Tech History Thursday: Week 1, 06/08-06/14



Welcome to the first installment of Tech History Thursday! If you’re keeping up to date with tech news by reading Techaeris, you’re just as interested in the origins of our high-tech world as we are.  This weekly snapshot will give you a look at what happened throughout history as it relates to technology.

June 8

  • In 1887, Herman Hollerith received a patent for a punch card reader that would be used for almost 100 years.
  • Sir Timothy Berners-Lee was born in London in 1955. Berners-Lee would go on to develop the World Wide Web, the basis of the Internet we use today.
  • Intel introduced the 8086, a 16-bit processor, in 1978. Later, Intel’s “Core” processors would be built upon the 8086 architecture.

June 9

  • In 1931, Robert Goddard achieved a design patent for an aircraft powered by a rocket.
  • The Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center opened in 1986. It helped the National Science Foundation’s NSFNET connect five supercomputer centers that would help transition the world to an open Internet.

June 10

  • In 1858, the Niagara and Agamemnon left Keyham Dockyard (Devonport) in England to begin work on the first successful trans-Atlantic cable.
  • Apple ships the first Apple II PC in 1977.
  • NASA’s Spirit Rover launched from Cap Canaveral, FL in 2003 aboard a Delta II rocket. Spirit would go on to explore Mars for 2,269 days from landing to last contact in 2011.
  • In 2013, Apple introduced the iOS 7 software update for the iPhone in San Francisco.

June 11

  • In 1978, the Speak & Spell is introduced to consumers. Manufactured by Texas Instruments, Inc., it is the first time a human voice is duplicated by electronic means, on a single silicon chip.
  • Steve Ballmer joined Microsoft in 1980. Ballmer would go on to succeed Bill Gates as CEO.
  • The first ever cameraphone photograph is taken and wirelessly transmitted by Philppe Kahn – a picture of his newborn daughter. More than 2,000 people receive the picture.

June 12

  • The first radio station with 500,000 watt power began testing in Pittsburgh, PA. The station would go on to become known as KDKA.
  • The 1996 Communications Decency Act is struck down by a panel of Federal judges. The panel stated that a law against indecency on the Internet would infringe upon the right to free speech of adults.

June 13

  • In 1961, the US launched Ham, a chimpanzee, into sub-orbital flight to test the capabilities of the Mercury capsule.
  • Apollo 14 launches, bringing US astronauts Shephard, Roosa, and Mitchell to the Moon in 1971.
  • Pioneer 10 becomes the first spacecraft to leave the Solar System in 1983.

June 14

  • In 1919, Captain John Alcot and Lt. Arthur Brown begin the first non-stop trans-Atlantic flight, leaving from Newfoundland and arriving in Ireland.
  • In a dedication of the Francis Scott Key memorial at Fort McHenry, Warren G. Harding became the first US President to be heard on the radio in 1922.
  • In 1951, the US Census Bureau puts UNIVAC into service, claiming it to be the first commercial computer in the world.
  • In 1952, the first nuclear powered submarine, the Nautilus, is dedicated.
  • Mariner 5 is launched from Cape Canaveral, FL in 1967. The space probe does a flyby of Venus.

There you have it! Which of these events do you think has had the most impact on how technology has been shaped? Sound off in the comments below.

Have a favorite moment in tech history that you’d like to add to next week’s snapshot? Leave a comment below, or connect with us on Google+, Facebook, Twitter, or by email!

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