October 12

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Podcast Episode

Day in Tech History: October 12th Prev: October 11 - Next: October 13 - Full Catalog list at Day in Technology History Project


Texas Instruments (TI) demonstrates working Integrated Circuits (IC) to Thomas J. Watson, Jr., president of IBM.


AMD and Intel signs a ten year technology exchange agreement centering on Intel’s x86 microprocessor architecture.


Steve Jobs’ new company, NeXT debuts the NeXT Computer at Davies Symphony Hall in San Francisco, California. The NeXT Computer features a 25MHz Motorola 68030 microprocessor, 8MB RAM, a 250MB optical disk drive, a math co-processor, a digital processor for real time sound, a fax modem, and a 17″ monitor. Although the NeXT will ultimately fail, it introduces several features new to personal computers, including an optical storage disk, a built-in digital signal processor for voice recognition, and object-oriented languages that simplified programming. The system runs version 0.8 of the NEXTSTEP operating system, although a mature release (version 1.0) of the operating system won’t be released for another year. NEXTSTEP is based on Mach 2.5 and 4.3BSD, and it features an advanced GUI system based on Postscript. It uses Objective-C as its native programming language and includes the NeXT Interface Builder. Apple’s newest Mac is only half as fast, features no peripherals, and costs US$1,000 more. NeXT Computer Inc. eventually became NeXT Software Inc. before being bought by Apple in 1997. Price: US$6,500

Yahoo!acquires Yoyodyne Entertainment, Inc., the first Internet-based direct marketer.


Former Olivetti computer engineer Edward Yearley, downloads the Marks & Spencer’s security file containing pin numbers when he visited a London store to carry out maintenance. In November, he will post the pin numbers to the Gates of the Underworld BBS under the pseudonym “Mr. Ed,” after cracking it. On July 10, 1996, he will be convicted under the Computer Misuse Act 1990 of gaining unauthorized access to computer material and be sentenced to seventy hours of community service and £170 in court costs.


Penton Media, a century-old med-western press and trade show organization, purchases Mecklermedia Corporation, who had previously purchased Jack Rickard’s Boardwatch Magazines on May 18th, 1998. The merger is estimated to be in the range of $274 million. WinBook introduces the WinBook XL computer, featuring a 233 MHz Pentium MMX processor, a 20x CD-ROM drive, a 1.44MB 3.5-inch floppy disk drive, a 256KB Level-2 cache, 16MB RAM, a 12.1-inch dual scan display, a PCI 2MB graphics accelerator, a 1.6 GB hard drive, and a touch pad controller. Price: US$999


Hundreds of websites based in Spain take their content offline in protest of a new law that takes effect on this day requiring all commercial websites to register with the government.


Apple introduces the new fifth generation iPod with video playback capabilities. The device is also forty percent thinner than the fourth generation iPod with a larger screen.

The Microsoft Windows Genuine Advantage anti-piracy system is cracked. The simple line javascript that, when entered into a browser, causes Microsoft’s website to automatically validate the user’s system spreads rapidly across the Internet,


Microsoft launches Xbox Live Pipeline, a flash-based website that provides access to game downloads, demos, game videos, themes, gamer pictures, and other media content.


Clockwise or counter? An image is displayed of a female silhouette spinning. The question is simple – is she turning clockwise or counter? The ideal is suppose to show whether your brain is right sided or left.


Twitter drops IM support

MySpace launches MyAds


Microsoft was awarded a patent for graphics chip video encoding. More to the point, encoding between the GPU chip and the CPU chip.

Sony announces their LCD Google TV. The NSX-GT1 will start at $599 for the 24-inch model.


Dennis Ritchie, designer of C programming language passes away

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