50 years ago today: “The Mother Of All Demos”

I’ve been hearing about this seminal presentation for ages, but until now I’d never actually seen it. It’s well worth a look at what must’ve been a jaw-dropping peek into so many breakthroughs that remain central to our lives today:

On December 9, 1968, Dr. Douglas C. Engelbart and the Augmentation Research Center (ARC) at Stanford Research Institute staged a 90-minute public multimedia demonstration… [F]or the first time, the public saw a computer mouse, which controlled a networked computer system to demonstrate hypertext linking, real-time text editing, multiple windows with flexible view control, cathode display tubes, and shared-screen teleconferencing. The 1968 demo presaged many of the technologies we use today, from personal computing to social networking.

[YouTube] [Via Peyman Milanfar]

Tutorial: The benefits of shooting 10-bit color

Illuminating stuff as always from Stewart & Drone Film Guide:

Of course, I’m reminded that before I even bother with this stuff, I need to move myself off the absolutely shite color tools in iMovie and onto… what, exactly? As I mentioned the other day, the new Adobe Rush’s tools are really anemic; learning Premiere Pro seems like no joke; and I don’t care to pay for Final Cut. Hmm—to be continued.



A 360º view from inside Chuck Yeager’s cockpit

History? Check.
Photography? Check.
Aerospace? Check.

I am there for this:

Smithsonian notes:

  • The distinct H-shaped yoke determined both roll and pitch. Airspeed was controlled by the number of rocket chambers—up to four—fired by the silver thumb-switch to the left of the yoke; there was no throttle.
  • The Mach indicator above goes to Mach 1.5; it was most likely installed after Yeager’s first transonic flight. It’s flanked by a conventional altimeter and airspeed indicator. The fastest Glamorous Glennis ever flew was Mach 1.45.
  • Yeager signed his name in the cockpit of Glamorous Glennis on many occasions over the decades. (He piloted 33 of the aircraft’s 78 career test flights, including its last, on May 12, 1950.) Can you find all his signatures?

[Via Bryan O’Neil Hughes]

Summon the Bots: “Waymo One,” for hailing self-driving cars, has arrived

Hola, future: Google’s (okay, Alphabet’s) self-driving unit Waymo has introduced Waymo One, an Uber-like service for requesting self-driving cars, in the Phoenix area. The intro vid about building “the world’s most experienced driver” is charming…

…but I’m more intrigued by some of the design & technical details touched on in this vid that celebrates Waymo’s 10,000,000th self-driving mile. (And side note: my team is now collaborating with these folks, so I hope to share other fascinating details down the line.)



Droning from a *van* down by the *river*

Just a quick bit of flying Thanksgiving weekend near Pismo Beach. A few thoughts:

  • Color grading in iMovie is for the birds, but somehow it’s no better in Adobe Rush (which lacks an Auto button (!), much less key framing), and learning Premiere Pro always seems like too big a hill to climb.
  • I likewise find it hard to cut on the beats—a problem compounded when I share the output to YouTube and Facebook (where, I swear to God, somehow the audio & video get differently out of sync).
  • I’ve gotta learn how to avoid (or later compensate for) the gross propeller shadows that appear in a few shots here.
  • No, the soundtrack doesn’t really fit (an assessment my 9-year-old Henry cheerfully volunteered 🙄), but, eh, I found the juxtaposition oddly fun. YMMV.