JF Ptak Science Books Quick Post
I feel slightly queasy seeing this photograph, found in the August 1937 issue of Popular Science magazine--it seems to me to be a backwards, inside-out analog cyberpunk (without the cyber) variety of the internet, a robotic device moving people around from data bit to data bit, an oil and iron process of automatic info retrieval, moving the user to the information rather than the other way around. The image does put me in mind of Terry Gilliam's Brazil, which renders info and other muck in a high-dystopian fashion with endless ducts and file cabinets, making things oppressively inaccessible in their accessibility.
And to some degree there's a little Spongebob similarity in there too, though without the iron nd metal part, just Mr. Squarepants and his cardboard filing cabinets for all of this thoughts and memories, serviced by smaller units of himself whop presumably have their own filing systems in their heads. Filing cabinets, all the way down.
And of course, Fritz Lang's Metropolis, made a little earlier, in 1927:
And finally, an image of the semi-reverse of the gigantic filing system: moving humans through mounds of paper not contained in file cabinets, stacked upon stacks of stacks. Once everything is said and done, none of this info-sausage-factory seems very pretty.