year.
Industry experts estimated more than 22 million US households collected Christmas ornaments, that 75% of those households collected Hallmark Keepsake Ornaments. After World War II, the East German government turned most of Lauscha's glassworks into state-owned entities, production of baubles in Lauscha ceased. After the Berlin Wall came down, most of the firms were reestablished as private companies; as of 2009, there are still about 20 small glass-blowing firms active in Lauscha that produce baubles. One of the producers is Krebs Glas Lauscha, part of the Krebs family, now one of the largest producers of glass ornaments worldwide. Although glass baubles are still produced, as expensive good-quality ornaments found at markets, baubles are now made from plastic and available worldwide in a huge variety of shapes and designs. There are a large number of manufacturers producing sophisticated Christmas glass ornaments in Poland, which produce "bombka" or the plural form "bombki", they are made in Chignahuapan, Mexico.
Handcrafted Christmas ornaments have become a staple of craft fairs and many smaller online businesses owing much of the success to both the internet and the growth of craft stores. Christmas tree ornaments Christmas tree Pleated Christmas hearts Snow baby Tree-topper Witch ball Media related to Christmas baubles at Wikimedia Commons
A nightclub, music club or club, is an entertainment venue and bar that operates late into the night. A nightclub is distinguished from regular bars, pubs or taverns by the inclusion of a stage for live music, one or more dance floor areas and a DJ booth, where a DJ plays recorded music; the upmarket nature of nightclubs can be seen in the inclusion of VIP areas in some nightclubs, for celebrities and their guests. Nightclubs are much more than pubs or sports bars to use bouncers to screen prospective clubgoers for entry; some nightclub bouncers do not admit people with informal clothing or gang apparel as part of a dress code. The busiest nights for a nightclub are Saturday night. Most clubs or club nights cater to certain music genres, such as hip hop. Many clubs have recurring club nights on different days of the week. Most club nights focus on a particular sound for branding effects. From about 1900 to 1920, working class Americans would gather at honky tonks or juke joints to dance to music played on a piano or a jukebox.
Webster Hall is credited as the first modern nightclub, being built in 1886 and starting off as a "social hall" functioning as a home for dance and political activism events. During Prohibition in the United States, nightclubs went underground as illegal speakeasy bars, with Webster Hall staying open, with rumors circulating of Al Capone's involvement and police bribery. With the repeal of Prohibition in February 1933, nightclubs were revived, such as New York's 21 Club, Copacabana, El Morocco, the Stork Club; these nightclubs featured big bands. In Germany, the first discothèque on record that involved a disc jockey was Scotch-Club, which opened in 1959. In Occupied France and bebop music, the jitterbug dance were banned by the Nazis as "decadent American influences", so as an act of resistance, people met at hidden basements called discothèques where they danced to jazz and swing music, played on a single turntable when a jukebox was not available; these discothèques were patronized by anti-Vichy youth called zazous.
There were underground discothèques in Nazi Germany patronized by anti-Nazi youth called the swing kids. In Harlem, Connie's Inn and the Cotton Club were popular venues for white audiences. Before 1953 and some years thereafter, most bars and nightclubs used a jukebox or live bands. In Paris, at a club named Whisky à Gogo, founded in 1947, Régine in 1953 laid down a dance-floor, suspended coloured lights and replaced the jukebox with two turntables that she operated herself so there would be no breaks between the music; the Whisky à Gogo set into place the standard elements of the modern post World War II discothèque-style nightclub. At the end of the 1950s, several of the coffee bars in Soho introduced afternoon dancing and the most famous was Les Enfants Terribles at 93 Dean St; these original discothèques were nothing like the night clubs, as they were unlicensed and catered to a young public—mostly made up of French and Italians working illegally in catering, to learn English as well as au pair girls from most of western Europe.
While the discothèque swept Europe throughout the 1960s, it did not reach the United States until the 1970s, where the first rock and roll generation preferred rough and tumble bars and taverns to nightclubs until the disco era. In the early 1960s, Mark Birley opened a members-only discothèque nightclub, Annabel's, in Berkeley Square, London. In 1962, the Peppermint Lounge in New York City became popular and is the place where go-go dancing originated. Sybil Burton opened the "Arthur" discothèque in 1965 on East 54th Street in Manhattan on the site of the old El Morocco nightclub and it became the first and hottest disco in New York City through 1969; the first large-scale discothèque in Germany opened in 1967 as the club Blow Up in Munich, which because of its extravagance and excesses gained international reputation. Disco has its roots in the underground club scene. During the early 1970s in New York City, disco clubs were places where oppressed or marginalized groups such as homosexuals, Latinos, Italian-Americans, Jews could party without following male to female dance protocol or exclusive club policies.
