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Flashback calendar

American cognitive scientist Marvin Minsky dies

His main interest was research of artificial intelligence. He built the first randomly wired neural network learning machine, SNARC. It was one of the first pioneering attempts at the field. Minsky also invented the head-mounted graphical display and the confocal microscope. One of the characters in the movie 2001: A Space Odyssey; Victor Kaminski, was named in his honour.

Voyager 2 makes 1st fly-by of Uranus

The probe came within 81 500 kilometres of the upper layer of the planet`s atmosphere. She discovered eleven moons previously unknown to science. Most of them were named after heroes of William Shakespeare's plays. The only exception was Belinda, named after the heroine of Alexander Pope's The Rape of the Lock.

Apple Computer Inc unveils its Macintosh personal computer

The Macintosh 128K, originally released as the Apple Macintosh, is the original Apple Macintosh personal computer. Its beige case consisted of a 9 in (23 cm) CRT monitor and came with a keyboard and mouse. A handle built into the top of the case made it easier for the computer to be lifted and carried. It had an initial selling price of $2,495 (equivalent to $5,752 in 2016). The Macintosh was introduced by the now-famous $370,000 (equivalent to $852,944 in 2016) television commercial by Ridley Scott, "1984", that most notably aired on CBS during the third quarter of Super Bowl XVIII on January 22, 1984.[6] Sales of the Macintosh were strong from its initial release on January 24, 1984, and reached 70,000 units on May 3, 1984.[7] Upon the release of its successor, the Macintosh 512K, it was rebranded as the Macintosh 128K.

The Nuclear Disaster of Kosmos 954

Kosmos 954 was a Soviet reconnaissance satellite launched in 1977. When the satellite reentered the Earth's atmosphere the following year, a malfunction prevented safe separation of its onboard nuclear reactor. It scattered radioactive debris over a total area of 124,000 square kilometres in northern Canada.

Microwave oven is patented

The heating effect of a high-power microwave beam was accidentally discovered by Percy Spencer, an American self-taught engineer from Howland, Maine. Employed by Raytheon at the time, he noticed that microwaves from an active radar set he was working on started to melt a candy bar he had in his pocket. The first food deliberately cooked with Spencer's microwave was popcorn.

American theoretical physicist Michio Kaku is born

While attending Cubberley High School in Palo Alto, Kaku assembled a particle accelerator in his parents' garage for a science fair project. His admitted goal was to generate "a beam of gamma rays powerful enough to create antimatter." Later he wrote several popular books on physics. He also writes blogs and speaks in TV and radio.

German-born economist Oskar Morgenstern is born

He is known as one of the two the co-founders of the mathematical field of game theory. The second one was American mathematician John von Neuman. Morgenstern grew up in in Vienna. When he was on a visit to Princeton University, Adolf Hitler took over Austria. Morgenstern decided to stay in the USA. He became an American citizen and even married American girl.

German aircraft designer Ernst Heinkel is born

His company Heinkel Flugzeugwerke produced the Heinkel He 178, the world's first and jet plane, and the Heinkel He 176, the first rocket aircraft. Heinkel himself was an ative member of the Nazi party. After the war he used his company's facilities to build Heinkel Tourist scooter and Heinkel Kabine car.

Anniversaries of the (in)famous

born 1941

Dan Shechtman

born 1947

Michio Kaku