Home

      Comment post English
x

Select your language

EnglishEspañol

Generation Y

 

1

JVC created the VHS in 1976.

<< Back to the Generation Y article
 

2

The Viking Probe was the first human-made object to land on Mars on July 20, 1976.

<< Back to the Generation Y article

3

On April 1, 1976 Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, and Ronald Wayne established Apple to sell the hand-made Apple I personal computer. It was sold just as a motherboard. It went on sale in July 1976 and was market-priced at $666.66 ($2550 in 2010 dollars). Later Wayne sold his share of the company to Jobs and Wozniak for $800 and finally the company was incorporated on January 3, 1977 under a funding of $250 thousands. On April 16, 1977 the Apple II was introduced at the first West Coast Computer Faire. It came with color graphics and 5 1/4'' disk; the Disk II.

<< Back to the Generation Y article

 

4

In 1976 Shugart Associates introduced the first 5¼-inch floppy disk to replace the 8-inch floppy disk.

<< Back to the Generation Y article

 

5

On June 19, 1978 Garfield, the cat who considers himself to be more intelligent than humans and other animals, made his first appearance. It was created by Jim Davis.

<< Back to the Generation Y article
 

6

On July 25, 1978, Louise Joy Brown, the world's first successful "test-tube" baby was born in Great Britain. Though the technology that made her conception possible was heralded as a triumph in medicine and science, it also caused many to consider the possibilities of future ill-use.

By the way, she is a millennial too.

<< Back to the Generation Y article
 

7

Sony released the first comercially available Walkman on July 1, 1979, the TPS-L2 model. It was first built in 1978 by audio-division engineer Nobutoshi Kihara for Sony co-chairman Akio Morita, who wanted to be able to listen to operas during frequent long plane trips.

In the US it was initially marketed as the Soundabout and the Stowaway in the UK. In Japan the marketing name was Walkman from the beginning, though Morita hated that name and asked that it be changed, he finally changed his mind when being told by junior executives that a promotion campaign had already begun using that brand name and that it would be too expensive to change at that moment.

It would become one of the symbolic inventions of this age, as it changed the way of listening music as well as it opened the access to media while doing activities outdoors and without the need to have the device plugged in the electrical outlet. It can be considered as the first portable media device.

<< Back to the Generation Y article

8

On November 26, 1976 the company was registered under the name of Microsoft with the Secretary of State of New Mexico. The name was first used in a letter sent by Bill Gates to Paul Allen on November 29, 1975. On October 22, 1979, a U.S. federal trademark registration was filed for Microsoft, being the first U.S. federal trademark filing by the company. On January 1, 1979, the company moved from Albuquerque, New Mexico to a new home in Bellevue, Washington.

The first operating system released publicly by the company was Xenix, a variant of Unix in 1980. In 1981 MS-DOS, was introduced.

<< Back to the Generation Y article

9

In October 1976, the first prototype DeLorean DMC-12 was completed by William T. Collins. DeLorean eventually built the DMC-12 in a factory in Dunmurry, Northern Ireland, a neighborhood a few miles from Belfast city centre. Construction on the factory began in October 1978, and although production of the DMC-12 was scheduled to start in 1979, engineering problems and budget overruns delayed production until early 1981.

The DeLorean Motor Company went bankrupt in late 1982 when John DeLorean, the designer, was arrested in October of that year on drug trafficking charges. He was later found not guilty, but it was too late for the DMC-12 to remain in production.

Its engine produced a 170 horsepower (130 kW) output emissions regulations required that parts such as catalytic converters be added causing a 40 horsepower (30 kW) reduction to the vehicle's power output, a loss which seriously impeded the DMC-12's performance thus decreasing its popularity in the American market. DMC-12 could achieve 0–60 mph (0–96 km/h) in 8.8 seconds, very good for the early 1980s, but the American version of the car achieved that speed in 10.5 seconds.

It had a retail price of $25,000 (the equivalent to about $60,000 today). Approximately 9,000 DMC-12s were made before production stopped in late 1982. Today, about 6,500 DeLorean Motor Cars are believed to still exist.

It would be later featured in the popular Back to the Future films trilogy (1985-1990).

<< Back to the Generation Y article

10

The series of Star Wars began when Lucasfilm released on May 25, 1977 the Star Wars film. It was followed by The Empire Strikes Back, released on May 21, 1980, and Return of the Jedi, released on May 25, 1983.

