Dallas Morning News, April 13, 1919, page 6.
Wireless Telephone Is Not Yet Practical Due to Static Electricity
Conversations Have Been Held With Success, of Course, But Perfection Is Still Far in the Future.
The recent report that wireless telephone communication has been established between Ireland and Canada is of interest in this respect--that is, whether the experiments have proceeded far enough to assure a working communication, or whether the result still unsatisfactory and uncertain.
From the dispatches, the present experiments are being made by the Marconi Company, and apparently from the British end, for there is no information on the subject on this side, further than the bare news items.
Experiments of this kind are not new, for three years ago last fall the American Telephone and Telegraph Company and the Western Electric Company undertook a series of experiments in wireless conversation between the Eiffel Tower in Paris and the Arlington (Va.) station, near Washington. At about the same time New York, via the Arlington station, talked with Mare Island, Cal., by wireless, and Arlington also talked with Honolulu.
Since then the experiments, both by the American Telephone Company and the Marconi Company, have continued, but, as far as known, wireless telephony is not yet, by any means, practical.
All experiments, however, in this system of talking through the air, without mechanical device except at the sending and receiving point, other scientists and many other persons are waiting with interest to learn of the recent Marconi attempts have proved more successful than former trials, says the Boston Transcript.
The "Static" Is What Bothers.
An engineer of the New England Telephone and Telegraph Company thus describes the difficulty of trying to talk without wires through the air: "It is as if you opened the window of your office and called down three or four stories to the street below; in the street are a thousand persons, all talking at the same time, and at about the same pitch of voice. You have a friend in that crowd and your attempt to distinguish what he says and at the same time shut out everything that the others in the crowd are saying is a good example of the obstacles in the way of wireless telephony. In talking without wires over a long distance much static electricity is encountered, and this blurs the whole message far worse than when a person 'listens in' on a wire circuit.
"If anyone tells you that he has established good wireless telephone connections over a great distance, ask him if he has got rid of the static--if he can pick up easily the voice of his friend in a crowd of a thousand--and if he can prove to you that he has succeeded, then we must admit that wireless telephony is a fact.
Pocket Telephone for Everyone.
"It is probable that we at present know but a little of what may be known about the wonders of electricity in time to come. It is only a foolish man who would assert that a thing can never be done, but just now, at any rate, wireless telephony is figuratively as well as literally 'up in the air.'
"But there are those who are so certain of its eventual success that they believe the time will come when a man need only carry a miniature telephone instrument in his pocket, and, metaphorically lifting the receiver, may talk to his friend a thousand miles away, who also has a pocket telephone tuned to the first one. This may be done, but it seems miraculous. Even now radio telephones may be tuned to each other, but the trouble is that others are able to 'cut in;' remove the 'cutting in' and the 'static' and there you are. But it's much more easily said than done."