Cleveland is the home of rock ‘n’ roll, but the common citizen first got their voice in Cleveland as well.
Semi Begun was a German inventor who was fascinated by magnetic recording. After officially patenting his electromagnetic tape recording device in 1934, he immigrated to the U.S. in 1935 and joined the Brush Development Co., where he helped contribute to the broadcasting industry.
During his time at the company, he invented a coated, non-metallic tape, which led to the creation of the first consumer tape recorder, dubbed the “Sound Mirror.”
While audio has been recorded since the days of Thomas Edison, this invention opened up the possibilities of audio recording within various fields and to the everyday consumer.
Why It Matters: Whether you record a voice memo on your phone, make music at home or send an audio message to a friend, you’re using the distant evolution of what Begun created over 70 years ago.