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Copyright © 1997, Jay Ligda.  All rights reserved.  Published by Humans in the Universe and Jay Ligda.

Evolution of Industrial Age Technology

      The following is a brief summary of the technological advances that developed during the period of the industrial revolution that increased humanity's capacity for creating memes-to-transmit-memes:

      In 1794, the first telegraph was invented (Grun, 1976).  In 1933, the first electromagnetic telegraph was invented.  The electromagnetic telegraph could transmit signals (Morse code) over 9,000 feet.  The first U.S. patent on the typewriter was granted in 1829.  By 1860, the typewriter was perfected and was mass produced in 1873.  In 1876, the telephone was invented.  Within a year, there was a public telephone service.  By 1910, there were 122,000 telephones in Britain.  In 1915, the first transcontinental telephone call was made between San Francisco and New York and, in 1957 the trans-Atlantic cable was laid.  In 1928, tele-typewriters, a marriage between the telephone and the typewriter, were brought into restricted use (Grun, 1976).

      In 1900 the first radio transmission of the human voice was made (Grun, 1976).  In 1906 the first radio broadcast of music was made.  In 1925, the first television images were transmitted.  By 1928, the first scheduled television broadcast was made.  In 1936, the BBC inaugurated television service.  By 1950, there were approximately 1.5 million T.V. sets in the U.S., and by the following year, there are around 15 million.  Commercial television began in 1955 in Britain.  In 1956 work began on a marriage between the telephone and the television, a "visual telephone."  By 1960 there were approximately 100 million T.V. sets world wide (Grun, 1976).

      Fuller (1981) credits the T.V. as the cause of the cultural revolution of the 1960's.  He suggests the T.V. became an authority in the home in addition to the parents of the household.  Adolescents were able to view images of war and destruction around the world and rebelled against society.  As for the mind-body split, commercial television began to broadcast ideal images of how life "should" be into homes further taking individuals away from their internal sense of who they are.

      Additional industrial age technology that transmit memes includes xerography, invented in 1946 (Grun, 1976), the recent introduction of the fax machine as a marriage between the telephone and xerography.  The first communications satellite was launched in 1968 (Grun, 1976).  The computer also evolved during this period.

by Jay Ligda

(This work is a all or part of an original work first published/written for John. F. Kennedy University:  Final Integrative Project., Mar1996.)


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References

  • Grun, B.  (1975).  The Timetables of History: A Horizontal Linkage of People and Events.  New York, NY: Simon and Schuster.
  • Fuller, R. B.  (1981).  Critical Path.  New York, NY: St. Martin's Press.

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