Interactive Video – an unholy mess of non-standards and then CDi salvation (not)…

In the 1970s and 80s there were many attempts at hooking up video players – first tape and then disc – with computers to make an interactive system for work or play.

Emmy Award-winning Bernie Luskin – of education and media solutions company Luskin International – was an enthusiastic evangelist for disc-0based interactive video.

The Ill-fated VHD system was used for interactive video. Before that cassettes had been tried, but access was painfully slow.

The industry then tried to do it with CD-ROMs. But although a very tight standard ensured that any music CD plays on any player, the much looser standard for CD-ROM gave the computer companies freedom to find their own best ways of packaging, control and access.

CDi was then conceived as the answer, while others backed systems powered by larger LaserVision discs.

While corporations could work with their own adopted system, consumers were never going to buy into a monster mess of almost-but-not-quite compatibility.

Lack of standards crippled them all, exacerbated by the steady growth in worldwide data connectivity.