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19 people who changed the face of the wireline telecom industry

Wireline innovators 2011It has been over 135 years since Alexander Graham Bell uttered that famous phrase to his assistant: "Watson, come here, I need you."

Anyone who works or covers the telecom industry as a member of the press knows that Bell's demand was one of the first shots fired in the ever-evolving telecommunications industry.

Over the course of the past 100-plus years, there have been numerous innovations to the voice network--many of which we now take for granted. Take the invention of the negative feedback amplifier or vacuum tube repeaters: early telephone amplifiers that made transcontinental calling possible.

Of course, the wireline telecom network has evolved into a foundation for not only voice service, but also a platform to deliver a host of data, video and multimedia services that run over copper, coax and increasingly, fiber networks.

One of the key themes that you will see in this special report is how many of our honorees adapted their educational and research pursuits into commercial reality.

Please join me in tipping a hat to these wireline industry innovators.--Sean

Alexander Graham Bell Alexander Graham Bell
Harold S. Black Harold S. Black
Cleyson Brown Cleyson Brown
John Cioffi John Cioffi
vint Cerf & Bob Kahn Vint Cerf & Bob Kahn
Elisha Gray Elisha Gray
Len Kleinrock Len Kleinrock
John MacChesney John MacChesney
Bill McGowan Bill McGowan
Bob Metcalfe Bob Metcalfe
Larry Roberts Larry Roberts
Arthur Schawlow & Charles Townes Arthur Schawlow & Charles Townes
Claude Shannon Claude Shannon
Shockley, Bardeen & Brattain William Shockley, John Bardeen & Walter Brattain
Almon Strowger Almon Strowger