We are speaking, of course, of television, and tomorrow marks the 100th anniversary of the birth of its inventor, Philo T. Farnsworth. Few know his name, and he never got the credit he was due during his lifetime, but oh, do we owe him some thanks, for it was in a San Francisco lab in 1927 that he made his dreams of transmitting light from one room to another come true. Or something. Frankly, we still don't understand how television works. All we know is whenever we crave the image of a guy in a wife beater getting arrested for public drunkenness, we can turn on the TV and more than likely see just that on an episode of "Cops."
"Cops" probably isn't what the Mormon inventor envisioned for the future of his invention, and we're pretty glad he didn't live to see it. His tale is sad enough, with lawsuits waged against RCA over the patent for television, and a life of relative obscurity. You can learn more about it at his Time 100 page, or at Farnovision.
And tomorrow, when you settle in for a night of complete loafing, and you reach for that remote, why not say a little "thank you" to Mr. Farnsworth?