A drama that shook the world. The story of Apollo 13 is the story of an almost trivial routine mission, which suddenly culminates in an almost hopeless fight for the lives of three astronauts.
On April 11, 1970, NASA launched its third mission to the moon. The launch platform for Apollo 13 was platform number 13. After just nine months before, more than one million people had witnessed the first live launch to the moon of Apollo 11 at Cape Kennedy, the 80,000 space enthusiasts at this launch were a manageable size. Among the guests of honour was the German Chancellor Willy Brandt, but for NASA and its audience the greatest adventure of mankind had apparently already become a trivial routine event. All this was to change suddenly – a few hours later, on April 13, 1970.
The drama of Apollo 13
“Okay, we’ve had a problem” the pilot of the command module “Odyssey” Jack Swigert radioed to the ground station with hardly surpassable coolness. Commander James Lovell confirms this with the legendary words, “Houston, we’ve had a problem.”
Astronauts Jim Lovell, Fred Haise and Jack Swigert are already more than 300,000 kilometres away from Earth when an explosion ruptures one of the Apollo spacecraft’s oxygen tanks. Not a “problem”, but an impending or rather already occurred catastrophe. The spacecraft races away from Earth on a trajectory that puts it in a safe orbit around the moon. Once in orbit, the spacecraft would have become the tomb of the three men. Imagine a memento for eternity. The damaged Apollo 13 “Odyssey” orbits our satellite as a steel grave of three men forever and ever.
In our film “The greatest adventure of mankind” Ulrich Walter describes the situation.
Film excerpt: “The greatest adventure of mankind”
At the moment of highest danger Houston shows the great ability of a team of people who cannot and will not give up. Scientists – among them first and foremost rine Johnson and Margaret Hamilton – calculate in a few hours the possibility of changing the flight path with the resources still available in the two space capsules. The situation appeared to be completely hopeless – as Ulrich Walter reports.
At an end?
Film excerpt: “The greatest adventure of mankind”
The Lunar Module’s fuel reserves would have to be sufficient to accelerate the team by means of a precalculated engine ignition in such a way that the trajectory would return to Earth at exactly the right angle after entering the lunar gravity field. To do this, the ship would have to be rotated and, above all, the on-board computer would have to be reprogrammed in order to be able to carry out the ignition and burn time exactly.
New flight path
Film excerpt: “The greatest adventure of mankind”
Ignition by hand would be too imprecise. The computer scientists from MIT and IBM work feverishly all night long on the necessary codes. The new flight program has to be uploaded to the on-board computer by radio in time, because the maneuver could not be performed by the ground station alone, because it has to be done without radio communication. Homer Ahr was one of IBM’s “Maneuver Control Programmers” on the Apollo 13 mission: “We didn’t even think about getting it back, we simply did everything we could to get it back”.
The first ignition is successful only 5 hours after the catastrophe occurred. But still the ship is too slow. Only a second ignition of the engines will accelerate Apollo 13 so that the oxygen reserves on board are sufficient.
Aquarius saves the crew
Film excerpt: “The greatest adventure of mankind”
Meanwhile, the lives of the astronauts in the spaceship must be saved. The Odyssey’s systems are shut down, the 3 men squeeze into the 2 man capsule of the Aquarius lander. Here another problem will soon arise. The lunar module does not have enough lithium hydroxide air filters to absorb the toxic CO2 from the breath of three people. The sufficient lithium hydroxide cartridges of the command module Odyssey do not fit into the ports of the lunar module. In the control centre, the scientists improvise a CO2 filter from the materials available to the astronauts in the Aquarius: Hoses, a box, a sock. This also works.
The rescuing improvisation talent
Film excerpt: “The greatest adventure of mankind”
The film also shows how the public on earth reacts to the drama. If the launch of Apollo 13 was perceived more as a minor matter, the audience is back at the moment of the catastrophe. Hundreds of thousands fear for the lives of the spacemen, praying for the success of the rescue operation. This has to do with sensationalism, the fascination of the catastrophe. The actually scientifically sober space flight can suddenly be translated into fate.
