Here’s how your TV set works » TwistedSifter | Bot To News


Not many people are alive today who remember a world with a television set. I mean, unless you’re an electrician or someone else who should know, you’ve probably never thought about how those blessed streaming programs made their way into your home.

If you’re interested, read on!

The Radio Corporation of America first brought television to the masses at the 1939 World’s Fair. It would be another 20 years before they appeared in most (about 85%) American homes, and another ten years or so before color schemes hit the waves.

RCA Pavilion How your television set works

Image credit: Creative Commons

Viewers chose from three or four channels, no DVR, and if you didn’t watch something you missed when it aired, there was no way to watch it.

Things have obviously changed a A lot.

Televisions still do three basic things: receive audio and video data, use that data to deliver sound and picture to you, and provide a way to set channels and volume at home.

Early televisions worked with radio waves that carried both the picture and sound of the television program.

1920px RCA 630 TS Television 1 How your television system works

Image credit: Creative Commons

The local television station sent those radio waves over the air using a large transmission tower, and antennas on the roofs of buildings and houses intercepted the waves and carried them through cables to television sets inside.

In 2009, television stations replaced those “analog” signals with digital ones. Our high definition televisions have better picture and sound quality, but the basic method of using radio waves has not changed.

Modern digital television uses different streams for picture and audio.

Images are made up of pixels; There are tens of thousands of them on your screen, each with a “color table” and “intensity”. All the pixels work together to create the required images.

iStock 1046046242 How your television set works

Image credit: iStock

Groups of bits are made up of bytes, which are the communication link between the content and your particular television set. Your modem compiles and decodes information and is an essential piece of the puzzle.

The information can be sent over Wi-Fi or over fiber or cable — or, in the case of streaming, over a computer network.

Your Smart TV allows you to control all functions; It’s basically a large computer, monitor and receiver in one beautiful package.

iStock 507831621 Here's how your TV set works

Image credit: iStock

If there’s one thing history has taught us, it’s that it keeps changing and moving forward.

See also virtual reality, augmented reality and ultra-high definition.

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