Hacker News new | past | comments | ask | show | jobs | submit login

This is interesting. From the article:

"Wynter’s veil had concealed not only her face but a wireless radio."

Isn't that pretty advanced for 1919? A wireless radio that fed her information through an earpiece?




It costed a lot but I have seen adverts for such hidden radio in magician's magazines from the time.

There has always been a very lucrativ market for an engineer+magician that could provide hidden communication devices at the fringe of technology. One of the best and oldest device I found used a telegraph (!) hidden in a turban and shoes with copper sole on a copper threaded carpet.


All radio is wireless :)

Radio was invented in the second half of the 19th century, so pretty mature by then. I guess a sufficiently miniaturized earpiece does sound impressive for the time, but it seems likely the radio itself would be too bulky and was likely hidden somewhere in her clothes.


By wireless it was probably meant that it was powered by battery, rather than by mains power.


a simple radio receiver works without a battery. we built those in school. the electricity induced by the radio signal is enough to drive a small speaker.


Such a device is commonly called a crystal radio[1] and they truly are ridiculously simple. If you don’t need a tuner or an amplifier, which in this case was likely, the only components required to build an AM receiver are an antenna, a diode, and an earphone. The name derives from an early type of diode based on a piece of crystalline mineral, discovered by Braun in 1874[2].

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crystal_radio

[2] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crystal_detector


Especially if you have a transmitter at full volume one room over, you'd be able to pick that up loud and clear on a crystal radio. I think you could make a small unpowered crystal radio using 1919 tech, since there's no amplification.


I think it's using the old-fashioned terminology. A wireless or wireless radio is just a radio.


It might very well be not a radio as we understand today, maybe a crystal one (passive ) with a powerful transmitter

Easier in the times before the fcc let's put it this way


It may not have been speech, but Morse code. AM voice was understood in 1919, but certainly not practiced at scale.




Guidelines | FAQ | Support | API | Security | Lists | Bookmarklet | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact

Search: