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Old 03-24-2005, 06:50 PM   #1
Kass Johns
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: At the base of Pikes Peak in Colorado Springs, Colorado
Posts: 143
Default DTP beginnings nostalgia, is it catching?

Hi gang,

I just wanted to report to you after my last class today.

My class is History of Graphic Design. My lecture about "The Digital Revolution" began Tuesday and finished today. I started on Tuesday discussing January 1984 and gave a hardware & software tools timeline.

TODAY, however, I verbally set the stage by describing how the computers most everyone knew until January 24, 1984 had a DOS-like dark screen with neon text characters on screen. Nobody had ever seen a mouse before--that was alien to them. Computers were NOT fun to use.

Then I discussed Chiat/Day and how the following commercial was later deemed "The Commercial of the Decade" by Advertising Age magazine. It was directed by Ridley Scott, fresh off his success with BladeRunner. It was so innovative it was repeatedly shown on national news feeds, morning talk shows and more.

I then showed the 1984 commercial QT video. I immediately followed it up with the Steve Jobs 1984 rollout QT video. As many of the items showed up on that 128k's screen, I held them up in class (Steven Levy's "Insanely Great" book, my original MacWrite and MacPaint manuals). As the credits for the QT movie rolled, I pulled my actual 128k Mac out from underneath the desk and hooked it up just like Steve did on the video. I had the power cord ready to plug in, then I fired it up. Up came Finder is System 1.1.

My students went nuts! They were just wowed! I passed around my first issue of Macworld and then explained that because of that seemingly ugly little box, they were all in that room at that point in time. That box started it all.

A great discussion of the GUI interface ensued and they all surmised that they probably owed their computer use today to that box.

Several of my students (even the PC users) asked if they could use their thumb drives to get copies of those movies off my PowerBook!

They admitted that it even gave them chills up their backs.

After everyone calmed, I explained that a lot of it is the Steve Jobs personality & presentation thing. I explained that in my opinion, Steve Jobs is one of the most dynamic speakers (pitchmen) out there and if they ever get the chance, don't miss a speech by him. I clarified that, yes, he can be a jerk, but so can all great pitchmen!

Anyway, I wanted to let you all know that I am doing my bit to spread the nostalgia and allow the new "kids" to experience what we felt and why we all bought into the dream of desktop publishing.


Now, I have a question...
Is it just me or does it seem like we have all been a bit more nostalgic than normal lately? Is it because of that great history piece that KT wrote for the history of The Forum? I dunno but, I suddenly seem to miss the "good old *exciting* days" when everything changed daily (so it seemed) as bugs were worked out of this new technology.

There has to be a book coming somewhere in all this nostalgia!


Anyway, I had fun today and my students had a rip-roaring send off!

(Of course, I tossed the 128k in my big denim bag and tossed it over my shoulder at end of class to re-emphasize how truly potable it still is!!! [g] Those of you who have seen my purse know that a 128k Mac is 'nuthin' to me!)
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