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The Message
A Media Exhibit

The Message
  • A History of Persia (by )
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  • The a B C of Wireless Telegraphy; A Plai... (by )
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  • The Telephone; Outlines of the Developme... (by )
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  • Telephone Apparatus, An Introduction to ... (by )
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  • A Brief History of the Internet (by )
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The Message:  A Media Exhibit

"The Message: A Media Exhibit" reveals that although some (throughout history) have been recognized as “inventors” of media technology, this was actually a collaborative and collective process to build upon past communication technologies and infrastructures that have evolved to a point where technology is a part of the lifestyle of the majority of the world populations. 

Media has connected humankind as never before, and now the greatest stories of these inventions and their creators and their idea of spreading knowledge all over the world, can be readily accessed (with technology) within these Collections.  From the invention of the Gutenberg Press to cellphone technology, explore the wonders of media innovation...
Religion and Written Text
Religion and Written Text
Media is the means through which people communicate and influence other’s beliefs.  Muhammed, nor the Apostles probably could not have hardly imagined that their manuscripts would one day, as Nostradamus wrote that he foresaw “... flying through the air everywhere…”  Some Nostradamus scholars believe that this was a vision of the internet. The Alexandrian Library and the invention of the Gutenberg Press, and now Wi-Fi and portable devices, accessibility to the messages. Media stores and transmits information through channels and tools.  Electronics and media transmission has innovated over time (especially in the last 100 years) because of the drive, creativity and competitive spirit of inventors creating multiple ways of human communication, such as in print, voice, sound, visual and digital formats.  "The Message: A Media Exhibit" reveals that although certain people have been recognized as “inventors” of media technology, it was actually a collaborative and collective process to build upon past communication technologies and infrastructures that have evolved to a point where technology is a part of the lifestyle of the majority of the world populations.  Media has connected humankind as never before.

A History of Persia writes how Muhammad was a prophet visited by the Angel Gabriel in the year 610 who told him to write down a message - there was only one God.  From that moment, Muhammad pushed for the writing of his messages into what is known as the Qu'ran, the media that founded the Islamic civilization (A History of Persia, Percy Molesworth Sykes).   Muhammad’s initial followers consisted of a small group of people. However, as his ideas gained more traction, he was treated with open hostility.   According to Sykes, Muhammad requested the Qu'
ran to be in Kureish, his native Arabic dialect, in order to convert countrymen from idolatry to his view of the worship of one God.   

The Qu'ran also reflected the business side of religion:  laws, ordinances and manifestos.  Muhammad established a mosque in Medina and engaged in battles with other religious ideologues, such as other interpreters of Islam, and followers of Judaism and Christianity. There was a high rate of illiteracy and many of his followers were taught to memorize and recite the teachings in the Qu'ran.  However, as a result of the battles, many reciters were killed, which diminished the number of followers.  The Qu'ran: Part 1, a book written by E.H. Palmer, describes how
Zaid Ibn Thabit, who was Muhammad’s scribe, sought the fragments of the Qu'ran’s teachings written upon tablets, white stones, and breasts of men in order to create the second official edition of the Qu'ran (A History of Persia, Percy Molesworth Sykes).  Then, Muhammad’s follower, Caliph Othman, sent copies to all principal cities of the Islamic empire and burned previous versions to prevent confusion in interpretation (The Qu'ran: Part 1, E.H. Palmer). 
Innovation of Communication
Innovation of Communication
Competition drives media invention.  In The Invention of Printing, Johannes Gutenberg was one among many inventors of the movable type in the 1450s.  His contemporaries, such as Castaldi, Shoeffer and Laurens Janszoon Coster, had different approaches to printing (The Invention of Printing:  A Collection of Facts and Opinions Descriptive of Early Prints and Playing Cards, The Blockbooks of the Fifteenth Century, The Legends of Lourens Janszoon Coster, Of Haarlem, And the Work of John Gutenberg and His Associates. Illustrated with Facsimiles of Early Types and Woodcuts, Theo Low De Vinne).  Although Castaldi and Schoeffer’s contribution were not widely known, controversy erupted between Laurens Janszoon Coster and Gutenberg (“Johannes Gutenberg,” World Heritage Encyclopedia).  In Titles of the First Books from The Earliest Presses Established in Different Cities, Gutenberg was Coster’s apprentice.  One Christmas, Gutenberg broke into his master’s shop and stole his movable types and tools, then fled to Mentz where he opened his own print workshop and achieved success.  Coster, discouraged by that theft, melted his types and passed into oblivion (Titles of the First Books from the Earliest Presses Established in Different Cities, Rush Christopher Hawkins).   Over time, media technology innovated to capture and transmit different forms of communication.  The book, Telephone Apparatus describes how the telephone system was invented to transmit people’s voices (Telephone Apparatus:  An Introduction to the Development and Theory, George Defrees Shepardson).  This transmission system was based upon an apparatus that connected circuits through which vocal sounds traveled.  The apparatus required standardization so that older branches of electrical engineering, such as switchboards and prepayment systems, could connect to selective devices (Telephone Apparatus, George Defrees Shepardson).   Alexander Graham Bell and Elisha Gray competed with one another to gain the patent of the early telephone (The Telephone; Outlines of the Development of Transmitters and Receivers, William John Hopkins).  Gaining patents allowed inventors to request license fees or charge royalties in order for their work to become standardized in the apparatus infrastructure (“Alexander Graham Bell,” World Heritage Encyclopedia).  

