Speaker Series Friday Nights @CHM

General Magic

Voted one of the top ten films of Tribeca 2018 by Time Out Magazine, GENERAL MAGIC is a feature documentary about how great vision and epic failure changed the world as we now know it.

From the smartphones that sit in our pockets to an array of technologies we take for granted today, many of the ideas that now dominate the tech industry and our day-to-day lives were born in 1989 at a Silicon Valley startup most of us have never heard of - General Magic.

The first smartphones, social media, e-commerce, touchscreen, and even the beloved emojis all had their origins at General Magic . But this was before the internet, before 3G, before Google, and when only a few people had mobile phones. The world was not ready in 1995 to hold the world in its hands.

Extraordinary creativity, remarkable breakthroughs, fierce competition, hubris and heartbreaking betrayal dominated behind the scenes of General Magic. While some never recovered from the failure that accompanied its downfall and bankruptcy, others went on to soar. The lessons learned at General Magic were instrumental in the creation of the iPod, iPhone, Android, eBay, even in the corridors of President Obama’s White House. And although General Magic died, the concepts and the people who worked there went on to change how the world connects today.

Described by Forbes as “The most important dead company in Silicon Valley” and combining rare archive footage with contemporary stories of the General Magicians today, this documentary tracks the progress of anytime, anywhere communication from a thing of sci-fi fiction to our modern day reality.

Join us for a special screening of this fascinating documentary followed by a panel discussion with former "magicians" Marc Porat, Andy Hertzfeld, Bill Atkinson and Megan Smith.

To learn more about the film, please visit General Magic Movie.

Friday Nights @CHM is offering you a whole new way to experience the Computer History Museum.

CHM is now open after hours, from 5 to 9 p.m., and we're hosting the techiest block party in Silicon Valley, featuring innovative cuisine from CateredToo, patio festivities at our Cloud Bistro beer garden, and special live programming on select Fridays for visitors of all ages.

Aug 03, 2018
6:00 pm

Add to Calendar 08/03/2018 6:00 pm America/Los_Angeles General Magic Computer History Museum 1401 N. Shoreline Boulevard Mountain View, CA, 94043 United States

Computer History Museum
1401 N. Shoreline Boulevard
Mountain View, CA, 94043



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