Tech - Gadgets
By: anonymous - at April 4, 2013

Latest Advances in Communication Technology

Communication Advancement of Our Era
Our society has come a long way with our means of communication. We've come from a cup and string used to communicate to high-tech cell phone towers that transmit signals into our pockets. 150 years ago, if someone made the claim that our society was going to have endless information at our fingertips; they would have thought you were sick in the head. How have we come so far with these developments? It seems almost every day something new comes out, out-dating the old and turning the value of it to basically nothing. On any given day, we have thousands of television shows we can pick through to watch. They keep most of their breakthroughs a secret though. My understanding is that we only get to see as much as corporations and the government want to show us. Advancement in these industries will continue until they become outdated and useless.

Cell Phones
Let's begin with the most practical technological advancement that has been created. Cell phones have blown up since people realized that they were able to contact anyone at anytime. They have been crucial in reducing crime, spreading news, and staying in touch with family and friends. Truly, cell phones are an incredible networking tool, but where did it all start? In 1843, Michael Faraday submitted the claim that, "space can conduct electricity" (Keith). All the other scientists in this era called him and his colleagues crackpots for beginning one of the most important studies to affect our generation. People tend not to believe things until they see them with their own eyes. Our society might even derail if the valuable tool happened to disappear.

The Use of Radio Frequencies
Radios were the starting point of figuring out how to transmit information amongst each other. If it weren't for radio frequencies, cell phones would be fancy music players with no real importance or value. In 1921, the police from Detroit, Michigan developed a radio frequency to use in their squad cars. This was the most basic form of communicating without being in the same room. It was most commonly used by convoys who needed to be able to talk to each other on the open road. The radio frequency for the Detroit Police operated on about 2 MHz of energy (Keith). They ended up not even using it due to interference on their channel. We have developed our technology to be thousands of times stronger in only one hundred years. My computer and even some newer cell phones now run on GHz. One GH is 1000 MHz!

The system we use now for communication divides our area code into multiple cells. A cell is the area that a radio tower covers. All the cell towers are linked together depending on your carrier. The towers give us the potential to connect to other cell phones thousands of miles apart from each other. A cell phone is a full-duplex device. This means that two people are able to speak at the same time and still hear each other. Before full-duplex devices were half-duplex devices, such as the CB radio and walkie-talkie. These devices were only able to transmit signals as far as their limited range was. Only one person was able to talk while another listened (Brain, 2).

When communication between human beings was at it's earlier stages of development, we were using only one channel to send and receive information. This one channel was capable of having one person talking and one person listening individually. The methods developed quickly, a cell phone carrier now receives about "832 frequencies per city," (Brain, 3). Each cell phone uses it's own channel, which is referred to as full-duplex. It's almost unbelievable how far we have developed our means of long-term communication.

Smart Phones
smart phonesThe newest development in the cell phone industry is the smart phone. I am sure you have heard of the iPhone, Android phones, Windows Phones and Blackberries. Based on my personal opinion, Android phones are the best route to go. They have the most maneuverability, and they support many more applications. Smart phones allow high-speed internet connections to be transmitted through the network for web browsing, e-mail applications, and social networking. Not only have we managed to connect the human race through radio frequencies, but we've also found a way to connect almost everybody to the internet in the palm of their hand. The I phone 5 has been clocked in at 1.3GHz (Humphries)! The processor in that cookie is exceedingly faster than the Apple's first mass produced PC. Here are the specs: "4.77 Mhz, 16kb of ram, 160kb floppy disk, and a mono 8 inch display," (Dundun2007). The increased speed in computers and cell phones is undeniable and hard to believe. A device that fits inside the palm of your hand is now a thousand times faster than a device that took up your whole desk. What would you do without that cell phone in your pocket? You would be quite devastated. I have lived for a while without a cell phone, although it really isn't the end of the world, it is inconvenient. You could lose your job because of an important call you needed to receive. Maybe you missed one of the biggest opportunities of your life, all because you didn't have that tiny little device in your pocket to notify you. Our society has become dependent on these devices to keep us in contact with the world outside of us.




