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Word Count: 414
In 1949 a young engineer named Ralph Baer was given an assignment to build a television set He wasnt supposed to build just any television set but one that would be the absolute best of all televisions This was not a problem for Baer but he wanted to go beyond his original assignment and incorporate some kind of game into the set He didnt know exactly what kind of game he had in mind but it didnt really matter because his managers nixed the idea It would take another 18 years for his idea to become a reality and by that time there would be other people to share in the glory like Willy Higinbotham who designed an interactive tennis game played on an oscilloscope and Steve Russell who programmed a rudimentary space game on a DEC PDP-1 mainframe computer And then there was also Nolan Bushnell who played that space game and dreamed of a time when fairground midways would be filled with games powered by computers Today with interest in classic games gaining steam once again players of video games are reminded of the rich history of the industry Craves Asteroids 64 is a modern version of a game that came out in 1979 And the original Asteroids was merely an updated version of Nolan Bushnells Computer Space which was really a jazzed-up copy of Steve Russells Spacewar Space Invaders is once again sharing shelf space with Centipede Frogger and Pong And Pong is but a polished variant of the game Willie Higinbotham displayed on his oscilloscope The history of video games is not just about people Its also about companies and ironies Atari was an American company with a Japanese name and the Japanese company Sega was started by an American Magnavox the company that started it all is owned by Phillips - a company that is over a century old and Nintendo the company that made video
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