1979: CompuServe began offering a consumer version of its dial-up online information service called MicroNET. The name would later be changed to CompuServe and offer public email among other online services.
In 1993 – Broderbund Software released the game Myst, for the Macintosh computer. It became a record-setting bestseller and helped popularize CD-ROM drives.
In 1997 – Ultima Online launched, revolutionizing online gaming by supporting thousands of simultaneous players in a persistent shared world.
In 1889 – Fusajiro Yamauchi founded Nintendo Koppai in Kyoto, Japan, to manufacture hanafuda, Japanese playing cards. Mario came much later.
In 1999 – NASA lost contact with the Mars Climate Orbiter. It began orbit normally, but after it went behind the planet and out of range, it never made contact again. It was later determined that the approach attitude was wrong because software put out imperial units instead of metric units.
In 2002 – Mozilla Phoenix 0.1 was released. It was the first public version of the web browser without mail or web editor, which would become Mozilla Firefox.
In 2008 – The T-Mobile G1 launched, the first phone to use Google’s Android OS, as it began it’s competition against the barely year-old iPhone.
In 1791 – Michael Faraday was born in south London. He grew up to discover electromagnetic induction and coined the terms ‘electrode’, ‘cathode’ and ‘ion.’ He also lent his name to the Faraday cage.
In 1986 – In NEC Corp. Vs. Intel Corp., the US District Court for the Northern District of California ruled that microprograms are copyrightable literary works. And so all the trouble began.
In 2011 – Facebook announced its new Timeline feature which would collect all your posts and materials in chronological order, replacing the old profile.
In 1866 – Herbert George Wells was born in Bromley, England. He would grow up to write under the name H. G. Wells and help form the genre of science fiction.
In 1999 – Google came out of beta. The young company announced its new Google Scout feature and the launch of its new website, removing the beta designation from the Google search engine.
In 2000 – Kevin Mitnick was released from a Lompoc, California prison after almost five years of incarceration.
1848 – At noon in the library of the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia, members of the former Association of American Geologists and Naturalists met to create the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
In 1954 – John Backus and his team at IBM ran the first FORTRAN program. FORTRAN stands for FORmula TRANslation and was the first high-level language and compiler developed.
In 1983 – A patent for the RSA Algorithm for public-key cryptography was awarded. RSA stands for Ron Rivest, Adi Shamir and Leonard Adleman, who first publicly described it in 1977.
In 1982 – In a posting made at 11:44 AM, Professor Scott Fahlman first proposed using the characters 🙂 to indicate jokes on a computer-science department bulletin board at Carnegie Mellon University. In the same post he suggested :-(.
In 1989 – About 100 hospitals that used software from Shared Medical Systems saw their computers go into a loop when the date was entered. The day was 32,768 days from January 1, 1900, which caused a system overflow.
In 1995 – International Talk Like a Pirate Day (ITLAPD) was first celebrated by John Baur (Ol’ Chumbucket) and Mark Summers (Cap’n Slappy), of Albany, Oregon. They had come up with the idea on June 6th while playing racquetball, but that was D-Day. The 19th was Summers’ ex-wife’s birthday, and the only day he could reliably remember.
In 1830 – America’s first native locomotive, the “Tom Thumb” lost a race to a draft horse at Ellicotts Mills, Maryland.
In 1927 – The Columbia Phonograph Broadcasting System went on the air with 47 radio stations. Within two years it would be sold and become the Columbia Broadcasting System and later simply CBS.
In 1998 – The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers aka ICANN was created in order to take over Internet administrative tasks from the US Government. The most famous of those tasks is overseeing the Domain Name System.
In 1822 – Jean-François Champollion, permanent secretary of the French Académie des Inscriptions, presented his Lettre a M. Dacier, describing his solution to the mystery of the Hieroglyphic inscriptions on the Rosetta Stone. A nifty bit of decryption.
In 1991 – The first version of the Linux kernel (0.01) was posted to a Finnish FTP server in Helsinki. Originator Linus Torvalds wanted to call the OS FreaX, but the FTP admin didn’t like the name and renamed it Linux.
In 2007 – AOL announced plans to refocus the company on advertising relocate its corporate headquarters from Dulles, Virginia to New York City
In 1959 – The first successful photocopier, the Xerox 914, was introduced at the Sherry-Netherland hotel in New York City. ONe caught fire. The demo that was carried live on television did not catch fire.
In 1985 – Steve Jobs spent his last day as an employee of Apple after submitting his resignation to the board.
In 1997 – After purchasing NeXT the previous December, bringing Steve Jobs back to the company, the Apple Board named Jobs as interim CEO, replacing Gil Amelio.
In 1947 – The Association for Computing Machinery was founded as the Eastern Association for Computing Machinery at a meeting at Columbia University in New York. It developed into the world’s largest organization of computer professionals.
In 1947 – RCA released the 12AX7 vacuum tube for public sale. The miniature dual triode vacuum tube with high voltage gain became popular with tube amplifier enthusiasts and has been in continuous production since.
In 2008 – Electronics retailer Best Buy acquired the Napster music service for $121 million, preventing the once dominating music-sharing service from going out of business.