Vivid's Story





It was during the cold war, just before Reagan demanded that Gorbachev tear down the wall that I was standing before the MGACG (pronounced "ma-gack") verifying a series of holes punched into a strip of plastic tape. The holes represented binary values and contained the coordinates of targets like the Kremlin. You see, I was one of the men people sometimes talk about who had their finger on the button, only they were keys not buttons. 


At home, I had a Commodore 64 but my real love was the brand new 286 personal computer that was soon to hit retail shelves. I had my eye on one with a turbo button that boosted its speed to 12 MHz! I dreamed of punching that Turbo button and running at lightening fast speed as it read executables off the 5-1/4" floppy and loaded the data into its 640k of internal memory.

A few years down the road, I upgraded to a 486DX machine running at 40MHz. That machine had a dedicated math co-processor and a full 4 Megs of internal memory.

And then there was the day I went to Egghead Software to buy the latest v.32bis Zoom modem that connected at a rocket fast 14,400 baud. It could actually download a 1 megabyte file in less than 10 minutes!

Long before the Internet, I was a power user of dial-up bulletin boards. While the rest of the world was discovering CompuServe, Prodigy, and the brand new America Online, I was deep in geekville learning vector modeling and ray tracing on the Graphics Alternative BBS.

Ray tracing was done by coding input files and then running them through a ray tracing engine. You can see examples of some of my early stuff in the Vintage Vivid section. In 2016, that technology is generically referred to as CGI for Computer Generated Image.

My first ray tracing engine was PovRay for Persistence of Vision Raytracer. But before long, I got hooked on a ray tracer called Vivid. From those two engines, I extruded the name Vivid Vision. In the mid-1990's, around the time NewTek's Video Toaster was all the rage on the Amiga platform, I jumped on board a new platform called Imagine. It was a 3d modeling and ray tracing platform for Windows and it supplied the final moniker for my business Vivid Vision Imaging.

Despite the fact that CGI was the driving force behind my geekness, I am fluent in all phases of IT. My beginnings in programming missile guidance telemetry on Martin Marietta mainframes had something to do with it, but remember, there was no Internet back then. The fact was, if you wished to play in IT you had to be an expert in every facet of information technology. As the years passed, I blended my knowledge and experience into the full-package concept my clients enjoy today. See the Services section for more on that.

Be sure to visit Portfolio for a look at past projects and there's some entertaining nuggets in Tech Talk.

Thanks for dropping by.

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Steve Wittmann - Owner
Vivid Vision Imaging

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