Computing: The Human Experience is a transmedia project engaging audiences of all ages in the story of the technology that has changed our civilization. The story of computing is the story of humanity. This is a story of ambition, invention, creativity, vision, avarice, and serendipity, powered by a refusal to accept the limits of our bodies and our minds. Delivered as a five part series of one-hour episodes for broadcast, Computing will teach the essential science of computing, present the stories of the people, events, and inventions in the history of computing, examine the connections among computing, science, and society, and contemplate the future. No documentary project has yet covered this subject in such a scope or style. In the spirit of Carl Sagan’s Cosmos, Computing will inform, inspire, and entertain.
Computing has been in development for the past five years by IBM Fellow Grady Booch and his wife Jan, in collaboration with John Hollar, CEO of the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, California. To guide our work, we have assembled an advisory board of luminaries including Vint Cerf, Tim O’Reilly, Dr. Mary Shaw, Dag Spicer and Martin Campbell-Kelly – the world’s leading historians on computing, and several others. We expect to deliver the broadcast series in the fall of 2015 or 2016. In addition, this project will deliver a series of books and ebooks, a set of apps, associated informational and social networking web sites, and educational materials.
Computing has played a fundamental role in the advancement of the human spirit, encompassing war, commerce, the arts, science, society, and faith. Computing causes us to consider the very meaning of self and sentience. The impact of computing on humanity is therefore a clear and present reality. As such, it compels us to tell the story of computing now, so that we may purposely shape the future of computing rather than passively surrender to it. An informed and educated populace is far more able to reconcile its past, reason about its present, and intentionally create its future.
Computing is a global story and is intended to reach a global audience, serving three primary audiences: the intellectually curious general public who are attracted to an exploration of computing’s past, present, and implications for the future; today’s youth, inspiring them to understand and pursue computing in their future; insiders to the world of computing, in celebration of the people who have shaped the past and continue to shape the future. This project serves to pull back the curtain on the matter and the mystery of computing. Computing: The Human Experience leads us on a journey through the duality of computing and humanity, inspiring us to invent a future that advances the human spirit.