Philo Taylor Farnsworth (1906-1971) invented television. Because the Radio
Corporation of America invested its abundant resources into destroying
Farnsworth, it's not surprising that he rarely gets the
credit he deserves. Few Hot 100 lists
included Phil Farnsworth in their ranks of important people of the century.
Although San Francisco's 202 Green Street, where Farnsworth narrowcast his
first televised image, now houses a post-production company called Philo
Television, a graffiti artist has written "RIP" on the landmark stone that
marks the address. But we need only glance at the trickle of aneurysm-inducing
video that comes through even a T-1 line to appreciate how much information
Farnsworth managed to harness and transmit back in 1927. And if you've grown
skeptical of the consensus-building vigor of Farnsworth's medium, we can only
ask, "Is that your final answer?" In any event, we choose to name the coldest
month of the year for the man who made the living room a tolerable place to be.