Without computers, there would be no Epcot. The myriad uses of computers dreamed up by the visionaries of Walt Disney Productions for this new section of the Walt Disney World resort in Orlando, Fla., is mind-boggling: several dozen major systems perform a variety of control, monitoring, and information jobs. These systems use hundreds of microprocessors, dozens of 16- and 32-bit minicomputers, fiber-optic communications, laser video disks, digital audio, voice recognition and response, and three-dimensional computer graphics.
Computers at the $900 million Epcot, which stands for Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow and which opened last month, monitor just about everything. Separate systems control the audio-animatronics Disney's unique brand of animated figures the rides, an information service, and special events. In fact, for the entire 28,000- acre Walt Disney World complex, one system monitors fire and security, while another manages central hot and chilled water and compressed-air production and distribution. Additional computers handle the control and distribution of the approximately 45 megawatts of electrical energy needed by the complex and the management of waste disposal.