Adult/ High School -The idea of a "technography," or a biography of a technology, is intriguing, and this thorough exposition supports the viability of the concept. Magoun discusses both the personalities and the technology that came together to create television. The explications of the science may be slightly confusing to those not scientifically inclined, but the human story of the patent battle between inventor Philo Farnsworth (erroneously named "Phil" in one heading) and television executive David Sarnoff is a tad more interesting. Magoun traces television's origins and development through the advent of the VCR to today's flat-panel displays and the future of the medium. Sadly, despite an extensive and impressive bibliography, there are no source notes to connect specific text with the research. Despite this serious flaw, the book is comprehensive and informative. However, the amount of detail, scholarly tone, and lackluster design of the volume are likely to limit its appeal to those already interested in the topic.-Tim Wadham, Maricopa County Library District, Phoenix, AZCopyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Television: The Life Story of a Technologyby Alexander B. Magoun
For better or worse, television is the dominant medium of communication in today's culture. Almost all American households have a television; most have more than one. But the ability to send images and sounds through the air, or via a cable, is a relatively recent invention, one that required inquisitive inventors, clever business people, and creative entertainers. This volume in the Greenwood Technographies series will will cover the entire history of television from the early twentieth-century ideas of transmitting images by electromagnetic waves to the current issues involving HDTV. In addition, the volume will discuss the continuing importance of television in the lives of people across the globe.
Television: The Life Story of a Technology will appeal to students and lay readers alike by relating the stories of some of the most influential and interesting events of the past century:
-The earliest engineers -- such as Philo Farnsworth and Vladimir Zworykin -- whose work ignited the entire television industry
-How the television industry and commercial programming bloomed in tandem with the Baby Boom generation
-The late-twentieth century expansion of cable television and the decline of the broadcast networks, and the new world of high-definition television.
The volume includes a glossary of terms, a timeline of important events, and a selected bibliography of resources for further information.
Patricia L. Dooley
Tracing the history of television from early inception through golden age, to the current world of flat screens, cable, and satellites, Magoun comprehensively overviews a medium now in everyone's memory... Readers are left with an appreciation for an old friend that they enjoyed having around, as well as recognition of the role that television has played in making entertainment and communication what it is today.
"The idea of a technography, or a biography of a technology, is intriguing, and this thorough exposition supports the viability of the concept. Magoun discusses both the personalities and the technology that came together to create television….Magoun traces television's origins and development through the advent of the VCR to today's flat-panel displays and the future of the medium." - School Library Journal
"In this history of television, Magoun not only explains the development and basic workings of this technology, but also the processes, personalities, and business decisions involved, and TV's impact on American values. In a life cycle framework, he traces TV from its protracted birth through the death of cathode tube TVs and resurrection in digital form. The author addresses issues relating to the paternity of inventions, government regulation, and changing broadcast standards. The book includes B&W illustrations." - SciTech Book News
"[A]n appealing read for students who should be encouraged to exercise their critical thinking skills to debate whether their digital generation spells the end of television and what they might predict in the immediate future to replace the gadgets that seem to be replacing it now." - GALE Reference for Students/Lawrence Looks at Books
Meet the Author
Alexander B. Magoun is executive director of the David Sarnoff Library.
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