January 9th was the day in history when…
2007: Apple Computer unveiled the revolutionary iPhone. The handy gadget was the first of its kind. In addition to a high quality camera and phone, the owner could also access the internet, email, and use it as a multimedia player. The iPhone used touch screen technology rather than an actual keyboard. Applications or “apps” could be downloaded to the iPhone enabling it to do anything from serving as a GPS to finding local restaurants. Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple, presented the breakthrough at Macworld 2007 but it was not available for sale until June of that year.
1972: Billionaire Howard Hughes called Clifford Irving’s biography a fake. Hughes was an eccentric man known for his achievements in aviation, Hollywood, and many other pursuits. In later years he became reclusive, shunning all contact with the outside world. The mystery surrounding Hughes peaked the public’s interest. Irving and his friend Richard Suskind, both authors, devised the scheme to create Hughes’s autobiography without ever actually contacting Hughes himself. The two counted on the billionaire’s reclusiveness to prevent him from challenging the book. Irving created letters in Hughes’s forged handwriting. Suskind did extensive research into his life. Together they created the counterfeit manuscript which they sold to publishing company McGraw-Hill. Hughes finally fought back by contacting seven journalists he had worked with years earlier, arranging a phone conference. Hughes announced that the manuscript had been faked and that he had never met Irving. Both the authors eventually confessed and were convicted of fraud.
1956: Abigail Van Buren’s “Dear Abby” column first appeared in newspapers. Pauline Phillips got her start when she first moved to San Francisco. She called the “San Francisco Chronicle” and informed the editor she could write a better advice column than the one which currently appeared in the paper. After an interview and submitting some writing samples Phillips got the job. She used the pen name Abigail Van Buren which she created getting her first name from the Bible and the last name from a former president. “Dear Abby” was an instant success and was syndicated in newspapers across the country. Her identical twin sister, Ester, wrote a similar column under the name Ann Landers. The two had a rivalry for much of their adult life, even competing over which newspapers would carry whose column.
1967: Dave Matthews – musician
1944: Jimmy Page – guitarist, Led Zepplin
1935: Bob Denver – actor, Gilligan’s Island
1913: Richard M. Nixon – 37th President of the U.S.
Notable People Lost:
1995: Peter Cook – actor
1994: Silas Hogan – blues singer and guitarist
1939: Johann Strauss – Austrian conductor
Odd Holidays (There’s Always Something to Celebrate!):
National Rape Survivor Day
National Static Electricity Day
National Apricot Day
Aviation in America Day
Thought for the day: Do glow-in-the-dark objects stop glowing when somebody turns the lights on?
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Beth’s Blog: It Seemed Like a Good Idea at the Time