Watch State-of-the-Art Computer Graphics and Music from 1968

YouTube / Jeff Quitney
YouTube / Jeff Quitney / YouTube / Jeff Quitney

In 1968, the future was approaching fast: the moon landing was just a year away, the film 2001 hit the silver screen, and Boeing introduced the first 747 "Jumbo Jet." At the same time, Bell Labs was the focus of a short documentary, The Incredible Machine, explaining the state of the art in computer graphics, speech synthesis, and music. It even includes the famous "Daisy Bell" song sung by a computer—it was the first time a computer sang.

Today, the film is incredibly dated, but the fundamental premise is solid. We see people making movies and music using computers. We see people interacting directly with a screen (albeit with a light pen). We see people astounded by the capabilities of their modern computers, even though of course those computers are now outmoded. Watch this, and wonder what our astonishing computers might look like 47 years from now.

Now compare that with a DHARMA orientation film from Lost. Pretty solid, right?