This Day in Geek History: May 14
Guglielmo Marconi communicates by wireless telegraph for the first time in history.
The first electrical timing device is tested at a track meet for three events between Columbia University and Syracuse University at Columbia’s Baker Field in New York City.
The Griffith Planetarium opens in Los Angeles, California. It is only the third planetarium in the U.S.
Lina Medina becomes the world’s youngest confirmed mother in medical history at the age of five.
George Walton Lucas, Jr., better known simply as George Lucas, is born. Lucas will go on to become the four-time Academy Award-nominated American film director, producer, and screenwriter made famous by his epic Star Wars trilogy. He will be one of American film industry’s most financially successful independent directors and producers.
CBS uses a laser light beam link to transmit a network television program for the first time anywhere. The program broadcast is “I’ve Got a Secret.” The studio uses a camera to modulate a laser beam that travels two feet to a receiver that decodes the signal. That signal is then relayed via the control room to be broadcast nationally. This demonstration is based on the work of GTE scientists Samuel M. Stone and Louis Richard Bloom.
The United States launches Skylab One, its first manned space station. It is the last launch of the Saturn V rocket, as well as the the largest payload launched into space by any nation to date. During the following nine months, three successive crews of astronauts will man the orbiting laboratory. It will fall back into the Earth’s atmosphere in July 1979.
Ashton-Tate introduces the dBase III relational database program for 16-bit IBM PC-compatible computers. The program is the successor to dBASE II, the first widely used database management system (DBMS) for microcomputers.
The final episode of the science fiction series War of the Worlds, The Obelisk, first airs. (No. 43) The series ran for forty-three episodes over two seasons. The series, based on the original 1953 The War of the Worlds film, was filmed in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
The Star Trek: The Next Generation episode “Sarek” first airs. (No. 323) In it, the Enterprise plays host to Ambassador Sarek, but the ambassador’s deteriorating mental health threatens negotiations. Memory Alpha entry