Billy L. Mitchell is an eletronic sports player who is best known for recording high scores in classic video games from the Golden Age of Arcade Games. He has been claimed by some as the “greatest arcade-video-game player of all time”. His achievements include the first perfect score in Pac-Man. He owns the “Rickey’s World Famous Restaurant” chain, based in Hollywood, Florida. He uses the same brand to sell a line of hot sauces, “Rickey’s World Famous Sauces”. The 2007 documentary The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters tells the story of newcomer Steve Wiebe’s attempt to surpass Billy Mitchell’s high score at the game Donkey Kong, which Mitchell had set in 1982. On July 26, 2007, in celebration of the film’s release and the 25th anniversary of Mitchell’s first record-setting performance, Mitchell again played in public and retook the Donkey Kong record with a score of 1,050,200, though that score was surpassed on February 26, 2010 by Hank Chien, who was temporarily the record holder at Donkey Kong. However, Mitchell reclaimed his title once again on July 24, 2010. On September 20, 2010, Steve Wiebe once again took the title with a score of 1,064,500. As of February 27, 2011, Hank Chien re-took the record with a score of 1,090,400.
Jeff Jarvis is an American journalist. He is the former television critic for TV Guide and People magazine, creator of Entertainment Weekly, Sunday editor and associate publisher of the New York Daily News, and a columnist on the San Francisco Examiner. He is a co-host on This Week in Google along with Leo Laporte and Gina Trapani, a show on the TWiT Network which covers cloud computing and social networking. In 2009, Jarvis wrote a book called, “What Would Google Do?” In the book, he discusses how companies can become successful like Google, and talks about how Google, and other top websites, such as Facebook, Craigslist, Wikipedia, and Digg, have changed the business model. He gives advice on how companies can copy Google’s success, and how other successful companies have already done so, such a Dell and Apple.
Gertrude Margaret Lowthian Bell was an English writer, traveller, political officer, administrator, and archaeologist who explored, mapped, and became highly influential to British imperial policy-making due to her extensive travels in Greater Syria, Mesopotamia, Asia Minor, and Arabia. Along with T. E. Lawrence, Bell helped establish the Hashemite dynasties in what is today Jordan as well as in Iraq. She played a major role in establishing and helping administer the modern state of Iraq, utilizing her unique perspective from her travels and relations with tribal leaders throughout the Middle East. During her lifetime she was highly esteemed and trusted by British officials and given an immense amount of power for a woman at the time. She has also been described as “one of the few representatives of His Majesty’s Government remembered by the Arabs with anything resembling affection”.
Cameron Bruce Crowe is an American film director, producer, and screenwriter. Before moving into the film industry, Crowe was a contributing editor at Rolling Stone magazine, for which he still frequently writes. Crowe has made his mark with character-driven, personal films that have been generally hailed as refreshingly original and devoid of cynicism. Michael Walker in The New York Times called Crowe “something of a cinematic spokesman for the post-baby boom generation” because his first few films focused on that specific age group, first as high schoolers and then as young adults making their way in the world. Crowe’s debut screenwriting effort, Fast Times at Ridgemont High, grew out of a book he wrote while posing for one year undercover as a student at Clairemont High School in San Diego, California, where he met Geraldine Edwards, who was a student there while he was visiting mutual friends in 1975. He later based part of his Penny Lane character on her in Almost Famous after discovering that she had been going backstage to Rock and Roll concerts. Later, he wrote and directed one more high school saga, Say Anything, and then Singles, a story of Seattle twentysomethings that was woven together by a soundtrack centering on that city’s burgeoning grunge music scene. Crowe landed his biggest hit, though, with Jerry Maguire. After this, he was given a green light to go ahead with a pet project, the autobiographical effort Almost Famous. Centering on a teenage music journalist on tour with an up-and-coming band, it gave insight to his life as a 15-year-old writer for Rolling Stone. Part of the dialogue was inspired by comments that were made by Bebe Buell in certain interviews. Also in late 1999, Crowe released his second book, Conversations with Billy Wilder, a question and answer session with the legendary director.
Benjamin “Ben” Burtt, Jr. is an American sound designer for the films Star Wars (1977), Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978), Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981), E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (1982), Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989) and WALL-E (2008). He is also a film editor and director, screenwriter, and voice actor. He is most notable for creating many of the iconic sound effects heard in the Star Wars film franchise, including the “voice” of R2-D2, the lightsaber hum and the heavy-breathing sound of Darth Vader. Burtt was born in Jamesville, New York, and graduated with a major in physics from Allegheny College in Meadville, Pennsylvania. In 1970, he won the National Student Film Festival with a war film Yankee Squadron, reputedly after following exposure to classic aviation drama through making an amateur film at the Old Rhinebeck Aerodrome, a living aviation museum in Red Hook, New York, under guidance from its founder, Cole Palen. For his work on the special-effects film Genesis, Burtt won a scholarship to the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, California, where he earned a master’s degree in film production.
The World Chess Championship 1972 was a match between challenger Bobby Fischer of the United States and defending champion Boris Spassky of the Soviet Union for the World Chess Championship. The match took place in the Laugardalshöll arena in Reykjavík, Iceland and has been dubbed the Match of the Century. Fischer became the first American to be the official World Champion since Steinitz, the first Champion, became a naturalized American citizen in 1888. Fischer’s win also ended 24 years of Soviet domination of the World Championship. The first game started on July 11, 1972. The last game began on August 31 and was adjourned after 40 moves. Spassky resigned the next day without resuming play. Fischer won the match 12½-8½, becoming the eleventh official World Champion.
Marc Lowell Andreesen is an American entrepreneur, venture capitalist, software engineer, and multi-millionaire best known as co-author of Mosaic, the first widely-used web browser, and co-founder of Netscape Communications Corporation. He founded and later sold the software company Opsware to Hewlett-Packard. He is also a co-founder of Ning, a company that provides a platform for social-networking websites. He sits on the board of directors of Facebook, eBay, and HP, among others. Andreessen is a frequent keynote speaker and guest at Silicon Valley conferences. He is one of only six inductees in the World Wide Web Hall of Fame announced at the first international conference on the World Wide Web in 1994. Andreessen was born in Cedar Falls, Iowa, and raised in New Lisbon, Wisconsin, the son of Patricia and Lowell Andreessen, who worked for a seed company. He received his bachelor’s degree in computer science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. As an undergraduate, he interned one summer at IBM in Austin, Texas, United States. He also worked at the university’s National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA), where he became familiar with Tim Berners-Lee’s open standards for the World Wide Web. Andreessen and a full-time salaried co-worker Eric Bina worked on creating a user-friendly browser with integrated graphics that would work on a wide range of computers. The resulting code was the Mosaic web browser.