Novel Radio Items
1940 National Radio News Article
Aug/Sep 1940 National Radio News
of Contents] These articles are scanned and OCRed from old editions of the
National Radio News magazine. Here is a list of the
National Radio News articles I have already posted. All copyrights are hereby acknowledged.
My father used to refer to the "sweet-voiced lady predicting the weather
over and over again" as my girlfriend because I would call the 'WEather-1212'
phone number (936-1212) so often. It really wasn't because I was infatuated
with her voice, it's that I was obsessed with weather forecasting. Most
of my free time as a kid and teenager was spent building and flying
airplanes and rockets, and at eighteen years of age I began taking
full-size aeroplane flying lessons, so my world revolved around a zone
extending from terra firma up to about 5,000 feet AGL. This collection
of communications news items in a 1940 edition of National Radio News
includes the creation of that very recorded weather forecasting service
(we lived about 30 miles east of Washington, D.C.). Now, I admit to
having a bit more of a problem explaining my frequent calling of the
local time annunciator lady at 'TIme-1212' (844-1212).
Novel Radio Items
By L.J. Markus
When Washington residents dial WEather 1212, they hear a sweet-voiced
lady predicting the weather over and over again. Those who would
like to enjoy the voice indefinitely are cut off automatically
after about nine reports. A $20,000 telephone company gadget
provides this unique service. The report, as read by a young
lady selected for clearness of speech, is recorded on an endless
wire tape by magnetizing the molecules in the tape in proportion
to the variations in the audio signals. The message can be erased
by a second magnet in preparation for re-recording whenever
the U. S. Weather Bureau decides to change its prediction.
A St. Louis resident complained to the sheriff's office that
his chickens were being shocked by an electric fence put up
by a neighbor. The deputy who investigated found that a bare
wire, supported on insulators at the level of a chicken's head,
had been erected around a flower bed to discourage destruction
of young plants by the chickens. Since this fence was on private
property, the law decided the neighbor was entirely within his
rights in maintaining the fence. The officer gave orders, however,
that a sign be erected warning that the fence was charged. It
is now up to the complainant's chickens to learn how to read.
Experiments in the transmission of orders by radio from the
central control tower of a railroad freight yard to switching
locomotives are being conducted by the Central Railway Signal
Company of Proviso, Illinois, after receiving authorization
for this purpose from the Federal Communications Commission.
Construction permits were issued for two 15-watt stations, one
operating somewhere between 300,000 and 400,000 kc., and the
other being assigned to four different frequencies in the range
from 35,000 to 40,000 kc. This newest application of radio may
mean hundreds of additional jobs for men with radio training.
Portable Radios Are Nuisance
Portable radio receiver are the newest menace facing radio
engineer during broadcast pick-ups from remote points, according
to a report from station KDYL of Salt Lake City. Members of
the audience at the scene of a remote broadcast tune their portables
in on KDYL, thereby creating feed-back. Before future broadcasts,
engineers plan to seek out the portable radios and issue appropriate
instructions or warnings.
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Phonograph Sells Tune for Penny
An automatic phonograph which will play any one of ten different
songs when a penny is inserted, has been developed recently
by Dr. Gordon K. Woodward, a Los Angeles physician. The special
record used with this phonograph is sixteen inches in diameter,
and contains ten separate songs on each side.
----- n r i -----
KDKA Changes Tubes Automatically
Broadcast interruptions due to rectifier tube failures are
eliminated in the new 50-kilowatt transmitter of KDKA at Allison
Park, Pennsylvania, by tube-changing relays. These automatically
disconnect a burned-out tube from the circuit and connect a
new tube into the circuit.
Electrolytics Freeze at Little America
Not a single mercury vapor rectifier tube is used in the
dozen of transmitters and receivers for the Byrd Antarctic Expedition.
All rectifiers are of the high-vacuum type, for mercury is slow
to vaporize at the low temperatures encountered. Likewise, there
are no electrolytic condensers in any part of equipment. Apparently
the electrolyte freezes at temperatures below zero, for chief
radioman Bailey says you might just as well use block of wood.
----- n r i -----
Electronic Speedometer for Typists
Typing speed is indicated directly in words per minute by
a unique new electronic gadget employing two radio tubes and
a vacuum tube voltmeter. Hitting a typewriter key closes a relay
circuit, thus applying a charging impulse to a condenser. Between
strokes, a motor-driven cam switch discharges the condenser
a certain amount through a resistor. A vacuum tube voltmeter
connected across the condenser is calibrated to read words per
minute instead of volts.
Posted May 1, 2014