TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Re: "IBM and the Future of TV" Podcast

Re: "IBM and the Future of TV" Podcast
19 Apr 2006 07:39:43 -0700

Monty Solomon wrote:

> IBM to Release "IBM and the Future of TV" Podcast
> - Apr 17, 2006 01:18 PM (BusinessWire)
> -

I believe this was previously posted, but around 1943-1944 IBM joined
with some other businesses to get a microwave carrier license for a
postwar transcontinental network. IBM intended to use it for high
speed data transmission (remember, this was 1944!) and perhaps
television broadcasting.

(As reported by the New York Times. There was about one hour nightly
of commercial television service in those days (WW II years) , I don't
know how many sets were in use at that time (anyone know?). There was
also FM radio, but on different frequencies than used later. I'm
pretty sure postwar TV and FM transmissions were somewhat different
than what was used during the war years. A search on the keyword
"television" of the on-line NYT index finds a surprising great many
references during the war years; technical schools were training
people and industry was gearing up to manufacture components.)

I don't know what became of that application and plans. IIRC, after
WW II the FCC wasn't sure what to do with microwave channels and a
number of businesses sought licenses, some for private use, some for
common carrier use. Stuff dragged for a while. There were legal
debates about common carrier status. I don't think IBM did anything
further in data communication until the 1950s (during the war, it did
have radio teleteypwriters for the army it developed).

As an aside, in the early 1980s with deregulation coming up, many
people expected a big clash between IBM and AT&T as their respective
worlds collided. That was a major cover story often in the trade
press. It never came to pass. While IBM made modems and bought Rolm
telephones and AT&T bought NCR computers, they never became fierce
competitors as predicted. Indeed, both companies found it tough to
survive in the new world and had to change drastically. On the
inside, IBM is a very different company than it was back then. They
had to get out of a 1950s consent decree to do so

Post Followup Article Use your browser's quoting feature to quote article into reply
Go to Next message: "Re: For Sale:"
Go to Previous message: Robert Bonomi: "Re: Is it Possible to Get a Shock From POTS/DSL"
May be in reply to: Monty Solomon: ""IBM and the Future of TV" Podcast"
TELECOM Digest: Home Page