Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

Listen to Alexander Graham Bell

Alexander Graham Bell

Alexander Graham Bell 1904

Alexander Graham Bell was born in Edinburgh on March 3, 1847 (d. August 2, 1922) and became an engineer, was regarded as an eminent scientist, innovator, and inventor who was ultimately credited with inventing the first practical telephone.

Together with his family (which was involved with elocution and speech), his research on hearing (both his mother and sister were deaf) and speech eventually led him to being awarded the first US patent for the telephone in 1876.

Despite attempts by some to discredit Bell, and claims that he stole the idea of the telephone from Elisha Gray, it is a matter of record that Bell’s use of work attributed to Gray took place after his telephone patent had been awarded.

Audio of the famous inventor speaking was discovered on June 20, 2012, and has been placed online, so can now be heard by all:

Listen to Alexander Graham Bell’s Voice | Audio Gallery | Smithsonian.com

The voice of Alexander Graham Bell has been identified for the first time, in a recording from 1885.

On the wax-disc recording, the telephone inventor says: “Hear my voice, Alexander Graham Bell.”

The recording is among the earliest held by the Smithsonian Institution, which runs the National Museum of American History.

Bell’s voice was recorded on to the disc on 15 April 1885 at his Volta laboratory in Washington.

Via Phone pioneer speaks for first time in 128 years

In the past, it would simply not have been possible to play the original wax recording and recover the voice it contained.

Being so old, pressure exerted by the needle needed to follow the bumps and grooves recorded in the wax disc would have destroyed it.

However, thanks to some clever software and the use of a 3D camera, it is now possible to use light and image processing to recover the same information without the need to physically touch the fragile surface of the disc, then convert the data into sound, courtesy of clever researchers at the US Library of Congress and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

The Smithsonian show how in this short video:

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April 27, 2013 - Posted by | Civilian | , , , , ,

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