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calendar   Tuesday - May 19, 2015

EDISON’S TALKING DOLLS

Came across something interesting today aside from the usual sort of thing I post.

Talking dolls from the 1880s.
Thomas Edison released a range of talking dolls that contained wax cylinders children could operate using a crank in the back. They were pulled from shelves within 6 weeks after children said that the voices terrified them.

120 years later .... those voices have been digitised.

The sound is creepy.
Here’s a link/

H/T WebUser Magazine

Edison Talking Doll Recordings, 1888-1890

image

Thomas Edison’s Talking Doll of 1890 set an early milestone in the history and technology of recorded sound. It was the world’s first recorded-audio product designed, manufactured, and sold for home entertainment. It proved to be a rough start, however.

The talking doll business venture was a costly failure for Edison and his investors, who ceased sales after only about one month on the market.  Historians have had few opportunities to hear talking doll recordings.

Surviving examples are rare. Prior to 2011, just two Edison doll recordings were widely available online in digital form.Recent technological advances in audio recovery methods are making more historic sounds available to hear.

During 2007-2009, the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, in collaboration with the Library of Congress, developed a three-dimensional optical scanning system called IRENE-3D. The IRENE-3D system creates a digital model of the surface of a phonograph record.

With the digital model, image analysis methods are used to reproduce the audio stored on the record, saving it as a WAV-format digital audio file.

The first Edison Talking Doll record to benefit from optical scanning is a tin cylinder, cataloged as National Park Service artifact EDIS 1279.

The small metal ring had been so severely distorted from its original cylindrical shape decades ago, that the out-of-round record could not be properly played by a traditional stylus-contact based approach. In May 2011, scientists at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in Berkeley, California used IRENE 3-D to create a digital model of the tin record’s modulated surface. Their software analysis revived the voice of a young woman reciting the first stanza of the nursery rhyme “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star.”

LOTS TO SEE AND READ AND HEAR


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Posted by peiper   United Kingdom  on 05/19/2015 at 01:52 PM   
Filed Under: • Amazing Science and DiscoveriesHistoryUSA •  
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Oh, and here's some kind of visitor flag counter thingy. Hey, all the cool blogs have one, so I should too. The Visitors Online thingy up at the top doesn't count anything, but it looks neat. It had better, since I paid actual money for it.
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