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CommuniCore


 CommuniCore (short for Community Core) was actually two buildings to the east and west of Spaceship Earth.  Both featured technology exhibits.  CommuniCore East and West closed on January 31, 1994 and were remodeled into Innoventions in July of 1994.

CommuniCore Tributes

It's a little hard to see in this picture, but the carpeting in the South of the Breezeway of Innoventions West has the old CommuniCore Icon on it.  The outside of the two Innoventions entrances used to also contain the old icon.

CommuniCore WEST:

FutureCom was presented by Bell Systems (later AT&T).  The area was dominated by the Fountain of Information sculpture, which represented the various ways that people receive information.  Guests could also visit exhibits that featured touch screens with news from around the country and video conferencing.  


Phraser would speak words that guests typed out on a keyboard.  The Network Control game let people try to manage a long-distance network.  
Chip Cruiser let guests fire at "contaminants" before "they affected long distance service."
Epcot Outreach was home to a research librarian that could answer questions about any topic in Future World and World Showcase.  The nearby Teacher's Center offered lessons based on Future World themes for all grade levels.  Once Innoventions opened, both of these places moved and became known as the Epcot Discovery Center.
Expo Robotics:  This robot demonstration area opened February 13, 1988 and closed on October 3, 1993.  Robotic arms performed tricks, and some could draw pictures of a guest's face from a video monitor.  

SMRT-1 caught on camera by Brotherdave

CommuniCore EAST:

Epcot Computer Central was presented first by Sperry Univac ("Official Computer Supplier to EPCOT Center") and then by UNISYS.  There were many games to play here, including:
SMRT-1: Guests could communicate with this computer through a telephone set.  He (She?) would ask questions and laugh if the answer wasn't correct.
Compute-A-Coaster: Way before the Roller Coaster Tycoon computer game and CyberSpace Mountain at Disney Quest, this game allowed guests to design a roller coaster ride on a computer with the help of a beaver who sounded similar to the one in Lady and the Tramp.
Backstage Magic: This show talked about the history of computers and explained how they were used at Walt Disney World.  It was hosted by Julie and I/O and replaced the Astuter Computer Revue.


The Astuter Computer Revue

 Backstage Magic originally started out as a show called the Astuter Computer Revue. Some sources list it with the last word spelled as "review".  It starred Ken Jennings and featured him singing and dancing about the computers that ran Epcot.  The show ran from opening day to January 2, 1984 and holds the distinction of being the first attraction to be removed from Epcot.


The song was written by the Sherman Brothers:

You see my friends, the computer make life easier.
Saves me time and headaches too.
He sorts things out, analyses in a shake.
My enormous problem, to him's a piece of cake!

He's got a great big memory like an elephant.
Utilizes knowledge without end.
That's why I'm a rooter, for me computer.
Everybody needs a friend!

When my work piles up, and I'm seein' red,
'cause I need five arms and an extra head,
I find the computer, becomes me trouble shooter.
He keeps miles and miles of facts on file.
My wish, is his command.

Nothing is astuter than a computer, when I need a helping hand.
Let me explain:

They keep on top of accommodations,
record and update reservations.
Coordinate telephone operations,
and help plan energy conservation.
They're really a great financial device,
payroll service is kept precise.
They protect attendance then give advice,
on personnel, food and merchandise.
They're constantly focusing all their attention,
on matters of safety and fire prevention.
They've given efficiency new dimension,
with numerous examples, too many to mention!

(Stops to gather breath.)

And that's why I'm a rooter, for me computer.
Everybody needs a friend!

You see my friends, the computer does the drudgery,
leave me free for better things.
I push some buttons, and in a half a mo',
What was a sticky wicket, becomes an easy go!

He's got a great big memory like an elephant.
How he works is hard to comprehend.
Complicated computations take him just a tick,
he coordinates and tabulates, and does it double quick!

And that's why I'm a rooter, for me computer.
Everybody needs a friend!
(Computers applaud.)

No need to stand!  No need to stand!
Thank you!  Thank you one and all!

Eric Paddon from LaughingPlace.com actually saw this short-lived show.  Here's how he remembers it:

 "Astuter was a name connected with the corporate sponsor Sperry, but I forget how. The host had no name as far as I remember. It began with him on film at the Rose & Crown Pub in the United Kingdom with his pet monkey and he then gets transported to the computer facilities at CommuniCore in front of the audience.  The crowd looked out onto the computers, which were through glass and about one floor below.  The man was projected as a small-sized hologram on top of one of the computers for the rest of the show. The only other memory I have of the program was some kind of bit checking on what's happening at the Universe of Energy, which led to one quick close-up film shot of a dinosaur roaring. After the main program ended, the man was transported back to the Rose & Crown Pub and to his normal size again."

Brotherdave from LaughingPlace.com also has memories of this show:

 "The 'hologram' was really another use of the Pepper's Ghost effect that is used in the ballroom of the Haunted Mansion. Instead of animatronics reflected onto the glass in front of the stately ballroom, this effect utilized a video or movie of the actor projected onto the glass which overlooked the Epcot Computer Central computer room. It made the image of the actor look as if he were shrunk and was able to walk across the top of the computer consoles in the main computer room. The same effect was utilized with the Backstage Magic show as well, just using a character named Julie in place of the Pearly musician from the Astuter Computer Revue.  Also, during the course of both shows, an animatronic Mr. Eggz from the Kitchen Kabaret was utilized (via the same Pepper's Ghost effect) to demonstrate how Audio Animatronic figures were programmed and operated with the use of DACS (Digital Animation Control System, I believe.)"

Great American Census Quiz: Choose a topic from the touch-sensitive TV screen and answer questions about America.
Get Set Jet Game: Try to load passengers and luggage on a plane and complete the safety checklist within 60 seconds.
Flag Game: Design an American flag on a computer as patriotic music plays.  

Other areas of CommuniCore West included:
American Express Travelport: Visit one of the touch-sensitive screens and preview a vacation anywhere in the world.  American Express Travel Service could then help you plan your next trip or provide services to cardholders.  Presented by American Express, the Travelport was at CommuniCore from opening day to April 27, 1992.
Energy Exchange: See how much power you generate compared to a gallon of gasoline and learn about energy conservation and excavation.  Presented by Exxon.


Person of the Century: This was launched on January 14, 1990. You could cast your vote from 89 nominees or write in your own choice.  At one point, some of the top nominees included Lucille Ball, Winston Churchill, Marie Curie, Thomas Edison, Mikhail Gorbachev, Michael Jackson, Martin Luther King, Jr., and Mother Theresa.  The poll was discontinued before 2000 and no final winner was ever announced.  Amazingly, Walt Disney was not one of the nominees!
Electronic Forum (Epcot Poll): This attraction opened on December 23, 1982.  Guests entered the Future Choice theater and watched short films about current events.  After the watching the clips, viewers could press the buttons on the seat armrests and take part in a poll with the results being instantly tabulated.  The Forum closed on March 16, 1991 and the preshow area was used for the World News Center starting the very next day.  

Gyro the Robot


This photo was sent by Carmen, who took it in February of 1988.  Gyro was operated by a Cast Member backstage and could talk and interact with guests.

(Thanks to Mark Thompson for providing some of the photos on this page.)

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