Founder of Emerson Radio and Phonograph
The Emerson Radio & Phonograph Corp., founded by Max Abrams, was one of the premier companies that mass-produced radios that were very modern in appearance in the years just before and after World War II.
Invented the TV remote control
Dr. Robert Adler, 86, is the creator of the TV remote control. Nearly 40 years ago he devised the idea of beaming high-frequency ultrasonic waves at a microphone in the TV. The Space Commander 400, nicknamed "the clicker," arrived in stores in 1956.
Edwin Howard Armstrong
Creator of FM radio
In 1937, Edwin Armstrong built a 425-foot radio tower on the Palisades in New Jersey. It was from this tower that FM radio was launched as a broadcast medium. Armstrong had trouble winning commercial acceptance of FM. Eventually RCA won the right to use FM. Armstrong committed suicide in 1954 in Manhattan.
John Logie Baird
Developer of television
John Logie Baird's primitive television was the first that could "see at a distance." His mechanical system could broadcast moving images across the Atlantic, while rival Philo Farnsworth had produced only a thin white line across a screen. Scholars still debate the "real" inventor of television, but there is no doubt Baird played a significant role.
Former president, Philco Corp.; leader in developing car radio
William Balderston, who worked his way up in the electronics industry to become head of Philco Corp., helped mastermind the idea of putting radios into cars and radar units on ships and planes. Balderston was president and chairman of the Philco Corp., a major producer of radios and television sets.
Co-inventor of the transistor
A physicist, John Bardeen was working with scientist Walter Brattain at AT&T's Bell Laboratories when they developed the first semiconductor transistor in 1947. It replaced the large, inefficient vacuum tubes and paved the way for every electronic device created since. Later adapted by William P. Shockley for wider use, the transistor earned the three men the 1956 Nobel Prize in physics.
Alexander Graham Bell
Inventor of the telephone
Patent No. 174,465 for "improvements in telegraphy" - the telephone - often is called the most valuable patent ever issued. In addition to the telephone, Bell held patents for the telegraph, photophone, phonograph, hydrofoils and a selenium cell.
Creator of market for home video sales
In 1977, Andre Blay, a Detroit businessman who owned Magnetic Video, was offering Hollywood movies for sale in the home-video format. While video sales and rentals are commonplace today, Blay's idea was revolutionary at the time.
Walter H. Brattain
Co-inventor of the transistor
Walter Brattain and John Bardeen, working together in 1947, observed that when electrical signals were applied to contacts on a crystal of germanium, the power was amplified. Brattain's investigation of the surface properties of solids, plus his personal creativity and persistence, helped the scientists triumph over technical obstacles.
Karl Ferdinand Braun
Invented the oscillograph
Developed as a monitor a century ago by German scientist and Nobel Prize winner Karl Ferdinand Braun, the cathode ray tube (CRT) was a crucial component in the development of television. In 1897 Braun found a way to produce a narrow stream of electrons and invented a fluorescent screen that produced visible light when struck by the particles. Thus, millions of TVs, oscilloscopes and computer monitors were born.
Spurred the video game industry
Nolan Bushnell, 56, is known as "the father of electronic entertainment." He created the coin-operated "Pong" game and founded Atari Corp. in 1972 with $250. He served as CEO until he sold the company to Warner Communications Inc. in 1976 for $28 million. Atari was an industry pioneer of video games and achieved $2 billion in annual sales in 1981.
Powell Crosley Jr.
First mass-market radio
Powell Crosley Jr.'s ingenuity gave America the Crosley radio, the Shelvador refrigerator, the Crosley car and numerous radio programs. His résumé included the Crosley Radio Corp., stations WLW and WLWT, ownership of the Cincinnati Reds baseball team from 1934-1961, and Crosley Field, which he built.
Developed the vacuum tube
Of Lee DeForest's more than 300 patents, the most important was the audion amplifier, which established the principle of the vacuum tube, in 1907. His breakthrough boosted the development of radio, television and hundreds of other electronic marvels.
Ray M. Dolby
Founder and chairman of Dolby Laboratories
Ray Dolby took the hiss out of tape recording and transformed movie sound. Put simply, the invention that bears Dolby's name reduces background noise so listeners can hear the true sound of a recording. Dolby's name is inextricably linked with the anti-hiss process.
Founder of the DuMont Television Network and the first practical CRTs
In the 1930s and 1940s, Allen DuMont was at the forefront of TV technology and programming. DuMont Laboratories perfected the first practical cathode ray tubes (CRTs) and the first all-electronic TV receivers. In 1952, the DuMont Network aired professional football and basketball. The DuMont Network's legacy in programming remains an important chapter in television history.
Thomas Alva Edison
Invented the light bulb, storage battery and phonograph
In his life the prolific Thomas Edison patented 1,093 of his inventions. The light bulb, phonograph, storage battery, mimeograph and many other creations sprang to life from Edison's ideas, sometimes by plan, other times simply by accident. In 1879 Edison unveiled his incandescent light bulb.
