June 24

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Podcast Episode

Day in Tech History: June 24th

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The BBC studios demonstrated the Telcan, which is short for television in a can. This 20 minute recording would eventually lead to the home video recorder or VCR.


Commodore International announces that James Finke will leave the company as president at the expiration of his contract on June 30th.


Democratic House Representative Albert Gore introduces Senate Bill 2594, the Supercomputer Network Study Act of 1986. The bill calls for a study of the possibility of creating fiber optic links to supercomputer centers, requiring the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) to issue a report on the subject.


Touchstone Pictures releases the comedy film Who Framed Roger Rabbit, directed by Robert Zemeckis (live-action) and Richard Williams (animation) and starring Bob Hoskins, Christopher Lloyd, Joanna Cassidy, Charles Fleischer, and Kathleen Turner, to 1,045 US theaters. Produced on a budget of US$70 million, the film will gross US$11,226,239 domestically in its opening weekend. At US$70 million, Roger Rabbit is one of the most expensive films to date, but it will prove to be a sound investment, earning over US$150 million during its theatrical run. The film is notable for including a unique combination of animation and live action, as well as a combination of cartoon characters from different studios (Disney and Warner) in a single film. It is also one of the last performances of Golden Era voical actors Mel Blanc and Mae Questel. The film will win four Oscars at the 61st Academy Awards ceremony in 1989.


Severe Tire Damage, without the permission of the Rolling Stones, use the MBONE to perform some songs preceding and following the Stones’ concert. Described in the press as a “renegade band” who “electronically crash[ed] the party,” Severe Tire Damage will take credit for being the first musical group in history to perform a warm-up set in a different city than the headliner band. Somewhat peeved, the Rolling Stones soon described their computer-savvy competitors as “furry Palo Alto Geeks.” In 1994, the Rolling Stones will give an official performance that is broadcast live on the Internet.


The Computer Game Developers Association is formed by Ernest W. Adams to promote and strengthen the video game industry and to promote computer games as an art form.


After repeated threats via email and snail mail Network Solutions drops 9,272 domain names from its Domain Name System (DNS) tables for failure to pay their domain name fees.

Hewlett-Packard Co. announces new advanced ATM test capabilities, which it showcases at the Supercomm ‘96 convention in Dallas June 25th through 27th. The new asynchronous transfer mode test options allows users to test equipment according to their specific class of service.


3DO completes the sale of its hardware business to Samsung for US$20 million.

The United States Supreme Court lets stand a ruling in favor of Nintendo that overturns a jury’s decision to award US$208 million in damages to Alpex Computer in a patent infringement case filed in 1986. Alpex’s claim was that the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) violated a 1977 patent for a device that displays video images.


Symantec purchases Ghost, a disk cloning program developed by the New Zealand company Binary Research. The name Ghost is an acronym for “General Hardware-Oriented Software Transfer.” It is the program that created the market for disk-cloning software.


CompUSA, Inc. initiates dramatic changes to its chain of 211 stores. Changes include closures of up to fourteen locations, approximately 1,500 job cuts of 21,000 employees and a shift in focus away from desktop computers. Blaming low margins, weaker demand and highly competitive pricing, CompUSA also reports three consecutive quarterly losses. The chain will also close its distribution center in Grapevine, Texas.

Testimony in the US Justice Department’s Microsoft anti-trust case ends, after eight months.


US President Bill Clinton makes the first ever Presidential webcast. Among the announcements made during the webcast, President Bill Clinton announces a new website that will be able to search all government resources.


Jerry Jessop initiates an auction on eBay for item #1249640557, a very rare Atari 2700 “RC Stella” game system prototype featuring wireless RF controllers. The system was originally unveiled at the 1980 Consumer Electronics Show CES in Chicago, Illinois. A member using the handle “Buyatari” will ultimately be the highest bidder on the auction with a bid of US$2626.00.


