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Found 7 results

  1. BREAKANOID may be one of the few (perhaps the only?) new VCS releases that has an Official Atari game Manual - I would like to share it with Atari fans and discuss! Having an Official Atari game Manual is really cool and I'm curious if there are any other homebrews or new releases, perhaps on one of the Flashback consoles that have one? Here is the Official Atari game Manual used by Nolan Bushnell and The Champions of Pong : BREAKANOID_Official_Atari_Manual.pdf In addition to instructions, it covers the Atari Pong INDIE Developer Challenge and BREAKANOID testing guidelines for team Atari as well as setup instructions for installing a 2600 virtual machine on windows (Stella!) which is the platform where Nolan and The Champions of Pong played BREAKANOID. BREAKANOID was the only entry in Atari's massive Pong Party to use a virtual machine for the Atari VCS Hardware. Nolan enjoyed it immensely and is sending me an engraved commemorative plaque for my office signed by him and The Champions of Pong, I will post a pic when I receive it; this is awesome - I think every programmer wants one of these!!! For anyone interested, the VGC has a BREAKANOID review and all four games in the series are available here for $20 and come with a Level Editor for Windows that allows you to design new BREAKANOID games, and the rights to put one version on cart.
  2. Starts around the 8 minute mark. Some surprising tid-bits of info in this interview. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nod-5rWtrdY
  3. One of a number of links to a series of edits from the 20th Anniversary of the Atari 2600 at Nolan Bushnell's:
  4. Atari is awesome! Atari just shipped me this cool Nolan Bushnell era Legacy Development Kit!!! I did some recent work for them and shared my admiration for the iconoclastic VCS and the Flashback consoles. I haven't opened the package yet - just shook it to listen I need to pickup the hardware to connect it along with a six switch model it's designed for; I've only got a Vader and a Junior at present but I've been wanting six switches on the console for some time and now I really have no excuse! I will post pictures of my Retro Development Kit once I have that equipment; for now, here is a picture of the package as I received it from Atari last weekend - you can see it's from California and was shipped to my software company
  5. Take a hop on over to the 2600 Connection web site @ http://www.2600connection.com We have some new additions, including a link to an external site (gametrailers.com) that is running a video series called ROLLIN' WITH NOLAN. In the 3 episodes that were made, Nolan Bushnell talks about the current console war, gaming trends, and the future of gaming. He also mentions his new book, Finding the Next Steve Jobs, available at Amazon. We also have some older articles now online: http://www.2600connection.com/articles/playing_strategies/super_football.html and a new article on Dukes of Hazzard: http://www.2600connection.com/reviews/doh/dukes_of_hazzard.html ENJOY! Tim
  6. I have uploaded to Archive.org a collection of the 46 patents cited by both of the Bally Arcade/Astrocade patents 4,301,503 and 4,296,930. It's pretty neat reading/browsing the patents referenced in the Astrocade patents. Some of the referenced patents go back as far as 1958. Also, some of the patents are for systems from Atari, Magnavox's original 1972 Odyssey or even very obscure computers like the VideoBrain. Here is a link to all of the patents: https://archive.org/details/46PatentsCitedbytheBallyArcadeandAstrocadePatents Here is some general information about both the Astrocade patents and the patents that are cited by them. ------------------------------ Bally Arcade/Astrocade Patent 1: "TV Game Apparatus" United States Patent #4,296,930 Inventor: Jeffrey E. Frederiksen (Arlington Heights, IL) Assignee: Bally Manufacturing Corporation (Chicago, IL) Patent Granted October 27, 1981 Abstract A TV-type game employs a raster screen television for presenting game symbols. Player operated control switches are encoded to move the symbols. A microprocessor reads the switches. A dually addressed random access memory is employed as the interfacing between the screen and the processor which otherwise function