Phones in History

Contest Info

  • Started: 3/3/2008 06:00
  • Ended: 3/5/2008 06:00
  • Level: advanced
  • Entries: 22
  • Jackpot:
  • FN Advanced 1st Place $5
  • FN Advanced 2nd Place $3
  • FN Advanced 3rd Place $2
Phones in History
Contest Directions: Today is the 161st birthday of Alexander Graham Bell - the man who invented and patented the telephone. Most of his life Bell was experimenting with sound and hearing devices. Bell was also called "the father of the deaf". Both his mother and wife were deaf, which influenced Bell's decision to create hearing devices, to transmit and record sounds.
To celebrate the birthday of the telephone inventor Alexander Bell, show how historical life would be different if phone were invented much earlier. Some examples are: show phones used in old paintings, by ancient civilizations, and even dinosaurs. Any type of phones are allowed- from most antique ones to most recent ones (including cell phones).

Contest Info

    • Started: 3/3/2008 06:00
    • Ended: 3/5/2008 06:00
    • Level: advanced
    • Entries: 22
    • Jackpot:
    • FN Advanced 1st Place $5
    • FN Advanced 2nd Place $3
    • FN Advanced 3rd Place $2
This gallery only contains our top 25 selections from its parent contest Phones in History. All 22 contest pictures can be viewed here.
  • Cell Phone & T-Rex

