04w39:3 History of Typewriters and Television

by timothy. 0 Comments

Good Reads Mailing List | 2004 week 39 number 3 (history of typewriters and television)


Against type? What the writing machine has wrought | Arthur Krystal
“The armada of women who sailed into the workplace just before the turn of the century did not pass unnoticed. For one thing, typewriters began flying out of the factories. In 1900 alone, around 100,000 Remingtons were shipped, and by 1906 the Remington plant was turning out a machine every working minute. […] As for the office itself, men and women suddenly found themselves standing on uncharted terrain, often behind closed doors, which, as it turned out, was a great boon to cartoonists (‘Don’t hold supper, dear. I’ll be working late with my typewriter’), though not much of one to the cuspidor industry, which dried up under the baleful glare of the less expectorating sex. Needless to say, so many women working alongside men–becoming, in fact, indispensable to their male employers–had its civic consequences. Once women began joining the workforce in such numbers, could universal suffrage and an Equal Rights Amendment be far behind?”

Beck’s Typewriter | Stefan Beck
A gallery of images of early typewriters

The Televisionary | Malcolm Gladwell
“It was then that the sewing-machine business took off. For the sewing machine to succeed, in other words, those who saw themselves as sewing-machine inventors had to swallow their pride and concede that the machine was larger than they were – that groups, not individuals, invent complex technologies. […] Farnsworth was twenty-four, and working out of a ramshackle building. Sarnoff was one of the leading industrialists of his day. It was as if Bill Gates were to get in his private jet and visit a software startup in a garage across the country. But Farnsworth wasn’t there. He was in New York, trapped there by a court order resulting from a frivolous lawsuit filed by a shady would-be investor. Stashower calls this one of the great missed opportunities of Farnsworth’s career, because he almost certainly would have awed Sarnoff with his passion and brilliance, winning a lucrative licensing deal. Instead, an unimpressed Sarnoff made a token offer of a hundred thousand dollars for Farnsworth’s patents, and Farnsworth dismissed the offer out of hand. This, too, is a reason that inventors ought to work for big corporations: big corporations have legal departments to protect their employees against being kept away from their laboratories by frivolous lawsuits. A genius is a terrible thing to waste.”

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emailed by Timothy on Thursday 23 September 2004 @ 1:06 AM

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