In The A B C of Wireless Telegraphy; A Plain Treatise on Hertzian Wave Signaling; Embracing Theory, Methods of Operation, And How to Build Various Pieces of the Apparatus Employed, the radio was invented through innovations and competition of previous electrical inventors (The A B C of Wireless Telegraphy; A Plain Treatise on Hertzian Wave Signaling; Embracing Theory, Methods of Operation, And How to Build Various Pieces of the Apparatus Employed, Trevert Edward).  In 1895, Guglielmo Marconi achieved successful radio transmission at long distance.  He established stations on both sides of the Atlantic to communicate with ships at sea.  By 1896 Marconi was awarded a British patent for transmitting electrical impulses and signals through the radio.  At Marconi’s death, his claim over certain radio patents were questioned by the court and returned to previous inventors: Oliver Lodge, John Stone Stone and Nikola Tesla (“Guglielmo Marconi,” World Heritage Encyclopedia).
Internet and the Politics of Communication
Internet and the Politics of Communication
The innovations that facilitated the flow of electricity and information around the world created the foundation for the Internet.  The Internet interconnects computers from around the world through the standard internet protocol suite called the TCP/IP, or Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) and the Internet Protocol (IP). TCP/IP specifies how digital data should be packetized, addressed, transmitted, routed and received at the destination (“Internet Protocol Suite,” World Heritage Encyclopedia).  The U.S. Department of Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency Network (ARPANET) served as the basis for the development of the Internet (Internet Users' Glossary, G. Malkin).  In 1962, during the height of the Cold War, there was fear that in the event of a nuclear war, the communications system for the United States would be compromised.  The Internet was invented as a new technology for the military so that the U.S. government leaders and their allies could communicate even if their enemies destroyed the telephone system ("Arpanet," World Heritage Encyclopedia).  Today, the Internet is a place for all kinds of people to share information.  Maxwell Fuller and Michael Hart’s A Brief History of the Internet: The Bright Side, The Dark Side, has questioned how copyright prevents people’s access to information.   Nevertheless, there are certain Internet users that have created ways for regular people to share information on the web for free.  A tool one can use to facilitate self publishing:   Project Gutenberg Self Publishing How-To Tutorials: Upload Your Own Publications which gives independent writers a way to distribute their eBooks without needing a traditional publisher, and provide readers with royalty free access to their books (Project Gutenberg Self Publishing How-To Tutorials: Upload Your Own Publications, Project Gutenberg).

Works Cited
Alexander Graham Bell.”  World Heritage Encyclopedia.  WorldLibrary.Org.  Web.  2014.

De Vinne, Theodore Low.  The Invention of Printing:  A Collection of Facts and Opinions Descriptive of Early Prints and Playing Cards, The Blockbusters of the Fifteenth CenturyThe Legends of Laurens Janszoon Costerof Haarlem and the Work of John Gutenbergand His Associates.  New York:   Hart, 1876.

Edward, Trevert. 
The A B C of Wireless Telegraphy; A Plain Treatise on Hertzian Wave Signaling; Embracing Theory, Methods of Operation, And How to Build Various Pieces of the Apparatus Employed.  Lynn:  Bubier Publishing Company, 1904.

Fuller, Maxwell and Michael Hart.  Project Gutenberg's A Brief History of the Internet: The Bright Side, The Dark Side.   Project Gutenberg eBook.  March 8, 1995.

Guglielmo Marconi.”  World Heritage Encyclopedia.  WorldLibrary.org.  Web.  2014.

Hawkins, Rush Christopher.
 Titles of the First Books from the Earliest Presses Established in Different Cities.  New York:  J.W. Bouton, 1884.

Hopkins, William John.  The Telephone
; Outlines of the Development of Transmitters and Receivers.  New York:  Longmans, Green and Company, 1898.

Internet Protocol Suite.”  World Heritage Encyclopedia.  WorldLibrary.org.  Web.  2014.

Internet Users' Glossary.  Ed. G. Malkin.  Network Working Group:  Xylogics.  Web. 1983. 

Johannes Gutenberg.”  World Heritage Encyclopedia.  WorldLibrary.org.  Web.  2014.

"Medina."  World Heritage Encyclopedia.  WorldLibrary.org.  Web.  2014.

Padlipsky, M.A.  A Perspective on the Arpanet Reference Model.  Bedford:  The Mitre Corporation, 1982.

Palmer, E.H.  The Qu'ran, Part I.  Oxford:  The Clarendon Press, 1880.

Project Gutenberg. 
Project Gutenberg Self Publishing How-To Tutorials: Upload Your Own Publications

Shepardson, George Defrees.  Telephone Apparatus:  An Introduction to the Development and Theory.  New York:  Appleton, 1917.

Sykes, Percy Molesworth, Sir.  A History of Persia.  London:  Macmillan Publishers, Ltd., 1915. 
Media Collections
Media stores and transmit messages through tools and channels.  "The Message: A Media Exhibit" explored the Qu'ran as a written media used to transmit and shape the belief systems of whole societies.  We examined the dynamic of inventors of communication technology and patents to learn how communication networks were developed, expanded and innovated.  However, when these infrastructures were created, those with considerable wealth and power could dominate the use of them for their own Interests.  The Internet has shown us that the independent streak of a few inventors inspired them not just to invent for individual benefit, but to expand more people’s access to the communication infrastructure so that more people’s ideas could go far and wide. 

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