Happy 100th Birthday To The Consumer Technology Industry! Part 4: The Birth Of A Business

This week we’re celebrating the 100th birthday of the consumer technology industry with the story behind how our business came to be and of those responsible for creating it. You can read Part 1 here, Part 2 here, and Part 3 here.

Harry Phillips Davis

Dr. H.P. Davis was unusually excited when he bounced into his office in the Westinghouse Electric & Manufacturing Company’s sprawling 92-acre complex in East Pittsburgh bright and early on Thursday morning, September 30, 1920. In the bookish VP’s coat pocket was a clipping of the Horne’s Department Store radio set ad from the previous evening’s newspaper.

Davis bade his secretary a chipper “Good morning!” then, without missing a beat, told her to “ask Frank to come in.” She knew her boss was referring to Frank Conrad, Westinghouse’s sudden resident radio star.

When Conrad arrived, Davis pulled the Horne newspaper clipping out of his pocket, and

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Happy 100th Birthday To The Consumer Technology Industry! Part 1

Westinghouse RA-DA

Our consumer electronics industry is now 100 years old. We were born on November 30, 1920, in a factory building in East Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, when the first Westinghouse RA-DA radio rolled off the assembly line at the sprawling 92-acre Westinghouse Electric & Manufacturing works. We know the exact date and place because affixed to each of the plain wooden boxes of the two-piece radio – the RA was the tuner/receiver, the DA the detector/amplifier – was a small metal plate that identified its manufacturing particulars. It was this unprepossessing product, backed by Westinghouse’s corporate business commitment toward the creation of a consumer radio business, from which grew the mass communications age and our industry.

Westinghouse RA-DA ID plate

In this age of instant media access to the world on demand, it may be hard to understand the impact of radio a short century ago. Through this small wooden

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SpaceX launches 60 more Starlink internet satellites in 100th Falcon 9 launch

A time exposure captures the fiery trajectory of a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket climbing away from the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station carrying 60 Starlink internet relay satellites. It was the company’s 23rd launch so far this year, the 100th for the workhorse Falcon 9 since the rocket’s debut in 2010 and a record seventh flight for the booster’s first stage.

William Harwood/CBS News

SpaceX fired off a Falcon 9 rocket from Florida on Tuesday night, marking the company’s 100th overall and 23rd so far this year. The rocket boosted off another set of 60 Starlink internet satellites into orbit using a first stage making a record seventh flight.

The latest batch of Starlinks pushed the total number launched to date to 955 as SpaceX continues building out a globe-spanning constellation of internet relay satellites designed to provide broadband services to subscribers anywhere on the planet. Thousands more satellites are

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SpaceX celebrates 100th Falcon rocket launch with latest Starlink mission


SpaceX shared this scenic view of a Falcon 9 being readied for launch earlier this year.


Elon Musk’s rocket company is hustling to get more of its Starlink broadband satellites into orbit. After “Scrubtember” and then “Scrubtober” wreaked havoc with the SpaceX launch schedule, the company sent its 15th batch of orbiting routers aloft from Cape Canaveral in Florida Saturday after the 14th set was launched Sunday.

A Falcon 9 rocket boosted the small satellites off the launch pad at Space Launch Complex 40 at 8:31 a.m. PT (11:31 a.m. ET in Florida) and on their way to low-Earth orbit where they’ll join over 700 others. SpaceX noted on its webcast of the mission that this marks the 100th successful launch of one of its Falcon family of rockets since 2008.

The first stage booster then returned for a successful landing on the droneship known as Just Read The

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