Video: Edison: The father of recorded sound

updated 5/5/2004 3:12:01 PM ET 2004-05-05T19:12:01

No conversation about inventing can get very far without mention of Thomas A. Edison.

After beginning a career as a telegraph operator, Edison pursued decades of research that won him more patents than any other individual -- before or since.

His most significant inventions -- from the motion picture camera to the storage and distribution of electricity -- gave birth to modern, multibillion-dollar industries. But none had a greater impact than the phonograph and the process of recording sound.

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