Satoru Iwata (December 6, 1959 – July 11, 2015) was a Japanese game
programmer and businessman who became the fourth president and chief
executive officer of Nintendo in 2002. Born in Sapporo, Japan, Iwata
expressed interest in video games from an early age and later majored in
computer science at the Tokyo Institute of Technology. He joined the
game developer HAL Laboratory in 1980 and became its president in 1993.
Joining Nintendo as the head of its corporate-planning division in 2000,
he brought growth to the company. A self-declared gamer, he focused on
expanding the appeal of video games across all demographics and
increasing the market space. He also built a strong relationship with
Nintendo fans through social media and his regular appearances in Iwata
Asks and Nintendo Direct, becoming the public face of the company. Under
his direction, Nintendo developed the profitable Nintendo DS and Wii
video game consoles, but the Nintendo 3DS and Wii U dropped net sales by
two-thirds from 2009 to 2012, leaving the company with its first
operating losses in 30 years. Iwata voluntarily halved his salary as an
apology in 2011 and 2014.
Today’s selected anniversaries:
Flemish infantry defeat a large French army near Kortrijk at
the Battle of the Golden Spurs.
Noongar warrior Yagan, wanted for leading attacks on white
colonists in Western Australia, was killed, becoming a symbol of the
unjust and sometimes brutal treatment of the indigenous peoples of
Australia by colonial settlers.
Former President of the United States William Howard Taft was
sworn in as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, making him the only
person to ever hold both positions.
In a massive ethnic cleansing operation, units of the Ukrainian
Insurgent Army attacked various Polish villages in the Volhynia region
of present-day Ukraine, killing the Polish civilians and burning those
settlements to the ground.
Shortly after takeoff from King Abdulaziz International
Airport, Saudi Arabia, Nigeria Airways Flight 2120 caught fire and
crashed, killing all 261 occupants on board.
Wiktionary’s word of the day:
1. The act of travelling long distances.
2. The act of a taxicab driver taking a passenger on a long detour to the
destination without consent in order to drive up the fare.
3. The act of transporting goods over long distances.
Wikiquote quote of the day:
When you consider that there are a thousand ways to express even
the simplest idea, it is no wonder writers are under a great strain.
Writers care greatly how a thing is said — it makes all the
difference. So they are constantly faced with too many choices and must
make too many decisions. I am still encouraged to go on. I wouldn’t know
where else to go.
–E. B. White
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