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Vintage Film Clip Reveals Some of the Earliest Computer Rendered Images of Chicago

We often take computer generated architectural renderings for granted these days as they've long ago replaced hand drawn images of buildings as the standard for many architecture firms. Things were much different a few decades ago, and creating images of cityscapes using computers was a lengthy and arduous process. Illustrator Peter C. Little has unearthed a retro 16mm film from Skidmore, Owings & Merrill called 9 Cities that recreates nine famous U.S. cities using early computer generated imagery, including SOM's hometown of Chicago. While the images may not be exactly sharp or impressive compared to what we're used to these days, the graphics in the film were cutting edge at the time it was released in 1984. It's just really neat to see how much our cities and computers have evolved over the years.

9 cities by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill 1984. Scanned from the original 16mm film. from peter little on Vimeo.

A few screenshots from the film:

·9 cities by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill 1984. Scanned from the original 16mm film [Vimeo]