Developer of stereo FM radio
Four decades ago, high-fidelity sound for radio revolutionized the radio experience for millions of consumers worldwide. As co-inventor of two key industry standards - stereo FM radio and multichannel television sound (MTS) - Carl Eilers helped make that revolution possible.
Philo Taylor Farnsworth
Developed TV based on cathode ray tube
Philo Farnsworth believed that mechanical TV was a dead end and that a new way - using the cathode ray tube - would open worlds of possibility. In 1934, in Philadelphia, Farnsworth demonstrated live TV - a B&W, 10 x 12-inch picture. RCA licensed the technology.
Reginald Aubrey Fessenden
Developer of radio broadcasting
Canadian Reginald Fessenden's goal was to transmit the human voice and music without wires. He devised the theory of the "continuous wave," a means to superimpose sound onto a radio wave and transmit this signal to a receiver. On December 23, 1900, he successfully transmitted the sound of a human voice between two 50-foot towers.
Invented the transistorized amplifier, combination stereo radio/phonograph
Avery Fisher's achievements include the first transistorized amplifier and the stereo radio-phonograph combination. In 1945 Fisher started Fisher Radio. In 1956 the company produced the first transistorized amplifier. Two years later it developed the first stereo radio and phonograph combination. In 1969, Fisher sold the company to Emerson for $31 million.
President of Magnavox
Frank Freimann, often referred to as a merchandising genius, is credited with creating a policy of selective distribution to combat widespread price-cutting in the early consumer electronics industry. Cutting out distributors was the cornerstone of the merchandising philosophy. Magnavox sold directly to about 2,200 dealers who owned 3,000 stores.
Founder of Motorola
More than seven decades since the Galvin Manufacturing Corp. was created, Paul Galvin and his progeny have built Motorola into an engineering company with landmark training programs and generous resources for engineers. The company has built car radios, solid state devices for televisions, cellular phones, integrated circuits and chips, and even a global telecommunications satellite system.
Leader in developing video recording
Charles Ginsburg, an electrical and radio engineer at Ampex Corp., and a six-member research team introduced the world's first practical videotape recorder (VTR) in 1956. The achievement earned Ampex its first Emmy Award.
Invented the 33-1/3 RPM vinyl LP record and the first color TV system
In 1940, Peter Goldmark, a CBS staff inventor and engineer, invented the first color television system. But the CBS system was not compatible with B&W sets. But in the early 1950s Goldmark developed the 33-1/3 RPM longer play record.
Dr. Sidney Harman
Developed the first receiver
Dr. Sidney Harman, chairman and CEO of Harman International, began his distinguished career 46 years ago in 1953 when he and partner Bernard Kardon helped define the home hi-fi industry with the development of the first receiver. Harman International and its subsidiary companies are among the most well-regarded in today's consumer electronics marketplace.
Work on electric waves
Heinrich Hertz, a German physicist, was the first to demonstrate the production and detection of Maxwell's waves. In 1888 he generated electric waves by oscillatory discharge of a condenser through a loop provided with a spark gap. His experiments triggered the invention of the wireless telegraph and of radio.
Co-founder of Sony
Masura Ibuka was a co-founder of Sony. Under his technical leadership, Sony introduced the first transistor television set in 1959, the first solid-state videotape recorder in 1961, and the Trinitron TV in 1967.
Eldridge Reeves Johnson
Founded the first consumer electronics company
Eldridge Reeves Johnson, a Dover, Del., native, was the founder and president of the Victor Talking Machine Company, the first consumer electronics company that later became RCA Victor. The company's first product was The Toy, a $3 gramophone introduced in 1900.
Co-inventor of the integrated circuit
Electronics pioneer Jack Kilby, who conceived and built the first integrated circuit, or semiconductor chip, is recognized as the chip's co-inventor along with Robert Noyce. The two men made possible enormous gains in computer power.
Invented the acoustic-suspension speaker and the large-screen projection TV
Henry Kloss is known for his numerous inventions, including the acoustic-suspension speaker and the large-screen projection television. He also founded four successful consumer electronics companies.
John Koss Sr.
Designed first commercial headphones
At the dawn of the transistor era, John Koss Sr. designed a set of commercial headphones using World War II military headphones. It was 1958 and the stereo business was taking off with the advent of rock 'n' roll music. The headphones were called "private listening units."
Consumer electronics journalist
David Lachenbruch, a respected writer and editor in the world of consumer electronics, chronicled nearly every major development in the television industry. Lachenbruch invented the expression "consumer electronics" and also coined the term "camcorder" for the home video tape recorder.
James B. Lansing
From the 1920s to the 1950s James B. Lansing was at the forefront of creating leading speaker systems used in motion-picture theaters. In the 1930s, Lansing named his company James B. Lansing (JBL) Sound Corp. JBL's parent company is audio-conglomerate Harman International.
Pioneer in high-fidelity music systems
Saul Marantz, a pioneer in high-fidelity music systems, founded the Marantz Co. in the 1950s. The company produced record players, amplifiers and speakers that became industry standards. In 1964 Marantz Co. was sold to Superscope Inc. and today is owned by Philips Electronics.