The public’s sympathy
Film excerpt: “The greatest adventure of mankind”
The astronauts were helped by the talent of the scientists and engineers, their great knowledge, their ability to keep their nerve, to work together and to reach the saving point with improvised solutions. It just went well once again. A miracle? I think not. President Kennedy’s grand vision of “reaching the moon, not because it’s easy, but because it’s difficult” has inspired and brought the NASA team together in a unique way. Kennedy calls on the entire nation to achieve this goal. The Apollo Project has up to 400,000 people at times working on the realization of their president’s “mission”, which remained as his great legacy after his assassination. Here is the central excerpt from Kennedy’s speech on September 12, 1962 in Houston.
Excerpt from President Kennedy’s speech 12.9.1962, Houston Texas
The greatest adventure of mankind
The Apollo program was indeed the “greatest adventure of mankind” – comparable perhaps only to the departure of Christopher Columbus in 1492, and the near tragedy of Apollo 13 shows the tremendous risk that the astronauts took. The last film clip shows once again the uncertain moment of the landing of the capsule, when the radio communication was interrupted for several minutes.
Film excerpt: “The greatest adventure of mankind”
The cause of the accident
The explosion of the oxygen tank of Apollo 13 was thoroughly investigated by NASA. The result of the investigation revealed a defect in a thermal switch that had happened on the ground before launch and went unnoticed. NASA has posted a summary of the investigation.
The historical role of Apollo
Some today claim that the Apollo program was a waste of money. I would disagree with that. The Vietnam War at its height cost the USA more dollars in a single year than 10 years of the Apollo program. Not to mention the tens of thousands of victims of the war. President Kennedy in his speech in Houston conceived the Apollo Program as part of a peaceful competition of nations. It was the answer to Khrushchev’s vision of peaceful space travel. To me, both embody productive visions for our technological and scientific development. The fact that, especially after the assassination of Kennedy and the disempowerment of Khrushchev, the destructive forces in the foreign policy of the two superpowers gained the upper hand, ultimately devalued the vision of Apollo at the moment of its greatest triumph of the successful moon landing of 1969 and robbed it of its chances. The dying in Vietnam continued unimpressed. But the rescue of the Apollo 13 astronauts proves that we must never give up hope. The sign of a spaceship orbiting the moon with three dead astronauts does not exist today.
We told the dramatic story of Apollo 13 in our film “The greatest adventure of mankind” for ZDF. The film can be seen in the media library of ZDF and will soon be available on the streaming platform.
A historical documentary film
The movie “Houston, we’ve had a problem” was produced for NASA in 1970. It mainly shows NASA’s mission control room and the work of engineers and scientists in rescuing the spacemen. The restored archive material can be obtained from us.
“Houston we’ve got a problem” Documentary of 1970 – remastered by zb Media
Houston, we’ve had a problemStephan Bleek2020-03-11T13:56:09+01:00
The Buchenwald concentration camp had been reached by US troops on 11 April 1945. The film was shot 5 days later, on 16 April 1945. The US army had brought a selected group of Weimar citizens to the concentration camp.
It’s a sunny and warm spring day. On April 16, 1945, Weimar citizens were taken to the concentration camp only 10 kilometers away to show them the inhuman horror of the Nazi regime. The shots will be shot by an American film team from William Wyler’s “Special Film Project”. Unfortunately, the shots are not in a very good condition. The later American President General Dwight D. Eisenhower writes about the background of the action:
“I have never been able to describe the feelings that came over me when I first saw such an undeniable testimony to the inhumanity of the Nazis and their unscrupulous disregard for the most primitive commandments of humanity. […] Nothing has ever shaken me as much as this sight. […] As soon as I returned to Patton’s headquarters in the evening, I telegraphed to Washington and London and urged the government authorities to immediately send a number of newspaper editors and people’s representatives to Germany without further ado. I thought it right to make this evidence immediately available to the public in America and England in such a way that there was no room for cynical doubt.”
