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These articles are interesting, but raise some questions:
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/55748706/historical_articles_on_james_miller_0001.pdf

The longer article talks about Miller's "magnetic recording" invention and juxtaposes it in 
competition with German tape developments in the 1930s. As I understand Miller's system that Philips 
made and sold, and Miller's patents related to that system, his was not a magnetic recording system 
as in a magnetic head inducing a field onto magnetic media. Rather, it was a system which used 
electromagnetism to drive a cutting stylus which cut an opitcally-reproduced soundtrack onto 
black-coated film stock.

Miller's patents covering this are US2034111 amd US1919116, and there are also patents for the 
coated-film "recording blanks."

Did Miller also invent a magnetic-induction recording system? I have never seen any details on this.

Miller was my father's first employer and an early mentor. By the late 1930's, Miller operated a 
film-sound studio in Queens or Manhattan (not sure of exact location). My father started work there 
as a teenager, shaving wax recording blanks. Miller was an expert at cutting stylus systems, and 
developed a high-fidelity, high dynamic range disk-cutting system that used no electronic feedback 
(it was mechanically damped, and each cutterhead needed to be hand-tuned against resonances). The 
Miller cutting system was part of the "secret sauce" of the mono-era Mercury Living Presence 
records, along with the Fine-Fairchild Margin Control system, which allowed for wide dynamics and 
classical-length LP sides as early as 1952.

As far as I know, the Philips-Miller film-recording system was used only by a few organizations in 
Europe. I've wondered why it wasn't adopted in Hollywood, because it would have allowed 
instantaneous playback and would have been very useful in such activities as location sound 
recording and dialog looping. Perhaps the machines were not interlockable? Or was it a typical "not 
invented here" thing? As I understand it, until magnetic-film recorders were developed in the late 
40's, the only way to get instantaneous playback in Hollywood was to run disk recorders at the same 
time as optical film recorders.

Does anyone know a source for more information on Mr. Miller? I've been able to find only sketchy 
info online. As far as I know, he made relatively few Miller cutterheads and even fewer 
Philips-Miller recorders. Perhaps there is more information buried somewhere at Stanford?

-- Tom Fine