The National Computer Conference is held in Anaheim, California, over four days. At the National Computer Conference (NCC), Apple Computer introduces the Apple III, featuring a 2MHz 6502A microprocessor, a 5.25-inch floppy drive, and 128KB RAM. Price: US$4,340 to US$7,800
NASA launches the Intelsat V satellite.
A patent for a device for “keeping a head alive” is issued to Chet Fleming. (US No. 4,666,425) The device is a cabinet which provides the biochemical support for a sustaining the bodily processes of a severed head, including oxygenated blood and nutrients circulated through tubes connected to the subject’s arteries and veins that are exposed at the neck. The patent was tested on animals, but it suggests that it could be used to treat people suffering from terminal illnesses, as well.
Hewlett-Packard HP begins shipping the HP 300LX and 320LX handheld computers. Intel announces the 133MHz Pentium processor with MMX technology for notebook computers. Price: US$284 Version 4.2 (Biltmore) of the Red Hat Linux operating system is released. Visit the official Red Hat website.
All seven members of LØpht, a famous hacker collective based in Boston, Massachusetts, (Brian Oblivion, Kingpin, Mudge, Space Rogue, Stefan Von Neumann, John Tan, Weld Pond) testify before Congress that they could shut down the entire Internet in thirty minutes.
The Galaxy 4, a communications satellite, strays from it’s orbit and disrupts service to millions of pager customers and several television feeds. PageNet, one of the companies most severely effected, will estimates that as many as ninety percent its 40 to 45 million United States pager customers lost service.
Twentieth Century Fox releases Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace, directed by George Lucas and starring Liam Neeson, Ewan McGregor, and Natalie Portman to US theaters. Produced on a budget of US$115 million, the motion picture shatters box-office records with the largest single day gross in history – over US$28.5. The film goes on to gross US$64,820,970 in the opening weekend and more than US$102.7 million within its first five days.
The SourceGear Corporation releases the free open source word processor AbiWord for the first time. The name “AbiWord” is derived from the root of the Spanish word “Abierto” which means open. AbiWord is supported on BeOS, Linux, Mac OS X (PowerPC), Microsoft Windows, ReactOS, and other operating systems. Visit the official AbiWord website.
Apple Computer opens the first two locations of the twenty-five retail stores which will be opened in the US by year’s end. One is located in McLean, Virginia and the other is located in Washington, D.C. Within the first weekend of their opening, they will attract 7,700 shoppers, and they will sell a combined total of US$599,000 of merchandise. Visit the official Apple Store website.
Microsoft agrees to license Unix technology from the SCO Group.
Microsoft releases Microsoft Office 2004 for the Macintosh. Visit the official website for Microsoft Office for Windows.
The final version of the Netscape Browser, version 8.0, is released, followed a few hours later by version 8.0.1, which incorporates the key security patches of Firefox 1.0.4. Visit the official Netscape website.
Intel previews the “pineview” chip, their next ATOM based processor. They also showed off the beta of Mobiln 2.0 Linux OS.