Monday, February 15, 2016

Science ##

I was working on a new Unity tutorial today that involved multiple light sources.  I find it amazing that I can use a piece of software to just create different levels and hues of light and the physics within the application takes care of smoothing it across the object/s.  That's an amazing amount of power to wield with almost no programmatic effort (on my part).

Here's a main light, rim light, and fill light, all bouncing off my main object with varying intensities, hues, and positions.  It mostly came down to copy and paste.

It reminded me of this cover from the Science magazines my parents ordered for me when I was younger.  There was one cover where they showed several pool balls rendered by a computer.  In 1984, this was freaking magic to me.  The fact that it was difficult to even find the covers tells you how early in popular computing 1984 was.  I couldn't find the correct magazine searching on line, but Kyle tracked it down.  It's the one in the upper right corner.  But searching around for the right cover let me see all the issues that I remember.  There isn't a single issue of this magazine I didn't cherish and read and reread and there wasn't a single cover that I didn't immediately remember.  Between those and Gaming magazine, that was a huge part of my teenage reading (well, and Mack Bolin books at $0.10 each from the flea market, but that was altogether different).  That 20 discoveries that changed our lives issue I carried around with me for weeks; maybe even months.

There was one on sharks (I believe that was early on, Science 81) that had me obsessed with the critters.  As well as this one about undersea exploration from the same year that was so cool.

And this one, a larger version of one of those in the montage above, which is a beautiful cover.  There's a wikipedia article on the magazine, but it's short and no associated covers.  Probably worth fixing were I so inclined.  The article includes this sad bit, that I remember well because I hated the format of Discover compared to Science ##, "Science was purchased in 1986 by Time Inc. and folded into Discover, the last issue being July 1986. A few issues of Discover after the merger feature a stamp noting "Now including Science 86", but this quickly disappeared. This claim was somewhat suspect, however, as all of the Science staff was immediately laid off after the takeover."

1 comment:

Dr. Tufte said...

Appreciate your post about how much Science8x meant to you. I also got a gift subscription around 1982. It's really hard to find the covers, and impossible to find the articles. I'm actually looking for 2-3 that still stick in my mind. If you ever come across a site with some, post it back here.