Computer Imaging

Computers: An Illustrated HistoryGerman art book publisher Taschen has released what I sheepishly admit is probably the perfect book for me: “Computers, An Illustrated History.” The book is a somewhat perfunctory historical account of the evolution of big iron mainframes and unexpectedly powerful ‘micro-computers’ and PCs, but probably no one should consider it authoritative. Rather, its true value is as a quietly lavish compendium of 50+ years of computer photographs, mostly marketing shots of hardware. Nostalgiac kitsch aside, this is a remarkable compilation of coolly alluring imagery, some of which is beautiful, and some of which is frightening — but most all of which seems to promise a kind of precision-controlled, modernistic utopia, if only humans would give themselves over to the digital world.