August 2

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Aug 2

Podcast Episode

Day in Tech History: Aug 2nd


For $25,000, the Army Air Corps purchased its first aircraft, designed by the Wright Brothers to meet Army specifications of a powerered flying machine capable of carrying 2 people at least 40 miles per hour. Acceptance tests on the aircraft by the US government had been delayed by a crash during flight trials the prior year, in which Army Lt. Thomas Selfridge was killed.


Alexandar Graham Bell passes away.


Carl Anderson of CalTech recorded the first photograph showing the positron, the first anti-matter particle to be detected. Studying cosmic-ray tracks in a cloud chamber, Anderson found particles consistant with electrons, but with a positive charge of similar value to a proton. The positron's existance had been previously suggested by Paul Dirac though mathematical means in 1928. Anderson was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1936 for his discovery.


Albert Einstein and Leó Szilárd, representing fellow physicists who have discovered that an atomic bomb could be built from uranium, write a letter to Franklin D. Roosevelt explaining the dangers of Germany developing Atomic Bomb capabilities before the United States. The letter comes just before the beginning of World War II. The scientists warn Roosevelt of efforts in Nazi Germany to purify Uranium-235. Soon after the letter, the United States Government begins “The Manhattan Project.”


First successful launch of the Atlas-B missle. The 75-foot tall ICBM launched from Cape Canaveral a month after the first Atlas-B exploded less than a minute after launch. Although primarily an Air Force R&D design for nuclear-capable ballistic missles, the Atlas-B missle could also reach orbit; an Atlas-B was used in late 1958 to place the world's first communications satellite into orbit.


IBM introduces multiprocessor models of its IBM System/370 family. The Models 158MP and 168MP models included a feature called "virtual storage" (a form of paging), and supported three different operating systems. In its typical configuration, a processing unit was coupled with a display console with a CRT, keyboard, and light pen, plus a printer, communication, and storage devices.


Universal Pictures releases the sci-fi comedy Weird Science, directed by John Hughes and starring Anthony Michael Hall, Kelly LeBrock, Ilan Mitchell-Smith, Bill Paxton, Robert Downey Jr., Robert Rusler, Judie Aronson, Suzanne Snyder, Vernon Wells, and Britt Leach, to 1,158 US theaters.


Michael Elansky (also known by the handle “Ionizer”), a twenty-one year old University of Hartford student, is arrested for two “anarchy” files on his “Ware House BBS,” which contain bomb-making instructions. Unable to post the US$500,000 bail, Elansky will await trial in jail for nearly four months, and eventually plead guilty for a twenty-eight months of prison, down from a possible ten years. The case receives a lot of attention for its first amendment issues. Read more at


Donald A. Thomas, Jr., Director of Customer Services for the Atari Corporation, completes a report of registered Jaguar owners. Of the 14,099 registered owners, 99% are male, 82% of the respondents are between the ages of 12 to 34 with 40% are between the ages of 18-24. 56% of those returning legible warranty cards also own a Sega Genesis and an equal number report that they also own a Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES). A near equal number, approximately 25%, own either an Atari Lynx or Nintendo Game Boy.


Apple Computer introduces the dual-processor Power Macintosh 9500/180 MP computer, featuring two 180 MHz PowerPC 604e processors, 32 MB RAM, 2 GB hard drive, and 8x CD-ROM drive. price is US$5,699.

Apple Computer introduces the Performa 6400 computer featuring either a 180 or 200MHz PowerPC 603e processor, an optional 256kB L2 cache, 16MB RAM, a 1.6 or 2.4 GB hard drive, and two PCI slots.

Apple Computer introduces the Power Macintosh 9500/200, featuring a 200MHz PowerPC 604e processor, 32MB RAM, a 2GB hard drive, and a 8X CD-ROM drive.


Wizards of the Coast is granted a patent on for several basic CCG techniques. They will use these patents to leverage a contract to become Nintendo’s manufacturer of the Pokemon card game for North America, Europe, and the Middle East.


Intel releases a 600 MHz version of the Katmai core Pentium III processor. Price: $669

Microsoft releases early test versions of Millennium, a consumer-oriented upgrade of the Windows operating system to hardware makers and software developers. The product is scheduled to be released to consumers “sometime in the year 2000.”

SGI announced that it would use Intel processors for the first time in a server, introducting the 4-processor SGI 1400 server with support for both WIndows NT and Linux.


The Santa Cruz Operation (SCO) software company announces that it will sell its Server Software and Services Divisions, as well as UnixWare and OpenServer technologies, to Caldera Systems, Inc. The purchase will be completed in May 2001. Caldera will change its name to “Caldera International,” and the remaining part of SCO, the Tarantella Division, will changed its name to “Tarantella, Inc.”

United States Judge James Robinson orders an emergency hearing on a privacy rights organization’s request for details about of a Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) email surveillance tool called Carnivore. At the 3:00pm federal courthouse hearing in Washington, the Judge ordered the FBI to comply with the privacy group’s request pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act. Carnivore is policeware that is essentially a customizable packet sniffer that monitors all of a target’s Internet traffic.


A federal appeals court rejects Microsoft’s request to re-hear a prior ruling against them finding that they had improperly exercised monopolistic power to have “commingled” Internet Explorer with releases of the Windows operating system.


The Mozilla Foundation announces a $500 bounty for high-risk security bugs in their open-source software projects, including the Firefox browser. Funded in part by Internet entrepreneur Mark Shuttleworth and Linux product maker Linspire, the award subsequently rose to $3000.


Apple Computer releases the Mighty Mouse for Macintosh computers, featuring a 360-degree scroll ball and four programmable buttons. It is the first multi-button mouse sold with a Mac since the Apple Lisa, twenty-two years earlier. Price: US$49

EnterNetica releases version 1.0 of VolumePhoto SE, a software suite for the creation and editing of panoramic photographs, for Windows XP.


Version 9.01 of the Opera web browser is released. This version resolves bugs introduced by the Opera 9 release and makes IMAP and NTLM improvements.

Ziff Davis and Microsoft jointly announced that Computer Gaming World magazine will be discontinued in November after 269 issues and replaced by Games for Windows: The Official Magazine. Visit the magazine’s official website.


Google surpasses Apple as 'top global brand,' according to analytics company General Sentiment. Google led with $756 million in brand value, as oppose to Apple's $594 million.

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