Hewlett-Packard releases the HP iPAQ Pocket PC H3950 handheld computer, featuring the Pocket PC 2002 operating system, remote control software, an infrared port, a Secure Digital slot, a transreflective display, an Intel 400MHz XScale PXA250 processor, a lithium-polymer batteries, 64MB RAM, and 32MB flash memory. Price: US$649

Hewlett-Packard releases the HP iPAQ Pocket PC H3970 handheld computer, featuring a 400MHz Intel XScale PXA250 processor, 64MB RAM, 48MB flash ROM, remote control software, an infrared port, a Secure Digital slot, the Pocket PC 2002 operating system, Bluetooth wireless connectivity, a backlit transreflective TFT color display, and lithium-polymer batteries. Price: US$749 Weight: 6.6 ounces

Hewlett-Packard Jornada 728Hewlett-Packard releases the HP Jornada 728 Handheld PC, featuring a 206MHz Intel SA1110 processor, a modem, and 64MB RAM. Price: US$999

Intel introduces the 1.9 and 2GHz Mobile Pentium 4-M processor, featuring 8kB Level 1 data cache, 12kB Level 1 instruction cache, 512kB Level 2 cache, a 400MHz system bus, MMX, SSE, and SSE2 instructions, 64GB address space, and two pipelined FPUs. It incorporates fifty-five million transistors in a 0.13-micron process. Code-name: Northwood Price: US$401 (1.9 GHz) and US$637 (2 GHz)

Intel introduces the 1.33 to 1.5GHz Mobile Celeron processor, featuring 8kB Level 1 data cache, 12kB Level 1 instruction cache, 256kB Level 2 cache, a 400MHz system bus, MMX, SSE, and SSE2 instructions, 64GB address space, and two pipelined FPUs. It incorporates fifty-five million transistors in a 0.13-micron process. Code-name: Northwood Price: US$134 (1.33 GHz), US$149 (1.4 GHz), and US$170 (1.5 GHz)

The Kyocera 7135Kyocera announces the Kyocera 7135 handheld computer, featuring a phone, keypad, color screen, Global Positioning System technology, a Secure Digital slot, a digital audio player, 16MB RAM, and the Palm OS 4.1. Price: Estimated US$500 Weight: 6.6 ounces

Sony releases the Clie PEG-T665C handheld computer, featuring a 66MHz Dragonball Super VZ processor, 16MB DRAM, 4MB Flash memory, a 320×320 pixel TFT color display, the Palm OS 4.1, a Memory Stick port, sixteen Sony applications, and eighteen third-party applications. It includes remote control software and infrared port allowing it to be used s a remote control for home entertainment equipment. Price: US$399.99

Sharp introduces the Zaurus SL-A300 handheld computer, featuring a Linux operating system, an Intel 200 MHz XScale PXA210 processor, 64MB RAM, a 3.5-inch active matrix 320×240 pixel display, and a Secure Digital slot. It will begin shipping July 12. Price: 50,000 yen (US$411) Weight: 4.2 ounces


Netflix receives a patent covering its subscription rental service as well as Netflix’s methods of communication and delivery. (US No. 6,584,450) This is one of two patents which Netflix will accuse Blockbuster of violating in the lawsuit Netflix v Blockbuster, filed on April 4, 2006 in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California.


Intel releases the Celeron D 315, 320, 325, and 330 processors, which run at 2266, 2400, 2533, 2667, and 2800 MHz respectively. The processors feature Level 2 256KiB caches, 533 MT/s front side buses.


Microsoft releases Build 5456 of the Windows Vista operating system. Some of the new features included in this build include a revamped Aero subsystem and a completely overhauled and significantly less obtrusive User Account Control interface. “List view” has been brought back to Windows Explorer, after having been removed in Beta 1. Microsoft developer Ben Betz will later explain in a blog entry that, while developers felt that Explorer’s List mode made sense based on usability research and its inability to support Windows Explorer’s new “grouping” feature, the feature was restored because of feedback generated by beta testers. The disk space occupied by a clean installation is also significantly reduced.

Version 0.44 of Inkscape, a cross-platform vector graphics editor, is released under the GNU General Public License. This version adds a Layers dialog, support for clipping and masking, improved PDF export with transparency, and performance improvements.


A report came out saying that video game addiction is not a mental disorder (like alcoholism). Samsung announced they produced the first 64 GB Solid State Drive (SSD) .


Nokia announces they have purchased Symbian outright by purchasing the remaining 54% for $410 million. At the same time they announce they are forming the Symbian Foundation to improve relationships to future phone app makers.

Blockbuster and Paypal join up to offer another form of payment.

Evernote web service launched Open beta . It is a program for smartphones Android, WebOS and OS X to allow note taking and archival.


After careful scrutiny (mostly due to Psystar filing bankruptcy), Florida Judge Robert Mark grants Apple rights to continue the copyright infringement case against the Mac clone maker.

Boxee makes a series of updates, including a software version that can be installed on a Windows PC. Google announces they will bring AdSense to mobile applications.

Scientists at Columbia University create a tree that can catch Carbon 1,000 times faster than a real tree.


Google closes Google Health, PowerMeter

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