David C. Nicholas was a PhD student in electrical engineering at Iowa State University in the late 1960s. As part of his post-graduate work, Nicholas developed a method to compress data so that fax machines would work more efficiently.
Nicholas’ work was patented in the 1980s (it’s the highest-earning patent in ISU history) and his discovery was incorporated into most fax machines.
Today, a team of college football coaches will be standing around the fax machine at the Bergstrom Football Complex waiting for signed National Letters of Intent (NLIs) to arrive from recruits around the nation. It’s the day that future Cyclones make their university commitments official.
In today’s world of Skype, texts, scanners, instant messages, etc., it’s still typical for football recruits to fax their NLIs to football offices from coast-to-coast.
The NCAA doesn’t require the signed letters to arrive by fax, but that’s been the preferred method for years. Wednesday will be a fun and anxious day for coaches and fans as everyone is on high alert until the faxes arrive.
Once Coach Paul Rhoads and his staff have collected all of the proper paperwork via fax, the head coach will publicly discuss the class that he and his coaches have put together.
If you want to watch Rhoads’ news conference as well as full signing day coverage all day, check out Cyclones.com.