Posts Tagged 'telephone'

The First Prank Phone Call – 1884!

NetworkWorld presented this little nugget –

Unless it turns out that Alexander Graham Bell didn’t really want to see Watson – that he was just goofing on the guy – then the first documented prank phone call would appear to have occurred about eight years after that famous 1876 exchange … and at the expense of an undertaker in Providence, R.I.

Read more HERE



Google Ends Free 411 Service

Google is ending their free directory assistance service on November 12, 2010. I used it a few times in the 3 years it operated and I got good results each time. In researching a replacement, I found 1-800-FREE-411. I tried it today and it did find the number I was searching for. Like Google’s service, it is an automated, voice-activated system that requires the caller to listen to short ads. I got 1 ad at the beginning of my call and another short ad before I was given my number. Callers navigate through the menu system and have the option of being connected to the number or having it read to them. Overall, I found it be be kind of a pain to use, but for the occasional number look-up, it is OK – and the price (free) is right.

1-800-FREE-411 website

Google announcement


US Government Idiocracy – 1930 Style

According to the Senate’s web site –

Whereas dial telephones are more difficult to operate than are manual telephones; and Whereas Senators are required, since the installation of dial phones in the Capitol, to perform the duties of telephone operators in order to enjoy the benefits of telephone service; and Whereas dial telephones have failed to expedite telephone service; Therefore be it resolved that the Sergeant at Arms of the Senate is authorized and directed to order the Chesapeake and Potomac Telephone Co. to replace with manual phones within 30 days after the adoption of this resolution, all dial telephones in the Senate wing of the United States Capitol and in the Senate office building.

Sponsored by Virginia’s Carter Glass, the resolution passed without objection when first considered on May 22, 1930. Arizona’s Henry Ashurst praised its sponsor for his restrained language. The Congressional Record would not be mailable, he said, “if it contained in print what Senators think of the dial telephone system.” When Washington Senator Clarence Dill asked why the resolution did not also ban the dial system from the District of Columbia, Glass said he hoped the phone company would take the hint.

Continue reading HERE.

Beware The Inventor

phone “A man about 43 years of age giving the name Joshua Coppersmith has been arrested for attempting to extort funds from ignorant and superstitious people by exhibiting a device which he says will convey the human voice any distance over metallic wires.”

– Boston newspaper, 1865

Read MORE.


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