Who Discovered Television?

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The television and television broadcasting were not discovered or invented by any single person. The three who had the most impact were Willoughby Smith, Paul Gottlieb Nipkow and John Logie Baird.

Willoughby Smith discovered the photoconductivity in the element selenium in 1873. This led to Nipkow’s invention of the scanning disk in 1884. He patented the first electromechanical television system that same year. Variations of Nipkow’s spinning-disk, or image rasterizer, became exceedingly common and was used until 1939.

John Logie Baird gave the first public demonstration of televised silhouettes in motion on March 25, 1925. He held it at Selfridge’s Department Store in London.