It may seem hard to believe, but more than 60 years ago the first solar-powered car — albeit a miniature one — was displayed at a General Motors auto show.
On Aug. 31, 1955, GM engineer William G. Cobb showed off a 15-inch balsa wood car model, complete with solar cells, to the roughly 2 million visitors who attended the monthlong convention. The design, which Cobb called the Sunmobile, was widely acknowledged as impractical, because even a full-size model would have failed to produce anywhere near the amount of power needed for a standard car. Still, the concept intrigued many in the mainstream automobile industry about the possibilities of solar energy — some of which are still being refined and expanded upon today.
A more immediately impactful technology was introduced to the public on Sept. 2, 1969, with the world’s first automatic teller machine, or ATM. Chemical Bank in Rockville Center, New York, was the first to offer the au- tomated service to its visitors.
Today, ATMs have been widely integrated with the daily lives of many in the United States (though that probably goes without saying). It’s interesting to note, however, that most banks did not add charging fees to their machines until the 1990s.
Just as most every adult in the United States understands what an ATM does, most are also aware of iconic baseball player Babe Ruth. Fewer, however, would know of the most easily comparable player in Japanese professional baseball, Sadaharu Oh, who hit his 756th home run — a pro record — on Sept. 3, 1977.
Like Ruth did several decades before, Oh emerged first as a star pitcher in the 1950s before transitioning to the slugging first baseman he came to be immortalized as. He’d end his career in 1980 with a total of 868 home runs, and it’s unlikely anyone in professional baseball will touch that for some time.
Interestingly enough, Oh was not the most popular player in the Japanese league during his career because of his half-Japanese, half-Chinese lineage. His more popular teammate Shigeo Nagashima was known as the “Lou Gehrig of Japanese baseball;” Oh as the “Babe Ruth.”
Finally, on Sept. 5, 2005, network news began to look a little different.
On that day, Virginia native Katie Couric became the first woman to solo anchor a weekday network evening news broadcast. She took over CBS Evening News, which had previously been handled by Dan Rathers before his retirement.
Couric, who had coanchored the Today show from 1991 until leaving in 2006, attracted a large audience to her debut broadcast, and she won several awards during her tenure.
The program trailed in ratings to ABC’s and NBC’s equivalent newscasts, however, and Couric left the position in May 2011.
Angel Olsen’s new album “My Woman” is another complete creation — one that’s highly interpretable and rewarding.