In the late 1950s American animator, composer and inventor John Whitney acquired a WWII vintage Kerrison Predictor special purpose electromechanical analog computer anti-aircraft fire-control system at an army surplus store. He connected the electrical outputs to servos controlling the positioning of small lit targets and light bulbs. Whitney's next step was to modify the "mathematics" of the system to move the targets in various mathematically controlled ways, a technique he referred to as incremental drift. As the power of the systems grew they eventually evolved into what is today known as motion control photography, a widely used technique in special effects filming.
Probably Whitney's best known work from this early period was the animated title sequence from Alfred Hitchcock's 1958 film Vertigo, on which Whitney collaborated with graphic designer Saul Bass.