Good News in History, June 29

Good News in History, June 29

Steve Jobs at iphone premiere

 

10 years ago on this day, the first iPhones went on sale in America, designed by Apple in 30 months at a cost of $150 million. With its full-capacity touchscreen and consumer-friendly design, the smartphone was a game-changer for mobile phones, selling 6.1 million units of its first generation over 15 months. Before choosing the obvious name, “iPhone,” these other names were proposed…

Working in the secretive Project Purple, developers discussed naming the device a Mobi, Telepod, Tripod, or iPad—before the tablet was born.

One of the key successes for the iPhone was due to Apple opening its device to third-party app development, which flourished from the beginning. 2.2 million apps are now available to extend the capabilities of any phone.

MORE Good News on this Day:

  • The First known recording of music—Handel’s Israel in Egypt—was made on a wax cylinder (1888)
  • The Federal Aid Highway Act of 1956 is signed, officially creating the United States Interstate Highway System (1956)
  • After her husband fell ill, vice-president Isabel Peron was sworn in as president of Argentina – with the support of the armed forces and labor unions – becoming the first non-royal female head of a modern state in the Western Hemisphere (1974)
  • The NASA Space Shuttle docked with the Russian space station Mir for the first time, signaling a new era of space co-operation between the two former Cold War rivals, and the first docking between a shuttle and a space station (1995)
  • Randy Johnson became the fourth pitcher in major league baseball history to record 4,000 career strikeouts (2004)

And on this day in 1936, Harmon Killebrew, the legendary baseball player, was born in Idaho. For the Minnesota Twins and Washington Senators, Killebrew was a prolific power and distance hitter who, at the time of his retirement, was second only to Babe Ruth in American League home runs (and only Alex Rodriguez passed him as a right-hander).

Despite his nickname, “The Killer”, Killebrew was a quiet, kind man who raised money for leukemia and cancer research and promoted children’s sports through community service. Killebrew was known for his quick hands and exceptional upper-body strength, demonstrated by several record-distance home runs, including a 520-footer in the old Minnesota stadium. Killebrew said that his first home run in the Majors was his favorite, coming off Billy Hoeft at Griffith Stadium. He said of it, “Frank House was the catcher. When I came to the plate, he said, ‘Kid, we’re going to throw you a fastball.’ I didn’t know whether to believe him or not. I hit it out. It was one of the longest home runs I ever hit. As I crossed the plate, House said, ‘That’s the last time I ever tell you what pitch is coming’.”

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