The first live TV audience found it hard to believe that it would take off. Ninety years ago today a moving head on a screen made history. It was the first public demonstration of live television.
The face in question belonged to Daisy Elizabeth Gandy, the business partner of John Logie Baird, the Scottish scientist who is regarded as the inventors of the mechanical television.
The mechanical television, also known as “the televisor” worked a bit like a radio, but had a rotating mechanism attached that could generate a video to accompany the sound. It preceded the modern television, which creates images using electronic scanning.
In 1924 Baird managed to transmit a flickering image across a distance of 10 feet and the following year, he had a breakthrough when he achieved TV pictures with light and shade.
Within two years this flicker was the face of a woman who was in a different room.
The historic 1926 public display took place on January 26, in a laboratory in Soho in front of members from the Royal Institution and a journalist from the Times.