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Top 10 Scottish Inventors.

Biography of John Logie Baird Inventor of Television

Inventor: John Logie Baird

Most Famous Invention: Television


          John Logie Baird was born August 1888 in Helensburgh, Dunbartonshire, Scotland.  He graduated from Larchfield Academy in Helensburgh, the Glasgow and West of Scotland Technical College in Strathclyde and attended the University of Glasgow.  He left the university to enlist in the British service in World War I and never bothered to return to pursue his degree.

          Baird experimented with the idea of television, successfully transmitting the first television pictures with what is called a greyscale image on October 2, 1925.

          Baird gave the first public demonstration of television on January 26, 1926  It is interesting to note that some six months later Baird also gave demonstrations broadcasting  colour images, therefore becoming not just the inventor of television but the first to broadcast television in  colour also.  Baird was also the first to broadcast a long distance television demonstration.

John Logie Baird

John Logie Baird

          In 1932, Baird made broadcasts demonstrating the use of ultra short waves, what we now refer to as the VHF band.

          It is very evident that Baird not only invented television but that he constantly improved on it and made amazing changes, some of them being changes that later became part of the television world that became accessible for use by the public.

          Baird was not only a talented inventor, quite possibly a genius, but also a great showman, rivaling P. T. Barnum in that ability.  He broadcast events that people wanted to see, thereby luring them not only by his wondrous invention but also by the desire to see the event being broadcast.  He broadcast boxing matches and also regular television programs from his own studio.

          It is amazing to realize that Baird built the first working television set from an old hatbox, shears, darning needles, bicycle light lenses, a tea chest, sealing wax and some glue.

          When he succeeded in burning his hand badly by accidentally getting an electric shock while working on his invention, Baird’s landlord asked him to move from his workshop before he managed to kill himself or someone else or to burn the place down.

          After that Baird worked from his home.  Baird died on June 14, 1946, after a life of tremendous successes.


John Logie Baird demonstrating his "televisor" circa 1925

John Logie Baird demonstrating his "televisor"

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