Imagine a time before smartphones. Before iBooks. Before Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and even the mighty Google. A world without web browsers, when the Internet belonged to universities and going online meant logging onto an electronic bulletin board. Now imagine being able to smell it all coming—not the details but the impact of a networked world on culture, business, politics, daily life. These were the preconditions that spawned Wired.
To mark our 20th anniversary, we’re taking you back to the beginning!
The trek to the bottom of Bay Bridge pillar number 7 (westbound) starts down a ladder below a squeaky metal trap door, continues downwards 80 feet or so on narrow metal stairs sandwiched in a column tight enough to touch either side at once, and ends by passing through a crawl space in about 3 inches of salt water.
Once there, in a round concrete chasm, sunk beneath the San Francisco Bay, there’s enough room to stand up, which is what Benny Burtt does. And in the dim light of a little flashlight, he pulls out a pistol.
It sounds like a scene from a Hollywood thriller, but it’s not — though the sounds involved might someday show up on the silver screen. Burtt, an assistant sound effects editor for Skywalker Sound, the audio arm of Lucasfilm, is inside the new Bay Bridge on a rainy Friday with three other Skywalkers. They’re firing blanks with the gun to help record the sonic impulse response — an audio impression — of the bridge’s interior before the bridge opens and Homeland Security closes it off.
See more pictures from our trek to the center of the Bay Bridge, and hear clips of the audio from Skywalker Sound over @ Wired Design!
TAKE THAT, TOKYO! WE HAVE TINY HOMES FOR OUR TINY THINGS, TOO!
For a few minutes on Thursday night, San Francisco’s new Bay Bridge was bathed in radiant white light, spilling down from thousands of LEDs, mounted on a new lighting system unlike any other.
Lamps have been making streets safer for driving since before cars were invented. Eventually, they featured hoods to reduce light pollution, and LEDs to increase efficiency. But when Bleyco, the electrical contractor for the new $7 billion bridge from Oakland to San Francisco, decided they wanted the most advanced system ever made, they reached out to a sports-lighting manufacturer, Musco.
The idea was to use cutting-edge directional lighting to carpet the bridge in solid white light, without glare on drivers’ windows or patches of dark on the road.
“When Bleyco contacted us about the project, the solution was unknown,” said Musco sales manager Adam DeJong. In 2008, when Bleyco first asked Musco to build it, the technology didn’t exist.
More @ Wired Design.
Perfect representation of what it feels like to live in SF. Paints this city perfectly. Plus the song is great, too.
Who knew a Ford Fiesta could be so cool?