Fax (short for facsimile), sometimes called telecopying or telefax, is the telephonic transmission of scanned printed material (both text and images), normally to a telephone number connected to a printer or other output device. The original document is scanned with a fax machine (or a telecopier), which processes the contents (text or images) as a single fixed graphic image, converting it into a bitmap, and then transmitting it through the telephone system in the form of audio-frequency tones. The receiving fax machine interprets the tones and reconstructs the image, printing a paper copy. Early systems used direct conversions of image darkness to audio tone in a continuous or analog manner. Since the 1980s, most machines modulate the transmitted audio frequencies using a digital representation of the page which is compressed to quickly transmit areas which are all-white or all-black.
Scottish inventor Alexander Bain worked on chemical mechanical fax type devices and in 1846 was able to reproduce graphic signs in laboratory experiments. He received patent 9745 on May 27, 1843 for his "Electric Printing Telegraph."Frederick Bakewell made several improvements on Bain's design and demonstrated a telefax machine. The Pantelegraph was invented by the Italian physicist Giovanni Caselli. He introduced the first commercial telefax service between Paris and Lyon in 1865, some 11 years before the invention of the telephone.
Fax was a show by the BBC one, shown in the 1980s. It was presented by Bill Oddie, Wendy Leavesley, Debbie Rix and Billy Butler. The series first appear on Tuesday 7 Jan 1986 at 17.35, sharing its slot with Masterteam, Rolf Harris cartoon and sitcoms. Viewers would write in questions for the team to answered in each episode.
Fax third series was moved to a Sunday teatime slot, when Michael Grade moved the Australian soap Neighbours to the early evening.
Series one: 7 January - 7 March 1986: 16 Episodes. (Tuesday and Friday)
Series two: 6 January - 27 February 1987: 14 Episodes (Tuesday and Friday)
Series three: 3 January - 24 April 1988: 17 episodes (Sundays)