Day in Engineering History Archive - December 3
Note: These historical tidbits have been collected from various sources, mostly on the Internet. As detailed in this article, there is a lot of wrong information that is repeated hundreds of times because most websites do not validate with authoritative sources. On RF Cafe, events with hyperlinks have been verified.Please submit significant historical events and dates for inclusion in these lists. I will be glad to include your name and birthday. Please do not submit your death date ;-) A couple years ago, I began commemorating the birthdays of notable people and events with special RF Cafe logos. Where available, I like to use images from postage stamps from the country where the person or event occurred.
1838: Cleveland Abbe, known as "the father of the U.S. Weather Bureau," was born. 1888: German optician Carl Zeiss, of precision optics fame, died. 1924: American computer scientist John Backus, inventor of the FORTRAN language (FORmula TRANslation), was born. 1942: American physicist Peter Schultz, who is credited for inventing the first commercially viable optical fiber, was born. 1956: The USS Gyatt was recommissioned as the first guided missile destroyer. 1967: Dr. Christiaan Barnard performed the first human heart transplant on Louis Washkansky, who lived 18 days with the new heart. 1973: Pioneer 10 passed Jupiter in the first fly-by of an outer planet. 1983: Over 40 tons of highly poisonous methyl isocyanate gas leaked out of the Union Carbide pesticide factory in Bhopal, India, killing thousands of souls. 1992: British engineer Neil Papworth sent the world's first text message (SMS). 1999: NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) lost communications with the Mars Polar Lander moments before impact.