Collection area: Information & Communication

Merged from various holdings, the collection area of information and communication today covers the collection groups of radio and television, audio and video, musical Instruments, typesetting and printing, photography and film, telecommunication, post, the office and data processing. Allotted to these groups are many object types that have been produced during the rapid growth of the consumer-goods industry since the 19th century. As a consequence, in putting together the collection we have to deal with an almost incalculable wealth of historical objects.

Filter: All Categories / All Epochs / (51 Exhibits found)
Audio and Video
  • FA-110404

    Berliner Standard Gram-o-phon

    The gramophone can be used for playing back shellac records, which are being produced in increasing numbers from the turn of the century onwards. The music industry starts out in an environment of cranks and acoustic horns.

  • FA-112471


    The dictaphone by Thomas A. Edison makes it possible to record speech and is used mainly in offices. Now the bosses no longer dictate to their secretaries, but to a dictaphone instead.

  • FA-112623

    Digital Handycam DCR-TRV 24 E

    The computer develops into a universal work and leisure time tool. It allows to process and play back multimedia content and access archives from around the world via the Internet.

  • FA-112422

    Edison Triumph Phonograph

    Thomas A. Edison successfully manages to record sound waves on wax cylinders. However, the procedure is unsuitable for commercial marketing purposes, as each cylinder has to be recorded individually.

  • FA-109758

    Philips V2414

    The video recorder opens the doors to additional programme entertainment from video libraries. The video camera makes it possible to record one's private life. 

  • FA-112163

    Sony MZ-1

    Thanks to MP3 players one's favourite music becomes available almost everywhere and anytime. Music fans rejoice as musical exchange platforms become available on the Internet which, however, are antagonized by the music industry.

  • Knaus_Detail1_AllesschreibendeWundermaschine

    All-writing miraculous machine

    Unfortunately this article is only available in German.

  • FA-111714

    File with cardboard sleeve

    At the end of the 19th century, the file by Louis Leitz facilitates office organisation. It enables the systematic administration of written correspondence.

  • FA-110347

    Mercedes Elektra

    In 1921, Carl Schlüns develops a typewriter which is powered by a small electric motor.

  • FA-110372

    Underwood No. 5

    The typewriter opens up a fast and efficient way of managing correspondence. Its standardised type face ensures the best possible readability.

Data Processing
  • FA-111604


    The Arithmometer by Charles Xavier Thomas can perform all the basic mathematical calculations, thus yielding time savings for the commercial sector. 

  • FA-112004

    Atari Portfolio

    In the 1990s, Personal Computers are becoming increasingly compact. Laptops are based on the size of a briefcase, PDAs on the size of a coat pocket.

  • FA-112725


    The radio communication of the German army in World War II, which is encrypted by the Enigma cipher machine, can soon be decrypted and evaluated by the allied forces. 

  • FA-108710


    Punch cards make it possible to quickly process large amounts of data. They are used for civilian as well as military purposes.

  • 19110-001_1308423 #_Mailüfterl

    Mailüfterl [May breeze] transistorised computer

    After the Second World War, calculator installations were initially equipped with valves and transistors, and later with microchips, heralding the age of the modern computer.

  • FA-110868

    Minicomputer PDP 11/40

    With the use of transistors, the reliability of computers is enhanced and they become increasingly compact. As a result, a growing amount of work processes are automated and rationalised.

Photograph and Film
  • FA-112050


    Digital images, which are composed of thousands of pixels, can be edited in any way. On this basis, the new art form of computer graphics is born in the 1980s.

  • FA-112066


    The electrotachyscope by Ottomar Anschütz, the kinetoscope by Thomas A. Edison and the cinematograph by the Lumière brothers present motion pictures.

  • Panzerkreuzer Potemkin_Objekt

    Panzerkreuzer Potemkin

    December 21, 1925 saw the world premiere of the Soviet silent film Battleship Potemkin. Directed by Sergei M. Eisenstein, this propaganda film celebrated the Revolution of 1905. The opening scene, a mutiny on the battle ship Potemkin, set the tone for the entire movie.

  • FA-110455

    Polaroid Speedliner Model 95°

    The instant camera by Polaroid quickly and automatically develops the pictures taken with it, soon also in colour.

  • Soldier's camera

    Soldier´s camera

    The First World War coincided with a period during which amateur photography was becoming increasingly popular. For hundreds of thousands of soldiers the war represented an adventure they had never previously experienced, one they were keen to capture for their own private photo albums.

  • FA-110306

    Stereoscopic viewer

    The stereoscope enables three-dimensional image perception. After being presented at the World Expo in 1851, stereographic images are circulated around the world.

  • FA-112714

    Western Electric

    The main challenge for early sound film was to synchronise the film and the soundtrack. The American film The Jazz Singer from 1927 marks the beginning of the sound film era.

Musical Instruments
  • FA-123545

    "Giraffe" grand piano

    A upright pianoforte - space-saving, elegant and fashionably "à la giraffe". 

