Wednesday, January 08, 2003

Here's some interesting trivia about TV
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Was there ever a real TV Channel 1?
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Yes! We need to go back to the Empire State Building for this one.

David Sarnoff, the head of RCA, pushed early TV experiments in New
York City (1930s). He used the top of the Empire State Building for
his antenna and transmitter location. The RCA experimental TV
Channel was not in the current band used for VHF TV Channels 2
through 13.

When the FCC picked TV Channels to commence regular commercial TV
broadcasting, they only authorized TV Channels 1 through 5. The
authorized TV Channel 1 was very close to the band RCA was using for
their 1930s experiments. When regular commercial TV broadcasting
commenced on July 1, 1941, NBC (owned by RCA) only had to adjust
the experimental TV transmitter to the newly authorized TV
Channel 1.

In 1946 the FCC dropped the TV Channel 1 completely but added VHF
TV Channels 6 through 13. NBC had to abandon TV Channel 1 and move
to their current TV Channel 4 allocation in New York.

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Various Sources:
http://www.esbnyc.com
A History of Broadcasting in the United States, E. Barnouw (3 Vols.)
The History of Television N. Goldstein 1991
The First Fifty Years of Broadcasting 1982 BPI

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More TV trivia:

The first use of the word Television in print was in Scientific
American in 1907.

Experiments in TV transmission, as we known them today, began in
the 1920s.

The first experimental moving TV image from the Empire State
Building was a statue of Felix the Cat, spinning on a record
turntable.

The CRT was first used for video in 1900 . . . in Russia!

Read "The Empire of the Air" by Tom Lewis! A good book!

Contributed by Ted Perzeszty