What will the average American do when a disaster happens? My guess is pull out their cell phone and try to call somebody for help or spread the news. When the cell phone towers are jammed, people become frantic and feel excommunicated from the world. A good example of this is during the events of September 11, 2001 (Chen). Nobody could make phone calls because everybody was trying to use the service at the same time; therefore, the system became inaccessible and useless. Cell phones can be a smart precautionary measure, but always make sure you have a backup plan. Although uncommon, the whole entire cell phone system is prone to become completely jammed at any given moment. They have been very helpful with saving lives when they do work, but in the event of a serious catastrophe, your cell phone is not a very good back-up plan.

smart phone at the beach

Cell phones are the newest, most useful improvement that our generation has had the luxury to use. We've developed towers and filled up most of God's green earth with cell phone traffic. They started out on a basic frequency and were not affordable. They are so common and affordable nowadays, almost every American has one in their pocket. Most of them now are stronger than an older computer. Remember to plan a more detailed reaction to catastrophe than just pulling out your cell phone. Chances are if it's going down, your cell phone probably won't work. Cell phones have created their own industry and have been successful with connecting people together on a global level.

Television
Currently, we have access to thousands of television channels in the palms our hands. When TV first came out, there were about 5 channels. A television has become a common household necessity for millions of people around the world. Everyone seems to enjoy such a broad access to information and entertainment. However, television has been known to rob us of our individuality. It makes common generalizations and suggestions that subconsciously work themselves into our psyche. There have been a handful of studies performed that prove that television has harmful effects on the human body. Even with the negative health consequences being known to the public, television still continues to offer a steadily increasing amount of consumers. The television is one of the best known ways to advertise for your business or product. Nobody likes to watch commercials though so we now have the power to fast forward through them with DVR services. Digital Video Recorders or DVRs are a service cable companies have developed which allow you to record any television program or movie in advance. This section of the article will touch on the history of television, how it came to be where it is now, some negative effects that television has on our brains, and television marketing at it's best.

In 1947 the amount of televisions distributed across America was measurable by only thousands. In 1955, an estimated 50% of Americans owned a television set. By 1990, television became so increasingly popular that 98% of Americans bought a television set for their home. That's an advance of over 1000% profit for television networks. An unfathomable jump-start in their consumer network followed by a continual renewal of interest by highly satisfied consumers.

Television took flight when RCA hired a Russian scientist and invested 50 million dollars into developing it. The WWII struggle caused the FBI to get involved with the film industry. A report issued by the FBI, "Counterattack: The Newsletter of Facts on Communism," blacklisted almost everyone who was involved in the growing industry. The government wanted to stop television from becoming popular because it affected their control over the people. The man leading the campaign for this made a fool of himself on national television. After that, legal problems ceased and allowed television to grow.

The two major networks that were available for public viewing when TV hit the streets were CBS and NBC. ABC Network came along shortly after those two. NBC and CBS mostly aired dramatic movies and news programs that all eventually went off the air. Shortly following it's arrival, NBC began competing with the newspapers for being the country's primary source of news. Consumers at the time were more concerned with watching shows that were not as complicated and hard to follow. The most popular shows among the consumers were situational comedies like I Love Lucy. Sitcoms captured the element of drama, combined it with comedy, and eliminated the need to pay attention in order to understand what was going on. Consumers craved mindless entertainment to pass the time, so the television networks made it happen.

old tv

Right when the television was made available to the public, your basic 5 channels consisted of NBC, CBS, ABC, a public broadcasting channel, and maybe a few independent channels. All of the programs on the main networks were designed to pull in a massive amount of viewers. These main channels have continued to compete with each other heavily since television became popular with the public. Now we have thousands of television shows at our disposal. Currently, NBC, CBS, and ABC all broadcast on more than one channel.

Cable television is what gave these three large companies a run for their money. All you needed to do was buy a cable box and install it to your television. Many new independent networks popped up including FOX, PBS, C-Span, ESPN, Nickelodeon, HBO, and CNN. Cable made many more channels available to the general public than ever before. It's amazing how we have so many options on the television, but it's a struggle still to find a quality program that's worth spending your time watching.

All television productions viewed on national television were produced in black-and-white up until 1964. Color television made the display on the television open to much more vivid and artistic work. It also drew in another large amount of people to the network of television consumers (Stephens).

Television has been used as a tool for not only information, but also constant and flamboyant misinformation. Commercials will commonly attempt to trick you into buying items that are worthless. Not long ago, ads would get away with selling you one ring-tone for a recurring fee of 10 dollars a month on your cell phone bill. They just did not tell you their product was going to cost money until you received the actual bill. When I was very young, I had the interpretation that everything that was featured on the television was trustworthy. It did not take me long to learn otherwise.

brainwashing

Brain-washing is a serious concern for people who dedicate their lives to their television sets. A certain television program can change how you look at yourself and your environment. Television is notoriously known for leaving impressions within your subconscious. This means that it is capable of developing opinions and forming ideas in your head without you even knowing that it's happening. Have you ever watched something on the television and immediately wished you had not? It could have been a commercial or a particularly upsetting horror film. Well, it's too late, you already watched it, and the cogs are now turning in your brain. This is an unfortunate demise you will run into with most television programs. The only way to avoid it is not to subject your entity to television, but no one wants to do that.

