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The History and Development of Television - Essay Example

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The History and Development of Television

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The word television was coined by a Russian scientist Constantin Perskyi in a paper he presented at the International Electricity Congress at the International World Fair in Paris on August 25, 1900. Even before that, Paul Gottlieb Nipkow, a German student, had patented the first television in 1884. It was a electromechanical device based on the photoconductivity of the element Selenium and Nipkow's spinning disk with a series of holes of equal diameter drilled into it at equal distances. In the camera unit, as the disk spun in front of the object, each hole produced a scan line which was captured by a light detecting device behind it. The scan line was transmitted by radio wave to the reproducer or receiving unit. This basic television and other refinements that came after it were however restricted to transmission of still images and silhouettes. It was only on October 2, 1925 that the Scottish scientist John Logie Baird, who took the lead in development of the electromechanical television, achieved live transmission of moving half-tone images in his laboratory. Baird's endeavour took the electromechanical television through a continuous phase of technical development ranging from the first transatlantic transmission between London and New York by his company in 1928, the first transmission between shore to ship, demonstratin of the first electromechanical colour, infrared and stereoscopic television to the first live transmission, of the Epson Derby in 1931 and demonstration of the ultra short-wave television in 1932. The electromechanical television technology reached its zenith with the BBC Television broadcasts at a resolution of 240 lines before giving way to the purely electronic technology. Others who contributed to the development of the electromechanical system were Charles Francis Jenkins, Frank Conard and Frank Grey and Herbert E Ives.
The basic technology behind the electronic television system is the use of cathode ray tubes at both the transmitting and receiving ends. Continuous photoemission from the eye of the camera and the build up of positive charges leads to storage of the picture in the form of the 'latent electric picture' 1. The world's first demonstration of an all-electronic television system was given by Philo T Farnsworth at the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia on August 25, 1934. His electronic television was the precursor of all modern televisions. The Russian scientist Vladimir Kozmich Zworykin, who was a contemporary of Farnsworth, had also worked on developing a television using cathode ray tubes. Even though he lost his patent case with Farnsworth, his contribution to the development of the electronic television is nevertheless acknowledged as significant. Eventually, it was Baird again who gave the first demonstration of the electronic colour television on August 16, 1944.
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The concept of the Global Village purports a world in which the electronic media and Information and Communication Technology (ICT) have transcended all barriers of time, space and geographical distance. Without distance, there is no remoteness. The entire world becomes a single entity socially, economically, politically, culturally…
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