September 3, 2013 10:44 AM Subscribe
Does anybody know or have any information on what happened to Theodore Huppinger's dictation machine from 1875?
posted by Thing to technology (5 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Reading through an old newspaper, I came across a short news story about a dictation machine invented by Huppinger in 1875. Several publications ran the story, and the following is from the Operator
APPARATUS FOR WRITING SPOKEN LANGUAGE.—The Welthandel mentions that Th. Huppinger, of Männerdorf, on the lake of Zürich, has invented an apparatus for writing oral language. The whole apparatus, which is about as large as the human hand, is so brought in contact with the mouth, that the least movement of the tongue, the lips, or the palate, &c., are conveyed to the writing mechanism of the apparatus in such a manner as to make the latter work. The writing alphabet used is similar to the telegraph alphabets, and consists of dots and strokes. Whilst the speaker is speaking an endless slip of paper passes off from the machine with a verbatim report. As this instrument merely renders by written signs the spoken language through the various movements of the mouth, independently of the sounds, the inventor believes it will prove of great value to reporters, since the latter by merely silently repeating the spoken words heard might immediately receive the speeches from the machine neatly stenographed. We (Iron), however, have our doubts of this machine as thus described.
I would like to know if this machine survives, or a better description of how it works, or even any recordings from it. Indeed, any information is welcome.