3 Sound Transmissions That Changed History

3 Sound Transmissions That Changed History

Last Updated on May 1, 2015

Radio Transmissions Changes HistoryAlthough human beings have been creating music for thousands of years, it wasn’t until the 20th century that we learned how to control sound.

In a relatively short period of time, we learned how to record sound, and maybe more importantly, how to transmit it.

The transmission of sound has enabled us to communicate on a level that prehistoric humans would’ve never dreamed possible.

Sound transmissions literally change history, as they allow individuals to talk to each other, when it would’ve never been the case in the past.

In today’s post, we’re going to discuss three radio and sound transmissions that changed history.

How Does Sound Transmission Work?

Before we get into the sound transmissions that changed history, let’s build a foundation by explaining how sound transmission works.

In order to successfully transmit sound, sound must be converted into electricity. This is what allows it to travel at near instant speed, across the world. It must then be converted back into sound, so we can understand it.

The best way to transmit sound, is to replicate the process of sound creation electronically.

For example, when you speak, you have a diaphragm and vocal chords, which vibrate to produce sound.

Your phone also has an electric diaphragm, which senses the pressure applied to it through sound waves, and then sends those signals, in the form of electricity, through the line. This is then radio transmitted to the phone you’re talking to, traveling nearly at the speed of light.

Maxwell’s Theory

Around 1867, Scottish theoretical physicist James Clerk Maxwell mathematically predicted the existence of electromagnetic wavelengths.

Nearly 20 years later,  Heinrich Hertz  expanded on Maxwell’s theory by proving the existence of these “radio waves” in his laboratory.

These initial discoveries eventually led to the first radio transmission, paving the way for the modern world we live in today.

#1. Marconi’s Cross Atlantic Transmission

Known as the father of radio, Guglielmo Marconi was the first person to ever send a radio transmission across the Atlantic Ocean.

Although this seems like a simple feat nowadays, at the time, it was extremely difficult. And not just because of the vast distance the wave had to travel.

At his time, Marconi’s critics told him that it was impossible to send a radio transmission across the ocean.

Why? It was speculated that the curvature of the earth would prevent a radio wave from traveling over 200 miles.

But before Marconi could send a radio wave across the Atlantic Ocean, he first had to pioneer technology that could send it just 10 miles.

He was able to do this in 1896.

Then in 1899, he sent a transmission across the English Channel.

Despite what his detractors were saying, in 1901, he sent a transmission from England to Canada, which traveled across the Atlantic, over 2,000 miles.

In 1909, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in physics for his accomplishments.

Without Marconi’s experiments, the global communication we have on earth today may have taken years longer to develop.

#2. Alexander Graham Bell’s Telephone

In 1871, Alexander Graham Bell started working on a telegraph device. His goal was to be able to transmit messages at multiple different frequencies.

Bell and his assistant Watson, would work tirelessly for the next four years, making leaps in progress with the telegraph device.

In 1875, Bell and Watson succeeded in creating the first ever telephone, which was capable of transmitting words from one end of a wire to the next.

With Bell’s invention, and the inventions of the other notable figures mentioned in this post, cell phones and long distance calling technology was made possible in the 21st century.

#3. Jagadish Chandra Bose’s Gunpowder

Jagadish Chandra was a Bengali scientist, known for his groundbreaking work with electricity and radio signals.

Using the waves that Maxwell had predicted to exist, Bose was able to ignite gunpowder, and ring a bell at a distance, using millimeter wavelength microwaves.


In the present day, we’re constantly using radio waves and microwaves in our day-to-day lives.

Most of us don’t even realize what’s going on when we do.

But it wasn’t until the past century, that this technology was born. And in that time, we’ve improved a long ways.

Our technology today, including the call recording technology we offer at Versadial, can always be traced back to hard working, bright individuals, who refused to give up.

The results of their experiments have changed the world, and are phenomenal examples of what can be accomplished through determination and effort.

Last Updated on May 1, 2015