Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 15th May 2007 17:37 UTC
Geek stuff, sci-fi... "Ever since the remote control's co-inventor Robert Adler passed away [in March], I've wanted to own one of the first remote controls. After trolling through eBay every now and then, I finally have in my hands a piece of the history of the button. But there's a mystery: which piece?" Entertainingly written piece on the world's first remote controls. I totally enjoy the simplicity of the ultrasonic remote: "All these early remotes are purely mechanical. No batteries at all. When you push the button, a small hammer strikes an aluminum rod, triggering a sound above our hearing range that's picked up by the TV. Each rod is a different length, thus a different frequency, thus distinguishable by the TV." Brilliant.
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RE: Magic
by sbergman27 on Tue 15th May 2007 20:16 UTC in reply to "Magic"
sbergman27
Member since:
2005-07-24

"""
There's something magic about ancient cutting edge technology.
"""

Not to mention ancient security exploits.

The family of a friend of mine had one of these ultrasonically remote-controlled TV sets, made somewhat later than my grandmother's TV which I've already mentioned.

We discovered that if we dropped our keyrings on the hardwood floor in just the right way, we could make it change channels without the hand-held remote. :-)

Cheap thrills, I know. But thrills, nonetheless. :-)

Edited 2007-05-15 20:19

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: Magic
by irbis on Tue 15th May 2007 20:52 in reply to "RE: Magic"
irbis Member since:
2005-07-08

"We discovered that if we dropped our keyrings on the hardwood floor in just the right way, we could make it change channels without the hand-held remote."

That's not a security exploit, it's a useful feature ;) It could prove useful if, for example, someone else of your family is holding the remote controller and you don't like the channel and program he's watching...

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[3]: Magic
by sbergman27 on Tue 15th May 2007 21:05 in reply to "RE[2]: Magic"
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

"""
That's not a security exploit, it's a useful feature ;) It could prove useful if, for example, someone else of your family is holding the remote controller and you don't like the channel and program he's watching...
"""

During the 70's and 80's I would have agreed. But in this spyware and virus infested world, can you imagine the effect of such an exploit upon, say, the incidence of tinnitus? ;-P

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Magic
by dimosd on Tue 15th May 2007 21:37 in reply to "RE: Magic"
dimosd Member since:
2006-02-10

We discovered that if we dropped our keyrings on the hardwood floor in just the right way, we could make it change channels without the hand-held remote.

Damn hackers :-)

Edited 2007-05-15 21:38

Reply Parent Score: 1