Project Grow

Ralph Baer, Video-Game Pioneer, Dies at 92

Ralph Baer, Video-Game Pioneer, Dies at 92
Image credit: bitte8bit | Flickr
Ralph Baer
Entrepreneur Staff
Staff Writer. Covers leadership, media, technology and culture.
2 min read

Ralph H. Baer, the creator of the Magnavox Odyssey (known as the "Brown Box"), the first commercial console for home video games, died at the age of 92 on Saturday.

A pioneer in the now $93 billion gaming industry, it's likely you've played with the games and systems Baer invented or influenced. In addition to building the first light gun -- a gun-shaped controller that allows users to shoot objects on screen -- he created the forerunner to Atari's Pong game as well as the colorful electronic memory game Simon, which made its debut in 1978 at Studio 54 and continues to be sold today.

Related: Across the U.S., Bars Are Letting You Play Your Favorite Childhood Video Games

In 1971, while employed at Sanders Associates, a defense contractor in Nashua, N.H., Baer filed for the first ever video-game patent. His papers are now housed in the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C., and he was awarded the National Medal of Technology and Innovation in 2006.

So, what can entrepreneurs learn from Baer's legacy? The biggest takeaway is this: he never stopped inventing. And, as is the case with the best entrepreneurs, his work has inspired generations of new innovators, with a promise of more to come.

Related: Can Video Games in the Office Make Employees More Productive?

More from Entrepreneur

Are paying too much for business insurance? Do you have critical gaps in your coverage? Trust Entrepreneur to help you find out.
Get Your Quote Now

One-on-one online sessions with our experts can help you start a business, grow your business, build your brand, fundraise and more.
Book Your Session

Whether you are launching or growing a business, we have all the business tools you need to take your business to the next level, in one place.
Enroll Now

Latest on Entrepreneur

My Queue

There are no Videos in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any video to save to your queue.

There are no Articles in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any article to save to your queue.

There are no Podcasts in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any podcast episode to save to your queue.

You're not following any authors.

Click the Follow button on any author page to keep up with the latest content from your favorite authors.

Your Best Ideas Are the Ones No One Else Believes in