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The iPad's Progenitor — 123 Years Ago 123

scurtis writes "All technology evolves from cruder predecessors, and tablets are no different. People have been playing with some of the technologies underlying tablet PCs for over a century: In July 1888, for example, inventor Elisha Gray received a US patent for an electrical stylus device that captured handwriting. According to his original application, this 'telautograph' leveraged telegraph technology to send a handwritten message between a sending and receiving station."
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The iPad's Progenitor — 123 Years Ago

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 26, 2011 @07:26PM (#35948040)

    What BS. An ancient handwriting recorder has as much to do with the iPad as does pencil and paper.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 26, 2011 @07:32PM (#35948078)

    Some people might find it offensive that a 49 year old is a grandparent. Each to their own?

    And anyway, I know of C programmers that can't figure out how to use a microwave. I'm not sure what your point is.

  • by Fallen Kell ( 165468 ) on Tuesday April 26, 2011 @07:33PM (#35948092)
    I mean, seriously, this is more like a FAX technology than a tablet PC if you ask me.
  • Really? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by guspasho ( 941623 ) on Tuesday April 26, 2011 @07:50PM (#35948230)

    Am I the only one annoyed that it's obvious from the summary that this device is nothing even remotely like an iPad? How is this even news?

  • by spagthorpe ( 111133 ) on Tuesday April 26, 2011 @07:56PM (#35948294)

    The iPad doesn't do anything with handwriting.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 26, 2011 @09:14PM (#35948752)

    Heh. I had the opposite reaction: it's annoying when the modern ego gets so huge that big chunks of history have to be recast as before-their-time flops that all lead up to [our new product, the best thing ever, GO BUY IT].

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 26, 2011 @10:05PM (#35949024)

    This would be legal (in the UK) but outrageous. Don't get me started on the failings of the welfare state, please...

    It's legal in the U.S. too and not really outrageous. Maybe frowned upon, maybe. Two 16 year olds can make a baby. I would speculate that it is more normal world wide and historically than abnormal. I know of no other animal that waits so long after hitting reproductive age to actually reproduce.

    To be sure, for humans, waiting can be beneficial. The ability to pursue education being the main one. I'm not so sure there is a 'failing of the welfare state' more than diminishing of family structure. Industrialization brings many things to a society that weaken the dependence and therefore strength of family.

    The automobile has scattered families. Moving off of farms has cut our rate of offspring at least in half. Independence from each other has made it much easier to divorce. The ability to be financially independent seems to be a factor in the divorce rate as divorce rates usually decline in economic slumps.

    House insurance means you don't have to depend on your neighbors to help you rebuild. The modern world gives us independence. Unfortunately that brings problems when what family structure remains consists of a dozen or less people. When someone honestly needs help it can strain that small circle. I'm not sure how to address the underlying problems/freedoms that industrialization has given us.

Who goeth a-borrowing goeth a-sorrowing. -- Thomas Tusser