River Through Time

By Marc Taylor, whose undergraduate major was Geology.


  1. DVD: use backup copy of River DVD. (The original was destroyed.)

  2. CD: Magpie.

  3. VCR: off, to avoid interference with animation DVD.

  4. Video projector: input select, monitor select line 2 for animation DVD.

  5. Animation DVD: page 4, Solar System formation (used to be laser disc 3, Chapter 32, “Solar System formation sequence”).

  6. Sound board: volume up for output, CD, and DVD; down for all others.

  7. Orrery: power off, brightness down, all objects on, slow counterclockwise motion.

  8. Zeiss: latitude 35° S, Southern Cross (RA 12h 30m, under Virgo) high on meridian to make the sky unfamiliar. Universal projector to 12 (Ursa Major).

  9. Spice computer: DVD-RTT.CUE. You should see slides of large pink dots, except for the title slide on G, Adirondacks on P, a hand on the slew, and a nebula on the zoom.
    1. Manually slew the pointing hand to the word “Adirondacks” on the map. Set slew to slowest speed (9:00 on dial). Leave slew in automatic.
    2. Zoom nebula to maximum size, dial at 3:00.
    3. Run blue “shockwave” effect until it appears on the right.
    4. When 108 ' play CD is highlighted, audience enters.

  10. Audience entry sequence.


At transition between eras (the date and the “running river” effect), turn off whatever you had on: stars, Zeiss blues, etc.

  1. Launch the show while DVD-RTT.CUE has 108 ' play CD highligted. Press the PLAY/PAUSE button on the front of the DVD twice.

  2. Opening: Adirondacks pan and clouds. Zeiss blue lights up (slightly).

  3. Julio: “There you are, girl!” Blue lights down.

  4. Chris: “who just happens to have a map of the river. So, let’s take a look.” Slew to manual. Move hand carefully to point at Lake Tear of the Clouds. After reaching New York Harbor, leave slew in automatic.

  5. 4 billion, 500 million years ago transition: stars on, slow diurnal motion throughout rest of show.

  6. “…and inside that cloud…gravity is slowly pulling together huge streamers of gas and dust”: Play animation DVD page 4, Solar System formation, after the nebula zooms out and fades.
    “Although originally, here may have been more than eight or nine planets.”
    “What happened to the others?”: fade down DVD as belt of planetesimals appear (l. 227).

  7. Stars off for Grenville Mountains.

  8. When Palisades appear, level Zeiss to get it out of the way.

  9. Stars and orrery on when Dr. Franklin says “Well, there are some hints” as dino footprints fade. Orrery off when Eva says “As far as New York?” as swirly asteroid motes fade (before l. 600).

  10. Stars off, north in front, when Chris says “You know, I think we’re about to find out” at K-T asteroid impact. Keep stars off during 624 snow.

  11. Stars on, point out Big Dipper when Joanna says “and when the sun went down, the sky was dark and clear”. Briefly display Ursa Major on the universal projector.

  12. Zeiss cardinal points. “For each direction there was a guardian.”

  13. MUHHEAHKANTUCK painting panorama: stars and cardinals off.

  14. Amarante: “You never know. Maybe, in time.”: stars on. Pause for sky tonight.