Baudot, Jean-Maurice-Emile

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b. 11 September 1845 Magneux, France
d. 28 March 1903 Sceaux, France
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French engineer who developed the multiplexed telegraph and devised a 5-bit code for data communication and control.
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Baudot had no formal education beyond his local primary school and began his working life as a farmer, as was his father. However, in September 1869 he joined the French telegraph service and was soon sent on a course on the recently developed Hughes printing telegraph. After service in the Franco-Prussian war as a lieutenant with the military telegraph, he returned to his civilian duties in Paris in 1872. He was there encouraged to develop (in his own time!) a multiple Hughes system for time-multiplexing of several telegraph messages. By using synchronized clockwork-driven rotating switches at the transmitter and receiver he was able to transmit five messages simultaneously; the system was officially adopted by the French Post \& Telegraph Administration five years later. In 1874 he patented the idea of a 5-bit (i.e. 32-permutation) code, with equal on and off intervals, for telegraph transmission of the Roman alphabet and punctuation signs and for control of the typewriter-like teleprinter used to display the message. This code, known as the Baudot code, was found to be more economical than the existing Morse code and was widely adopted for national and international telegraphy in the twentieth century. In the 1970s it was superseded by 7—and 8-bit codes.
Further development of his ideas on multiplexing led in 1894 to methods suitable for high-speed telegraphy. To commemorate his contribution to efficient telegraphy, the unit of signalling speed (i.e. the number of elements transmitted per second) is known as the baud.
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Bibliography
17 June 1874, "Système de télégraphie rapide" (Baudot's first patent).
Further Reading
1965, From Semaphore to Satellite, Geneva: International Telecommunications Union.
P.Lajarrige, 1982, "Chroniques téléphoniques et télégraphiques", Collection historique des télécommunications.
KF

Biographical history of technology. - Taylor & Francis e-Librar. . 2005.

Look at other dictionaries:

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