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Happy birthday, Ralph Baer

Perhaps no one has made a greater contribution to video games than Ralph Baer, who headed the development of the Magnavox Odyssey (and its prototype, the Brown Box), the first home video game console. In 2006, former President George W. Bush awarded him the National Medal of Technology for this accomplishment.

He also created the first peripheral and light gun game for home use, collectively known as Shooting Gallery, for the Magnavox Odyssey. In total, 350,000 Odysseys were produced and bought.

Additionally, he helped Coleco break into the video game business with their Telstar model. He later wrote the book Videogames: In the Beginning.

Baer was born in 1922. He turns 90 years old today.

Follow @wita on Twitter for tales of superheroes, plumbers in overalls, and literary adventures.

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Stephanie Carmichael Twitter: @wita
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