[SIGCIS-Members] Documentary Project on History of Personal Computing

James Cortada jcortada at umn.edu
Wed Oct 7 05:57:29 PDT 2020


Pierre makes an excellent point.  The PC was so inexpensive in comparison
to other ICTs that it became the device that spread computing over large
swaths of the Earth.  So, while the Americans get the credit for inventing
the PC, it was the Asians who did a great deal to diffuse the technology,
especially Taiwan, and the PC played an extraordinary role in the Soviet
Union/Russia from the very ate 1980s through the early 2000s--all stories
that are not even superficially understood.  Pierre is correct in being
specific about Taiwan and the Soviet/Russian piece of the story.  And that
was all preceded by the French experience, which arguably predates the
invention of the PC by many years with its phone system.  Jim Cortada

On Wed, Oct 7, 2020 at 3:38 AM Pierre Mounier-Kuhn <mounier at msh-paris.fr>
wrote:

> Hi Eric,
> Do you consider including the history of personal computing beyond North
> America – say, from Europe to Taiwan and the Soviet empire ?
> Best,
> Pierre
>
> ------------------------------
> *De: *"Eric Gade" <eric.gade at gmail.com>
> *À: *"members" <members at sigcis.org>
> *Envoyé: *Mardi 6 Octobre 2020 18:58:51
> *Objet: *[SIGCIS-Members] Documentary Project on History of Personal
> Computing
>
> Hi all,
>
> Please forgive me if this message is inappropriate for the list. I am
> hoping some members will be interested in the following project.
>
> For the past year and a half I have been working on a team that is
> developing a documentary
> <https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/messagenotunderstood/message-not-understood/>
> on the history of personal computing. Our goal is to interview the very
> people who laid the foundations for personal computing while they are still
> with us, learning about their original visions and getting their take on
> the present. In this sense it is both an aspiring feature length
> documentary project but also an endeavor in oral history and posterity.
>
> Last fall we were able to shoot our first three interviews. We used these
> to make a short teaser <https://vimeo.com/429045920>, with the idea it
> could be used to raise funds for future rounds of interviews. That said, we
> are currently in the middle of a Kickstarter campaign
> <https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/messagenotunderstood/message-not-understood/>
> to get the second round funded. If you are interested in learning more,
> feel free to reach out to me directly and to visit the film's campaign
> site
> <https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/messagenotunderstood/message-not-understood/>
> and website <https://messagenotunderstood.com/>.
>
> Thanks!
>
> --
> Eric
>
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-- 
James W. Cortada
Senior Research Fellow
Charles Babbage Institute
University of Minnesota
jcortada at umn.edu
608-274-6382
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