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Saturday, July 10, 2021, was the 59th anniversary of the launching of Telstar 1, a 170 lb. communications satellite launched for the purpose of receiving ground signals and re-transmitting them back to earth. According to britannica.com:
Following Telstar’s launch on July 10, 1962, a giant movable horn antenna near Andover, Maine, locked onto the satellite when its shifting orbit (apogee 5,600 km [3,500 miles]) reached an appropriate point. Minutes later the first television pictures were transmitted across the Atlantic Ocean and received, via relay stations in England and France, on European television screens. Telephone, telegraph, data, telephoto, and facsimile transmissions were also successfully made.
So much that we take for granted these days. And yet, at the time, it was almost miraculous and portended a future of instantaneous communication, where no part of the world was disadvantaged by remoteness, and no person was out-of-touch. (Here at the end of the first quarter of the 21st century, it’s possible to look back from a “careful what you wish for” perspective, but at the time we had no such thoughts. The world was our oyster, science was progress, and we believed.)