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In Memoriam

RIP: Nintendo President Satoru Iwata

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RIP: Nintendo President Satoru Iwata

Japanese videogame giant Nintendo announces the death of president Satoru Iwata on 11 July, age 55, due to bile duct cancer.

Iwata was named the fourth president in Nintendo's 126-year history-- and the first outside the founding Yamauchi family-- in 2002. An industry veteran, Iwata was originally a programmer, having worked on classic titles such as Balloon Fight, Kirby and EarthBound, before moving into upper management.

Under Iwata's tenure Nintendo launched some of its most successful (and arguably riskiest) hardware to date, namely the Wii home console and the DS handheld family, as well as the more recent Wii U. He also embraced the role of public face for the much loved company, regularly appearing in quirky "Nintendo Direct" videos and interviewing game developers in the "Iwata Asks" series.

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Jack Tramiel Dead at 83

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Jack Tramiel Dead at 83

Commodore International founder Jack Tramiel passed away Sunday April 8 at age 83, Forbes reports.

Tramiel was born in Poland to a a Jewish family in 1928. During WWII his family was imprisoned in Auschwitz, after which he and his father were sent to a German labour camp.

He emigrated to the US in 1947 where he started a typewriter repair business, Commodore Portable Typewriter. The company evolved throughout the years, replacing typewriters with digital calculators and home computers.

In 198 Continue reading...

Experimental Plane Crash: Micron CEO Dead at 51

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Experimental Plane Crash: Micron CEO Dead at 51

Micron Chief Executive Officer Steve Appleton crashed and died while attempting to fly an experimental plane in Boise, Idaho. Appleton took charge of Micron at age 34 and was the memory chip industry’s longest-serving CEO.

Appleton’s aircraft crashed early Friday morning, shortly after his second takeoff of the day. The Lancair IVP aircraft departed first at 8:46 am, only to land after lifting off only 5-10 feet from the runway.

He flew again in a second try, but had to call in a request to land again, indicating an aircraft problem.

“I’m going to taxi back in and see if I can figure it out,” can be heard on a recording of Boise airport's air-traffic control conversations. “I’d like to turn back in and land,” he said. “Coming back in.”

Then you can hear people at the control tower, “Oh my God,” repeated over and over in shock as the plane crashed between two runways at the airport.

When only 22 years old, Appleton joined Micron, working at first for the factory's night shift. Continue reading...

Steve Jobs Dead at 56

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Steve Jobs Dead at 56

The undisputed leader of the computer, mobile phone, entertainment industries, Steve Jobs passed away yesterday at the age of 56.

All the best eulogies were already written when he stepped down on Aug. 24th as CEO of Apple...and most of us knew the only reason he would walk away from Apple would be his own ultimate demise.

Steve wanted to changed the world and he did. Held up as the consummate businessman, ironically Steve actually was an anti-businessman...a cult legend who stood against much of the business culture. Frank Sinatra may have sung the song, but Steve Jobs really lived "I Did It My Way."

You heard a lot about his business life when he gave up Apple. Now you'll start to hear a lot more about Steve as a man. Now when his private life will be less guarded and admirers, deprived of his public persona, will seek further insight from his life.

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Bruce Cummings...The Channel Expert's Expert

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Bruce Cummings...The Channel Expert's Expert

Goodbye, Bruce, We'll miss you.

It's taken me months to be able to write this rememberance of my good friend, Bruce Cummings. I am writing this on his birthday: he would have been 64. By the time I post it, it will be nearly Christmas and I'll miss his usual email of holiday greetings.

Bruce passed away end of July, just days after diagnosis. That's the way he wanted to go if he had to, but the suddenness is hard on the rest of us.

Bruce passed away in the San Francisco Bay area that he called Continue reading...

In Memoriam: Gene Hellar

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In Memoriam: Gene Hellar

Gene Hellar passed away in July in California and I think many of his friends and business acquaintances in Europe may not know.

Below is a link where you can add your thoughts so that his family will know how many friends Gene made in Europe.

Gene Hellar and I go way back...but that's because Gene was an industry pioneer. He was one of the very, very first to bring Silicon Valley's computer products to Europe. He and his partner, Dick Walker, brought some of the first storage products Continue reading...

Bryan Pini Deceased

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Bryan Pini DeceasedA sudden heart attack this week in Silicon Valley took Bryan Pini from us. Many readers will remember Bryan because he held executive roles in international sales at Asoka, Actiontec Electronics, Telecruz Technologies and Diamond Multimedia/S3/Sonic Blue. 

If you didn’t know Brian brought to Europe one of the world's first MP3 player, the Diamond Rio, then you may remember his golf game: when Bryan graduated from the University of the Pacific, he was an inductee into their Sports Continue reading...