Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Conan, the Boy in the Future

Conan, the Boy in the Future (未来少年コナン) (Mirai Shounen Konan) the 26 episode animation series based on Alexander Key's novel The Incredible Tide is celebrating its 40th anniversary. Produced by Nippon Animation, the series premiered across Japan on the NHK network between April 4 and October 31, 1978, on the Tuesday 19:30-20:00 timeslot. This science fiction epic is one of the first TV shows in which Hayao Miyazaki had a major role as director, crafting the storyboards and designing the characters and layouts among other tasks. 

The series has been released in multiple video formats over the years and many books have been also published in Japan where the series is a timeless classic. 

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Computer History Museum's Oral History Collection: Richard Williamson & Ken Kocienda

Video info:

Richard Williamson great up in Stafford, England, and moved to Arizona at age 11, when his father moved to the Honeywell mainframe factory in Phoenix. While at Swarthmore College studying the philosophy of language, he met Steve Jobs and joined NeXT, working on the Digital Librarian, the NeXT laser printer, and after graduation, the abortive NeXT RISC Workstation project, the AppKit and Foundation frameworks, the end-user environment and applications that shipped with NeXTSTEP. After leaving NeXT in 1994, Williamson co-founded InfoScape, which developed development tools for Java, and then worked as CTO at Resonate, a company which focused on internet server load balancing, before joining Apple. 
Ken Kocienda grew up on Long Island, New York in a Polish family, studied art history at Yale, pursued an MFA in fine art photography, and then discovered the World Wide Web in the early 1990s, and spent a number of years creating websites and writing Java, before joining Andy Herzfeld’s startup Eazel. After Eazel’s demise, Kocienda was one of a number of Eazel employees that joined Apple. 
In June of 2001, a few months after the initial version of Mac OS X 10.0 ships, Scott Forstall asked Don Melton to start the Safari/WebKit project to build a web browser and web framework for Apple. Melton hired Kocienda and Williamson, and the three of them built the initial version of Safari/WebKit from the open source Konqueror/KHTML project, after researching various open source options, including Mozilla, which was rejected due to its overly large and complicated codebase. Williamson wrote the initial OS X port of KHTML as a proof of concept in a few days, which convinced the team that it was the right choice. WebKit made it possible not only for Apple to ship the Safari browser, but also to embed web pages inside other applications as web views, as well as to create standalone apps using Web interfaces, which lead to the creation of Dashboard widgets. In a subsequent release of OS X, Kocienda added HTML text editing in WebKit to support editing rich text messages in Apple Mail using HTML. 
After several years of work on Safari, Williamson and Kocienda were recruited to join the iPhone team to work on WebKit and Safari for the iPhone. Again, the two of them were the initial engineers on the team, with Williamson eventually becoming the manager as the team grew. Williamson was a crucial voice in pushing the vision of the iPhone as a web browsing device. Beyond Safari, however, WebKit was important on the iPhone because it was used for all text display and input in iPhone 1.0, even in native applications. WebKit was also considered a contender as the API for all application development, in a way similar to Dashboard Widgets on OS X, until the decision was made to create the native UIKit framework, for reasons of internal developer productivity. The iPhone software team became divided organizationally between Williamson’s web team, which owned not only WebKit and the Safari browser but also apps implemented in WebKit, and Nitin Ganatra’s native applications team, which owned UIKit and native apps, such as Mail, that were implemented using UIKit, though there was collaboration throughout. Kocienda won an internal contest to design a workable software keyboard for the iPhone and became the engineer responsible for the keyboard for many years. Williamson’s team also built the original Maps and YouTube apps for the iPhone, implementing the native client applications in collaboration with Google’s server-side platforms and data. 
* Note: Transcripts represent what was said in the interview. However, to enhance meaning or add clarification, interviewees have the opportunity to modify this text afterwards. This may result in discrepancies between the transcript text and the video recording. Please see the transcript for further information: 
Visit for more information about the Computer History Museum's Oral History Collection. 
Catalog Number: 102740224
Lot Number: X8367.2018

Ken Kocienda has recently released a book about his days working for Apple:

Creative Selection:
Inside Apple's Design Process During the Golden Age of Steve Jobs

Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Release date: 2018-IX-4
Language: English
Number of pages: 304
Size: 6.4 x 1.1 x 9.6 inches
ISBN-10: 1250194466
ISBN-13: 978-1250194466

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Monday, September 10, 2018

BLUEPRINT | Todd McFarlane

Published on June 24, 2017

Video info:

Todd McFarlane opens up about his career as a comic book artist that includes making Spider-Man cooler and creating the Spawn character. He also shares his blueprint to launching Image Comics and McFarlane Toys.  
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COMPLEX is a community of creators and curators, armed with the Internet, committed to surfacing and sharing the voices and conversations that define our new America. Our videos exemplify convergence culture, exploring topics that include music, sneakers, style, sports and pop culture through original shows and Complex News segments. Featuring your favorite celebrities, authoritative commentary, and a unique voice, our videos make culture pop.

Sunday, August 12, 2018

Talks at Google | David Macaulay

Video info:

David Macaulay updates the worldwide bestseller The New Way Things Work to update us with the the latest developments in technology, from touchscreens to 3D printers. Each principle is captivatingly explained--with the help of a very endearing woolly mammoth. There is an illustrated survey of inventions, along with a glossary of technical terms, and an index. What possible link could there be between zippers and plows, dentist drills and windmills? Parking meters and meat grinders, jumbo jets and jackhammers, remote control and rockets, electric guitars and egg beaters?

The Way Things Work Now by David Macaulay

Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers
Release date: 2016-X-4 (Updated edition)
Language: English
Number of pages:
Size: 8.4 x 1.3 x 10.9 inches
Retail price: $35
ISBN-10: 0544824385
ISBN-13: 978-0544824386

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Saturday, July 28, 2018

Weekly Shonen Jump 50th Anniversary

Today we have received in the mail this Weekly Shonen Jump issue dated January 29, 1986 in which Goku was about to enter Red Ribbon's Muscle Tower and it happens that the WSJ is celebrating its 50th anniversary this month. The first issue of WSJ was published on August 1, 1968. So this weeks issue both the Japanese and the USA digital editions come full of bonus materias such as a talk betwen manga authors Akira Toriyama and Takehiko Inoue. Toriyama has also contributed with a drawing of Goku and a note  congratulating the anniversary.

To celebrate the event, the publisher of the magazine, Shueisha has organized an exhibition divided in 3 volumes by periods of time. It started last summer and will last until this September. The exhibition was divided in this phases:

Shonen Jump Ten vol. 1: July 18, 2017  to October 15, 2017
Shonen Jump Ten vol. 2: March 19, 2018  to June 17, 2018
Shonen Jump Ten vol. 3: July 17, 2018  to September 30, 2018

A huge amount of merchandise was created for this events, featuring all the series that have been published in the WSJ all over the years. Aaron was in Japan last year when the exhibition opened, so he managed to buy some cool stuff. For those like me that haven't been able to travel to Japan to visit the exhibition, the catalogs, that luckily are written in Japanese and English, are great way to take a glimpse of what was exhibited and come packed with lengthy interviews with the manga authors.

Official Shonen Jump sites:
Shonen Jump Japan:
Shonen Jump USA:
Shonen Jump Ten Exhibition:
Shonen Jump Ten Exhibition News:

Most of the merchandise is available in the Jump Character Store: