...The radios we'll always remember

1963 FCC Film

with FCC Chairman Newton N. Minow

Ham Radio History 0 Comments 04/26/2022 

Posted By: Robert Nickels (W9RAN)
Posted on 04/26/2022

A rare FCC film showing vintage RADIO and TELECOMMUNICATIONS topics including Ham radio, CB, shortwave, and emergency commmunications involving a Coast Guard rescue of a small boat.   Narrated by Chairman Newton N. Minow who is remembered for a few words from a  speech he gave to the National Association of Broadcasters in 1961, when he referred to television as "a vast wasteland".   How true those words turned out to be, and this was five decades before reality television shows!   Here's the quote, in context:

When television is good, nothing -- not the theater, not the magazines or newspapers -- nothing is better.

But when television is bad, nothing is worse. I invite each of you to sit down in front of your television set when your station goes on the air and stay there, for a day, without a book, without a magazine, without a newspaper, without a profit and loss sheet or a rating book to distract you. Keep your eyes glued to that set until the station signs off. I can assure you that what you will observe is a vast wasteland.

You will see a procession of game shows, formula comedies about totally unbelievable families, blood and thunder, mayhem, violence, sadism, murder, western bad men, western good men, private eyes, gangsters, more violence, and cartoons.

   Everyone knows the history of the "Missiles of October"  - the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962.   But many - even dedicated radio fans - may not know that 10 US AM radio stations joined the fight against the threat of nuclear proliferation by becoming the medium wave extension of the Voice of America.    This excerpt from a 206 page paper entitled "Cuban American Radio W...  READ MORE
- Robert Nickels (W9RAN)  Posted: 05/18/2022 
   Here we see a part of the collection of mostly entry-level shortwave and ham receivers owned by Tom WBØDVM of Cedar Rapids, Iowa.    Many will recognize Tom even without his trademark Hayseed Hamfest t-shirt and can-cap cap,  so daughter Denise aka "Dee Dee" does the honors.   By the way she is KBØLMH, which we're told stands for "Little Miss Hayseed".Ne...  READ MORE
- Robert Nickels (W9RAN)  Posted: 05/11/2022 

Did you hear KC2XIO?

Experimental radio station from 1971
Category: Monitoring Post
A strange yet familiar-sounding voice appeared on 13.56 MHz in 1971...can you identify who and what it was? Your browser does not support the audio tag.First - the "who"....This is the voice of Jane Barbe, which was familiar to everyone from the many recordings she made for the telephone systems around the world.   Of course it would be natural to hire the most talented voice actres...  READ MORE
- Robert Nickels (W9RAN)  Posted: 05/09/2022 
   In an era when many legacy companies seem to have forgotten their legacy, or have been bought out and remnants of their vintage past have been scrubbed from their websites, it's nice to see a company that does just the opposite.Triad Transformers has been around since 1943 and embraces its past, as a supplier that powered everything from  Leo Fender's guitar amplifiers to the Apollo missions....  READ MORE
- Robert Nickels (W9RAN)  Posted: 05/05/2022 
   Digital meters aren't new nor are they quite "dime a dozen" but when you can guy one for under five bucks right off the rack, why get excited about one for $50?    One reason:  "non contact DC current measurement"!The UNI-T UT210E does all the usual things you'd expect from a handheld meter in this class: AC DC Current measurement Resistance measurement LCD backlight ...  READ MORE
- Robert Nickels (W9RAN)  Posted: 05/05/2022 

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