“My Apple’s telephone just called up the home office!” (Jul, 1984)

This was the first modem I got for my Apple IIc. I remember being crushed when I tried to log in to a particular bulletin board system and it came back with: “300 baud? Yeah right, come back when you’re at least at 1200.”

“My Apple’s telephone just called up the home office!”

The exciting world of telecomputing. With a Hayes system, you just plug it in! Communicating is so easy with a complete telecomputing system from Hayes. Hayes Smartmodem 300™ is a direct-connect modem for the new Apple IIc. Hayes Micromodem IIe installs easily in an expansion slot in the Apple II, IIe, III and Apple Plus. Packaged with Smartcom I™ companion software, both are complete systems. Best of all, both systems are from Hayes, the established telecomputing leader. Just plug in-and the world is your Apple!

Circular-Type Radio Antenna (Dec, 1942)

Circular-Type Radio Antenna

Designed for mobile use, this General Electric “doughnut” antenna shown at the recent convention of the Institute of Radio Engineers, can be installed directly above the roof of an automobile and is claimed to give the same results as the tall whip-type (vertical) antennas commonly seen on police squad cars. Efficient for both receiving and transmitting, it provides equal radiation of radio waves in all directions horizontally. The demonstration model was mounted on a toy train.

Signals from the Stars (Jul, 1952)

Signals from the Stars

EVER since it was first indicated that the static present in the output of radio receivers was due in part to physical disturbances on the sun a new field of research has attracted popular scientific interest. It is radio astronomy, whose equipment and observers listen not to man made responses, but instead to continuous “static” from the stars. That cosmic radio noise exists was realized as far back as 1931. Early records proved it to be most intense when receivers probed toward the Milky Way, or lengthwise through our enormous watch-shaped galaxy.

Self-Answering Telephone Thinks and Talks (Mar, 1950)

At a current value of $362 I’m pretty sure you could just get a human answering service for considerably less money.

Self-Answering Telephone Thinks and Talks

By Harry Kursh

“HELLO, hello. This is the residence of Mr. John Smith. Your message is being recorded automatically. Ready! Please speak now.”

Don’t be surprised if that’s what you hear one of these days when you dial the familiar number of one of your friends. For Ipsophone—the robot telephone device with a brain—has been placed on the market and is rapidly coming into use all over the world. Three of these ingenious Swiss inventions have already been installed for the King of Egypt but their cost ($38 per month) will make them practical for even the smallest businessman.


YOUR heart may soon be diagnosed for ailments by telephone. A new five-lb. transistorized unit which transmits heart sounds and electrocardiograph signals via telephone has been developed by the University of Kansas Medical Center. The device is designed to solve many of the problems of phone consultations between heart specialists. The patient, with transmitter attached, sits or reclines next to a phone mouthpiece. At the receiving end, a second unit transmits the signal to another electrocardiograph machine for consultant’s reading.


Perched on ledges high above the street, two window washers, one in New York and the other in Chicago, communicated by radio recently in a novel broadcast sent out over a nationwide hook-up. With portable transmitters strapped to their backs, the workmen carried on a lively conversation about their work for the entertainment of the listening audience scattered all over the United States.


Besides the obvious impracticality of broadcast power the “one frequency per person” cell phone service is totally unfeasible. Car phones worked using one frequency per call (not receiver) up until cell phones came out, but it was able to handle about 30 simultaneous calls per city.

The idea that your calls are safe from eavesdropping because you have a specially tuned radio is also incredibly naive. All you’d need was a general radio with a tuner and you could listen to all the calls.


by Thomas J. Naughton

The Klystron, greatest radio advance, transmits energy without use of wires!

LIKE schoolboys in a classroom, more than 100 deans and professors of Eastern universities stood in a laboratory of the Westing-house plant at Bloomfield, N. J. Each of the learned gentlemen held in his hand a light-bulb with a few inches of bare wire attached; all of them expectantly watched the Westing-house engineer who was tinkering with two small doughnut-shaped, contraptions, connected to a six-foot loudspeaker-like horn, at the front of the room. The engineer straightened up.

Beating the Celestial Strip-Tease (Jan, 1942)

Beating the Celestial Strip-Tease

by Bill Williams

THE Eskimos call them “the dancing souls of the dead.” The ancient Norsemen said they were Valkyries carrying warriors to Valhalla. Modem scientists call them a “celestial strip-tease.” But communication engineers call the Northern Lights a plain pain in the neck.

The Northern Lights—the Aurora Borealis —have been the subject of superstition and folk-lore for ages. There have been tales as fabulous as the eerie lights themselves—of immense radium mines in the Arctic that glow at night, of frigid goddesses of the glacial ice, of vast fires that bum beyond the rim of the earth.

So long as the ghostly Gay White Way of the Heavens did nothing more to disturb us than frighten a few superstitious people, scientists paid no particular attention to them.

Two Ears Now Can Listen at One Telephone (May, 1929)

Two Ears Now Can Listen at One Telephone

A TELEPHONE attachment which permits the user to listen to a long distance call with both ears, and incidentally allows two people to hear from a single receiver at the same time, has been designed especially for noisy offices. The device is a sound-distributing chamber which slips over the end of the standard telephone receiver and sends part of the sound through a rubber tube ending in a metal cup, similar to that on a doctor’s stethoscope, which fits in the opposite ear of the user.

Trends in Telecommunications (Jul, 1984)

“The significance of higher data communications rates has grown with the deregulation of the communications industry because communication costs are expected to rise. Gamma Technology is claiming that an eightfold increase in data rate (from 1200 bps to 9600 bps) will save several thousand dollars a year if 160K bytes of information are transmitted daily across the United States. Savings would be even greater if data were transmitted overseas.”

Sitting here on my 50 mbs internet connection I’m going to say that guess was a bit off. The total amount data they are talking about transmitting over a year is less than the size of the images in this post.

I also particularly liked that the searches on the third page are for “Computer, Privacy Surveillance, NSA and Tapping”. Just a hunch but I’d guess that the person who made that screenshot probably later joined the EFF.

Trends in Telecommunications

On-line search software and faster modems for PCs

by John Markoff

Now that the personal computer (PC) has won the battle for office desktop space, software developers are turning their attention toward programs that combine the storage capacity of mainframe computers with the local processing power of PCs. Although mainframes offer PC users access to huge on-line databases of specialized information, how to get to the information and bring it to the PC in a usable form is another question entirely.