Re: London events - Time and Space, 19 July 2009

From: Tom B Whiteside (email suppressed)
Date: Fri Jul 17 2009 - 07:50:15 PDT

This program sounds wonderful. And speaking of Time and Space, is it not
downright astonishing that NASA seems to have lost the original videotapes
of the first moon landing? They had developed a high resolution video
format for that mission, what we saw on television was a downgraded
version.... but now 40 years later they no longer have the originals,
they were probably erased and recorded over. That unique video format
would have been somewhat equivalent to Hi-Def today (or so I've heard).
BTW, the recorder is still up there, I would love to have it for my
collection and will pay good money to anyone who can fetch it.

The watercolors painted by Englishman John White 420 years ago on his
visit to Roanoke Island in the "New World" still exist, they are in the
British Museum. But 40 year old videotapes......... let's see, now where
did I put those things? White's paintings were translated into engravings
and published in 1590 and have pretty much been in print ever since that
time - but the engravings were made by someone who never set foot in the
Western Hemisphere, details were changed considerably. It is very helpful
to also have the originals, they were painted on location. For example, I
recall subsequent versions of the moon landing in which the astronaut was
flying a flag for MTV, which I do believe is an anachronism ........

I remember watching the moon landing on tv, the first shot of Armstrong's
descent of the ladder was (briefly) upside down. Made sense to me, the
moon was "up there" you know, maybe everything was upside down. I was only
a kid, but perhaps that moment planted the seed for my becoming an
experimental filmmaker.

        - Tom Whiteside Durham, North Carolina

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