Ernest Gary Gygax (July 27, 1938 – March 4, 2008 ) was an American writer and game designer, best known for co-creating the pioneering role-playing game Dungeons & Dragons (D&D) with Dave Arneson, and co-founding the company Tactical Studies Rules (TSR) with Don Kaye in 1974. Gygax is generally acknowledged as the father of the role-playing game.
Space shuttle Atlantis lands for the STS-135 mission marking the final mission of the Space Shuttle Program at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Time of landing was 5:57 a.m. (EDT) on July 21, 2011.
The “just at dawn” landing was one of the most memorable landings ever, as shown in this picture:
Left to right: Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins, and Buzz Aldrin, the crew of Apollo 11. Photo: NASA.
On this day in 1969, humans walked on the moon for the first time. The Apollo 11 spaceflight brought Americans Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin to the lunar surface on July 20, 1969, at 20:18 UTC.
Michael Collins, the mission’s third member, remained in lunar orbit. All three men returned safely to Earth after an 8-day mission that began with a Saturn V rocket launch from Kennedy Space Center in Merritt Island, Florida on July 16.
This was the fifth manned mission of NASA’s Apollo program, which ran from 1963 to 1972 and included 6 missions that landed on the moon. These were the first and last times human beings set foot on another world.
NASA has a collection of restored HD videos well worth watching on this historic day.
James Garner as Bret Maverick
James Garner as Jim Rockford
James Garner (born James Scott Bumgarner; April 7, 1928 – July 19, 2014) was an American film and television actor. He starred in several television series over more than five decades, which included such popular roles as Bret Maverick in the 1950s western-comedy series Maverick and Jim Rockford in the 1970s detective drama The Rockford Files.
Garner starred in more than 50 films including The Great Escape (1963), Paddy Chayefsky’s The Americanization of Emily (1964), Grand Prix (1966), Blake Edwards’ Victor Victoria (1982), Murphy’s Romance (1985) for which he received an Academy Award nomination, and The Notebook (2004).
On this day in 1799, during Napoleon Bonaparte’s Egyptian campaign, a French soldier discovers a black basalt slab inscribed with ancient writing near the town of Rosetta, about 35 miles north of Alexandria. The irregularly shaped stone contained fragments of passages written in three different scripts: Greek, Egyptian hieroglyphics and Egyptian demotic. The ancient Greek on the Rosetta Stone told archaeologists that it was inscribed by priests honoring the king of Egypt, Ptolemy V, in the second century B.C. More startlingly, the Greek passage announced that the three scripts were all of identical meaning. The artifact thus held the key to solving the riddle of hieroglyphics, a written language that had been “dead” for nearly 2,000 years.
When Napoleon, an emperor known for his enlightened view of education, art and culture, invaded Egypt in 1798, he took along a group of scholars and told them to seize all important cultural artifacts for France. Pierre Bouchard, one of Napoleon’s soldiers, was aware of this order when he found the basalt stone, which was almost four feet long and two-and-a-half feet wide, at a fort near Rosetta. When the British defeated Napoleon in 1801, they took possession of the Rosetta Stone.
Several scholars, including Englishman Thomas Young made progress with the initial hieroglyphics analysis of the Rosetta Stone. French Egyptologist Jean-Francois Champollion (1790-1832), who had taught himself ancient languages, ultimately cracked the code and deciphered the hieroglyphics using his knowledge of Greek as a guide. Hieroglyphics used pictures to represent objects, sounds and groups of sounds. Once the Rosetta Stone inscriptions were translated, the language and culture of ancient Egypt was suddenly open to scientists as never before.
The Rosetta Stone has been housed at the British Museum in London since 1802, except for a brief period during World War I. At that time, museum officials moved it to a separate underground location, along with other irreplaceable items from the museum’s collection, to protect it from the threat of bombs.
Harry Chapin (December 7, 1942 – July 16, 1981)
Harry Forster Chapin was an American singer-songwriter best known for his folk rock songs including “Taxi,” “W*O*L*D,” “Sniper“, “Flowers Are Red,” and the No. 1 hit “Cat’s in the Cradle.” Chapin was also a dedicated humanitarian who fought to end world hunger; he was a key participant in the creation of the Presidential Commission on World Hunger in 1977. In 1987, Chapin was posthumously awarded the Congressional Gold Medal for his humanitarian work.
Solo! Hay lapa no ya, Solo!
Harrison Ford (July 13, 1942 – )
Harrison Ford (born July 13, 1942) is an American film actor and producer. He is famous for his performances as Han Solo in the original Star Wars trilogy and as the title character of the Indiana Jones film series. Ford is also known for his roles as Rick Deckard in Blade Runner, John Book in Witness and Jack Ryan in Patriot Games and Clear and Present Danger. His career has spanned six decades and includes roles in several Hollywood blockbusters, including Presumed Innocent, The Fugitive, Air Force One, and What Lies Beneath. At one point, four of the top six box-office hits of all time included one of his roles. Five of his films have been inducted into the National Film Registry.
In 1997, Ford was ranked No. 1 in Empire‘s “The Top 100 Movie Stars of All Time” list. As of July 2008, the United States domestic box office grosses of Ford’s films total over US$3.5 billion, with worldwide grosses surpassing $6 billion, making Ford the third highest grossing U.S. domestic box-office star. Ford is the husband of actress Calista Flockhart.
Ernest Borgnine (January 24, 1917 – July 8, 2012)
Ernest Borgnine (born Ermes Effron Borgnino) was an American film and television actor whose career spanned more than six decades. He was an unconventional lead in many films of the 1950s, winning an Oscar in 1955 for Marty. On television, he played Quinton McHale in the 1962–1966 series McHale’s Navy and co-starred in the mid-1980s action series Airwolf, in addition to a wide variety of other roles. Borgnine was also known for his role as Mermaid Man in the animated television series SpongeBob SquarePants. Borgnine earned an Emmy Award nomination at age 92 for his work on the series ER.
Space shuttle Atlantis launches for the STS-135 mission to the International Space Station in the final mission of the Space Shuttle Program at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Liftoff was at 11:29 a.m. (EDT) on July 8, 2011. Astronauts Chris Ferguson, STS-135 commander; Doug Hurley, pilot; Sandy Magnus and Rex Walheim, both mission specialists, were on board.
There have, to date, been no “amendments” to the Bible. Interesting, no?
So, after one of the recent SpaceX rockets landed a little hard (one rocket contributed less than its potential), Elon Musk tweeted:
“RUD=Rapid Unscheduled Disassembly :)”