She Tells Herself the Time (Aug, 1936)

I’ve always wondered if the MoviePhone guy ever uses his own service and if it freaks him out.

She Tells Herself the Time

LONDON now has a time-telling telephone service, obtained by dialing T-I-M on the automatic exchanges. A natural-sounding voice gives the time— but it is, as a matter of fact, a phonographic reproduction. It has been recorded on a glass disc, in the same manner as sound tracks are put on moving-picture films, and similarly reproduced electrically in any telephone circuit connected in. The phone thus functions as does a theatre loud speaker, when connected in the projector’s amplifier circuit.

6 comments
  1. Jayessell says: December 9, 20102:07 pm

    I always enjoy reading how engineers of the past past managed without digital technology.
    That was cutting edge at the time.

  2. Jari says: December 9, 20103:05 pm

    Jayessell: Automatic telephone exchanges had relays and stepping switches at a time, they’re pretty digital to me. I recall, that last “Miss Time” recorded in glass plates in Finland was replaced with digital recording system in -90′s. Can’t be sure.

  3. Stephen Edwards says: December 9, 20103:23 pm

    This may be the world’s first optical disc, although it’s analog(ue) instead of digital. I’m going to guess the “photocells and lamps” move horizontally to select the playback of different numbers.

  4. Jayessell says: December 10, 20104:06 am

    Re:#3
    Yes. Concentric tracks. Like CDs.

  5. Stephen says: December 10, 20105:15 am

    “Miss TIM”, as she was known, survived until the 1980s.

  6. LightningRose says: December 11, 201010:09 am

    Jayessell #4, CDs and DVDs are spiral, not concentric. However, the data on magnetic hard drives are concentric.

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