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Monday, January 17, 2011

The birth of radio broadcasting

Hi there,
As I am working and going to school full time, I will not be able to blog much.
I am taking broadcast technology, so here is a blog I wrote after reading from chapter one of my text book.
Good night and Good luck.

In December of 1901, Guglielmo Marconi was able to transmit a wireless signal across the Atlantic a distance of more than 2.000 nautical miles.

Not unitl Reginald Fessednen was the human voice able to come over the air waves. At first, radio signals were only dots and dashes, like Morse code. The human voice could not be transmitted. Fessenden came up with a solution. He built a high speed alternator, using the idea of the Fleming valve.

He called it the audion. It was a device that looked alot like a light bulb. Within the 3 element vaccum tube were pieces working together to act as an oscillator, an amplifier and a detector. These three elements worked to create a continuous radio wave able to carry speech.

On Christmas Eve in 1906, wireless operators aboard ships were amazed to hear a human voice through thier headphones. Fessenden explained what was happeneing, then played the violin for them , read passages from the bible and wished all a Merry Christmas before signing off.

Radio took off over the years. Radio signals could be heard using crystal sets to detect waves. By 1910, Lee De Forest was able to amplify the radio waves.
Legal problems became a tangle of issues between inventors, until WW1.
the Navy was very intereseted in the ship to shore communications and all legal issues were put aside for the war effort.

Radio took America by storm and new legislation came about in response to the new media. Soon, millions were tuning in to local broadcasts on a regular basis, it had grown from point to point messaging to a form of mass communication, and the people loved it.

Fessenden commented "I have discovered an invisible empire of the air." in regard to his invention.
An empire still growing as of today.


Anonymous said...

The first commercial radio station in the world is right here in Pittsburgh, PA: KDKA and is still in operation....That first broadcast sent out the results in the Harding /Cox election of November 3, 1920
It is the ONLY radio station west of the Mississippi permitted to use those "K" call letters because of it's historical designation.

Jen Childers said...

we talked bout KDKA a bit in class!
I have my first test in february, and I told my teacher about this blog.

He laughed at the name.
Can you post a pic of the station?
Do they allow tours?

Thanks for commenting.