by Nikki Anderson
In the July 2011 issue of Popular Mechanics magazine, the cover story was, “101 Gadgets That Changed the World.” Now, I have to admit that I’m not in the habit of reading Popular Mechanics, since it just doesn’t fall into my area of interest. But what did catch my eye was that the gadgets on the list were the “Top 101 Gadgets of All Time.”
Hmm. That sounded like there were more than just tools on the list, and I was impressed that I should read the article. Thank You, Lord!
The judges who ranked the gadgets were chosen from a wide selection of fields of expertise, and their list included such things as duct tape, the electric toothbrush, the syringe, and 97 other things that have, indeed, changed our world. Most brought about a good change, and some, not so much.
The invention of the radio ranked number two on that long list. Here, in part, is what they had to say about the radio:
“Police switchboards jammed. Drivers fled cities. Doctors volunteered to treat the injured. Why all the ruckus? On Oct. 30, 1938 … Orson Welles presented a radio play he based on H. G. Wells’ sci-fi novel, The War of the Worlds. The Mercury Theatre on the Air presentation sounded like a news broadcast of a Martian invasion, complete with fake bulletins that interrupted dance music. The resulting hysteria dramatically revealed the power of gadget No. 2, the first instrument of instant mass communication. Patented in England in 1896 as ‘wireless telegraphy’ by Guglielmo Marconi—who based his work on technology developed by Nikola Tesla—radios were in 80 percent of U.S. homes by the time those aliens landed in New Jersey.”
Some of you may yet remember that broadcast. Pretty effective, eh? That event truly represented the description of radio as being the “theater of the mind.” Since radio listeners only use one of their senses when they tune in, they must imagine what the things they’re hearing look like. When listening to a press conference, our minds picture that person in front of a microphone and standing in front of members of the press.
If you’ve seen Pastor Doug Batchelor on 3ABN television, your mind will automatically picture him when you hear his voice on 3ABN Radio; you may even picture him doing his famous back flip! And when you hear Pastor David Asscherick’s voice, you may picture him running back and forth as he gets excited about his topic!
One day I heard a local radio personality say, “Radio is the original social network.” I think he’s probably right!
Remember the statistic in the Popular Mechanics article that said radios were present in 80 percent of U.S. homes by 1938? That’s a huge percentage—especially for a nation just coming out of the Great Depression. And how did Americans learn about the destruction at Pearl Harbor that bleak December day? People of every age were huddled around their radios for days—not wanting to miss any newscast about that tragedy and what it meant to their country. Their sense of security was shaken, and the radio was their lifeline.
Thank You for Twelve Years
As the 3ABN Radio network celebrates its twelfth anniversary this month, we want to thank all of the people who own and operate our affiliate radio stations around the world. Without all of you, we’d be nowhere.
We’d also like to thank our parent company, Three Angels Broadcasting Network. Without it we wouldn’t be here!
And, as always, we thank all of you who pray for and support this ministry so we can do this work for the Lord.
P.S. In case you’re wondering, the number one spot was given to the iPhone. Okay, we can handle being second to that little gadget!