as essentially separate and distinct devices. The memory provides a static storage of the screen pattern for each point in the raster lines with a portion assigned as a processor scratch pad. The memory may be dynamic with periodic refreshing and constructed with individual chips for each of the several bits in a word. The chips are grouped for alternate refreshing and powered during access periods. The processor updates the memory during idle display access periods. The memory is accessed in multiple bit words or bytes for display and processing. For display, a parallel to serial output latch is employed. The previous symbol position and pose is stored in the scratch pad and is erased and rewritten in a new position and pose. The controls may provide encoding. A hardwired bit shifter with programmed shift level rapidly shifts the symbol bits before placing in memory. A high speed memory and low speed processor are shown with separate clocks and a special synchronizer unit. ------------------------------ Bally Arcade/Astrocade Patent 2: "Home Computer and Game Apparatus" United States Patent #4,301,503 Inventor: Jeffrey E. Frederiksen (Arlington Heights, IL) Assignee: Bally Manufacturing Corporation (Chicago, IL) Patent Granted November 17, 1981 Abstract A home computer system provides a video processor for use with a television receiver. The video processor can selectively perform a variety of modifications to pixel data under the direction of the CPU of the computer system before the pixel data is stored in a random access memory to effectively increase the speed or data handling power of the system. ------------------------------ Here are links to both of the Bally Arcade patents: Bally Arcade Patent 4,296,930 (Oct. 27, 1981) "TV Game apparatus" Filed: July 05, 1977. http://www.ballyalley.com/documentation/Astrocade_Inc/Bally%20Arcade%20Patent%204296930/Bally_Arcade_Patent_-_(4296930)_(Oct_27_1981).pdf Bally Arcade Patent - 4301503 (Nov. 17 1981) "Home Computer and Game Apparatus" Filed: May 30, 1978. http://www.ballyalley.com/documentation/Astrocade_Inc/pdf/Bally_Arcade_Patent_-_4301503%20(Nov%2017%201981).pdf ------------------------------ 46 total patents are cited between the two patents. It breaks down like this: 15 Patents Cited by Bally Arcade/Astrocade U.S. Patent 4301503 ("Home Computer and Game Apparatus") 31 Patents Cited by Bally Arcade/Astrocade U.S. Patent 4296930 ("TV Game Apparatus") Here is a list of each of the 46 cited patents: Rectangular coordinate point data display Charles F Althouse U.S. Patent #2847661 1958 Translation system Dick Co Ab U.S. Patent #3017625 1962 Training appliances for marksmen Bolkow Entwicklungen K G U.S. Patent #3046676 1962 Symbol generator circuit George H Balding U.S. Patent #3122607 1964 Method for the representation of the movement of two bodies by means of electron beams and apparatus for carrying out this method Bolkow Entwicklungen K G U.S. Patent #3135815 1964 Digital storage and generation of video signals RCA Corp U.S. Patent #3345458 1967 Digital storage and generation of video signals RCA Corp U.S. Patent #3388391 1968 Display systems RCA Corp U.S. Patent #3422420 1969 Arrangements for indicating the state of adjustment of optical components in a television camera Fernseh Gmbh U.S. Patent #3435136 1969 Digital marker generator for cathode ray tube Us Navy U.S. Patent #3462639 1969 Logical expansion circuitry for display systems Sperry Rand Corp U.S. Patent #3497760 1970 Means for limiting field length of computed data Fairchild Camera Instr Co U.S. Patent #3577130 1971 Computer for generating animated images with overlap prevention and animation recording Computer Image Corp U.S. Patent #3585628 1971 Character generator for cathode ray tube display device IBM U.S. Patent #3657716 1972 Television gaming apparatus Sanders Associates Inc U.S. Patent #3659284 1972 Television gaming apparatus and method Sanders Associates Inc U.S. Patent #3659285 1972 Video data display system Viatron Computer Systems Corp U.S. Patent #3685039 1972 System and method for the continuous movement of a sheet having graphic subject matter thereon through a window of a display screen IBM U.S. Patent #3716842 1973 Method of perspective transformation in scanned raster visual display Singer Co U.S. Patent #3725563 1973 Graphics