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The Tennessean from Nashville, Tennessee • Page 72

The Tennesseani
Nashville, Tennessee
Issue Date:
Extracted Article Text (OCR)

I 15 THINGS YOU DIDNT KNOW ABOUT 12 Cellular phones The palm-size phone that fits in your pocket has its origins as a two-pound whopper that barely fit in a briefcase. This year, the beeping, vibrating, Mozart-playing, little must-have for 60 million Americans celebrates 20 years in the public realm. It's history, however, goes back much further. Some things you may not know about those constant interruptions: PHOTO BY SCRIPPS HOWARD NEWS SERVICE Can spk txt? IMIIO, AFAIK spking txt is XLNT! ROFL? WAN2 try? IC GMT A. CUL8R.

Translation: Can you speak text? In my honest opinion, as far as I know, speaking text is excellent! Are you rolling on the floor laughing? Want to try? I see great minds think alike. See you later. Of course, if we didn't provide the translation to these acronyms, you could always visit www.transl8itcom for clues to two-way text messaging. You don't need $3,000 to buy a cell phone anymore. In fact if you're low on cash (or don't have good credit), or you want to avoid a long-term phone contract you can purchase a prepaid cell phone plan for as little as $19.99.

As hip-hop singer Jaheim sings in his Fabulous sting, "We pay cellulars for local calls." Yup, who needs BellSouth when you can chirp and chat away on your Cricket (or any other low-cost cell phone 13 Martin Cooper of Motorola is con-. sidered the inventor of the first modem portable phone handset He made the first cell phone call in April 1973. Whom did he call? His rival at Bell Labs. i In 1947, inventors figured out they i could use small cells, or range-of-service areas, to work mobile phones. However, the technology wasn't available.

That year, the FCC declined proposal to allocate a wide area of radio frequencies so there would be incentive to research the technology. I The first use of mobile radio, which is what cell phones really are, was in 1921 by the Detroit, Mich, police department You should have bought stock. Twenty-five years ago, when cell phones were available only in some markets, annual revenues were just $3 millioa Today it's close to $30 billion. A banker installed the first commer-K cial telephone line in 1877. It extended three miles from his home in Somerville, Mass, to his bank in Boston.

In 1983, the DynaTAC 8000X, or "brick phone," was the first commercial, portable cellular phone unveiled to the public It cost $3,995 and weighed two pounds, the weight of about of eight of today's modem cell phones. 14 NO i 1 Let's not pretend everyone is part of the cell phone culture. There are, in fact anti-cellular vigilantes, thanks to a British techie named Jon WurtzeL For $L000, you can purchase the Executive Silencer, a device that disables cell phones within a 190-foot radius. The gadget is palm-size and has the potential to bring quiet back to restaurants, movie theaters and business meetings. There is, of course, a catch; It's illegal to use the Silencer in the UK, and you must have government permission to use it here because the gadget can also block the frequencies police use to communicate.

7. 15 8. They call it "cellular phone nicatioa" but for teens especially, cell phones are all about fashion. Before you go for the basic black or silver tone, consider these designs: cartoon covers; a keypad that flashes during incoming calls holograms that range from Buddha to an alien head; faceplates that range from flames and dragons to a scented coffee design that honest! really smells like coffee! There is no hard and fast evidence that cell phone use causes adverse health effects. However, boring and annoying cell phone conversations by loud talkers can be deadly to the person sitting at the next table.

Beware. Remember when ringing phones all sounded the same? Now cellular phones offer hundreds of ringing alternatives. Every tune from sports and game themes to Bing Crosby's Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas and the Ying Yang twins' Whistle While You Twirk. And if music is not your thing, consider a feature offered by Moviso, a company that markets ringtones. Instead of music, customers can purchase the voice of William Shatner or Anna Nicole Smith.

According to, for a wireless download worth about two bucks, Capt Kirk will say, "Go where no one has gone before answer the phone." Nokia, at the latest Cellular Telecommunications Internet Association show in New Orleans earlier this month, introduced a phone that features a built-in FM radio, a keyboard for text messaging and a slot for memory cards that hold MP3 music files. The 3300 Music Phone is due in stores in August No word yet on the price. Fox's American IJoL If you've seen the show and heard Ryan Scacrest's directions for voting, you know you don't have to deal with a busy signal on the toll-free voting lines. If you have an phone, you can vote via text message. On Sept.

2002, Brian Baker, the trench-coat-clad spokesman for Sprint PCS and a 2001 People magazine "Sexiest Man Alive," married Terry FerrelL an actress who formerly appeared on the 'sitcom Becker. They married atop the Eiffel Tower the one at the Paris hotel in Las Vegas. Hmmm, think they had clear communication up there? 11 CAJWt FtROUMN AND 1MNOM ORACt nwooaoLA. rtw wwmn 11 1 i rnm inmni1i( imni Wwliti inn, www www tfmul own: mm wMmmtmaam. Macron, Cum Htonimjlm 10.

showcases its phone features on WHATCHA KNOW? Got an idea of a place you'd like to leam a few things about? Better yet, got some inside information about such a place? Drop us a line at Things You Didn't Know About, do Life, 1100 Broadway, Nashville 37203. Fax: 259-8057, e-mail: www.temess8an.oom THETENNESSEAN Sunday, March 23, 2003 23 i.

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