Category Archives: History

One Hundred and Forty Years Ago Today …

Sir Sandford Fleming first proposes adoption of Universal Standard Time at a meeting of the Royal Canadian Institute and gives the world a way to plan and execute global communication and scheduling on a reliable basis and revolutionizes the measurement of time for the modern age. (In stark comparison to George Hudson who proposed Daylight Savings Time 16 years later in an attempt to take the world back to the Dark Ages. How good can an idea be if its primary proponents ended up being the German Nazis???)

And while the global community is still arguing over the best implementation of UST– whether UT0, UT1, UT1R, UT2, or UTC is best — the simple fact of the matter is that UT1 is good enough, and thus UTC is good enough, and the world should just adopt it and quote all times in UTC.

Thirty Five Years Ago Today …

Apple Computer’s Macintosh personal computer goes on sale in the United States, beginning an era. As the first mass-market PC with a GUI (graphical user interface), built-in screen, and mouse, it set a new standard for the modern computer age.

While it wasn’t adopted en-masse initially due to its high cost (compared to the Commodore 64 and the IBM clone market), it set a new standard when when Apple consolidate down to 4 models 5 years later — the Power Mac G3, the iMac, the PowerBook G3, and the iBook — with more competitive prices and aesthetic designs, Apple became profitable and started its trek to become the brand of choice for the discerning enthusiast.

Now every device, including our pocket phones, have built in screens, GUIs, and trackpads (mouse replacements). The Macintosh ushered in a computing revolution. It just took a few years longer than Apple expected.

Fifty Years Ago Today …

Soviet spacecraft Soyuz 4 and Soyuz 5 perform the first-ever docking of manned spacecraft in orbit and the first-ever transfer of crew from one space vehicle to another (which was also the only time such a transfer was accomplished with a space walk).

This was a historic event in space exploration as it is one of the capabilities necessary to have a(n International) Space Station and we’re not going to reach the age of extra-planetary supply management (Part II and Part III) unless we can build space stations and efficiently dock spacecraft with them on inter-planetary supply runs.

70 Years Ago Today Was the Beginning of an Era …

When the first “networked” television broadcasts took place as KDKA-TB in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania goes on the air connecting east-coast and mid-west programming. And then,

12 Years Ago Today the End of that Era Began …

when Netflix announced it will launch streaming video services. Who needs cable TV when you can watch all the shows on your laptop, iPad, and even cell phone on the go?

Regardless of what you think, that’s a pretty fast rate of advancement. Eras used to last centuries. Now they barely last decades. Can your supply chain keep up?

One Hundred Years Ago Today …

The UK began its effort to leave the dark ages with the first general election where women were permitted to vote and the first woman was elected to the Commons.

If only it would finish its exit of the dark ages in Procurement, which, sadly, in many organizations is still controlled by white males in their fifties.

While the doctor does not want to be stereotypical, he does want to be realistic — Procurement is simply better when there are multiple perspectives (and skills) at the table. And without the second gender, you’re clearly leaving half the perspective and skill off of the table (and that is simple, irrefutable, math).