The story takes place in a fictional galaxy, where space travel is common and various species of alien creatures, humanoids and robotic droids (mostly built to serve their owners) are depicted. Many planets in the galaxy are members of a Galactic Republic, which later was reorganized as the Galactic Empire.

<< Back to the Generation Y article

11

Though it was invented in 1962 by John Spinello and first marketed in 1965 by Milton Bradley; the game became very popular during the 80s.

The game consists of an operating table, with an embedded image of a patient named Cavity Sam with a large, red rubber coated light-bulb for his nose. In the surface are a number of openings, which reveal fictional and humorously-named ailments made of white poly-plastic.

The game is for 1 or more players, it includes two sets of cards -Doctor and Specialist cards-; the Specialist cards are dealt out evenly among the players at the beginning of the game, while to pick Doctor cards they must take turns, which offer a cash reward for removing a particular ailment, using a pair of tweezers connected with wire to the board. If a player successfully removes the ailment they'll win the amount shown on their card, but if the tweezers touch the metal edge of the opening during the attempt, a buzzer sounds, the patient's nose lights up red, and the player loses their turn. The player holding the Specialist card for that piece then has a try, getting double points if they succeed. The winner is the player with the most money after all the pieces have been extracted. The game can become sometimes difficult due to the shapes of the plastic ailments, and the fact the openings are just a little larger than the ailments themselves.

This is a dexterity game for an aproximate age range of 6 to adult and has an average playing time of 10 minutes. You most probably have played with, heard of or seen it, when you were a child in the 80s.

<< Back to the Generation Y article

12

Another famous toy of the 80s, the Rubik's Cube. Though it was invented in 1974 by Erno Rubik, under the name of Magic Cube it didn't become popular until 1980 when it was licensed by Rubik to be sold by the toys company Ideal Toys in the American market. During the 80s it became a worldwide success and an iconic toy of the decade, it is the world's top-selling puzzle game and widely considered to be the world's best-selling toy.

Since 1980, all kind of Rubik's Cube competitions started to take place all around the world.

It measures 2.25 inches (5.7 cm) on each side, consists of a 3x3x3 assortment of 26 coloured squares. The puzzle is simple (to understand), you must end up with only one color on each side by twisting the rows of squares around; now the taugh part is solving it.

If you are a child of the 80s you most probably played with it or you have seen a friend of yours trying to solve the maddening puzzle.

<< Back to the Generation Y article

13

Another pop culture symbol of the 80s, Simon. Despite having been launched in 1978, it is a pop culture symbol of the 80s as it was very popular during that decade. So millions of children of the eighties had one or played with one.

It was designed by Ralph H. Baer and Howard J. Morrison and its name was based on the old children's game Simon Says. The marketing slogan of Simon was: Simon's a computer, Simon has a brain, you either do what Simon says or else go down the drain.

It is an electronic game of rhythm and memory skills, it consists of four large buttons, one each of the colors red, blue, green, and yellow. The unit lights these buttons in a sequence, playing a tone for each button; the player must press the buttons in the same sequence. The sequence begins with a single button chosen randomly, and adds another randomly-chosen button to the end of the sequence each time the player follows it successfully. The game ends when the player makes a mistake or when the player wins by matching the pattern for a predetermined number of tones. The Red button (upper right) plays an A-note or La, the Green button (upper left) plays an A-note or La but an octave higher than the Red button, the Blue button (lower right) plays a D-note or Re, and the Yellow button (lower left) plays a G-note or Sol.

There were lots of clones and re-releases of this game; including one with translucent case rather than plain black, a two-sided Simon, Pocket Simon, an eight-button Super Simon, a wriswatch version, a themed version featuring Star Wars sounds and a handheld Atari arcade named Touch Me (Actually the latter was a re-release of the 1974 version of the homonymous Atari game; since the company tried to take advantage on the success of Simon). But no one was so successful as the original.

<< Back to the Generation Y article

14

There is almost no child of the eighties who cannot remember He-Man and the Masters of the Universe. This is a toyline created by Mattel featuring different action figures including He-Man and Skeletor. The He-Man concept, later renamed the Masters Of The Universe, was originated and developed by Roger Sweet in early 1980. The concept was followed by the original minicomics by Donald F. Glut which came with each of the figures; these stories involved the character it came with.

Later in 1983 the production company Filmanation released the cartoon series for TV. The production company focused more on the lighter, humorous elements of the story rather than the violent ones featured by the toyline and the minicomics to make it more suitable for the children's TV audience.

