History of Charles Dickens: 211 years Ago

HISTORY OF CHARLES DICKENS Today marks the 211th birthdate of Charles Dickens, considered by many the greatest English writer since Shakespeare — at least he was during his lifetime in the Victorian age. He enjoyed the distinction of fame and a measure of financial success during his lifetime, starting in his 20s. Many of his…

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History of The Beatles: Coming to America February 7, 1964

The Beatles

HISTORY OF THE BEATLES On February 7, 1964, The Beatles landed at JFK Airport in New York. The airport was recently renamed by a mourning country in honor of President Kennedy, who had been assassinated just 77 days earlier. The airport was now full of 4,000 greeters. Not realizing why there was such a crowd,…

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History of Peter Pan: the Story Behind the 70-Year-Old Disney Classic

Peter Pan

HISTORY OF PETER PAN All of this has happened before, and it will all happen again.   So begins my favorite Walt Disney animated movie, Peter Pan, which debuted 70 years ago today on February 5, 1953. The original movie poster said: “It will live in your heart forever!” …and indeed, it has. Why was…

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History of The Day The Music Died

American Pie

HISTORY OF THE DAY THE MUSIC DIED On February 3, 1959, a plane crash occurred in Iowa during a snowstorm shortly after 1:00 AM, killing three young rock and roll singers who would go down in history: Buddy Holly, Richie Valens, and J.P. “The Big Bopper” Richardson. Their story would later be captured as “long,…

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History of Apple Lisa, part 2: Meet Its Creators

Happy Birthday Lisa

HISTORY OF APPLE LISA, PART 2: MEET ITS CREATORS This week at the Computer History Museum’s “Happy 40th Birthday Lisa” event, Katie Hafner, former Computerworld writer, interviewed several of the creators of the Apple Lisa. Many more of the original development team were in the audience. This article follows my previous article on the History…

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History of Apple Lisa at 40: The Flop that Influenced Macintosh

Apple Lisa Computer

HISTORY OF APPLE LISA AT 40: THE FLOP THAT INFLUENCED MACINTOSH Forty years ago, on January 19, 1983, Apple Computer introduced Lisa. It has well been called Apple’s biggest flop, but it’s accurate to say that without the Lisa computer, there would have been no Macintosh, and it is likely Microsoft Windows would not look…

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History of Groundhog Day

HISTORY OF GROUNDHOG DAY Groundhog Day comes from Candlemas Day, observed for centuries in parts of Europe on February 2. The custom was to have the clergy bless candles — representing how long winter would be — and distribute them to the people. Pagan Roots This seems to have derived from the pagan celebration of Imbolc…

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History of February

February

HISTORY OF FEBRUARY February is the month we love to misspell, or at least mispronounce, but you’re forgiven for dropping the first “r” as dissimilation causes people to do that when there are two “r”s or “l”s near each other in a word. The name came from the Latin Februa an ancient Roman purification festival around…

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History of Mozart: today’s his birthday

Mozart

HISTORY OF MOZART Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was born on January 27, 1756, but he was baptized under the name Johannes Chrysostomus Wolfgangus Theophilus Mozart.   What’s In A Name? When he was an adult, he referred to himself as “Wolfgang Amadè Mozart,” signing his marriage certificate that way. His baptismal name was Latinized, as was…

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History of the Liberation of Auschwitz: January 27, 1945

Auschwitz

HISTORY OF THE LIBERATION OF AUSCHWITZ: JANUARY 27, 1945 January 27, 1945, was the liberation of the Auschwitz Concentration Camp, one of the most notorious camps of World War II, by the Soviet Red Army. This date is now known by the United Nations and the European Union as International Holocaust Remembrance Day. In America,…

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History of Australia Day: Ties to the American Revolutionary War?

AustraliaFlag

HISTORY OF AUSTRALIA DAY Did you know that the history of European Australia has ties to the American Revolutionary War? When the 13 American Colonies were part of the British Commonwealth, it was convenient for England to transport its convicts to the Colonies. Indeed, it was considered more humane to “transport” prisoners than to execute…

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History of Macintosh: a 39-Year Love Affair

Macintosh

HISTORY OF MACINTOSH: A 39-YEAR LOVE AFFAIR The now-famous Macintosh computer turns 39. When Apple President Steve Jobs launched this computer at the Flint Center on the De Anza College campus on January 24, 1984, to the theme from the movie Chariots of Fire, he called it “insanely great!”   Macintosh Launch The $1.5M “1984”…

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