The Museum of Hoaxes
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Jean Gauntt, the Immortal Baby, 1939
The Diaphote, a television hoax, 1880
The Sandpaper Test, 1960
Rare planetary alignment decreases gravity, 1976
Fake Fish Photos
Eccentric's last prank, 66 years after his death, 1900
Use your left ear to detect lies
Taco Bells buys the Liberty Bell, 1996
The Great Space Monkey Hoax, 1953
Mencken's fake history of the bathtub, 1917
Shellac, Sound of the Future -- April Fool's Day, 2003
National Public Radio's All Things Considered ran a segment about the efforts by preservationists to transfer audio recordings to a durable medium that would last far into the future. The medium they had decided upon: shellac (what Edison used when he first invented recording technology back in the nineteenth century). Rick Karr reported:
The format needs to be reliably re-created and understood by civilizations 50, 100 or even 1,000 years from now. But thanks to a grant from the Smolian-Giovannoni Foundation, all of these audio formats are being transferred onto 10-inch wide, 78 rpm shellac disks—the one rock-solid format archivists have identified that works every time.

And so works such as Vanilla Ice's debut CD were being painstakingly transferred onto shellac. The report concluded: "If funding levels can be maintained, experts estimate the archiving project can catch up with recordings made before 2003 by April 1, 2089."


Links and References
2003
April Fool Categories: Music, Technology, Radio, United States, 2003, NPR.
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All text Copyright © 2014 by Alex Boese, except where otherwise indicated. All rights reserved.