1957 – A Vision of HDTV and Flat Screen Displays

TV’s Inventor on TV

The only on-air tribute Dr. Philo T. Farnsworth ever received from the industry he helped to create was on a segment of the popular game show “I’ve Got A Secret.”

In 1957, Dr. Farnsworth was interviewed by Host, Garry Moore after his “secret” of “Inventing Electronic Television at the age of 14″ was revealed to the panel of four and the studio audience.

For stumping the panel this great man walked away with the show’s prize – A carton of cigarettes and $80.00 Cash.

In a remarkable prediction Dr. Farnsworth laid out his vision for the future of electronic television. His discussion was not only awe inspiring it was made over fifty years before technology caught up and produced such devices.

His delivery was like the mouse that roared as he explained in a humble, quiet, educated voiced what he envisioned for the future.

2000 Lines Of Resolution!

Dr. Farnsworth said — “In television we are attempting first to make better utilization of the bandwidth[1], because we think we can eventually get in excess of two-thousand lines instead of five hundred and twenty five[2] and do it on even narrower channel if possibly than we are doing present television[3], which will make for a much sharper picture.”

Flat Panel Displays and Memory Storage

Dr. Farnsworth continued — “We believe in a “Picture Frame” type of a picture where the visual display will be just a screen[4] and we hope for a memory so the picture will be just pasted on there[5] and many improvements will result in the camera when you use such devices because there is part of the scene that you can remember and you practically have a memory file of it and will simplify production of it.”[6]

Dr. Farnsworth foresaw all of this in 1957:

  • [1]Utilization of less bandwidth
  • [2]High Definition Television
  • [3]Refined transmission frequencies
  • [4]Flat Panel Displays
  • [5]Perhaps even a glimpse into digital photography
  • [6]Memory storing cameras (Still Store, Instant Replay)

We finally caught up with his vision. -33-


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