Discoteques had a law. This shifted the idea of this post-heterosexist community, as women could be seen as a kind of gateway for men to advance their own experience without fear of being arrested under the male-to-male dancing law; the women sought these experiences to seek safety in a venue that embraced the independent woman — with an eye to one or more of the same or opposite sex or none. Although the culture that surrounded disco was progressive in dance couples, cross-genre music, a push to put the physical over the rational, the role of female bodies looked to be placed in the role of safety net, it brought together people from different backgrounds. These clubs acted as safe havens for homosexual partygoers to dance in peace and away from public scrutiny. By the late 1970s many major U. S. cities had thriving disco club scenes centered on discothèques and private loft parties where DJs would play disco hits through powerful PA systems for the dancers. The DJs played "... a smooth mix of long single records to keep people'dancing all night long'".
Some of the most prestigious clubs had elaborate lighting systems that throbbed to the beat of the music. The genre of disco has changed through the years, it is classified both as a nightclub. This club culture that originated in downtown New York, was attended by a variety of different ethnicities and economic backgrounds, it was an inex
A silent film is a film with no synchronized recorded sound. In silent films for entertainment, the plot may be conveyed by the use of title cards, written indications of the plot and key dialogue lines; the idea of combining motion pictures with recorded sound is nearly as old as film itself, but because of the technical challenges involved, the introduction of synchronized dialogue became practical only in the late 1920s with the perfection of the Audion amplifier tube and the advent of the Vitaphone system. During the silent-film era that existed from the mid-1890s to the late 1920s, a pianist, theater organist—or in large cities, a small orchestra—would play music to accompany the films. Pianists and organists would play either from improvisation; the term silent film is a retronym—a term created to retroactively distinguish something. Early sound films, starting with The Jazz Singer in 1927, were variously referred to as the "talkies," "sound films," or "talking pictures." Within a decade, the widespread production of silent films for popular entertainment had ceased, the industry had moved into the sound era, in which movies were accompanied by synchronized sound recordings of spoken dialogue and sound effects.
Most early motion pictures are considered lost because the nitrate film used in that era was unstable and flammable. Additionally, many films were deliberately destroyed because they had little value in the era before home video, it has been claimed that around 75 percent of silent films have been lost, though these estimates may be inaccurate due to a lack of numerical data. The earliest precursors to film began with image projection through the use of a device known as the magic lantern, which utilized a glass lens, a shutter, a persistent light source to project images from glass slides onto a wall; these slides were hand-painted, after the advent of photography in the 19th century, still photographs were sometimes used. Thus the invention of a practical photography apparatus preceded cinema by only fifty years; the next significant step toward the invention of cinema was the development of an understanding of image movement. Simulations of movement date as far back as to 1828—only four years after Paul Roget discovered the phenomenon he called "Persistence of Vision."
Roget showed that when a series of still images is shown at a considerable speed in front of a viewer's eye, the images merge into one registered image that appears to show movement. This is an optical illusion, since the image is not moving; this experience was further demonstrated through Roget's introduction of the thaumatrope, a device that spun at a high speed a disk with an image on its surface. The three features necessary for motion pictures to work were "a camera with sufficiently high shutter speed, a filmstrip capable of taking multiple exposures swiftly, means of projecting the developed images on a screen." The first projected proto-movie was made by Eadweard Muybridge between 1877 and 1880. Muybridge set up a row of cameras along a racetrack and timed image exposures to capture the many stages of a horse's gallop; the oldest surviving film was created by Louis Le Prince in 1888. It was a two-second film of people walking in "Oakwood streets" garden, titled Roundhay Garden Scene.
The development of American inventor Thomas Edison's Kinetograph, a photographic device that captured sequential images, his Kinetoscope, a device for viewing those images, allowed for the creation and exhibition of short films. Edison made a business of selling Kinetograph and Kinetoscope equipment, which laid the foundation for widespread film production. Due to Edison's lack of securing an international patent on his film inventions, similar devices were "invented" around the world. In France, for example and Louis Lumière created the Cinématographe, which proved to be a more portable and practical device than both of Edison's as it combined a camera, film processor, projector in one unit. In contrast to Edison's "peepshow"-style kinetoscope, which only one person could watch through a viewer, the cinematograph allowed simultaneous viewing by multiple people, their first film, Sortie de l'usine Lumière de Lyon, shot in 1894, is considered the first true motion picture. The invention of celluloid film, strong and flexible facilitated the making of motion pictures.
This film was 35 mm wide and was pulled using four sprocket holes, which became the industry standard. This doomed the cinematograph; the art of motion pictures grew into full maturity in the "silent era". The height of the silent era was a fruitful period, full of artistic innovation; the film movements of Classical Hollywood as well as French Impressionism, German Expressionism, Soviet Montage began in this period. Silent filmmakers pioneered the art form to the extent that every style and genre of film-making of the 20th and 21st centuries has its artistic roots in the silent era; the silent era was a pioneering one from a technical point of view. Three-point lighting, the close-up, long shot and continuity editing all became prevalent long before silent films were replaced by "talking pictures" or "talkies" in the late 1920s; some scholars claim that the artistic quality of cinema decreased for several years, during the early 1930s, until film directors and production staff adapted to the new "talkies" around the late 1930s.
