Jeffrey Powers @geekazine
Posts by Jeffrey Powers:
1982 – After a decent success of the Atari 400/800 line the company noticed the console was looking a little “old”. After all, the Atari 400 actually discolors upon UV light. The 400’s non-tactile keyboard was replaced with the 800’s raised key keyboard. Still, Atari felt they needed to bring this personal computer into the 80’s.Therefore, the 1200XL was born. It was a hybrid computer – using what they called “Sweet 16” – a byte language developed by Steve Wozniak. It was to manipulate 16-bit pointer data from an 8-bit system.
The Atari 1200XL also featured 64 KB of RAM and a redesigned cable port and keyboard layout. Unfortunately the community felt the 1200XL was poorly designed for certain ports were in the wrong place. There was also a color enhancement feature that couldn’t be used because it wasn’t connected to the monitor port.
The Atari 1200XL was $599.99
- Charles Dickens publishes A Christmas Carol
- Cyrix files lawsuits over others who were using their patented technologies
- Symantec licenses Java from Sun Microsystems.
1980 – Apple Computer goes up for their Initial Public Offering and makes a statement in the market. Using the symbol “Steve Jobs reports $217 Million, being the largest shareholder. It beat out Ford Motor when it went IPOV (IPO Viral).
- OSCAR I goes into orbit
- Christopher Cockerell patents the Hovercraft
1967 – The Concorde was a British and French venture. It wa the first supersonic airliner. The prototype (Concorde 001) was rolled out to 1100 present. British technology minister Anthony Wedgwood Benn coined it Concorde on that day. The last “e” would stand for excellence. The first flight would not happen until March 1969.
1993 – 20 years ago, a Shareware copy was uploaded through a server at the University of Wisconsin (and although I was going to school there at the time, it wasn’t me – HONEST). The end result was the beginning of the first-person shooter. For those who do not want to read the Doom Bible, the story is about a Marine who assaults a senior officer, therefore was incarcerated on Mars at the Union Aerospace Corporation. His job was to overlook the teleportation device.However, the device goes haywire and a whole bunch of creatures come out of the portal. The player is told to secure until help arrives. Unfortunately, that means heading through the establishment and defending from the monsters that attack.
2002 – The trial of Jon Lech Johansen, better known as “DVD Jon,” begins with Johansen pleading not guilty. DVD Jon has been a pioneer in “Reverse engineering”. O.K, so that is a fancy way of saying “Pirating”, but without his efforts, advances might not have been made. He was acquitted on January 7, 2003.
2004 – It was an interesting day in the Tech community when we heard the news. IBM was getting out of the desktop and laptop markets and focus on server and infrastructure. They started by selling all their assets to Lenovo – China’s largest computer manufacturer. Lenovo wasn’t a household name in the US, but this pretty much changed that overnight.The deal was for $650 million in cash and $600 million in stock. Lenovo would also acquire $500 million in IBM liabilities, which would put the total to $1.75 billion. In return, Lenovo would instantly become the 3rd largest PC vendor with $12 billion in revenue, not to mention major markets in both China and the U.S.
- RCA demonstrates Split Screen technology for the first time.
- Patent for Coaxial cable
- Atari sues Coleco, Coleco sues back.
The picture was updated in 2008 when the group (except Bob Wallace, who passed away in 2002) got back together for Bill Gates last few days at Microsoft (below).
The staff picture includes: Bill Gates, Andrea Lewis, Marla Wood, Paul Allen (2nd row) Bob O’Rear, Bob Greenberg (who helped launch Cabbage Patch Kids), Marc McDonald, Gordon Letwin, (3rd row) Steve Wood, Bob Wallace (passed away in 2002) and Jim Lane.