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Happy Birthday, Telephone!

150_alexander_graham_bell

Well back in 1876 an ol' boy named Bell
Invented a contraption that we know so well
By the 1950's they're in everybodys home
It's a crazy little thing they call a telephone
Now there's one in every corner, in the back of every bar
You can get one in your briefcase, on a plane, or in your car

-Why Haven’t I Heard from You (Reba McEntire)

It was on March 10, 1876 that Alexander Graham Bell called his assistant in the next room by speaking into his new invention. From Bell’s journal:
I then shouted into M [the mouthpiece] the following sentence: "Mr. Watson, come here -- I want to see you." To my delight he came and declared that he had heard and understood what I said.

I asked him to repeat the words. He answered, "You said 'Mr. Watson -- come here -- I want to see you.'" We then changed places and I listened at S [the speaker] while Mr. Watson read a few passages from a book into the mouthpiece M. It was certainly the case that articulate sounds proceeded from S. The effect was loud but indistinct and muffled.

The new “telephone” wasn’t free of controversy. There has long been talk of Bell stealing the idea and the technology from Elisha Gray. Bell won the patent, and is therefore known as the inventor of the telephone. Link

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Well if Bell really was the first to use a telephone then I share the same birthday as the telephone. I was born 110 years after the 10th of March, 1876. Woo!
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it's often the case that no one person invents something. the 'big man' theory of history, patents (which, by the way everybody are a COMMERCIAL concern, not scientific), and peoples' desire for simplicity all feed into this. the wiki on meucci is contradictory, saying that both he and bell were either fraudulent, or first... as the wiki on 'invention of the telephone says: 'The modern telephone is the result of work done by many people, all worthy of recognition of their contributions to the field.'. it's the same with television, the lightbulb, cinema, radio, electricity...
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That's quite ridicolous. You should give a look to wikipedia at Meucci. He was the real one who invented the telephone, Bell was just a lamer and "if Meucci had been able to pay the $10 fee to maintain the caveat after 1874, no patent could have been issued to Bell"...
Remember this...
You can always buy your celebrity despite someone else poverty...
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I once read (but I can't for the life of me find where) that Antonio Meucci was recently posthumously awarded the US Patent for the telephone, revoking it from AGB. Canada then passed a law recognizing AGB as the "only inventor of the telephone."
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