Pink Floyd were an English rock band formed in London in 1965. They achieved international acclaim with their psychedelic music. Distinguished by their philosophical lyrics, sonic experimentation, extended compositions, elaborate live shows, they are one of the most commercially successful and influential groups in popular music history. Pink Floyd were founded by students Syd Barrett on guitar and lead vocals, Nick Mason on drums, Roger Waters on bass and vocals, Richard Wright on keyboards and vocals, they gained popularity performing in London's underground music scene during the late 1960s, under Barrett's leadership released two charting singles and a successful debut album, The Piper at the Gates of Dawn. Guitarist and vocalist David Gilmour joined in December 1967. Waters became the band's primary lyricist and conceptual leader, devising the concepts behind their albums The Dark Side of the Moon, Wish You Were Here, The Wall and The Final Cut; the Dark Side of the Moon and The Wall became two of the best-selling albums of all time.
Following creative tensions, Wright left Pink Floyd in 1979, followed by Waters in 1985. Gilmour and Mason continued as Pink Floyd; the three produced two more albums—A Momentary Lapse of Reason and The Division Bell —and toured through 1994. After nearly two decades of enmity, Gilmour and Mason reunited with Waters in 2005 to perform as Pink Floyd in London as part of the global awareness event Live 8. Barrett died in 2006, Wright in 2008; the last Pink Floyd studio album, The Endless River, was recorded without Waters and based entirely on unreleased material from The Division Bell recording sessions. Pink Floyd were inducted into the American Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1996 and the UK Music Hall of Fame in 2005. By 2013, they had sold more than 250 million records worldwide. Roger Waters and Nick Mason met while studying architecture at the London Polytechnic at Regent Street, they first played music together in a group formed by Keith Noble and Clive Metcalfe with Noble's sister Sheilagh.
Richard Wright, a fellow architecture student, joined that year, the group became a sextet, Sigma 6. Waters played lead guitar, Mason drums, Wright rhythm guitar; the band performed at private functions and rehearsed in a tearoom in the basement of the Regent Street Polytechnic. They performed songs by the Searchers and material written by their manager and songwriter, fellow student Ken Chapman. In September 1963, Waters and Mason moved into a flat at 39 Stanhope Gardens near Crouch End in London, owned by Mike Leonard, a part-time tutor at the nearby Hornsey College of Art and the Regent Street Polytechnic. Mason moved out after the 1964 academic year, guitarist Bob Klose moved in during September 1964, prompting Waters' switch to bass. Sigma 6 went through several names, including the Meggadeaths, the Abdabs and the Screaming Abdabs, Leonard's Lodgers, the Spectrum Five, before settling on the Tea Set. In 1964, as Metcalfe and Noble left to form their own band, guitarist Syd Barrett joined Klose and Waters at Stanhope Gardens.
Barrett, two years younger, had moved to London in 1962 to study at the Camberwell College of Arts. Waters and Barrett were childhood friends. Mason said about Barrett: "In a period when everyone was being cool in a adolescent, self-conscious way, Syd was unfashionably outgoing. In December 1964, they secured their first recording time, at a studio in West Hampstead, through one of Wright's friends, who let them use some down time free. Wright, taking a break from his studies, did not participate in the session; when the RAF assigned Dennis a post in Bahrain in early 1965, Barrett became the band's frontman. That year, they became the resident band at the Countdown Club near Kensington High Street in London, where from late night until early morning they played three sets of 90 minutes each. During this period, spurred by the group's need to extend their sets to minimise song repetition, the band realised that "songs could be extended with lengthy solos", wrote Mason. After pressure from his parents and advice from his college tutors, Klose quit the band in mid-1965 and Barrett took over lead guitar.