  • FA-121722

    Hupfeld "Phonoliszt Violina"

    A violin that plays itself? You would hardly think it possible. But it exists: a piano and violins in one case, controlled by a perforated paper tape.

  • FA-109590


    The trautonium was developed by the German electrical engineer Friedrich Trautwein in 1930. After World War II, it was further developed by Oskar Sala to become the Mixtur-trautonium.

  • FA-123700

    Neo-Bechstein grand piano

    A "boardless" piano with radio and record-player: The Neo-Bechstein was a piece of multimedia furniture in the 1930s. 

  • FA-121723

    Organ of the Hofburgkapelle

    Two thousand years ago, organs were a circus instruments. Today, they are mainly found in churches. This also applies to this instrument from the Hofburgkapelle in Vienna, built by Carl Friedrich Ferdinand Buckow.

  • FA-108041


    "Vienna is a piano town," said the jazz pianist, Oscar Peterson. This is still true in today’s concerts practice. Vienna was one of the most important metropolises for piano construction around 200 years ago.

  • FA-118228

    Steinway-Welte grand reproduction piano

    The keys of this pneumatically-controlled piano move as though played by ghostly hands. Its invention in 1904 was a sensation.

  • FA-108046

    Upright piano with Jankó fingerboard

    The "classic" fingerboard, as seen on pianos, has been used for hundreds of years. There have been continual attempts to improve and reform it.

  • FA-110565

    Coupé-Landauer, Type XX

    Apart from conveying mail, stagecoaches also transport travellers. An extensive network of travel routes is set up, which exists until the era of railway transportation comes into being.

  • FA-110502


    After postmen were initially only responsible for collecting mail consignments, a comprehensive postal delivery service is eventually established.

  • FA-112650

    Letterbox with collection bag

    The increase in business and private correspondence in the 19th century requires a standardised transportation system and leads to the introduction of stamps, envelopes and post boxes.

  • FA-112350

    Pneumatic dispatch station

    At the end of the 19th century, the increase in inner-city communication traffic entails the set-up of new media networks. Post and telegraphy are joined by telephony as well as a subterranean pneumatic dispatch system.

  • FA-110641

    Stamp-vending machine

    Apart from the classic postal services, the Austrian Post also takes over the telegraph and telephone operations; the organisation continues to operate a pneumatic mail service and provides the possibility to make money orders.

Radio and TV
  • FA-109418

    Geographic US 437

    After World War I, the radio brings the big outside world into the living room. Radios evolve from a makeshift receiver into a luxurious status symbol.

  • Salon Radio

    Living room radio

    After the outbreak of the war in 1939 Jews were officially prohibited from owning radio sets. Regine Ehrenfest-Egger did not hand hers over to the Gestapo, preferring instead to donate it to the Technisches Museum Wien.

  • FA-109038


    Elvis Presley, the Beatles and the Rolling Stones inspire the youth of the post-war era with their music. The huge success of pop music builds the foundation for the modern music industry.

  • FA-110488

    Television camera

    In a former film studio in Schönbrunn, Austrian television outgrows its experimental stage producing elaborate television plays.

  • FA-111597

    Third Reich Radio, Type VE 301 Dyn

    The cheap Volksempfänger radio receiver is to ensure that every family in the Third Reich can afford a radio device in order to facilitate reception of national socialist propaganda. Only Third Reich radio stations may be listened to.

Typesetting and Printing
  • FA-123861


    In the mid 15th century, Johannes Gutenberg develops movable type printing, thereby setting the foundation for modern book culture. 

  • FA-112429

    Columbian Press

    The use of cast iron instead of wood in printing press manufacture makes book printing more efficient. In the era of revolutions, the demand for printed products rises. 

  • FA-123558

    Linotype Simplex

    The Linotype typesetting machine makes it possible to set thousands of letters per hour via a keyboard, thereby making hand composition redundant.

  • FA-110582

    Lithographic star-wheel press

    From 1800 onwards, lithography becomes the main method of producing picture prints –everything from playing cards to landscape illustrations.

  • FA-112418

    Three-colour Half-tone Printing

    At the end of the 19th century, George Meisenbach develops half-tone printing, a procedure enabling the print of photographs in the press. 

  • FA-112495

    Army telegraph

    In World War II, mobilisation orders via radio signals and telex allow warfare command over large distances of several thousands of kilometres.

  • FA-111970

    Ericsson GH 688

    Extensive cell phone networks, uniform wireless networking standards and powerful cell phones revolutionise telephony. However, users can also easily be monitored.

  • FA-108979

    Morse station with ink recorder

    The telegraph developed by Samuel F. B. Morse transmits messages using long and short electric impulses according to the so-called Morse alphabet.

  • FA-112751

    Siphon recorder

    Overland and submarine telegraph cables effect increased global networking. By means of telegraphic transmission, news spreads around the world in no time at all.

  • FA-108801

    Wall-mounted telephone

    At the end of the 19th century, the business community discovers the advantages of the telephone. Telephone exchanges are quickly set up, initially with hundreds, but soon with thousands of connections.

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