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Commentary: Toward specialized undergraduate telecommunication engineering education in the US

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10 Author(s)

In ancient times, unless somebody was prepared to travel, man could only communicate as far as he could shout. Methods were then developed to enable communications to extend over longer distances, using trumpets, beacon fire, flags, etc. It was not until the inauguration of telegraphy (by W. Cooke and C. Wheatstone in England in 1839, and by S. Morse in the US in 1844) and telephony (by A. G. Bell in 1876), that electricity was utilized to facilitate commercial telecommunication service [1]-[2]. Then, for nearly 100 years, telecommunications was mainly about telephony and telegraphy and was based almost entirely on electrical engineering methods. From audio to radio signals, electro-mechanic to electronic technologies, analog to digital systems, and electronic to photonic devices; telecommunications has witnessed tremendous progress on numerous fronts. In terms of services and applications, telecommunications evolved in recent years to embrace cyber space, entertainment, and electronic commerce and business.

Published in:

Communications Magazine, IEEE  (Volume:50 ,  Issue: 9 )