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Characteristic of the 1990s was the move from analog to digital with cell phones, cameras, camcorders, answering machines, and other consumer electronics. This move gradually occurred with movies, in production, in distribution, and in cinemas. The 2002 movie "Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones" was shot digitally, and the 2008 "Slumdog Millionaire", filmed in India, was the first digitally-shot movie to win the Academy Award for best cinematography. Cinemas acquired digital projectors, and movies began to be distributed through the Internet and by satellite networks.  
 
Characteristic of the 1990s was the move from analog to digital with cell phones, cameras, camcorders, answering machines, and other consumer electronics. This move gradually occurred with movies, in production, in distribution, and in cinemas. The 2002 movie "Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones" was shot digitally, and the 2008 "Slumdog Millionaire", filmed in India, was the first digitally-shot movie to win the Academy Award for best cinematography. Cinemas acquired digital projectors, and movies began to be distributed through the Internet and by satellite networks.  
  
Motion pictures began as an electromechanical technology the 1890s. In the course of the 20th century, a wide range of technological advances continually reshaped the medium. Electronic and computer techniques became more and more important, and motion pictures entered the 21st century moving from the analog to the digital realm.|bibliography={{STARSBibliography|Pauthor1=Thomas Edison|Pyear1=1888|Ptitle1=Patent caveat for the "kinetoscope"|Ppublisher1=Caveat 110, 8 October 1888 (Thomas A. Edison Papers Microfilm Edition, reel 113, frame 236)|Pauthor2=|Pyear2=|Ptitle2=|Ppublisher2=|Pauthor3=|Pyear3=|Ptitle3=|Ppublisher3=|Pauthor4=|Pyear4=|Ptitle4=|Ppublisher4=|Pauthor5=|Pyear5=|Ptitle5=|Ppublisher5=|Sauthor1=Geoffrey Nowell-Smith, ed. |Syear1=1996|Stitle1=The Oxford History of World Cinema|Spublisher1=Oxford: Oxford University Press|Sauthor2=Robert Sklar|Syear2=2002|Stitle2=A World History of Film|Spublisher2=New York: Harry N. Abrams, Inc.|Sauthor3=Kristin Thompson and David Bordwell|Syear3=2009|Stitle3=Film History: An Introduction. 3rd edition|Spublisher3=New York City: McGraw-Hill|Sauthor4=|Syear4=|Stitle4=|Spublisher4=|Sauthor5=|Syear5=|Stitle5=|Spublisher5=}}|resume=Frederik Nebeker received a B.A. in mathematics from Pomona College, an M.A. in history of science from the University of Wisconsin, and a Ph.D. in history of science and technology from Princeton University.  He worked at the American Philosophical Society and at the Center for History of Physics before moving in 1990 to the IEEE History Center at Rutgers University, where he is currently Senior Research Historian.  He is author, co-author, or editor of ten books, most recently Dawn of the Electronic Age: Electrical Technologies in the Shaping of the Modern World, 1914 to 1945 (Wiley & Sons, 2009).|complete=}}[[Category:]]
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Motion pictures began as an electromechanical technology the 1890s. In the course of the 20th century, a wide range of technological advances continually reshaped the medium. Electronic and computer techniques became more and more important, and motion pictures entered the 21st century moving from the analog to the digital realm.|bibliography={{STARSBibliography|Pauthor1=Thomas Edison|Pyear1=1888|Ptitle1=Patent caveat for the "kinetoscope"|Ppublisher1=Caveat 110, 8 October 1888 (Thomas A. Edison Papers Microfilm Edition, reel 113, frame 236)|Pauthor2=|Pyear2=|Ptitle2=|Ppublisher2=|Pauthor3=|Pyear3=|Ptitle3=|Ppublisher3=|Pauthor4=|Pyear4=|Ptitle4=|Ppublisher4=|Pauthor5=|Pyear5=|Ptitle5=|Ppublisher5=|Sauthor1=Geoffrey Nowell-Smith, ed. |Syear1=1996|Stitle1=The Oxford History of World Cinema|Spublisher1=Oxford: Oxford University Press|Sauthor2=Robert Sklar|Syear2=2002|Stitle2=A World History of Film|Spublisher2=New York: Harry N. Abrams, Inc.|Sauthor3=Kristin Thompson and David Bordwell|Syear3=2009|Stitle3=Film History: An Introduction. 3rd edition|Spublisher3=New York City: McGraw-Hill|Sauthor4=|Syear4=|Stitle4=|Spublisher4=|Sauthor5=|Syear5=|Stitle5=|Spublisher5=}}|resume=Frederik Nebeker received a B.A. in mathematics from Pomona College, an M.A. in history of science from the University of Wisconsin, and a Ph.D. in history of science and technology from Princeton University.  He worked at the American Philosophical Society and at the Center for History of Physics before moving in 1990 to the IEEE History Center at Rutgers University, where he is currently Senior Research Historian.  He is author, co-author, or editor of ten books, most recently Dawn of the Electronic Age: Electrical Technologies in the Shaping of the Modern World, 1914 to 1945 (Wiley & Sons, 2009).|complete=1263398007}}[[Category:]]

Revision as of 15:53, 13 January 2010

Author: Frederik L Nebeker

Citation

One of the most influential technologies of the past hundred years has been motion pictures. Not only are movies big business, but they are also a large part of popular culture. They have an enormous impact on how people perceive the world and how people behave, as they provide information, elicit empathy, and shape everyday behavior. This entertainment medium and art form began more than a hundred years ago as a relatively simple technology of motion-picture camera and projector. Since then, continual technological innovation has improved the medium, all the while expanding its expressive possibilities.

Timeline

1834 Invention of the Zoetrope
1888 Patent caveat by Thomas Edison for the Kinetoscope
1890 Construction of a practical movie camera by Thomas Edison and W. Laurie Dickson
1892 Construction of the Kinetoscope, for viewing motion pictures, by Edison and Dickson
1894 Opening of a Kinetoscope parlor in New York City
1895 Demonstration of film projection by Auguste and Louis Lumière in Paris
1903 Release of "The Great Train Robbery", a movie that tells a story
1923 Demonstration by Lee De Forest of a sound-on-film process
1927 Successful showing of the sound movie "The Jazz Singer"
1935 Release of the first full-length color film shot in three-strip Technicolor, "Becky Sharp"
1952 Release of the 3-D movie "Bwana Devil"
1953 Introduction of the wide-screen technology CinemaScope with "The Robe"
1970 Introduction of IMAX films, projected on a much larger screen
1982 Use of computer animation in the movie "Tron"
1992 Release of the first movie with the Dolby digital sound system, "Batman Returns"
1995 Release of the first movie created entirely on a computer, "Toy Story"

Essay

One of the most influential technologies of the past hundred years has been motion pictures. A photographic technique for capturing action became a new medium, a significant part of the economy, and a dominant part of popular culture. A long series of technical advances created the medium and allowed it to grow to express the visions of filmmakers and to provide entertainment for most of the world's population.

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Bibliography

References of Historical Significance


References for Further Reading


About the Author(s)

Frederik Nebeker received a B.A. in mathematics from Pomona College, an M.A. in history of science from the University of Wisconsin, and a Ph.D. in history of science and technology from Princeton University. He worked at the American Philosophical Society and at the Center for History of Physics before moving in 1990 to the IEEE History Center at Rutgers University, where he is currently Senior Research Historian. He is author, co-author, or editor of ten books, most recently Dawn of the Electronic Age: Electrical Technologies in the Shaping of the Modern World, 1914 to 1945 (Wiley & Sons, 2009).

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