Newly remastered footage from The Demo original film reels

This year we’re celebrating Doug’s legendary 1968 ‘Mother of All Demos’ with newly re-mastered footage from the original 16mm film reels! Huge shout out to Henry Lowood and his team at the Stanford Library Special Collections in their ongoing efforts curating the Engelbart Collection there.

Our video production partner Village Media Works took it from their 45GB per reel down to a more manageable size for uploading to our YouTube Channel, one video file per reel, plus one combined video from reels 1-3, and all-new demo highlights excerpts video shorts. The clarity and resolution are much enhanced from earlier renditions! You can find links to all the material on our all-things-demo portal https://dougengelbart.org/theDemo.

Due to the way the demo was filmed — a TV camera in a dark room at the lab pointed at a display monitor that was mirroring what was being projected at the arena in San Francisco, with not-ideal frame refresh rates from the camera’s perspective — there are many imperfections in the original film which we left for authenticity. There was understandably a recording gap during the changing of the reels, with some fidgeting before the audio and video recording both kicked back in, which we addressed at those two points in the combined video with a title slide indicating end of one reel and beginning of the next. We also painstakingly re-created the demo highlights video shorts that were originally produced in 2008 by SRI International with guidance from Engelbart researcher Harvey Lehtman, updating our Demo Highlights Playlist, Demo Highlights gallery, accordingly. And finally, we updated the Interactive Demo experience with the new footage which entailed re-deriving start and stop times…

Still a bit of work in progress, and we hope you enjoy the new watching experience!

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