1609 – Galileo Galilei craftily beat a Dutch telescope maker to an appointment with the Doge of Venice. Galileo impressed the Doge and received a lifetime appointment and a doubled salary. Later that autumn, Galileo pointed his telescope to the Moon, and trouble began.
1981 – Voyager 2 made its closest approach to Saturn. Eight years later on the same day in 1989, Voyager 2 would make its closest approach to Neptune.
1991 – 21-year-old Finnish student Linus Torvalds wrote a newsgroup post about a free operating system he was working on. He said it was “just a hobby, won’t be big and professional like gnu.” His OS would eventually be called Linux.
2014 – Amazon announced it had acquired Twitch.TV the popular video game streaming site. Rumors had indicated Google was going to buy the company, but the deal fell through.
2016 – NuTonomy began the first public trial of an autonomous taxi service. Customers could hail a self-driving taxi in Singapore’s One North business district. A human engineer sat in the driver’s seat ready to assume control if needed.
Read Tom’s science fiction and other fiction books at Merritt’s Books site.