The History of Digital Photography

Digital photography is so new you might not think it would have any history. An article by Allison Marsh and published in the IEEE web site will prove you wrong.

Photo: George Eastman Museum
This 1975 digital camera prototype used a 100-by-100-pixel CCD to capture images. Digital photography didn’t enter the mainstream for another 20 years.

Author Marsh starts at the beginning with the world’s first digital camera created in a laboratory 46 years ago, then mentions many of the highlights since then.

“It was 1974, and Sasson, a young electrical engineer at Eastman Kodak Co., in Rochester, N.Y., was looking for a use for Fairchild Semiconductor’s new type 201 charge-coupled device. His boss suggested that he try using the 100-by-100-pixel CCD to digitize an image. So Sasson built a digital camera to capture the photo, store it, and then play it back on another device.”

You can read the full story at https://spectrum.ieee.org/tech-history/silicon-revolution/how-the-digital-camera-transformed-our-concept-of-history.

The article also mentions Paul Allen and Ancestry.com with a comment of “Researching your family tree no longer means poring over documents in the local library.”

My thanks to newsletter reader Pierre Clouthier for telling me about this article.

One Comment

That prototype camera was at the Eastman House but now (2020) is in a lobby museum at the Kodak Center on Ridge Road in Rochester, NY.

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