This Day in Death

5.20.12: Eugene Polly, Inventor of the Television Remote – DEAD!

Filed under: Dead —James @ 9:25 am May 24, 2012

Despite being almost 60 years old, the original “Flash-Matic” bears an uncanny resemblance to the new “Flesh-Matic” I just ordered. (That’s the first of two masturbation jokes contained in this post, as required by state law.)


Zenith engineer Eugene Polly is dead today at the age of 96. In 1955 Polly created the first ever television remote control, the invention that’s enabled the lifestyles of diabetic cat ladies, morbidly obese shut-ins, and 12-year-old me’s who were able to watch unscrambled porn for just a second by rapidly flipping channels back and forth. God, masturbation used to be such a hassle. I can hardly believe there was a time before we had simple closed-circuit cameras hidden in our neighbors’ bedrooms. We really take our luxuries for granted, is my point.

John Taylor says the former Zenith engineer died of natural causes Sunday at a suburban Chicago hospital. He was 96.

Couch potatoes everywhere have Polley to thank for hours of feet-up, channel surfing. His invention began as a luxury, but has become a necessity in an era of hundreds of TV channels and home theaters. Just ask anyone who’s lost a remote.Polley’s 1955 Flash-Matic pointed a beam of light at photo cells in the corners of the screen. This activated the picture and sound and changed channels.

Polley and fellow Zenith engineer Robert Adler were honored in 1997 with an Emmy for their work in pioneering TV remotes.

That’s all pretty impressive until you find out that he was actually trying to create a death ray. To use on minorities, one could logically assume. What a monster!

Source: NY Daily News

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