Pioneering UK kids game show from 1987 utilizing green screen and CGI, a rare television programme inspired by computer games.
A team would go on a dungeon quest, with one member blinded by a helmet that would be guided by the others. Obviously the player could not see the CGI, but part of the tension from watching was how the team guided the player through the levels and puzzles.
I saw a repeat of this the other day, and felt it would be worth informing others outside the UK about it.
Some background, courtesy of the Knightmare website:
Spring 1985, and Tim Child, a journalist, reporter and occasional development producer for Anglia TV in Norwich, had a silly idea.
As a journalist, he’d taken to producing a regular weekly review of the fledgling UK 8-bit home computer games industry. The justification for Anglia was that much of this industry seemed to be originating from within its regional boundaries. Sinclair and Acorn were both in Cambridge; Commodore had its UK HQ in Northamptonshire.
Everywhere, people seemed to be coding computer games and spotty boys were becoming adolescent millionaires.
At the time, Tim’s elder sister was working as a middle manager for Clive Sinclair on the Spectrum computer range, and this contact gave him his first brush with home computers.
First, Ultimate’s Attic Attack, and then Hewson’s 48k interactive movie, Dragontorc, convinced the Anglia producer that if adventure gaming was possible in a machine as limited as a Spectrum, then the graphic power of modern television could capitalise on the idea and revolutionise the genre.
The idea for Knightmare was born.
Next, a number of key problems had to be solved. How to create a complex artificial world? How to populate it? How to experience it? How to explore it? How to make it work as television?
From the outset Tim Child wanted to use computer graphics to create his first dungeon, but the trouble was that in 1985, computer graphic imaging (CGI) was in its infancy. The Quantel paintbox had only just been developed (Anglia was yet to purchase one), and most computerised images were sadly disappointing compared to the real thing.
Tim knew what was needed, and it wasn’t the gaudy, crude 4-8 colour illustrations which current computer games were offering. What he actually needed, were the fabulous, atmospheric fantasy illustrations that decorated the outside packaging of said crude computer games. He found some examples, and called the publishers in a bid to identify the artist. The answer was soon forthcoming.
Here is an abridged complete version of a winning teams efforts (44 minutes long):
… but not everyone was so lucky … here is a compilation of many “deaths” in the game (and there were not game lives …):
More about the history of the show can be found here, and many more videos can be found at YouTube
I loved this show…
Xbox one explained.
Steve Wilhite, who invented the enduring GIF file format in 1987, will receive a lifetime achievement Webby Award.
He is proud of the GIF, but remains annoyed that there is still any debate over the pronunciation of the format.
“The Oxford English Dictionary accepts both pronunciations,” Mr. Wilhite said. “They are wrong. It is a soft ‘G,’ pronounced ‘jif.’ End of story.”
Gif guff? Or respect to the ‘jif’?
Xbox revealed its next-generation console today, Xbox One, featuring live TV integration and two big announcements to blur the lines between television and social gaming. “Until now the television viewing experience has been a one way experience, but that’s about to change,” explained entertainment chief Nancy Tellem. “Only on Xbox, will TV become social.”
I do love a bit of 3D projection mapping goodness
French designer Philippe Starck and car company Peugeot have unveiled a prototype bicycle crossed with a scooter, designed for a free cycle scheme in Bordeaux, France.
As part of efforts to integrate bicycles into its public transport system, the city of Bordeaux asked locals to submit design suggestions for an urban bike. Philippe Starck took their ideas and worked with Peugeot to develop a scooter and bicycle hybrid called Pibal, which means “baby eel”.
Simon Sinek has a simple but powerful model for inspirational leadership all starting with a golden circle and the question “Why?” His examples include Apple, Martin Luther King, and the Wright brothers…
Cara is a cheap, privacy-conscious tool that works on any standard webcam
Twitter was just officially granted a patent on the ubiquitous pull-to-refresh gesture — a touch interface concept the company acquired when it purchased Tweetie developer Atebits in 2010 and hired founder Loren Brichter, who invented the move. “I had started working on the patent two months before the Twitter deal,” said Brichter during a phone call yesterday. The application was officially filed the day before Brichter signed the Twitter acquisition paperwork. “The patent was the cherry on top,” he says.
What does advertising giant David Ogilvy have to do with user experience? You’ll be surprised. Here, method’s Ted Booth updates Ogilvy’s core campaign principles for the digital age.
Leap Motion with Windows
With Leap Motion technology and Windows, you can do everything that’s possible with multi-touch inputs — without actually touching anything.
Looking forward to get my hands above(?) this. It certainly looks awesome. The Leap Motion Controller costs $ 79.99 and the company will start shipping on July 22nd. A Mac OS X demo video is on its way as well.
LG showing off 5 inch flexible screen for smartphones.
LG will be showing off their latest flexible and unbreakable 5 inch OLED display at this weeks SID display week in Vancouver.
The plastic display will be shown off alongside other 5 inch and 7 inch HD Oxide TFT panels which have a bezel that’s only 1mm wide, allowing for smartphones and small tablets with virtually no frame or border.