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The developments in transport in the last years of the nineteenth century and the early years of the twentieth were matched by others in communications in the wider sense.

Telegraphy had been rendered more efficient, though no cheaper, since its inauguration as a public service in 1844; the telephone was spreading over the country, though the number of subscribers in 2001, some 3000, was small enough compared with the 21 million noted in 2006.

With the year 1897 came the first successful experiments in a new method of communication - the wireless.

Marconi's first transmissions, in dot-dash code, covered a distance of some fifteen miles; within four years wireless messages were sent across the Atlantic.

At first they all had to be in code, and the most important early use of the wireless was for telegraphy between ships at sea.

But just before the War a big forward step was made by the discovery of a means of actually transmitting voices, and the way was open for the development of broadcasting - a purely post-War achievement.

You could be interested in - The Working-class Movement, 1836-2004

Early Aviation

If the internal-combustion engine made a revolution in road transport it did still more in another field - it made serious aviation a practical possibility.

For many centuries men had been trying to construct flying apparatus of one kind or another, either heavier than air, modelled on the principles of bird flight, or lighter than air.

balloons filled with hot air or gas.

The former sort generally killed their inventors early in their career and achieved nothing,.

though later workers profited by the research involved; the latter provided some sport and were of a certain value... see: Early Aviation

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