    Cell Phone & T-Rex
  • Suicide Phone Bill Painting

    Suicide Phone Bill Painting
  • Phone Call Painting

    Phone Call Painting
  • Phone Call for Julius Caesar

    Phone Call for Julius Caesar
  • First Mobile Phone

    First Mobile Phone
  • Nicolaes Ruts Using a Phone by Rembrandt

    Nicolaes Ruts Using a Phone by Rembrandt
  • Cell Phones Painting

    Cell Phones Painting
  • Earth Phone in Space

    Earth Phone in Space
  • George Washington Using Blue Tooth

    George Washington Using Blue Tooth
  • Phone Booth & Ulysses S. Grant

    Phone Booth & Ulysses S. Grant
  • Jesus Using a Cell Phone

    Jesus Using a Cell Phone
  • Madonna and Child Using a Cell Phone

    Madonna and Child Using a Cell Phone
  • Jesus on his Blackberry

    Jesus on his Blackberry
  • Man with a Cell Phone at Passover

    Man with a Cell Phone at Passover
  • Ace Ventura iPhone

    Ace Ventura iPhone
  • Antonio Meucci + Alexander Graham Bell

    Antonio Meucci + Alexander Graham Bell
  • Plesiosaur vs Cell Phones

    Plesiosaur vs Cell Phones
  • Neil Armstrong's First MMS Message

    Neil Armstrong's First MMS Message
  • Cell Phone & Prisoner Girl

    Cell Phone & Prisoner Girl
  • Cell Phone Cave Painting

    Cell Phone Cave Painting
  • Last Supper Cell Phone Call

    Last Supper Cell Phone Call
  • Comics Watch Cellphone

    Comics Watch Cellphone
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This contest is fueled by the following news: The history of the telephone: The priority patent from the 14th of February, 1876 on the "telegraphic instrument for the transmission of human speech" was the second great invention, which is one of the basics of today's informational society. It was done 420 years after the first invention of the printing machine with movable metallic type by Johannes Gutenberg, on which, in 1456, the famous Gutenberg bible was printed. As it was not the first time this had happened with great discoveries, two researchers had invented it: Alexander Bell in Boston and Elisha Grey in Chicago. Bell had incidentally tumbled onto the principle of telephony, while experimenting with a harmonic telegraph. It happened on the 2nd of June 1875, when Thomas Watson, a friend and assistant of Bell, not noticing that one end of the steel strip of the telegraph transmitter was clutched between the contact screws of the circuit breaker switch, making the same constant electric contact, tried to manually force it to fluctuate. During the process an electric current was generated due to the vibration of the non-magnetized strip on the magnets pole, which in turn was tuned in by a different receiver in another room when Bell was trying to tune it. Pressing the strip to his ear, and fixing the free end of the other end (which actually is the element of the harmonic telegraph to the analog of the membrane of the modern telephone), Bell heard a sound and realized the value of what had happened. After 9 months, Bell and Watson conducted the first session of telephone communication. For the first time in the history of mankind, a telephonic message, delivered by Bell, sounded as a matter of fact "Mr. Watson, come here, I need you" and it was transmitted at a distance of 12 meters. In fact, such an invention can hardly be counted as accidental. This epochal incident was the precedent by years of deep research and different experiments. Behind this no less was the important motivation for years of long persistent hard-work and served love. Born in 1847 in Edinburgh, and completing London and Edinburgh universities, Alexander Graham Bell moved to Boston with his family , where falling in love with a girl named Mable Hubbard, had suffered deafness after contagious scarlet fever in his childhood. In 1872 he opens an institute in Boston for preparing teachers for teaching the deaf, and in 1873 becomes a professor of Physiology for the speech organs at Boston University and at the same time did research in the founding of the artificial vowel sounds and for transmitting them through the telegraph cable. In fact, the application for patent on the telephone by Bell's name was done by Gardiner Hubbard. Within hours, belated with the application for patent on the invention of the telephone, Elisha Grey succeeded in doing a different important thing. Seven years before the appearance of a patent on the telephone, Grey, along with Inoc Barton , opened a small company in Cleveland. Three years after, in 1872, the company was renamed as the Western Electric Manufacturing Company in Chicago and became one of the largest electric companies in the USA. After the emergence of a patent on the telephone, the practical cost of the invention was not so evident as it would be today. According to the historical version, at one time Bell suggested the patent to Western Electric for 100 thousand dollars. After getting refused, in 1876, Bell along with lawyer Gardiner Hubbard (father of Mable) and his assistant Watson, launched their own company, the New England Telephone Company, which as result was called the Bell Telephone Co. Alexander Bell himself was made the chief electrical engineer of the company and his assistant Watson Director and Accountant. Also, Watson and Hubbard received 1497 shares of the company, at that time when Bell himself got only 10 shares of the company. The earliest telephone instruments put forward by the Bell Telephone Company were made from wood (ebony or mahogany) with an element that served both as a transmitter and receiver. The source of the energy was often the constant magnet, located inside the device, and not a battery or an external source of electric power supply. Each telephone device had a direct connection with another device through a private line, which the telegraphists usually rented to the telephone company. The earliest advertisements for using two telephones along with the connecting line cost around $20 a year for public purposes, and $40 a year for corporate purposes, wherein free maintenance was provided. In 1879 he left the management of his company and the Bell Telephone Company continued to move forward without its founder. In 1881, the Bell Telephone Company completely acquired Western Electric, which continued to be the exclusive manufacturer of telephone equipment for 100 years, till Bell Systems itself did not break down. In 1922, Alexander Graham Bell died form diabetes, not so rich, but realizing the most important breakthrough made by him in the field of telephony. His assistant Watson left Bell Telephone soon after his death, and chose himself a career as an actor, he died in 1934. The subdivision of developers Western Union became a single organization, which in 1925 transformed into the world famous Bell Telephone Laboratories. This large scientific center gave the world the transistor, a digital automatic telephone station, a pulse code modulating device with programmed control, the Laser, packet switching, mobile communication, the operational system Unix and several other inventions and breakthroughs, a number of employees became noble laureates. Returning to the telephone history, remember that in 1878, American David Hughes invented the Microphone with carbon rods, which unfortunately, was not as sensitive and gave more distorted sounds. In the same year, Thomas Edison applied the induction coil to the telephone design, Watson patented the application in telephone devices with the electro mechanic bell, and Russian electrical engineer, P. M. Golubitsky used capacitors in telephones for the first time.
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