Today in Geek History for January

January 9

1968: Surveyor 7, an American, unmanned lunar probe lands on the moon and begins sending back pictures of the surface.

1986: The Atari 1040ST is released. It has 512 KB or 1MB of memory for the low, low price of $999.

January 15

1990: AT&T suffers a 9 hour failure of long distance service after a buggy upgrade of software to control long distance switches. AT&T engineers reload the previous software version to correct the problem. Buggy upgrades have created quite a bit of chaos through the years.

2006: The Stardust mission returns to Earth with a payload of dust collected from the Wild 2 comet. NASA found that samples from the Wild 2 comet held the amino acid glycine, proving that some of our amino acids came from deep space.

January 31

1999: The French navy ceases its use of Morse Code and signs off with its final message: "Calling all. This is our last cry before our eternal silence." The American Navy ends its use of Morse Code on July 12, of the same year. Its final message: Samuel Morse's original 1844 message, “What hath God wrought.”

2004: The Mars rover Opportunity rolls onto the Martian soil. Twelve years later and the rover is still hard at work. It is currently wintering in Marathon Valley where it can pull extra solar rays to keep its energy banks full.


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