Filmmaker, Ken Burns, told the story of radio in his documentary "Empire of the Air." Notice the story is not as much about the technology as it is about the people (the innovators).
In the documentary, Burns highlights the lives and work of Lee de Forest, Edwin Armstrong and David Sarnoff. (Note: We have previously covered de Forest.)
Below is a short YouTube clip on de Forest's audion.
Note: PBS provides a good, but incomplete, timeline for the documentary (see only the "Empire" timeline).
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