Our post yesterday on the soothing modern fluttersounds of 30th Street Station sign and KYW 1060 AM's teletype audio background drew a few illuminating responses. Among them:
"MOMA keeps their Solari board working and has even hacked it!
SO — come on AMTRAK:
I have reached out to one of their exhibits managers to get a sense of how difficult (or not) it is to keep such a machine operating properly.
In the meantime, check this out:
Meanwhile, even though the odds look slim, the inevitable Change.org position to save the 30th Street Station sign has appeared.
And lastly, we heard from Steve Butler of KYW Newsradio who informs us that much of what we reported yesterday on KYW's near-death of teletype sound experience was, in fact, urban myth! He was kind enough to explain:
"Thanks so much for the publicity, BUT, I can assure you the KYW tick-tick-tick of an old wire service machine has never been dropped…. nor brought back by listener demand. It’s apparently an urban legend that I hadn’t heard before. I’ve been associated with the station since 1978, and believe me, the “ticker” has always ticked. Although, you might or might not be happy to know the audio now comes from a flash drive… a recording from the last group of UPI wire service teletypes retired from the station back in the early 8o’s.
Have we THOUGHT about it? Yeah, when we’ve rebuilt our facilities over the years, the crazy tech involved in making it heard in various studios at the right times is, quite frankly, a pain-in-the-butt. However, we yield to the long-extinct piece of audio that you correctly identify as Philadelphia’s “iconic local news radio sound.”
As for the Amtrak train board? I’m switching to NJ Transit in protest.
DIRECTOR OF PROGRAMMING
Well, we regret the error. But if we're being straight with you, we prefer the myth. Onward we go.