The Boy Who Invented Television: A Story of Inspiration, Persistence and Quiet Passion

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Author: Schatzkin, Paul

Details: Product Description While the great minds of science, financed by the biggest companies in the world, wrestled with 19th century answers to a 20th century problem, Philo T. Farnsworth, age 14, dreamed of trapping light in an empty jar and transmitting it, one line at a time, on a magnetically deflected beam of electrons. Philo Farnsworth was a self-educated farm boy from Rigby, Idaho, when he first sketched his idea for electronic television on a blackboard for his high school science teacher. Six years later, while competitors still struggled with mechanical television systems, Farnsworth successfully demonstrated his invention. He was 21. In 1930, Farnsworth was awarded the fundamental patents for modern television. He spent the next decade perfecting his invention, fighting off challenges to his patents by the giant Radio Corporation of America and defending his vision against his own shortsighted investors who did not share his larger dream of scientific independence. The Boy Who Invented Television traces Farnsworth’s "guided tour" of discovery, describing the observations he made in the course of developing his initial invention, and revealing how his unique insights brought him to the threshold of what might have been an even greater discovery—clean, safe, and unlimited energy from controlled nuclear fusion. From Library Journal At the tender age of 14 and with very little previous knowledge of electronics, Philo T. Farnsworth brought together the building blocks for the television medium, which turned 75 on September 7. Schatzkin, a Farnsworth scholar, focuses on the boy genius's life story, showing us who and what influenced him. Drawing on 20 years of research (including interviews with Farnsworth's family and confidants), he details the funding of various television experiments, patent protection efforts, and technological developments. This joins a number of other recent biographies on Farnsworth, most notably Evan Schwartz's The Last Lone Inventor: A Tale of Genius, Deceit, and the Birth of Television, which focuses on his battle with David Sarnoff over the organization of television, and Donald Godfrey's more general Philo T. Farnsworth: The Father of Television. On its own, Schatzkin's book is a great biography of a gifted inventor and of value to anyone seeking an accessible tour of Farnsworth's life and challenges. Recommended, particularly for academic libraries with broadcasting and media collections.David M. Lisa, Wayne P.L., NJCopyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc. From Booklist Philo T. Farnsworth had one of his first insights into electronic television's design while watching a horse-drawn mower on a farm. It is remarkable enough that a boy should have such an inspiration, let alone that so primitive a technology would influence so advanced an instrument. But such insights occurred regularly throughout his life to a man not only obsessed with transmitting pictures over wireless airwaves but also one possessing a mind able to absorb and resolve every sort of theoretical and technical issue. Schatzkin, although clearly in awe of his subject, finds room to document some of Farnsworth's less amiable characteristics, such as his bouts of drinking and depression, his neglect of wife and family, and his persistent rivalry with RCA's Samoff, who was equally committed to developing television. Schatzkin keeps the pace moving quickly and doesn't let himself get bogged down in the scientific details. The result is a readable, if not particularly analytical, biography of the man whose invention truly revolutionized the world. Mark KnoblauchCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved Review "A great book. It truly catches the essence of my husband Phil's character and the spirit of his journey of discovery." -- Elma G. "Pem" Farnsworth"Excellent and much-appreciated work. Congratulations!" -- Jerry King, Broadcast Historian"Excellent reading for anyone who

Languages: English

Item Condition: UsedVeryGood

Binding: Paperback