The fax idea goes back over 100 years; the technology has been around almost as long and was influenced greatly by the telegraph (it being the first thing that allowed people to send information from one place to the other via wire and electricity). Although emails, texting, and social networking have taken over most modes of communication, the fax is still king for receiving important documents.
The telegraph is the first true “fax” in that it moves information from one point to another electronically. It came to be under the innovative hands of German scientist, Carl Friedrich Gauss and Wilhelm Weber. Later, Alexander Bain began to think and work on moving images through wire in the same fashion. The first chemical fax was patented in 1843, this was prior to the phone and only 10 years after the inception of the telegraph.
Giovanni Caselli years later improved on the science and created the very first commercial linking fax. The link was between Paris andLyon,France. This link sent several thousand images and bits of information per year.
Arthur Korn in 1903 created the first photo fax and by 1910 had addedBerlinto the French link. This was used and improved upon. AP used this to send pictures all over the world of various note worthy happenings and events.
Later around 1947, Alexander Muirhead added spinning drums to the process which vastly improved the function ability. Every model was a build on the previous, and this is true even today. These days instead of drums, faxes use scanners or eyes to obtain the image for sending.
You are able to obtain them in a wide variety, stand alone, all in ones, or even with the ability to fax to email. This is another innovation. You don’t have to actually have a fax machine to send or receive a fax.
There are many services that allow you to fax a document from a traditional machine and receive it in your email or in a fax server account. If you don’t own a fax machine, that is ok as well, if you have an online documents, or a scanned document, you can send it to a regular fax via a internet service or you may send it to another user with a online fax number. This is all great in the way that the environment is saved by reducing the amount of paper used, but you are still able to conduct business in a traditional manner.