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|CED Digest Vol. 6 No. 44 • 11/3/2001|
20 Years Ago In CED History: November 4, 1981: * The second planned flight of the space shuttle Columbia is canceled with 31 seconds remaining in the countdown. November 5, 1981: * Buckingham Palace announces that the Princess of Wales is expecting a baby in June. * RCA PRESS RELEASE: RCA Reaches Major VideoDisc Milestone with Shipment of its Two Millionth Disc Indianapolis, November 5 -- RCA has reached a major milestone in its VideoDisc introduction with the production and shipment of the company's two millionth "CED" video disc. Dr. Jay J. Brandinger, division vice president and general manager, "SelectaVision" VideoDisc Operations, announced today. RCA is presently expanding the manufacturing capacity for video discs due to strong demand for discs from both RCA and others supporting the company's "CED" system, Dr. Brandinger said. A production goal of 10 million discs has been established for 1982 at RCA's video disc manufacturing facility here, he said. "The progress of the major expansion of disc production capacity announced in June has encouraged RCA to aim for production of three million discs this year, compared with an earlier goal of two million discs," Dr. Brandinger said. Jack K. Sauter, group vice president and general manager of the RCA Consumer Electronics Division, said RCA will expand its VideoDisc player line in 1982 to include a new stereo model that will be introduced to distributors and dealers next May. A new version of the current monaural model, SFT100, will also be introduced next year. Formal production of the new models will begin in the first quarter at RCA's Bloomington, Ind., plant. As of October 20, RCA reported total sales to RCA distributors had amounted to 107,300 players in advance of the Holiday sales season. Mr. Sauter noted that the coming 11 weeks are normally very strong retail sales weeks which should result in significant increases in sales to dealers. "With more than 5,000 dealers selling the RCA VideoDisc players, the sale of only a small number of units each week by those retailers should produce some exceptional weekly totals," Mr. Sauter said. "To date, RCA has produced 174 video disc titles under the RCA and MGM/CBS labels at its Rockville Road pressing plant in Indianapolis," Dr. Brandinger said. "It is clear that video disc player owners are buying discs at a much faster rate than RCA had originally anticipated," he added. The two millionth disc pressed by RCA, "Ordinary People," received four Academy Awards, including Best Picture, in April of this year. The movie starred Mary Tyler Moore, Donald Sutherland and Timothy Hutton as a family coping with tragedy. The expansion of the videodisc plant includes an increase in the number of video disc presses that will allow a further rise in disc production in 1982, Dr. Brandinger said. He reported that the building of a separate compounding facility to the present plant is proceeding on schedule. This facility will have the capability of supplying the critical compound material to disc manufacturers worldwide. A new power plant at the Rockville Road facility is also under construction with a planned capability of handling energy requirements for 60 presses. November 6, 1981: * The Labor Department announces that the U.S. unemployment rate reached 8 percent in October, the highest level since 1975. * The Swedish government releases a Soviet submarine that ran aground inside Swedish territorial water the prior month. Sweden revealed that radiation had been detected near the front of the submarine, an indication that it was probably armed with nuclear weapons. * Future CED title in widespread theatrical release: Time Bandits. November 7, 1981: * "Private Eyes" (CED) by Darly Hall and John Oates becomes No. 1 U.S. single. November 8, 1981: * In a televised address before the Egyptian Parliament, President Hosni Mubarek asserted that Egypt was "an African State" that was "neither East nor West" and would consequently, never be within the orbit of this or that country, or this or that bloc." November 9, 1981: * U.S. troops begin arriving in Egypt for a three-week Rapid Deployment Force exercise that also includes Somalia, Sudan, and Oman. * The International Monetary Fund approves a record $5.8 billion loan to India. November 10, 1981: * Richard Burt, director of the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Politico-military Affairs, informs a Senate foreign relations subcommittee that the government now has clear evidence that the U.S.S.R. has engaged in chemical warfare in Asia.
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