Cable TV companies pioneered the transition from the 1950s onward, originally using coaxial cables (copper cables with a sheath of metal screening wrapped around them to prevents crosstalk interference), which carried just a handful of analog TV signals. As more and more people connected to cable and the networks started to offer greater choice of channels and programs, cable operators found they needed to switch from coaxial cables to optical fibers and from analog to digital broadcasting. Fortunately, scientists were already figuring out how that might be possible; as far back as 1966, Charles Kao (and his colleague George Hockham) had done the math, proving how a single optical fiber cable might carry enough data for several hundred TV channels (or several hundred thousand telephone calls). It was only a matter of time before the world of cable TV took notice—and Kao's "groundbreaking achievement" was properly recognized when he was awarded the 2009 Nobel Prize in Physics.
Gore: It’s true. Some of the lines in the songs talk about watching someone get killed via satellite, and it’s like, “Oh, yeah, well, someone else just died.” We are just completely dulled now. Technology now is really unbridled, and we’re going into areas where I don’t think everyone’s really talked about how it affects the human being. It’s available, and we can use it, but how does it actually affect us? But at the same time, with the technology that we have and news outlets being able to reach the whole world within a second, we still have over here in America a president who just says, “Oh no, that’s not happening. That’s fake news.” [Laughs] It’s crazy. The technology we have to be able to verify everything as being real, now it’s just got to the point that you just say, “Oh, no, that didn’t happen.”