A while back I posted about a fantastic book on the history of Xerox PARC, kindly recommended by Sir Jenson. In one of the chapters is an exciting retelling of the tale of The Mother of All Demos, where the outside world first got to see the mouse, hypertext, a/v conferencing, email, a gui, word processing, etc.

In 1968.

Reading the book, you essentially have to imagine what the demo must have been like. But now you can watch a video of the demo online.

More amazingly, there's even a project to re-create most of the demo's document editing/collaboration functionality on the web.

[via BrandonD]


  1. Come to SuperHappyDevHouse tonight if you'd like to see the system first-hand. The entire Hyperscope dev team will be there, as will Doug. If you can't make it tonight (late notice, I know), track our blog, as we'll have public status/participation meetings probably starting in April. Thanks for posting about this!

  2. Hi! We just put up a contemporary "little" mother of all demos screencast up on the web, signing to Douglas Engelbart's original Augment system to do a visual and audio walkthrough of the system. Check it out at: http://codinginparadise.org/weblog/2006/03/new-screencast-of-douglas-engelbarts.html

    Tell Steve that Brad Neuberg says hi :)