The first car to be built on an assembly line was completed today, a Model-T Ford.
Microsoft chairman Bill Gates steps aside as chief executive and promotes company president Steve Ballmer to the position. Gates would stay on as “chief software architect” until June of 2008 before finally giving up day-to-day responsibilities at Microsoft. Gates is still Microsoft’s chairman of the board.
The “Friday the 13th” virus strikes hundreds of IBM computers in Britain. This is one of the most famous early examples of a computer virus making headlines. Over twenty years later, while other companies have systems that are practically immune to virues, Microsoft still hasn’t been able to develop a solution to prevent viruses from infecting their systems.
The U.S. Patent Office issues a patent for the Spalding Adding Machine. The precursor of calculators and computers, mechanical adding machines could do simple arithmetic and were popular in businesses until supplanted by computers in the 1960s.
Apple Computer announces that it will post a US$68 million first quarter loss. It also announces a restructuring plan to reduce the company by a thousand employees. This event leads to the resignation of Apple CEO Michael Spindler, who is replaced by Gil Amelio. Gil Amelio eventually purchases Steve Jobs’ company, NeXT, which leads to the development of Mac OS X as well as the return of Steve Jobs as Apple CEO.
AT&T announces the designation of 911 as a universal emergency number.
January 11, 2005
Apple introduces the iPod Shuffle, the first iPod to use flash memory and the smallest iPod made to date. The small size and low cost of the iPod Shuffle proved popular, as Apple sold 10 million iPod Shuffles by September 2006. It also paved the way for future flash-based iPods, which have now become more common than hard drive based units.