Thermofax - They could do that back then?

I had read this ad twice before realizing that "Thermofax" is just the company's name, and that they're using the word "fax" in the actual sense of the word: a facsimile or copy. At first, the idea of a commercially available fax machine in 1958 had my brain doing somersaults. While it's less exciting that this is just a copy machine - albeit a copy machine from 1958! - I'm glad the universe still makes sense to me.
So no, this is not a fax machine. Even if it WAS a fax machine, how many people could there have been who owned one of these? Who could you fax to? It takes two to tango, faxfully speaking. You'd probably have your little clique of fax owners and you'd send smug little faxes to each other... "I love my Tele-Picto-Printo-Pronto-Tron, don't you? It was totally worth the six squillion 1958 dollars I paid for it." "Yep" would come the lazy response." Then you'd sigh and stare at the machine, wishing you'd just bought a experimental color tv instead (with a five inch screen).

Anyway, this was 1958, and somebody made a copy machine. Even more interesting, they made a copy machine that printed thermally. That means that, instead of ink or toner, it carefully burned the image onto the paper, which was special paper you had to buy just for this purpose. Remember early fax machines, how they printed on that weird paper that was kind of slippery and sticky at the same time? That's the stuff. Sometimes you still get receipts printed on that paper. While most companies try to make machines that work with regular paper, it was pretty amazing back in '58. Hell, I'M pretty amazed they had copy machines at all that far back in the mists of time.

Also, it's kind of great that the machine was enormous and had a giant knob on top. I wish every electronic device were available in an alternate version that has the exact same functionality of the normal version, but in a clunky retro case. Can you imagine how cool it'd be to walk around with your iPhone in a weird turquoise case with a tiny gold knob in the corner to flip between pages of aps? On the back, instead of the normal apple logo, there'd be an apple logo that looks like the badge on a fridge. That'd be great, right? When I'm elected Supreme Emperor of the Universe for Life, I'll make this happen. I hope I can count on your vote.


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