The group first referred to themselves as the Pink Floyd Sound in late 1965. Barrett created the name on the spur of the moment when he discovered that another band called the Tea Set, were to perform at one of their gigs; the name is derived from the given names of two blues musicians whose Piedmont blues records Barrett had in his collection, Pink Anderson and Floyd Council. By 1966, the group's repertoire consisted of rhythm and blues songs and they had begun to receive paid bookings, including a performance at the Marquee Club in March 1966, where Peter Jenner, a lecturer at the London School of Economics, noticed them. Jenner was impressed by the sonic effects Barrett and Wright created, with his business partner and friend Andrew King became their manager; the pair had little experience in the music industry and used King's inheritance to set up Blackhill Enterprises, purchasing about £1,000 worth of new instruments and equipment for the band
Zoo TV Tour
The Zoo TV Tour was a worldwide concert tour by rock band U2. Staged in support of their 1991 album Achtung Baby, the tour visited arenas and stadiums from 1992 to 1993. To mirror the new musical direction that the group took with Achtung Baby, the tour was intended to deviate from their past and confound expectations of the band. In contrast to U2's austere stage setups from previous tours, the Zoo TV Tour was an elaborately staged multimedia event, it satirised television and media oversaturation by attempting to instill "sensory overload" in its audience. To escape their reputation for being earnest and overly serious, U2 embraced a more lighthearted and self-deprecating image on tour. Zoo TV and Achtung Baby were central to the group's 1990s reinvention; the tour's concept was inspired by disparate television programming, coverage of the Gulf War, the desensitising effect of mass media, "morning zoo" radio shows. The stage featured dozens of large video screens that showed visual effects, video clips, flashing text phrases, along with a lighting system made of Trabant automobiles.
Channel surfing, prank calls, video confessionals, a belly dancer, live satellite link-ups to war-torn Sarajevo were incorporated into the shows. On stage, Bono portrayed several characters he conceived, including the leather-clad egomaniac "The Fly", the greedy televangelist "Mirror Ball Man", the devilish "MacPhisto". In contrast to other U2 tours, each of the Zoo TV shows opened with six to eight consecutive new songs before older material was played. Comprising five legs and 157 shows, the tour began in Lakeland, Florida, on 29 February 1992 and ended in Tokyo, Japan, on 10 December 1993; the first four legs alternated between North America and Europe, before the final leg visited Australasia and Japan. After two arena legs, the show's production was expanded for stadiums for the final three legs, which were branded "Outside Broadcast", "Zooropa", "Zoomerang/New Zooland", respectively. Although the tour provoked a range of reactions from music critics, it was well received. Along with being the highest-grossing North American tour of 1992, Zoo TV sold around 5.3 million tickets over its five legs.
The band's 1993 album Zooropa, which expanded on Zoo TV's mass media themes, was recorded during a break in the tour, its songs were played in 1993. The tour was depicted in the Grammy Award–winning 1994 concert film Zoo TV: Live from Sydney. Critics regard the Zoo TV Tour as one of rock's most memorable tours—in 2002, Q's Tom Doyle called it "the most spectacular rock tour staged by any band". U2's 1987 album The Joshua Tree and the supporting Joshua Tree Tour brought them to a new level of commercial and critical success in the United States. Like their previous tours, the Joshua Tree Tour was a minimalistic, austere production, they used this outlet for addressing political and social concerns; as a result, the band earned a reputation for being earnest and serious, an image that became a target for derision after their much-maligned 1988 motion picture and companion album Rattle and Hum, which documented their exploration of American roots music. The project was criticised as being "pretentious", "misguided and bombastic", U2 were accused of being grandiose and self-righteous.
Their 1989 Lovetown Tour did not visit the United States, at the end of the tour, lead vocalist Bono announced on-stage that it was "the end of something for U2" and that "we have to go away and... just dream it all up again", foreshadowing changes for the group. U2's first ideas for Zoo TV emerged during the Lovetown Tour in 1989, when various aspects of radio programming intrigued the group the large radio audience their Dublin concerts reached; the wild antics of "morning zoo" radio programmes inspired the band to consider taking a pirate radio station on tour. They were interested in using video as a way of making themselves less accessible to their audiences; the band developed these ideas in late 1990 while recording Achtung Baby in Berlin at Hansa Studios. While in Berlin, they watched television coverage of the Gulf War on Sky News, the only English programming available; when they became tired of hearing about the conflict, they tuned into local programming to see "bad German soap operas" and automobile advertisements.
The band believed that cable television had blurred the lines between news and home shopping over the previous decade, they wanted to represent this on their next tour. The juxtaposition of such disparate programming inspired U2 and Achtung Baby co-producer Brian Eno to conceive an "audio-visual show" that would display a changing mix of live and pre-recorded video on monitors; the idea was intended to mock the desensitising effect of mass media. Eno, credited in the tour programme for the "Video Staging Concept", explained his vision for the tour: "the idea to make a stage set with a lot of different video sources was mine, to make a chaos of uncoordinated material happening together... The idea of getting away from video being a way of helping people to see the band more easily... this is video as a way of obscuring them, losing them sometimes in just a network of material." While on a break from recording, the band invited production designer Willie Williams to join them in Tenerife in February 1991.
Williams had worked on David Bowie's Sound+Vision Tour, which used film projection and video content, he was keen to "take rock show video to a level as yet undreamed of". The band played Williams some of their new music—inspired by alternative rock, industrial music, electronic dance music—and they told him about the "Zoo TV" phrase that Bono liked. Williams learned about the band's affection for the Trabant, a