Weimar and Buchenwald
For us Germans, Weimar means Goethe, Schiller, German classical high culture. In contrast, Buchenwald describes the bestial rule of the totalitarian Nazi regime. Only ten kilometres lie between the centre of Weimar, the city of poets and thinkers, and the Buchenwald concentration camp, which was built on the Ettersberg in 1937. The Buchenwald concentration camp is one of the largest camps in the Third Reich. Almost 280,000 people from over 50 nations were imprisoned in Buchenwald over the 8 years of its existence. About 21,000 prisoners were liberated by the US troops on April 11, 1945.
It is not plausible that the citizens of the small Thuringian town of Weimar knew nothing of the existence of the camp. Could they have guessed the conditions? Shortly before the end of the Nazi regime with almost certainty. After bombing raids, concentration camp prisoners were used to clean up the middle of the city. And in the weeks before the liberation of the camp, thousands of prisoners had been driven on death marches to clear the camp at the last minute. This could not have remained hidden from the population.
The reactions to the horror
The film footage shows to a certain degree the extent of horror and the disturbing reactions, especially of women. At the crematorium, piled up corpses can be seen. The horror is written all over the faces of the viewers. The American soldiers have set up a table on the roll call square. Objects from the medical test area of the camp can be seen on it. Above all glass vessels with preserved human organs inside. The killing of prisoners during human experiments was part of everyday life in the camp. The faces of most of these Weimar people, to whom an American officer explains the background to the creation of the showpieces, remain apathetic and unbelieving.
We have scanned the archive films on HD. The rights of use can be requested from us.
Buchenwald Concentration Camp April 1945Stephan Bleek2020-03-06T19:18:19+01:00
The films by “Frau Hitler”, by Eva Braun, are among the few testimonies of the everyday life of Adolf Hitler and the powerful of the Third Reich. The films were shot in the years after 1936. They mainly show scenes on the terrace of the Berghof am Obersalzberg in Berchtesgaden, but also their excursions in Upper Bavaria or trips to Scandinavia or Italy. Hitler’s entourage at Berghof is captured in many scenes. They present the harmless face and behaviour of a society of murderous followers of the leader of the Third Reich. One example is the smart young man Dr. Karl Brandt, Hitler’s on-call doctor. Since 1939 he has been responsible for tens of thousands of euthanasia murders. In 1945 the Berghof is bombed, another film from May 1945 shows the ruins of the Obersalzberg area.
The “Photohaus Hoffmann” in Munich’s Amalienstraße has just moved into 25 new, larger business premises. On a Friday evening at the beginning of October 1929, a man arrives, he is in his early forties and at one meter 75 rather average, the few steps from his office in Schellingstraße across to visit his friend and party comrade Hoffmann in the new business. He enters the shop and Hoffmann asks him into the next room. As so often, the visitor is nervous and restless. Hoffman thinks a snack will do him good. That’s why he calls his new apprentice to get beer and Leberkäs from a nearby innkeeper.
Leberkäs and beer for the “Wolf
When the young trainee returns with jugs and meat cheese, the men stand at the light table bent over new photographs. Hoffman fetches plates and cutlery and asks the trainee to sit with them.
Eva Braun is just 17, has finished her commercial school in Munich and started her apprenticeship a week before. The special guest is called “Herr Wolf”. As Hoffmann remarks, he has less eyes for his meal than for the girl he is staring at all the time. Since it is already late, Eva wants to go home. The visitor offers to drive her home in his cabriolet, but she refuses.
The following morning, her boss Hoffmann asks if she had not recognised Mr Wolf? “Have a look around, he is Adolf Hitler, who hangs here on so many photos of us”. For example – reconstructed from stories told by the Braun family – a story begins that will be one of the best kept secrets of the Third Reich. And which leads to the films of “Frau Hitler”.
