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Virginia Utermohlen on: What all this Meant for Marconi
Virginia Utermohlen Q: Up to now, nothing like this had been used for this kind of rescue, right?

VU: Up to that point, wireless was used for non-urgent messages, communications between people, where they were going to meet or financial communications or even communications between governments, but nothing of urgency with respect to saving lives. And what Binnsy did, really, in the course of this "Republic" disaster was to change the view of what wireless could actually do, that it could, in fact, play a role in saving lives and that it could be used in emergency situations. What this did, of course, from the point of view of the Marconi system was to say suddenly, oh my gosh, it may be really important to have Marconi systems on ships and suddenly the Marconi company found itself thrust into the limelight. And in fact, in 1909 Marconi got the Nobel Prize for the work he had done with telegraphy.

With the word wireless being splashed all over the newspapers and the realization that wireless had accomplished something really extraordinary, Marconi realized that Binns had done a great thing, not only for the concept of wireless but for the Marconi company itself. And, indeed, Marconi then had a banquet and honored him as a very special person, gave him the traditional gold watch which Binnsy was of course extremely proud over the years.

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