Magnetic Secretary (Jul, 1947)

Of course, it’s all the slutty secretary’s fault! I’m sure he’s just disgusted that she feels the need to harass him like that.

Magnetic Secretary
SECRETARIES who prefer to sit on their boss’s laps while taking dictation may not like this new office aid, but for more efficient business it holds promise. The mechanical secretary is a little thirty-pound gadget called the Peirce (spelling correct) magnetic wire recorder. As the boss talks into the mike, his voice is transferred into electrical impulses. These are changed into magnetic impulses which magnetize a fine steel wire. When played back, the magnetic impulses revert to electrical impulses and are amplified into high fidelity soun

10 comments
  1. Casandro says: December 22, 20082:49 am

    Wire recorders? That was a bit outdated in 1947. The rest of the world was working with tape recorders already and most of those were very close to modern standards when it comes to sound qualitly.

    Wire recorders just are hard to get working reliably because the wire can turn and you read at another part of the wire than you wrote to.

  2. William Deering says: December 22, 200810:21 am

    The first reel to reel recorder I experienced in use during that time was at a children’s Christmas program. It was a wire type brought back from war-torn Germany and a real joy for us, a bunch of Indianapolis kids, to hear our recorded voices. However, sometime before that a major shoe store as a promotion was recording kids coversations with Santa on small 78 records. Santa asked my brother, Otto, “You won’t shoot the windows out will you”? When he asked for an air rifle. I still have our record. Belt type office recorders were around then but I didn’t see wide home use of reel to reel tape recorders until later.

  3. Charlie says: December 22, 200811:09 am

    William Deering: Silly Santa. Everyone knows that the correct response to a child wanting an air rife is “You’ll shoot your eye out!”

  4. John M. Hanna says: December 22, 20083:37 pm

    Ah. The good ol’ days when sexual harrassment was condoned and expected. Today, just saying “Good morning.” to a female co-worker will get you fined $10,000.00 and jailed for 18 months.

  5. William Deering says: December 22, 200810:24 pm

    John M. Hanna: Just a dull “Good Morning” by itself might not get you in trouble today unless you present this old magizine article or some of its words and implications (“contrasted – - – both magnetic in individual ways – - – complete set with attachments – - – playback – - – boss’s lap – - – dictation – - – secretary – - – is a little – - – pound gadget – - – Peirce – - – impulses – - – impulses – - – impulses”). The same thing sixty years ago worked then like it does today – - – it sells other things including magazines.

  6. Bob says: December 22, 200810:58 pm

    A few years ago a co-worker of mine indirectly referred to an assistant manager as a “female”, which was overheard by her, and believe me the stuff hit the fan!

    Wire recording was common thru the 1950s. Tape recorders were not available in the US until after 1948, when Ampex (Bing Crosby was a major investor) built the first US machines for the broadcast industry.

  7. William Deering says: December 23, 20089:07 am

    “All I see is a captain”. Will Stockdale in “No Time For Sargeants”?

  8. jayessell says: December 24, 20082:16 pm

    I read somewhere (here?) that thanks to High Tech German wire recorders
    Hitler’s speaches were broadcasted in high fidelety in every major
    German city. The BBC’s technical branch were perplexed and impressed.
    After the war several recorders were ‘liberated’ to the USA.

    What did YOU do in the war, Mr. Peirce?

  9. Christian Berger says: December 24, 20082:52 pm

    @jayessell
    Those were actually tape recorders.
    Strictly speaking the technology which made high fidelity tape recording possible was first discovered in Japan, then rediscovered in Germany.

  10. mickey says: January 8, 200910:34 am

    im almost positive that the writer has never seen a secratary taking a dictation before.

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