However the basic idea behind the cartoon was controversial since it was created to market the line of toys. In the UK, advertising regulations forbade commercials for He-Man toys to accompany the program itself. To lower the negative comments against the cartoon, a "life lesson" or "moral of the story" at the end of each episode was included. Orko, the small alien magician, was introduced in the series as he was not one of the original characters of the toyline.

The action figures were mostly repeated patterns of the same body model, with head variations and repaints. Originally there were few molds; Two chests, hairy and smooth, one belt/pair of shorts, and three sets of arms and legs (smooth muscular, evil 'claw' fingers/toes, and hairy). Teela had her own mold, which lated was used for Evil-Lyn. Later when Masters of the Universe became a complete success and a second wave was released, some new molds were added to the toyline, including Ram Man who had an exclusive format, Man-E-Faces and Trap Jaw are some examples.

He-Man action figures were sort of heavy as they were made of a rubbery plastic and some had a spring-loaded action. This action would enable He-Man or Skeletor to be able to throw a punch. He-Man action figure included a shield and sword for He-Man while Skeletor included a battle-axe.

The original line was released between 1982 and 1983 including He-Man, Man-At-Arms, Skeletor, Beast Man, Zodax, Teela, Mer-Man and Stratos. After becoming a complete success among children, Mattel decided to release a whole new batch in 1983 adding Faker I, Tri-Klops, Trap-Jaw, Evil-Lyn, Man-E-Faces and Ram-Man to the toyline.

Different spaceships as well as buildings were included. But the top point of the line was Castle Greyskull; the kind of 80s toy a child would  always dream to have, making it almost a luxury due to the high price and size.

Mattel continued making the He-Man figures until 1987. So if you were a child during the 80s (Early Millennial) you probably played with He-Man figures and if you were lucky enough you had the Castle Greyskull to.

<< Back to the Generation Y article

15

Another one that hits the hall of fame. This toyline's prehistory can be found in the 70s (as it happened with many other toys of the 80s) in a previous toyline first designed in 1974 by the Japanese toys company Takara that was branded with the name Microman. It was a line of miniatures of the Henshin Cyborg. The first series, Microman Zone, consisted of four figures and several vehicles that had to be assembled. All the Microman toys could be attached to another toy to form new sets of toys by special connectors.

Later in 1980 they launched another toyline, Diaclone, consisting of transforming vehicles and robots piloted by miniature, magnet-shoed figures spun off from the prior Microman line that were in turn known as Inch-Man. In 1982, the line added the Car-Robots set of transforming robot toys. The Car-Robots added the feature of the robots being able to transform themselves into late 20th century-era contemporary vehicles. Meanwhile they launched a subline of Microman named MicroChange featuring toys that transformed into vehicles or robots which could be used with the Microman figures.

Finally in 1984, the American toys company Hasbro licensed the both the Diaclone Car-Robots and the Microman "Micro Change" toylines from Takara merging the two series for the American market and thus creating the Transformers. During the first two years they reused the Diaclone and Micro Change molds; including some early models made of die-cast metal, which later were discontinued.

Some of the figures of the previous lines became part of the new one; for instance, seven MicroChange robots were released as the Autobots Mini-Cars. Megatron was originally a black-and-brown Walther P-38 who turned into a robot wielding a laser gun and a sword. CassetteMan, a recorder that turned into a robot, was converted into the Decepticon Soundwave the robot that was capable of carrying a number of other robots who turned into actual-sized micro-cassettes.
 

The Constructicons were the first "gestalt" team in the Transformers line, but were different from most subsequent gestalt teams in that they consisted of six members instead of five. The Autobot Jeltfire was a repainted version of VF-1 Valkyrie, a character of the Macross Anime series, it later was renamed Skyfire in the animated television series program for copyright reasons.

In 1986 when the Transformers animated movie was released, and during the run of the film, a pamphlet came with certain figures, whereby you could order by mail (the good old real mail ) certain transformers, like Optimus Prime among others; they came in a standard brown mailer box, with items, booklet, and a limited Edition Movie certificate and sticker.

Due to changes in the movie and the TV series where they leaped ahead twenty years to the year 2005, in 1986 the line featured another big change, when the majority of the figures were conceived as futuristic vehicles and bore little resemblance to present-day machinery. According to many fans this change might have been what signaled the beginning of the end for the Transformers (at least the first generation), as part of the novelty of the first lines was the realistic vehicles that turned into robots.

However they did well until 1989 in the USA and 1993 in the UK. Later newer generations were released, as well as video games and even the new feature films.

We can say lots of things about the Transformers, but one is clear, they are one of the top toys of the 80s.

<< Back to the Generation Y article