SC07 spiral chronicles computing history
Fermilab exhibited the giant, blue spiral at SC07. The spiral documents the laboratory's computing history from 1968 to the present.
The giant, blue spiral object positioned at the front of the Wilson Hall Atrium is more than a curiosity. It chronicles the history of computing at Fermilab from 1968 to the present.
The spiral is from SC07 exhibit in Reno, Nevada. It displays information chronologically, beginning on the outer edge and spiraling upward and inward.
"We were looking for a design that would allow us to express all the historical information visually," said CD's Lisa Giacchetti.
Included on the spiral are color-coded timelines containing information on the progression of computing and technology, networking, data and storage, facilities and the experimental program. It also contains other historical Fermilab information, such as the number of PhDs at the laboratory and names of former directors.
VMS's Reidar Hahn conceived the design idea, with CD's Lisa Giacchetti, John Urish and Dave Ritchie and VMS's Fred Ullrich and Diana Canzone to plan the SC07 exhibit. It was inspired by the MINOS exhibit building.
The team worked to create a design with multiple domains of
information on large scale. CD team members met with other members of
division for a day-long workshop to develop the content domains.
Ritchie gathered exhibit information from current and former CD
members and from the VMS archives, and graphic designer Diana Canzone created the
"People like to interact with a lot of data," said Ullrich. "They form their own comparisons and assumptions and learn something from their own interactions."
The spiral, which measures approximately 13 feet high and 44 feet long when unrolled, is made of printed fabric, stretched over a covered aluminum frame.
The Computing Division hopes to turn the collected data into a display showcase in Feynman Computing Center.
-- Rhianna Wisniewski
The spiral is pictured as part of Fermilab's exhibit at SC07.