I am trying to identify / find an online copy of a multimedia technology demonstration video. Timeframe: late 1980s / early 90s? Source: IBM. Format: VHS.

The content of this video was a computer program with a voice recording of either the original Greek epic of Ulysses or maybe James Joyce's book of the same title. The video showed details of how the program would display the text simultaneously with the reading, and had some annotations and other features.

I think the point of it was to show off the multimedia capabilities they had developed by using a real application of the book I mentioned; it may have been touting it for educational purposes. Today this kind of technology it obviously taken for granted but at the time it was innovative and impressive!

All these recollections are probably subject to error but that's what I remember...

I've done some searching but can't find any reference to it - but I bet its out there somewhere.

3 Answers 3


Was it Ulysses (alt), Tennyson's poem from Illuminated books and manuscripts (pub. IBM Educational Systems, 1992)?

enter image description here

  • 1
    I've come back to this a few times now and II'm not certain its a match though it is similar. Some aspects of this seem like what I remember, but other details are quite different. I don't recall the guy speaking, and although the poem seems right all the background images & video edited in with it are totally unfamiliar. What I had seen was much drier. I wonder if IBM had several versions of this or re-used some elements in more than one product / demo. Commented Oct 10, 2019 at 23:05
  • Maybe Tales of Brave Ulysses from Disraeli Gears? ;-)
    – dave
    Commented Jul 1 at 22:46

IBM had an educational division called Eduquest that developed a program called Illuminated Books and Manuscripts that ran on Lasardisk and was a multi-media, interactive program. There were a series of famous works, each designed to illustrate a specific genre with Ulysses representing poems. The above version is the pre-curser to the laserdisc version. The laserdisc version had 8 different actors/actresses reading and interpreting the poem, annotation features, vocabulary, an incredibly powerful visual component. Example: The poem ends with "...and not to yield" while freezing on the image of the lone student facing down tanks in Tiananmen Square. Unfortunately, it was formatted to laserdisc and they did not have right to convert it to CD/DVD when it became clear that was the direction the industry was going. What you are referring to is a demonstration given by my father-in-law, James Elton Dezell, Jr on the program. Yes, for a while it was distributed on VHS format of the speech. I have a copy of it on VHS in storage and someday need to reformat and post it as a tribute both to the man and to a program that was years ahead of anything else.


Here is what you are looking for http://entersection.com/posts/290-alfred-tennyson-on-the-guides-of-force-in-nature-ulysses

Here is a better version of the same https://youtu.be/c0qGIpBsYg4

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    While this might be relevant, it would help to format it into a full answer. So far it's a link only item, isn't it?
    – Raffzahn
    Commented Mar 10, 2022 at 2:25
  • 1
    That link has the same video embedded as the other answer Commented Mar 10, 2022 at 3:19

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