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Pico-mangled Pictures

The 10th Edition manual's Volume 2 featured altered images of various contributors, done by Gerard Holzmann's Pico program, which was described in the manual, and also in his book Beyond Photography: The Digital Darkroom, Prentice-Hall, 1988; ISBN: 0130744107. In its paper version it is, regrettably, out of print. But fortunately, Holzmann has recently put its contents online; it includes many more examples.

The try-out version of the program remains available, under the name popi, in the Bell Labs netlib archive.

The images sometimes appeared just before a paper by the pictured author; more often they were used as page-filler bonbons much more charming to find than This Page Intentionally Left Blank.

Here is a sampling of some of these tweaked images. Unfortunately, some of those appearing in the manual don't seem to have been saved.

Ken and Den K and D as seen by Gerard. Our foreheads were growing even then, although I don't think I ever achieved quite the Elvis hair quality pictured, and neither of us ever grew such luxuriant beards.

Andrew Hume Andrew Hume, successively transformed on the page just before the Introduction. I wonder whether they could be photos of him at Usenix board meetings.

Doug McIlroy Doug McIlroy, in which Gerard employs a transformation that is maybe too obvious.

Gerard Holzmann Gerard Holzmann, who did the alterations depicted, and didn't spare himself.

Brian Kernighan Brian Kernighan. It's unclear what was being strived for here; many of the other images are recognizable as characterizations, but this one is probably best appreciated just as an image.

Rob Pike Rob Pike. Rob presumably helped to select this one for printing: he likes interestingly altered or otherwise unusual images.

Rob Pike 1 Rob Pike again. This one was apparently second choice, and didn't appear in the manual, but it was saved in the Faces directory. Presented because I like the melting effect.

Tom Duff Tom Duff. This is one of the images that were heavily manipulated manually instead of algorithmically by a formula that moved pixels around.

Dave Presotto Dave Presotto. Only minimally altered.

Howard Trickey Howard Trickey.

Norman Wilson Norman Wilson. He was our main standby for understanding of VAX hardware, setting up systems, and much adminstration for years.

Peter Weinberger No compilation of images from our history would be complete without one of Peter Weinberger.

The original picture of Peter on which all others were based is available. Also, the AT&T Logo-style version, created by Tom Duff (but not with Pico) should be visible. This appeared on T-shirts and even (briefly) stencilled using spray-paint on a water-tower at Bell Labs. It is best viewed at a distance.

Copyright © 1990 AT&T and Lucent Technologies Inc. All rights reserved.