hellomynameisgeek: johnskylar: techno-dann: Today in Computer…



hellomynameisgeek:

johnskylar:

techno-dann:

Today in Computer Scientists You Haven’t Heard Of: Margaret Hamilton

This is Margaret Hamilton, standing next to one of her earlier projects: The Apollo Guidance Computer’s main operating program.

I’m going to let that sink in for a moment. Look at your image of NASA in the Apollo days. Look at miss Hamilton.

Now, I’m sure you’ve heard the story about how the computer crashed on Neil and Mike on their descent, leaving Neil to make the landing by hand. This story has only the barest grounding in reality.

During the descent, a checklist error left the rendezvous radar – normally used for keeping track of the Command Module in orbit – turned on. Radar is a computationally hungry beast, and the computer unhappily told Neil and Mike that it was being overtasked. It kept right on going, even though it was being overworked. It kept the truly important numbers – altitude, descent rate, fuel consumption – up to date perfectly as they descended, which allowed Neil to fly safely above the lunar surface to find a landing site.

So, here you have a computer, easily the most powerful computer for its size ever made as of 1969, controlling a flying machine above the lunar surface, and correctly juggling multiple real-time processing tasks by priority. This is something that modern computers, fifty years later, still struggle with. Margaret built it and got it right at the very dawn of the multi-tasking operating system. It was something done by Serious Computers – fridge-sized monsters with names like PDP-8 and System/360… and a series of tiny boxes that flew to the moon and back.

And then she went on and did other things. Ever heard the term “Software Engineering”? Margaret’s invention. More technically speaking, she’s responsible for parallel and asynchronous computing (which now is key to every supercomputer and major website), priority scheduling, end-to-end testing, and a huge chunk of human-computer interface theory.

She’s still active in software engineering today.

This is what a space wizard looks like.

In her own words:

Due to an error in the checklist manual, the rendezvous radar switch was placed in the wrong position. This caused it to send erroneous signals to the computer. The result was that the computer was being asked to perform all of its normal functions for landing while receiving an extra load of spurious data which used up 15% of its time. The computer (or rather the software in it) was smart enough to recognize that it was being asked to perform more tasks than it should be performing. It then sent out an alarm, which meant to the astronaut, I’m overloaded with more tasks than I should be doing at this time and I’m going to keep only the more important tasks; i.e., the ones needed for landing … Actually, the computer was programmed to do more than recognize error conditions. A complete set of recovery programs was incorporated into the software. The software’s action, in this case, was to eliminate lower priority tasks and re-establish the more important ones … If the computer hadn’t recognized this problem and taken recovery action, I doubt if Apollo 11 would have been the successful moon landing it was.”

This woman programmed a computer smart enough to prioritize tasks and make sure essential functions were carried out first even if other tasks were going on – she’s the one who made the moon landing possible, more than anyone else. If her programming hadn’t been able to prioritize, the mission would’ve been aborted. 

She’s also published a ton of papers and basically I’m so tired of people never hearing about all the brilliant coding women. Like, when it was first getting off the ground computer programming was a woman’s field – like they specifically looked for and hired women. There were also a ton of female mathematics BS and PhD candidates in the 30s-50s. 

And for the record: all the programmers who created the first general-use computer were women. Wanna know why? The men thought actually building the computer -as in, the design of the machine itself – was more important than programming the computer – as in, actually making it work and telling it how to run, y’know, enabling it to actually be useful.

Men didn’t think programming was important so they relegated it to women, and once they realized programming was the MOST important part of computers they yanked those jobs away, made it a boy thing, and failed to highlight the huge role women played in pioneering the computer age.

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darksilenceinsuburbia: Jason Hopkins Abhominal |…















darksilenceinsuburbia:

Jason Hopkins

Abhominal | Posthumans

Although currently a science fiction, we – the human race – are on the cusp of human genetic engineering.

Humans have altered the genomes of species for thousands of years through artificial selection. Over the past 40 years scientists have made amazing technological progress to improve natures crops and mammals through genetic modifications; recently science has mapped the entire human genome and begun to realise the potential for modifying us.

Abhominal, an archaic word meaning inhuman, is an exploratory weblog of the human form. The digital sculptures are a fusion of geometric, architectural and biological abstract forms – a bleak evolutionary future where biotechnology has been used to make perfect posthuman beings.

To modify nature is our nature. (artist statement)

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red-lipstick: Tom Gauld (Scottish, b. 1976) – The Reason I…


Tom Gauld (Scottish, b. 1976) – The Reason I Stayed In The House All Day Drawings


Tom Gauld (Scottish, b. 1976) – The Reason I Stayed In The House All Day Drawings


Tom Gauld (Scottish, b. 1976) – The Reason I Stayed In The House All Day Drawings


Tom Gauld (Scottish, b. 1976) – The Reason I Stayed In The House All Day Drawings


Tom Gauld (Scottish, b. 1976) – The Reason I Stayed In The House All Day Drawings


Tom Gauld (Scottish, b. 1976) – The Reason I Stayed In The House All Day Drawings


Tom Gauld (Scottish, b. 1976) – The Reason I Stayed In The House All Day Drawings


Tom Gauld (Scottish, b. 1976) – The Reason I Stayed In The House All Day Drawings

red-lipstick:

Tom Gauld (Scottish, b. 1976) – The Reason I Stayed In The House All Day    Drawings  (All perfectly valid reasons)

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Space Suite_Concept

created the video above as a visual proof-of-concept for a project which relies heavily on space visuals. I wanted to demonstrate that compelling footage could be created quickly and easily by mining the impressive public access image libraries of NASA (and others) for stunning photography, and then bringing them to life with simple 3d ‘tricks’.

