2012  Daito Manabe

Exploring frontiers of art

Growing up in Tokyo, the artist, computer programmer, and composer Daito Manabe mastered many disciplines at a young age. As a creative professional, he has done everything from controlling sound with his facial expressions to developing holographic motion graphics for musical performances on his MacBook Pro. Many would say Manabe’s art is indefinable. Or maybe he’s just chosen to define it on his own terms.

In elementary school, Manabe began composing simple beats using his computer and a synthesizer. By college, he turned to DJ-ing live performances and became known on campus for his spellbinding syncopations. But Manabe had higher aspirations for his art. He longed to see how his programming and musical skills could shape emerging mediums such as video and laser performance art. “My aim was to make an entirely different genre of art,” Manabe says. Before he could elevate his craft, Manabe first needed to upgrade his equipment. So he swapped his PC for a Power Mac G4.

“I’ve always wanted to create experimental and challenging art. My Mac makes that possible.”

— Daito Manabe

Before the Mac, Manabe and his production team directed stage objects and other elements of performances manually. It was a labor-intensive process that pushed Manabe to adopt a better approach. With Xcode and its wealth of GUI tools, Manabe wasn’t bound by these physical limitations. Now he could instruct an industrial robot arm — as well as LEDs, infrared cameras, and laser projectors — to create faster and more precise movements. This freed him to create compelling, avant-garde art such as an installation featuring dancers and laser projections. “I’d feel completely lost without my Mac,” Manabe says. “I wouldn’t be able to innovate without it.”

Introduced June 11, 2012

MacBook Pro with Retina display

This was the first Mac that featured the Retina display. It provided a stunning 2880-by-1800 resolution, where individual pixels couldn’t be discerned with the human eye. This display let Mac users see more detail than ever before, and it had a huge impact on photography, design, and moviemaking.

What people did with it

In 2012, the MacBook Pro with Retina display was many things to Mac users. Here’s how people say they used it the most.

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