Artifact Details

Title

UNIVAC 1952 Election, featuring Edward R. Murrow

Catalog Number

102639648

Type

Moving Image

Date

1952-11-04

Credits

Murrow, Edward R.

Publisher

CBS News

Place of Publication

New York, NY, US

Duration

00:08:00

Dimensions

6" cassette

Format

Betacam SP

Description

This news broadcast describes the role of the UNIVAC system in the 1952 U.S. presidential race between Dwight D. Eisenhower and Adlai Stevenson. The UNIVAC is introduced as the "miracle of the modern age, the electronic brain," and the broadcast is narrated by Edward R. Murrow. The clip discusses how UNIVAC was being used to predict the outcome of the election, based on the early returns. As a picture of the relationship between the public and computers in the 1950s, it is invaluable - Murrow continually refers to the UNIVAC as "he" (as in "now he is processing the data") and has one-sided conversations with the machine ("what are you saying now? He's not a very talkative machine"). There are several good shots of UNIVAC hardware, and the narration is geared towards an audience of laypeople.

Category

News Broadcast