I’ve posted a short breakdown of the project on my blog:

http://j.mp/1y4cBo6

Music: “Nero” by Two Steps From Hell

(View on Vimeo)

Audible exclusive – The Collectors by Philip Pullman, narrated by Bill Nighy

Christmas is right around the corner, and as a ‘thank you’ to our members, our gift to them is a wonderful mysterious story written by Philip Pullman and narrated by award-winning actor Bill Nighy. The Collectors, written exclusively for Audible, serves as a great introduction to this series, while revealing a little something extra to fans of Lyra and her world.

(View on YouTube)

CINEMA SPACE TRIBUTE

Music: Hans Zimmer – Mountains (Interstellar Soundtrack)
Lyrics: «Do not go gentle into that good night» by Dylan Thomas
Voice: Anthony Hopkins

FILMS:
«2001: A Space Odyssey» (1968, dir. Stanley Kubrick)
«Alien» (1979, dir. Ridley Scott)
«Aliens» (1986, dir. James Cameron)
«Armageddon» (1998, dir. Michael Bay)
«Avatar» (2009, dir. James Cameron)
«Battleship» (2012, dir. Peter Berg)
«Cargo» (2009, dir. Ivan Engler, Ralph Etter)
«Elysium» (2013, dir. Neill Blomkamp)
«Europa Report» (2013, dir. Sebastián Cordero)
«Event Horizon» (1997, dir. Paul Anderson)
«Gravity» (2013, dir. Alfonso Cuarón)
«Guardians of the Galaxy» (2014, dir. James Gunn)
«Interstellar » (2014, dir. Christopher Nolan)
«Lockout» (2012, dir. James Mather, Stephen St. Leger)
«Lost in Space» (1998, dir. Stephen Hopkins)
«Man of Steel» (2013, dir. Zack Snyder)
«Mission to Mars» (2000, dir. Brian De Palma)
«Moon» (2009, dir. Duncan Jones)
«Oblivion» (2013, dir. Joseph Kosinski)
«Pandorum» (2009, dir. Christian Alvart)
«Prometheus» (2012, dir. Ridley Scott)
«Solaris» (1972, dir. Andrey Tarkovskiy)
«Solaris» (2002, dir. Steven Soderbergh)
«Star Trek» (2009, dir. J.J. Abrams)
«Star Trek: Into Darkness» (2013, dir. J.J. Abrams)
«Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope» (1977, dir. George Lucas)
«Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi» (1983, dir.Richard Marquand)
«Starship Troopers» (1997, dir. Paul Verhoeven)
«Sunshine» (2007, dir. Danny Boyle)
«The Fountain» (2006, dir. Darren Aronofsky)
«The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy» (2005, dir. Garth Jennings)
«The Last Days on Mars» (2013, dir. Ruairi Robinson)
«The Signal» (2014, dir. William Eubank)
«Thor: The Dark World» (2013, dir. Alan Taylor)
«Transformers: Dark of the Moon» (2011, dir. Michael Bay)

(View on Vimeo)

Wanderers – a short film by Erik Wernquist

For more information and stills gallery, please turn to: http://j.mp/1y9Y35F
(Just in case my website runs slow, here is a link to an imgur album version of the gallery: http://j.mp/1y5alIX)

Wanderers is a vision of humanity’s expansion into the Solar System, based on scientific ideas and concepts of what our future in space might look like, if it ever happens. The locations depicted in the film are digital recreations of actual places in the Solar System, built from real photos and map data where available.
Without any apparent story, other than what you may fill in by yourself, the idea of the film is primarily to show a glimpse of the fantastic and beautiful nature that surrounds us on our neighboring worlds – and above all, how it might appear to us if we were there.

CREDITS:
VISUALS – Erik Wernquist – erik@erikwernquist.com
MUSIC – Cristian Sandquist – cristiansandquist@mac.com
WORDS AND VOICE – Carl Sagan
COLOR GRADE – Caj Müller/Beckholmen Film – caj@beckholmenfilm.se
LIVE ACTION PHOTOGRAPHY – Mikael Hall/Vidiotism – mikael@vidiotism.com
LIVE ACTION PERFORMANCE – Anna Nerman, Camilla Hammarström, Hanna Mellin
VOCALIST – Nina Fylkegård
THANK YOU – Johan Persson, Calle Herdenberg, Micke Lindgren, Satrio J. Studt, Tomas Axelsson, Christian Lundqvist, Micke Lindell, Sigfrid Söderberg, Fredrik Strage, Johan Antoni, Henrik Johansson, Michael Uvnäs, Hanna Mellin

THIS FILM WAS MADE WITH USE OF PHOTOS AND TEXTURES FROM:
NASA/JPL, NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center Scientific Visualization Studio, ESA, John Van Vliet, Björn Jonsson (and many others, of which I unfortunately do not know the names)

(View on Vimeo)