Inventor of wireless telegraphy
Few inventions match that of sending the human voice through the air to a distant place. In 1895 Guglielmo Marconi's simple signal, the Morse letter "S," was sent a little more than a mile. Marconi's experiments led to practical wireless telegraphy and radio. He was awarded the 1909 Nobel Prize for physics.
Founded Matsushita Electric Industrial Co.
Konosuke Matsushita's philosophy: provide a large supply of consumer goods at the lowest possible prices without compromising quality and service. He founded the Matsushita Electrical Industrial Company in 1918 - the name is still held by the company today. He stressed that sales was a noble profession: "Never forget that every single person you meet is a customer."
E.F. McDonald Jr.
Consumer electronics pioneer
Commander Eugene F. McDonald Jr. guided Zenith Radio Corp. for 45 years. From the company's laboratories during the McDonald years came countless innovations, including the first portable radios, the first AC-powered radios, the first automatic push-button radio tuners, the first wireless TV remote controls and the first subscription TV system.
Co-founder of Sony with Masaru Ibuka
Bold, personable and energetic, Sony's co-founder Akio Morita built his electronics firm into a well-known brand and an international presence. Morita founded Sony in 1946 with Masaru Ibuka. In 1960 he established Sony Corp. of America. Under Morita's leadership, Sony was the first Japanese electronics company to adopt a multinational stance.
Robert N. Noyce
Co-inventor of the microchip and the integrated circuit; co-founder of Fairchild Semiconductor, 1957; co-founder of Intel, 1968
Working separately in the late 1950s, Robert Noyce and Jack Kilby invented the integrated circuit, which advanced computer technology by putting the power of multiple transistors on a single tiny chip. The integrated circuit helped the electronics market explode.
Inventor of the telegraphone, a wire recording device
While working at the Copenhagen Telephone Company, Valdemar Poulsen invented the telegraphone. The device recorded human speech by alternating magnetization of a wire. Poulsen patented this first functional magnetic audio recorder in 1898.
Designed and built the first successful personal computer
Ed Roberts designed the first U.S. hand-held calculator. When Popular Electronics magazine was looking for someone to build a computer that would cost less than $400, Roberts designed the Altair 8800. It was packaged as a kit for hobbyists, and it included a microprocessor and a 256-byte RAM card for just $395 in 1975.
American radio and television pioneer
Through foresight, determination and public relations skill, David Sarnoff invented commercial broadcasting, as we know it. He also developed a communications giant called RCA, created NBC, and pushed television to prominence.
Hermon Hosmer Scott
Founder of the H.H. Scott Company
For 20 years, the H.H. Scott Company, founded by Hermon Hosmer Scott in 1947, set standards in the high-fidelity stereo equipment industry. Scott held several patents for innovations in the audio field. In 1985 Emerson Radio purchased the famous hi-fi brand and turned H.H. Scott into an upscale consumer electronics company offering both audio and video equipment.
Co-founder of the VHS format
Yuma Shiraishi is recognized as the Victor Company of Japan (JVC) engineer who co-founded VHS (Video Home System) with Shizuo Takano. They successfully promoted the VHS format until it became a global standard, beating out Sony's Beta format.
William Bradford Shockley
William Shockley advanced the idea of the transistor and pointed the way to its development, although he was not present at the actual moment of discovery in 1947. The transistor replaced the vacuum tube and paved the way for the integrated circuit.
Ross David Siragusa
Founder of the Admiral Corp.
Ross Siragusa founded the Admiral Corp. during the Great Depression and transformed it from a small radio and phonograph company into one of the leading makers of televisions, audio products, and home appliances. A pioneering TV brand, it became one of the top three in sales and was one of the first to produce color sets.
Led the development of the VHS format
Shizuo Takano is known as the father of VHS. His personality and leadership allowed the VCR format to become a global standard. The VHS beat out Sony's Beta format in one of the toughest marketing and technology battles in electronics history.
Pioneer in electric power, invented the electro-magnetic motor
Nikola Tesla discovered alternating current and wireless radio waves. He was the inventor of wireless telegraph transmission. In 1887 and 1888 he had an experimental shop at 89 Liberty Street in New York City, where he invented the induction motor. He sold the invention to George Westinghouse in July 1888. Westinghouse hired Tesla to create the Niagara Falls Power Project.
Jack Wayman has devoted his 50 years in business to consumer electronics, at retail, wholesale and trade association levels. For the last 35 years he has been associated with the Electronic Industries Alliance (EIA). He conceived and developed the International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) held in Las Vegas each January, which now is the largest consumer technology trade show in the world.
Instrumental in the invention of TV
One of three men credited with the invention of television, Vladimir Zworykin fled Russia for the United States in 1919. He already had demonstrated his "iconoscope" camera, based on a 1923 design, and his "kinescope" receiver when he met RCA's David Sarnoff. The meeting set the stage for RCA's success at electronic television transmission and reception.