Today in Tech History – November 18, 2017

Today in Tech History logo1883 – US and Canadian railways adopted five standardized time zones to replace the multitude of local times scattered across North America. It was called “The Day of Two Noons” as each railroad station clock was reset as standard-time noon was reached within each time zone.

1928 – Steamboat Willie premiered at Universal’s Colony Theater in New York City. It was the first fully synchronized sound cartoon, directed by Walt Disney and Ub Iwerks. It was also the first official appearance of Mickey Mouse. Happy birthday Mickey, now give us back a reasonable public domain date.

1977 – A startup called Microsoft, fresh off developing its own version of FORTRAN, won the right in arbitration to license its version of BASIC, previously licensed exclusively through MITS, makers of the Altair.

2012 – The Nintendo Wii U launched in North America. The console did not yet feature it TVii service but did require a 5GB download which took over an hour to update the console’s software.

Read Tom’s science fiction and other fiction books at Merritt’s Books site.