Game Cartridge Inventor Jerry Lawson Dies

Posted by at 11:57 am on April 12, 2011

Jerry Lawson, one of the early pioneers in the video game industry, died on Saturday at 71. Lawson was credited with inventing Fairchild Semiconductor’s Channel F, one of the earliest home video game consoles, along with the programmable game cartridges that defined the genre up until the original PlayStation in 1995. Before the Channel F in 1976, game consoles were only usually capable of playing games built into the firmware.

Lawson’s first arcade title was Demolition Derby, which he developed in his garage early in the 1970s. The engineer just recently made the spotlight, with an award from the International Game Developers Association’s Minority Special Interest Group at the GDC in March. Also, six games he originally designed for the Atari 2600 were finally released in 2011.

The cause of Lawson’s death wasn’t disclosed.

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