Movie Night at the Museum

Computer History Museum

I know I promised more on the cloud; that will come later. Right now I want to plug another excellent resource for the history of computing, the Computer History Museum (CHM)'s YouTube channel. (This plug was inspired by the posting today of a recent talk given at CHM by Paul Allen, discussing his recent memoir.) This post was , but I've used the CHM's videos in my research on several occasions, most notably videos of a two-day conference on PLATO that I was unable to attend, but could watch from the leisure of my home several weeks later. Unlike oral history transcripts, these videos are very difficult to skim if you're looking for information about a particular subject (Did Paul Allen say anything about Ed Roberts, for example?). On the other hand, they don't suffer from transcription errors, and capture much more information, including tone of voice and affect (not to mention what people actually look and sound like!). But not only is CHM posting videos of their recent events (such as another recent talk by VC big-wig Bill Draper), but they've also started putting up films from the archive. A flickering videotape transfer of Jay Forrester from 1980, for example. These are just wonderful for bringing to life people, technologies, and moments now long gone, and I hope to see many more in the future. Finally, I can't pass up this subject without plugging a video that blends computing history and sheer awesomeness in equal measures: a clip of Babbage's Difference Engine in action. Watch for the hypnotic ripple carries at 3:44!