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The Videotape Recorder Turns 50


"During his remarks, Lodge mentioned a new technological breakthrough, but was not specific. At the conclusion of his address, he remained at the podium. As the crowd began to murmur and break up, the video monitors went from black to an image of Lodge. Only this time, Lodge was still making his presentation, not standing silently.

This was a seeming impossibility, as the only means for preserving video images was kinescope recording, a process in which a special motion picture camera photographed a television monitor. When the recording was finished, the film had to be removed and sent away for developing. Under normal circumstances, this could take hours.

The crowd, realizing that they were experiencing something very unusual, became hushed and locked onto the monitors, viewing an image of Lodge that was indistinguishable from the video seen just moments before. Again, this was quite uncanny, as even the best "kine" had a distinctive look that set it apart from the live video it had captured.

Then a curtain opened, revealing a strange machine and four individuals hovering around it. The crowd couldn't restrain itself and amid cheers, whistles, back slappings and applause, began pushing and pressing in around the world's first video recorder and part of the team that had made it possible. Some even stood in chairs to get a better look at the device that was making this miracle possible.

That was the scene 50 years ago this month."

For the rest of the story, follow the link to The Videotape Recorder Turns 50

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