Thursday, June 09, 2005

Mr. Morse's Code in the Age of Flash

Here's something that's certainly interesting: A Flash-based Morse code generator/converter, courtesy of This little gadget is really nifty. I er, sheepishly admit to sending "CQD MGY" once I got the site loaded. Then again, I spent something like thirty minutes fiddling around with the Morse code telegraph keys at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C., just listening to the things. And yes, I tried to send "CQD MGY" there, too. Until then, I hadn't the foggiest that telegraphy had a sound to it, other than which I picked up from watching old war movies and the like. Instead, I found out that the system in place aboard Titanic was something called 'the spark drag' or 'drag spark'. The SI's exhibit had three keys, including one specifically designated as the type in use circa 1912. Naturally, I played with that one the most. It didn't sound like that radio-style chirp from the 1920s or the clattering I generally associate with railroad telegraphy; rather, it sounded like someone opening and closing an electrical circuit or a short/long sparking motion. It was, in short, both creepy and cool. Tip of the Executor hat to Ghost of a Flea. UPDATE: Found this discussing the Marconi wireless system deployed aboard Titanic. Interesting, even though I don't understand much of it. Reading the article suggests that the spark drag/drag spark system wasn't what Titanic had, but I could be wrong.


At 9:36 PM, Blogger Stephen said...

Ah, but this device will not permit you to OS the Sewell's Point drags. ... .... -.-

At 9:56 AM, Blogger The Country Pundit said...

That's a good point. The Flash generator sounds something akin to some CSX tranmitting gear I've heard, though.

I found this as a different take on the whole Morse generator. If certain circumstances occur, I may wind up putting a copy of it up.

At 6:23 PM, Blogger Stephen said...

And as I review the source code, I see that writing a Railroad Morse trnnslator is possible.

... .... -.-


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