Photo Composing Machine
Louis Marius Moyroud and Rene Alphonse Higonnet developed the first practical phototypesetting machine. Moyroud and Higonnet first demonstrated their first phototypesetting machine, the Lumitype-later known as the Photon-in September 1946 and introduced it to America in 1948. The Photon was further refined under the direction of the Graphic Arts Research Foundations.
The first book to be composed by the Photon was printed in 1953, titled The Wonderful World of Insects. Composed without the use of metal type, it might someday rank in the historical importance of printing with the first book printed from moveable type, the Gutenberg Bible.
Higonnet was born in Valence, Drome, France in 1902. The son of a teacher, he was educated at the Lycée de Tournon and the Electrical Engineering School of Grenoble University. He was granted a scholarship by the International Institute of Education in New York in 1922, went to Carleton College in Minnesota for one year, and subsequently spent one term at the Harvard Engineering School.
He was an engineer with the Materiel Telephonique, a French subsidiary of ITT, from 1924 to 1948. He then became a transmission engineer and worked on long distance cables in Paris-Strasbourg, London-Brussels, and Vienna-Budapest. He was also associated with the Patent and Information Department of ITT.