Phobos 1 launched

PhobosThe Soviet Union launches the first of two unmanned Phobos space probes, designed to investigate the largest of Mars’ two asteroid-like moons and deliver a lander to analyze that moon’s surface. With multiple nations pitching in resources to help the mission succeed, including the United States, the Phobos program is intended to be the definitive Mars exploration program of the 1980s, as well as the debut of a new Soviet interplanetary vehicle to take over from the Zond/Venera design in use since the 1960s.

Game over for Coleco

ColecovisionHaving weathered the storm of the 1983 video game industry crash longer than most, Coleco Industries, maker of the early ’80s Colecovision video game system, files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. At the time of the filing, Coleco is America’s sixth largest toy company, but the video game industry isn’t its downfall. Overproduction of the company’s Cabbage Patch Kids toys has proven to be fatal, with two straight years of annual losses exceeding $100,000,000. The remains of Coleco are eventually bought up by rival toymaker Hasbro.

More about Colecovision in Phosphor Dot Fossils

Phobos 2 launched

PhobosThe Soviet Union launches the second of two unmanned Phobos space probes, designed to investigate the largest of Mars’ two asteroid-like moons and deliver a lander to analyze that moon’s surface. The Phobos program is intended to be the definitive Mars exploration program of the 1980s, as well as the debut of a new Soviet interplanetary vehicle to take over from the Zond/Venera design in use since the 1960s; only Phobos 2 will actually reach its target intact, but it will still fail to complete all of its mission objectives.