Watching television has been proven to relax your mind into a hypnotic state. This is why it is easy to fall asleep while the television is playing a program. When you are in this state of mind, you are very susceptible to subconscious invasion! The hypnotic state you are in makes your mind very open to suggestion. The television is capable of altering ideas and beliefs that are in your head. When you watch TV, it switches your body over to using the right side of your brain. This side of your brain generates an emotional response instead of using common sense. Spending too much time on this side of your brain will result in having a less distinguished outlook on reality. Television has the potential to fog up your brain's developed distinction between right and wrong (Haracz).

Although programs on the television have the potential to change things in your subconscious, not all of them do. I refuse to believe that an intellectually stimulating documentary on the Discovery Channel is going to mess up your head; however, there are an increasing rate of troubling ads and brain-washing campaigns you are somewhat forced into viewing on cable. Movies and even some television shows also have the potential to make you think and analyze things on a higher level too. Not nearly everything on television is complete garbage. It is important to pay attention to the quality of the TV programs you watch. Watching television has the potential to make you smarter.

tv advertising

Advertisement agencies and marketers have been having a field day with television. Television is currently the best way to get your product or business noticed. The average time an American spends watching television every day is, "four hours and thirty-nine minutes"(Stelter, 1). This allows such a huge window of advertisement to almost the entire general public. A trick they use is finding out what type of people watch a show at a certain time. Then they show ads pertaining to the time of the day, what show it is, and likelihood of you buying or becoming interested in the item. If you're a big-time company, getting time on the air is not very difficult. Small businesses suffer from this because they are usually incapable of affording enough airtime to make a difference in their clientele. Advertising your product or business on television is a sure-fire way to promote it and become recognized by thousands of people.

Television has introduced an entire new industry for growth in the last 100 years. It quickly sparked as soon as it became available and is now a common household item. Television has been carefully monitored to fit the needs of the average consumer. Networks for broadcasting have developed all over the world, there are now hundreds of them. Many programs and advertisements have done a successful job at prying into your subconscious. Advertising on television is a must for any company who wishes to formulate a successful marketing campaign. It can almost completely guarantee that the word gets out. The only downfall is the cost where some prime-time advertising slots are very expensive. The television seems to have become an astoundingly close friend to the average American in an inexplicably short amount of time.

Bibliography
Brain, Marshall, Julia Layton, and Jeff Tyson. "How Cell Phones Work." Howstuffworks.com. HowStuffWorks, 1998-2013. Web. 11 February, 2013. <http://electronics.howstuffworks.com/cell-phone1.htm>

Chen, Bryan and Edward Wyatt. "F.C.C. details Storm-Related Cell phone Problems." Nytimes.com. The New York Times Company, 31 October, 2012. Web. 11 February, 2013. <http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/01/technology/fcc-details-cellphone-problems.html>

Dundun2007. "How Did the Computer Evolve and Where Did it All Start - history lesson." Knowledgesutra.com. 11 April, 2007. Web. 11 February, 2013. <http://www.knowledgesutra.com/discuss/tfscdm-computer-evolve-start-history-lesson.html>

Haracz, Martin. "The Effects of TV on the Brain." Erupting Mind. 2013. Web. 21 February, 2013. <http://www.eruptingmind.com/effects-of-tv-on-brain/>

Humphries, Matthew. "I phone 5 A6 chip clocked at 1.3GHz." Geek.com. Ziff Davis, 27 Sep. 2012. Web. 11 February, 2013. <http://www.geek.com/articles/mobile/iphone-5-a6-chip-clocked-at-1-3ghz- 20120927/>

Keith, Robert. "Cell Phone Timeline." Interactive Media Lab. Keith Robert, 2004. Web. 11 February, 2013. <http://iml.jou.ufl.edu/projects/fall04/keith/history1.htm>

Stelter, Brian. "Youths are watching, but less often on TV." Nytimes.com. The New York Times Company, 8 February, 2012. Web. 22 February, 2013. <http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/09/business/media/young-people-are-watching-but-less- often-on-tv.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0>

Stephens, Mitchell. "History of Television." Grolier Encyclopedia. Web. 21 February, 2013. <http://www.nyu.edu/classes/stephens/History%20of%20Television%20page.htm>

U.S. Department of Labor Statistics. "Focus on Prices and Spending." U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Web. 22 February, 2013. <http://www.bls.gov/opub/focus/volume1_number4/cex_1_4.htm>


 

 

 

 

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