CHRISTMAS'99 + MILLENNIUM 2000 ANIMATION
This is a Videotracker 'vidule' that can be run straight from floppy disk
on startup, since it is self-contained and has within itself all that is
needed. It runs on a bottom-of-the-line Amiga 1200 with a single floppy
disk - we turn it on and off with a timer. Simply copy all the files
to a bootable floppy and boot off it.
Contents of Archive:
vt.2000 - the vidule
s/startup-sequence - what you might expect!
2000.readme - this file
2000.protext - Handout containing the info below in Protext.
2000.pgs - my Pagestream file for a label
This animation is a portrayal of Christmas and the Millennium, 2000 years
(approximately) since the birth of Jesus Christ. 2000 years ago, the
Living God became a human being. So that he would share our humanity, bear
our problems and that we might truly live. 'Jesus' means that he can save
us from those problems. 'Christ' means that he is the 'anointed one', the
only one who has the real authority and power to do so.
Much of the cycle is pure visuals - circles, wire shapes, moire patterns,
colour cycling, and the like - which have no deliberate symbolic meaning.
At various places throughout the cycle, various short messages appear:
The birth of Jesus via a woman called Mary who was still a virgin.
"Christ - that we might truly live"
and the Christian symbols of the Cross and the Millennium.
The Cross was the means of execution used to kill Jesus Christ nearly 2000
years ago. Nails were driven through your wrists into a cross piece, and
you hung from them, arms stretched wide in the baking sun, until you die.
The message is that Christ, fully God, became fully human too, then died,
not just because he annoyed the authorities of the day, but for us. To
sort out the mess we had made - and still make of the world.
While various other religions have stories about gods being born and gods
rising from death, none give it the full meaning that it means that God is
with us in the deepest way possible, rather than 'above' us - and none
place it in history. That is why 2000 is so important: it says this was a
real happening, not just a story - and it affects us today.
This animation is played by Videotracker, a software package for the Amiga
that puts visual events on the screen in time with a music track. Each
event - starting an animation, putting up a picture, changing colours, etc.
- is attached to an instrument and comes up when that instrument is played.
The animation makes full use of the special hardware features of the Amiga:
Fast swapping between visual fields: that is how the animation manages
to show things in fast sequence.
'Dual playfield', in which two visual fields are shown, one behind the
other: e.g. see the moire fringe effects when two sets of circles move with
respect to each other.
Copper list, which changes the colour registers as the video beam makes
its way down the screen, giving the smooth shading you see in some parts.
Colour cycling, in which the colour registers are changed from frame to
frame, so that colours come and go.
Videoline shift, in which each line on the screen can be shifted
slightly to right or left: see the 'wobble' in some parts.
High efficiency: the animation is run on a bottom-of-the-range Amiga
1200, (a mere 2 Mb of memory, 14MHz clock), single floppy disk.
Safe switch-off: as long as the Amiga is not actually accessing the
disks, it can be switched off without having to be 'closed down'.
Fast, automatic start-up: the Amiga starts up in a few seconds from
switch-on, loading the animation straight away and running it.
So the animation can be run on a timer that switches on and off at times
of our choice, and saving power at other times.
Andrew Basden, Main Street Chapel, Frodsham, 12 December 1999.