Blog Archive for the ‘Long Shorts’ Category

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The Big Here – Trip to the Long Now Clock Site

Posted on Friday, October 9th, 02009 by Alex Mensing
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This time lapse and other footage of driving from San Francisco to the site of the Long Now 10,000 Year Clock in September of 02009 was produced by Sustainable Media. The audio was recorded in interviews on site and shortly after the trip. This 5 minute edit was made as part of our “Long Short” series of short films that convey long term thinking. This Long Short was screened at Stewart Brand’s “Rethinking Green” SALT.

The Big Here – trip to the Long Now Clock site from The Long Now Foundation on Vimeo.

Team Digital Preservation is back!

Posted on Wednesday, September 23rd, 02009 by Heather Louise Mae Bowden
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Now with their second installment: Team Digital Preservation and the Aeroplane Disaster. In this episode, Team Digital Preservation takes on the problem of obsolete software by migrating important digital files to the most current formats.

This goes hand-in-hand with Kevin Kelly’s concept of movage. We’ve got to keep our digital information moving; from storage medium to storage medium, from software platform to software platform, and from file format to file format.

The Methuselah Tree

Posted on Wednesday, August 19th, 02009 by Alexander Rose - Twitter: @zander
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I would love to find a way to see this documentary film on the oldest living tree if anyone out there knows how it is being shown…

The Curse of The Methuselah Tree

“I am not part of history. No. History is part of me.” This is the story of the oldest living thing on earth and its unique view of human civilisation. With narration and specially-commissioned poetry by Roger McGough.

This original film combines beautifully shot footage of Methuselah, the 26-foot bristlecone pine, with reconstructions of the thousands of years it has witnessed. But what if such a witness could speak? For the first time this 4,643-year-old is given his own voice.

Hear the tree’s perspective on passing of ancient civilisations, the settlement of America by Europeans and the testing of atom bombs 100 miles away in the Nevada desert.

Altered time lapse

Posted on Monday, June 1st, 02009 by Alexander Rose - Twitter: @zander
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This is one of the first altered time lapse sequences I have seen.  It’s a great medium.  Nicely done by the Citizen watch company for the recent Basel World Watch Expo.  Clipped from William Gibson’ Twitter feed (@GreatDismal).

Digital Preservation and Nuclear Disaster: An Animation

Posted on Thursday, May 7th, 02009 by Heather Louise Mae Bowden
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See Digi-Man and Blizzard duke it out over digital plans of a nuclear powerhouse!! It is good to see an effort to make digital preservation heroic, which as we saw with the Apollo tapes below, it certainly can be.

From the halls of Digital Preservation Europe

City Builder

Posted on Friday, March 6th, 02009 by Alexander Rose - Twitter: @zander
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The beautifully crafted short above by Bruce Banit (via Kevin Kelly’s blog) depicts a fantastical yet believable world building interface, in a future that does not feel too far off from where Google Sketch Up is now.  As if to prove that point, Stewart Brand sent over the below reference:

 This virtual “Telematics City” was built by design firm Hook for a Lexus marketing campaign.  The fantastic video linked above is a time lapse of the “building” of that city.  I guess it’s like the man said…

“The future is here, its just not evenly distributed yet.”  – William Gibson

And yet another Update:  Wired is running a piece today on the physical city modeling that has taken place, and features one of the greatest treasures in the SF Bay Area, The Army Corps of Engineers Bay Model in Sausalito.

History of Life in 60 seconds

Posted on Thursday, March 5th, 02009 by Alexander Rose - Twitter: @zander
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Video by Claire Evans

As part of SEED Magazine‘s Darwin anniversary articles here is “a video experiment in scale, condensing 4.6 billion years of history into a minute.” I thought it a worthy entry into our “Long Shorts” category.

The Evolution of Life in 60 Seconds is an experiment in scale: By condensing 4.6 billion years of history into a minute, the video is a self-contained timepiece. Like a specialized clock, it gives one a sense of perspective. Everything — from the formation of the Earth, to the Cambrian Explosion, to the evolution of mice and squirrels — is proportionate to everything else, displaying humankind as a blip, almost indiscernible in the layered course of history.

Each event in the Evolution of Life fades gradually over the course of the minute, leaving typographic traces that echo all the way to the present day. Just as our blood still bears the salt water of our most ancient evolutionary ancestors.

Everything is amazing and nobody is happy…

Posted on Monday, February 23rd, 02009 by Alexander Rose - Twitter: @zander
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This has to be one of the best, if not most humorous, perspectives on the progress of technology in our lifetimes that I have seen. Louis CK on Conan Obrien.

Timelapse compilation

Posted on Friday, January 2nd, 02009 by Alexander Rose - Twitter: @zander
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túrána hott kurdís by hasta la otra méxico! from Till Credner on Vimeo.

An excellent compilation of timelapse photography sent in by Stewart Brand.  It is part of the many great works at The Sky in

Against the clock

Posted on Wednesday, September 24th, 02008 by Stuart Candy
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It is 02019.

A multi petabyte-scale simulation of global processes, called the Global Extinction Awareness System (GEAS), has just determined that, without immediate action, humanity will survive only another 23 years before the deadly synergy of five catastrophic Superthreats does us in.

The Superthreats are:
1. Quarantine — declining health and pandemic disease, including the current Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ReDS) crisis
2. Ravenous — the imminent collapse of the global food system
3. Power Struggle — the increasingly desperate search for alternative energy solutions
4. Outlaw Planet — challenges to human security and civil rights in the midst of hypercomplex information systems
5. Generation Exile — skyrocketing numbers of refugees and migrants in the face of climate change, economic disruption, and war

Your role is to flex your foresight, creativity and collaborative skills to contribute to our collective survival.

The GEAS report is available in full here, and video briefings on each of the Superthreats can be found here. One to get you started:

The scenario described above is the premise of Superstruct, the world’s first massively multiplayer forecasting game, which kicks off in just under two weeks’ time, on 6 October 02008.

Over the six weeks of the game, long term thinkers everywhere will have the opportunity to imagine themselves in this version of 02019, bringing their real-world expertise and ideas to bear on the Superthreats. The purpose of the game is to harness our collective insights and ingenuity; to help invent the future by playing it first.

It’s being run by the Ten-Year Forecast Program at the nonprofit research organisation Institute for the Future, Palo Alto (disclosure: I’m one of the Game Masters).

Get involved, and good luck. The clock is ticking.