Design Hardware & Software

DESIGN West: Thomas Dolby to Keynote

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Soundtrack of the 1980s
williamlweaver   3/22/2012 11:31:05 AM
Each person has a decade which defines them, and maybe it is that decade which encompass the years of transformation into adulthood. For me the 1980's encompasses high school, college, and the first two years of graduate school. It's the decade that included the "Shining City on a Hill" metaphor, the Space Shuttle, John Williams, and the movies Top Gun, Gremlins, Ghost Busters, Airplane!, The Empire Strikes Back, and Indiana Jones. For me it represents the optimism that comes along with innovation and advancement in science and engineering.

Thomas Dolby was a large part of that. I wish we knew the secret ingredient we could add to our current decade to spur more excitement in exploration.

Alexander Wolfe
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Re: Soundtrack of the 1980s
Alexander Wolfe   3/23/2012 10:26:01 AM
On the tech side, the 80s (and '90s for that matter) were decades of incredible innovation. Now, things are more mature and I would say that the advances are not as "WOW" to the public, because they require more understanding of technology, and we live in a scientifically illiterate culture. I do like Dolby's studio on a lifeboat idea. Hope he finds his missing submarine.

Beth Stackpole
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Re: Soundtrack of the 1980s
Beth Stackpole   3/26/2012 7:57:16 AM
I love the recording studio on a lifeboat. How entertaining. I remember Dolby's "Blinded me by Science" song--it was a favorite of a couple of my friends back in college days and now the words have any real meaning given Dolby's clear commitment and passion for leveraging technology to boost innovation.

I have to agree with Alex that the general public has been somewhat immune to technology/innovation advances. After all, you don't have to be a committed reader of Popular Science or Design News, for that matter, to hear about cool new advances and quirky technology experiments. All you have to do is dial in to mainstream media and you're awash in stories on everything from cool robots to 3D printed organs.

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