A month of fate
October 1929 is a historically significant month. Hitler and his NSDAP were still a small splinter party in Germany. Only 2.8 percent of the voters had voted for the party in the Reichstag elections the year before. But Hitler’s party already has rich financiers. And a few days after the first evening meeting between Adolf Hitler and Eva Braun, the New York stock exchange crashes. The collapse of the world economy becomes a chance for the populist Hitler to become an important political power factor in the country overnight.
For he now has access to the mass press of the Hugenberg newspaper group and can drum his message all over the country: I, the Führer, am making Germany great again. The Mummenschanz in party uniforms pretends to be serious, secure and strategic. The party is a male alliance, arm of a military organization, held together in the minds of the narratives of the front fighters of the world war. “My struggle” – with success. In 1930, the NSDAP achieved 18 percent of the votes. Today we would call that the success of a populist.
For the simple mind of Hitler, who himself believes in his role as Redeemer with religious fervour, this success may have been connected with the entry into his life of the blonde Madonna figure of Eva Braun.
A few years earlier, in 1923, Adolf Hitler had come to Berchtesgaden for the first time to meet his party colleague Dietrich Eckart. Eckart was the editor of the party newspaper “Völkischer Beobachter”. After his conviction and imprisonment in Landsberg, Hitler returned to the mountains immediately after his release. 1926 he writes there on volume 2 of “Mein Kampf”. His preference for young women is already evident here. Mizzi, the 16-year-old Maria Reiter, succumbs in the autumn of 1926 to the “stabbing gaze” of the party leader, who is 21 years older. Half a child, half a woman, an easy-to-control playmate, an immaculate Madonna, after that is the “wolf”. Until 1931 the unequal liaison lasts, with which the girl let “everything happen with (herself)” according to her own statement. However, whether “everything” actually happened, whether Adolf Hitler seduced the minor, can no longer be clarified.
In 1928 Hitler was able to permanently rent a holiday home on Obersalzberg, the Haus Wachenfeld. And again a young woman comes into play. His niece Geli Raubal, whose guardian he is, becomes entangled in a tragic love affair with her uncle. She ends in suicide in 1931.
Eva Braun films her lover Adolf Hitler…
Hitler comes to money and power and buys the house Wachenfeld in 1933. Now the idyllic holiday home is transformed into a stately summer residence according to Hitler’s specifications. The Obersalzberg becomes a restricted area. The Führer-Versailles of the dictator in the mountains.
A court belongs to a pleasure palace. Eva Braun is also part of the party at the Berghof. A relationship has developed between the wolf, Adolf Hitler, and the 33-year younger since the first encounter in October 1929. After the death of Geli Raubal, Eva Braun became Hitler’s new muse and lover. Simple and nice, finds Albert Speer. A simple Munich girl. She is 19 years old, he is now 42. Eva Braun also makes two suicide attempts. Because the party leader does not make the relationship public. Marriage is out of the question. But he lets his relationship cost him something, buys Eva Braun a house, provides her with a princely income. Keeps her in the golden cage “Berghof”.
… in colour
Heinrich Hoffmann, Hitler’s in-house photographer, was one of the first to gain access to the new Agfacolor colour films developed by AGFA in 1936 in the mid-1930s. Eva Braun is able to capture the scenery at Obersalzberg with this film material. Frau Hitler’s films, which were kept top secret during the Third Reich, allow an unusually close look at Hitler. The films were found and confiscated in 1945 by American soldiers in Eva Braun’s villa at Wasserburgerstrasse 12 (now Delpstrasse) in Munich’s prestigious Bogenhausen district and in Austria.
