The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

29 July 2007

Let's get digital

While there was television to be watched before that, TV as we know it arrived in 1941, with the adoption of the technological standards proposed by the National Television Standards Committee.

And it departs in February 2009, superseded by purely-digital transmissions, motivated largely by the desire to free up spectrum space. So the frequencies occupied by channels 2 through 6 and 52 through 69 (70 to 83 disappeared years ago) will end up doing something else. This will likely accommodate more stations, which seems odd until you consider that it's possible to put digital stations in the same area on adjacent channels, something you could never do in the old analog system. (Before you write in: there's a 4-MHz hole between 4 and 5; 6 and 7 are on totally separate bands; likewise 13 and 14.)

The impact of all this on cable subscribers will likely be relatively minor, but if you get your signals off the air as God and General Sarnoff intended, your world grinds to a scree