Computer Kids #6

The tape features raw footage from the television show "Wired In." While the  program never actually came to fruition, the footage and demos put together are an interesting look into the the technological trends and innovations of the 1980s. In this video, we watch as children put computers to use at The Learning Circuit, a computer learning center in Los Angeles, California. The filmmakers also interview several children about their experiences with the new technology.

00:00Copy video clip URL This tape begin with color bars.

00:36Copy video clip URL Cut to a shot of a group of children sitting in front of a row of computers. The filmmakers go down the line, interviewing each child about their experience with computers. One child talks about his liking computers more than teachers: “I like computers better than teachers because they don’t scream at you and they don’t give you five minutes like my teachers always did.” Another child talks about the benefits of working with computers and how he can put his newly acquired skills to good use in the science world as an adult. He also shows the filmmakers a rocket program he created.

07:28Copy video clip URL The filmmakers interview twin sisters Sarah and Susan about their experiences with computers. The girls talk about the differences between the PET Commodore and Apple II computer. They make a few comments about the differences between natural and artificial intelligence as well. “Some people think that the computer has a mind of it’s own, but it really doesn’t. It’s just like a piece of  machinery that’s made into like a sort of mechanic brain or something.”When asked whether or not they think of the computer as a person, one of the girl’s says she thinks of the computer as a “mechanic friend.” “It’s like a computer is sort of alive in your own mind and also in the own ways that you make things up and then you can program and like you can take tapes or disks and you can save it all then add more ideas onto your programs.”

12:03Copy video clip URL The girls talk about the practical educational uses of a computer. The two girls state that they like computers better than their teachers because “they don’t really shout or send you to the principals office or anything.” They go on to talk about their use of computers in their future professions.

15:21Copy video clip URL When asked what a computer teaches them to think about, one of the girls responds, “Well, sometimes more about your own self.”

16:54Copy video clip URL One of the filmmakers asks the two girls about women becoming more involved in the field of computer technology. One of the girls makes an interesting comment about the future of women in the computer world. “Computers don’t have any kind of sex, you know like, they aren’t male or female. So it doesn’t matter” “Women are getting a lot more jobs that men are doing now and men are finally thinking well “I guess they can do this, I guess we we’re wrong,” luckily–shows that women have some rights too.”

20:53Copy video clip URL Cut to a shot of two boys programming a UCLA graphic into the computer. The two also say that if they could do anything with computers that they would make them easier to understand.

22:27Copy video clip URL Tape ends.



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