In the first part of our cut you can see Hitler in white NSDAP party uniform in conversation with his adjutant SA-Gruppenführer Wilhelm Brückner in brown uniform jacket. Albert Forster, then an important official of the German Labor Front, can also be seen with his back to the camera. Hitler had four adjutants who can be seen in other parts of the films. There were also three military adjutants. One sequence shows Hitler in a brown uniform, an excursion in a convertible and a bumpy scene at the staircase to the Berghof building. After all, the always irritable dictator appreciates his girlfriend’s passion for film and plays his role as ruler in the film well-behaved. Often for the pleasure of those involved, who come into the picture by chance. It is said that at the Berghof Hitler felt like he was part of the family. Private shots, however, look different. There is no casualness to be seen. Hitler tries like a bad actor to play the nimbus of the leader infallibly led by Providence.v
Hitler pats the children of his architect and later arms minister Speer, Albert (junior) and Hilde. We see a smart Albert Speer on the balustrade of the Berghof terrace. Speer, by the way, ridiculed the building, which according to Goebbels was Hitler’s favourite place and his real home, as the work of a dilettante. What was meant was Hitler himself, who had his architectural ideas realised there. The Speer couple nevertheless became regular guests at Obersalzberg and belonged to the closest circle around the dictator. There was the power and the money. And power is a beguiling plant. Albert Speer’s arrogance becomes visible on the film. Johanna Morell, wife of Hitler’s doctor, can also be seen. And Foreign Minister Joachim von Ribbentrop. A photograph from the summer of 1938. Then again Speer and Gerhard Engel, who was the liaison to the General Staff of the Army.
The colourful film show…
Hitler tried to hide his relationship with Eva Braun from the public. Eva Braun was not allowed to attend any official reception in Berlin. When visitors came, she, the mistress, was also hidden on the Berghof in the next room. Eva Braun attempted two suicides to escape this difficult double life. The first in 1932, even before Hitler had come to power, the second in 1935. An outcry of deepest despair. Because Hitler must have felt his love for Eva Braun as a flaw and weakness. It is said that he treated her contemptuously in the circle of the faithful of the Berghof.
… for distraction?
But she seems to have found joy and happiness in the magnificent Bavarian mountain world around the Obersalzberg and on summer excursions to the Bavarian lakes. Because Hitler enables her to lead a luxurious life in idleness. She has cut together her private film footage as “Bunte Filmschau”. A film clip shows a bathing excursion with the Braun family, the parents Franziska and Friedrich and Ilse, the younger sister Evas and secretary of Albert Speer, the actress Else von Möllendorff, Annie Rehborn-Brandt and Karl Brandt, Sofie Stork and her clique in the sports pool Fleischmann, Steinebach am Wörthsee. The film title “Die bunte Filmschau” was drawn by Sofie Stork.
Dr. med. Karl Brandt can be seen on many photographs. He belongs to the regular crew of the Berghof. Since 1934 he was a constant companion of Hitler as a surgeon, the “accompanying physician”. If Hitler had been involved in an accident, he should help immediately. The young, slim, tall man is an SS group leader and doctor at the Berlin University Surgical Clinic. In 1939, Brandt was personally commissioned by Hitler to lead the euthanasia program.
A thousandfold murderer
Brandt was responsible for the murder of thousands of mentally handicapped people. The idea of defining the value of a human life “at human discretion” is not an invention of the National Socialists. Eugenics had been an internationally recognized research discipline since the end of the 19th century. Francis Galton, the cousin of Charles Darwin, had founded this scientific teaching. High-quality genes were to be promoted, inferior ones excluded. From here, euthanasia, which can mean either euthanasia or deliberate killing, was also scientifically legitimized. Karl Brandt later tries to persuade himself that the responsibility for a killing lay with the doctor treating him.
A friendly looking intelligent young man
How can the scientific discourse in society slide in this gruesome direction? There was hardly any discussion in the medical profession of the Nazi era about the admissibility of killing programs. Under the conditions of the Nazi society, what did it mean to “extend the powers of physicians to be appointed by name” in such a way that “at human discretion” “at the most critical assessment of their state of illness” “grace death can be granted”? Well over 100,000 people were killed at the end of these instructions, as Braun himself confirmed during his interrogation. Scientific arguments serve to destroy humanity. Braun was therefore sentenced to death and executed in 1948.
Also today we can only act correctly in the discussion of euthanasia if we are aware of the influence of the circumstances of our environment on our judgement. But science is not value-free, not “true”, but always a child of its time. In this respect it is a deceptive basis, especially when it comes to the decision about life and death.
The women of the Berghof
The Berghof became Hitler’s most popular and important residence in 1935. Eva Braun’s films immortalize a number of women who belonged to the court. The NSDAP originated from the military male unions of the time of the First World War. The propaganda of the NSDAP saw the role of women as helpers and fellow combatants of men. Hitler was always able to cast a spell over women. The ecstatic scenes at NSDAP major events are well-known, at which women enthusiastic about leadership are close to powerlessness.
Little dots on the mountain
Eva Braun has titled a film sequence “Pünktchen am Berg”. “Pünktchen” is the Munich actress Else von Möllendorff. She was a close friend of Eva. You can also see Gerda Bormann, Herta Schneider and Evas Braun’s sister Gretl. Casual posing of the protégés of a powerful man who is about to reach for world domination. He has tens of thousands of Jewish families humiliated and destroyed without hesitation at this time, he does not shrink from any act of violence, he plans the great war that will cost millions of victims and destroy Germany as well as Europe. The little dot on the mountain – despite all its harmlessness in detail a disturbing document of naive normality.
Fit für den Führer
Einige der sommerlichen Filmaufnahmen von den oberbayerischen Seen zeigen Eva Braun bei Fitnessübungen. Also kann man annehmen, dass sie Hitler mit diesen Aufnahmen beeindrucken wollte. Wie immer die Beziehung zwischen den beiden aussah, Körperkult und Sex spielen für Hitlers Muse eine große Rolle.
Die First Lady? Offizielle Besucher
Die Rolle der “First Lady” des Dritten Reichs spielt seit 1931 Magda Quandt, die später Josef Goebbels heiratet. In Berlin zeigte sich Hitler auf offiziellen Empfängen an ihrer Seite, sehr zum Missvergnügen seines Propagandachefs. Goebbels bemerkt über Hitler, er habe bei Frauen kein Glück, weil er ihnen zu weich sei. Jedoch gehört zum Mythos Hitler seine Rolle als alleinstehender, im Prinzip für alle Frauen erreichbarer Hohepriester. “Wenn das der Führer wüßte” lautete ein Topos im Volk, mit dem die Untaten, die Korruption und das Versagen der NS Funktionäre zwar bemerkt, Hitler und sein totalitäres System aber entschuldigt wurden. Deswegen wurden zig-Tausende Eingaben, Beschwerden und Bittschriften aus der Bevölkerung an den Führer geschickt, im naiven Glauben an den gerechten Führer und Messias.
Nur auf dem abgesperrten Gelände des Berghofs konnte Hitler eine private Rolle spielen. Die Lage über dem Berchtesgadener Tal entsprach seinem Selbstbild als weitsichtiger Visionär und Künstler. Der Berghof wurde mit den ausgedehnten Aufenthalten von Hitler zu einer Art Regierungssitz. Für die Reichskanzlei unter Hans Heinrich Lammers wurde eigens eine Aussenstelle in Bischofswiesen errichtet. Der Berghof war mit Telefon und Fernschreiber rund um die Uhr erreichbar. Die Sekretärinnen und Adjutanten arbeiteten im Gebäude. Dennoch liebte Hitler es, sich hier unerreichbar zu machen. Andererseits gingen Parteigrößen ein und aus und offizielle Staatsbesuche gab es auch am Berghof.
Ein offenes Geheimnis?
Die Rolle von Eva Braun konnte nicht verborgen bleiben. Offiziell wurde Eva Braun als Hitlers Sekretärin geführt. Und vielleicht gab sie sich als Angestellte der Firma Heinrich Hoffmann und Fotografin aus, wenn sie Filmaufnahmen der Besucher machte? Die Aufnahmen zeigen bei sorgfältiger Durchsicht jedoch, dass niemandem im Führungszirkel des Dritten Reichs die Rolle von Eva Braun verborgen geblieben war.
Mussolinis Aussenminister Graf Galeazzo Ciano kokettiert auf einem Foto mit ihr. Und Josef Goebbels grüßt jovial in die Kamera, auch Himmler scherzt entspannt. Dem mächtigen NSDAP Schatzmeister Franz Xaver Schwarz wirft sich Eva kokett an die Brust. Er oder Martin Bormann steckten ihr Kuverts mit Bargeld zu. Hermann Esser, Parteibuch Nummer 2 der NSDAP, führt sie feixend am Arm.
Nach dem Ende des Naziregimes wird Esser versuchen, mit einem Manuskript “Frauen um Hitler” Kasse zu machen. Schon 1938 wurde in einer tschechischen Zeitschrift auf Eva Braun hingewiesen. Jedoch hat der amerikanische Reuters Korrespondent in München, Ernest Pope, der einige Kenntnisse des Nachtlebens der Münchner NS Prominenz in den Jahren vor 1940 ausbreitet, zu Eva Braun nur wenig berichten können. Die deutsche Öffentlichkeit erfuhr von diesen Vermutungen allerdings nichts. Weil, so Josef Goebbels , der Führer “sich voll und ganz der Nation widmet und kein Privatleben hat …”. Aber die Neugier der Deutschen war risengroß, Tausende defilierten in den Sommerwochen am Zaun des Berghofs.
Am 28. April 1945 diktierte Hitler seiner Sekretärin Traudl Junge: “Da ich in den Jahren des Kampfes glaubte, es nicht verantworten zu können, eine Ehe zu gründen, habe ich mich nunmehr vor Beendigung dieser irdischen Laufbahn entschlossen, jenes Mädchen zur Frau zu nehmen, das nach langen Jahren treuer Freundschaft aus freiem Willen in die schon fast belagerte Stadt hereinkam, um ihr Schicksal mit dem meinen zu teilen.” Eva Braun wird für 24 Stunden zu Hitlers Ehefrau. Dann enden beide durch Selbstmord. Zeitgleich am 25. April wird der Berghof von britischen Bombern in Schutt und Asche gelegt. Amerikanische Soldaten filmen Anfang Mai 1945 die gespenstische Szenerie.
Beitrag: Stephan Bleek. Lizenzierungsanfragen für Texte, Film- und Fotomaterial bitte an zb Media.
The film “A Computer Glossary” was produced in 1968 for the IBM Pavilion at the San Antonio World Exposition. It shows the functioning of a computer, the information machine, with funny and instructive graphic animations. Ray and Charles Eames created a highly interesting short film.
The designer couple Ray and Charles Eames
Charles Eames and his wife and partner Ray are best known for their chair design or their famous house in Pacific Palisades near Los Angeles. They have shaped the design of the 20th century. It is little known that they have also produced numerous films, including more than fifty films, exhibitions and books for the computer group IBM.
Technique of representation
With the help of animations, characteristic aspects of the logic of electronic problem solving are presented. With its two image levels, the film provides an introduction to the functioning of a computer. A process and its cybernetic representation are illustrated by simple means. The film shows an animated sequence of an event on the first image level and the representation of this event in a flowchart on a second image level. Such flowcharts were the usual basis for the creation of computer programs in the 1960s. The diagram uses the then common classical symbols for data flow diagrams. With the help of templates, such processes were initially recorded manually. The careful analysis and exact representation of the sequence of the respective data flow is the decisive prerequisite for the correct creation of the program instructions for controlling the computer.
The film was made in 1968 by Glen Fleck, an employee of the office of Ray and Charles Eames, with support from Lynn Stoller of IBM. The film won a bronze medal at the Atlanta International Film Festival in 1969.
The World Exposition San Antonio
The film by IBM and the Eames Office was first shown in 1968 at IBM’s Lakeside Pavilion at the Hemisfair World Exhibition in San Antonio, Texas.
Performances in Germany
In the 1970s, he was presented by the US Information Agency in the foreign offices of the USA. We were able to see the film in 1973 at the Amerika Haus in Munich. A copy of the film is now in the National Archives in College Park. A digital copy is in the archive of zb Media. Here is information about the licensing possibilities
To learn more about Ray und Charles Eames visit Eames office page.
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