display system Atomic Energy Commission U.S. Patent #3736411 1973 Digitally controlled computer animation generating system Computer Image Corp U.S. Patent #3747087 1973 Source data entry terminal Sycor Inc U.S. Patent #3760375 1973 Circle or arc generator for graphic display IBM U.S. Patent #3789200 1974 Video image positioning control system for amusement device N Bushnell U.S. Patent #3793483 1974 Television combat game Magnavox Co U.S. Patent #3809395 1974 System for generating orthogonal control signals to produce curvilinear motion Hughes Aircraft Co U.S. Patent #3809868 1974 Portable computer terminal using a standard television receiver Digi Log Syst Inc U.S. Patent #3822363 1974 Special effect generator for a simulator visual system Singer Co U.S. Patent #3826864 1974 Visual display system Raytheon Co U.S. Patent #3872446 1975 Electronic device for the simulation of an animated game, in particular the game of football Rosalba Ariano U.S. Patent #3874669 1975 Waterborne vehicle trainer visual system Us Navy U.S. Patent #3895183 1975 Method and means for reducing data transmission rate in synthetically generated motion display systems Sperry Rand Corp U.S. Patent #3899662 1975 Apparatus and methods for computer graphics Nat Res Dev U.S. Patent #3906197 1975 Synthetic terrain generator Singer Co U.S. Patent #3911597 1975 Preprogrammed television gaming system Sanders Associates Inc U.S. Patent #3921161 1975 Method and apparatus for generating character patterns Fuji Xerox Co., Ltd. U.S. Patent #3936664 1976 Computer automated information system DMA Data Industries, Inc. U.S. Patent #3949375 1976 Data display terminal having data storage and transfer apparatus employing matrix notation addressing Lear Siegler U.S. Patent #3955189 1976 Microcomputer terminal system Zentec Corporation U.S. Patent #3973244 1976 Multi-channel data color display apparatus Midwest Analog And Digital, Inc. U.S. Patent #3978470 1976 Multi-microprocessing unit on a single semiconductor chip Burroughs Corporation U.S. Patent #3980992 1976 Digital video modulation and demodulation system Sanders Associates, Inc. U.S. Patent #3993861 1976 Television display control apparatus Alpex Computer Corporation U.S. Patent #4026555 1977 Method for generating a plurality of moving objects on a video display screen Atari, Inc. U.S. Patent #4116444 1978 Digital joystick control interface system for video games and the like Texas Instruments Incorporated U.S. Patent #4142180 1979 Computer control of television receiver display Umtech, Inc. U.S. Patent #4177462 1979 ------------------------------ One of the two Bally Arcade/Astrocade patents (U.S. Patent 4,296,930, "TV Game Apparatus") references 31 patents. Among them are two by Ralph Baer, usually referred to as the father of home video games. These both refer to patents related to the original 1972 Odyssey home video game system. Here is some information about them: Preprogrammed Television Gaming System Baer U.S. Patent #3921161 November 1975 Abstract Apparatus for playing games on the cathode ray tube screen of a television receiver is disclosed comprising a gaming device having components for providing location controllable spots on the screen, a source of prerecorded modulated audio frequency control signals, and means for demodulating those control signals and for supplying them to selected gaming device components to thereby provide gaming capabilities where the progress of a game is in part controlled by the recorded signals and in part controlled by the actions of a player. The signal source may be a magnetic tape or record/disc player and a selected prerecorded game tape or disc with control signals recorded thereon as a plurality of modulated audio frequency signals to thereby allow signal separation based on frequency and waveform control techniques and subsequent demodulation of each so separated carrier to provide a plurality of control signals. Here is a link to the above patent (check out the cool drawings of the console!): https://patents.google.com/patent/US3921161 ------------------------------ Digital video modulation and demodulation system Baer U.S. Patent #3993861 November 1976 Abstract In a television system, a digital video system permits the transmission of data along with the usual television picture. The television picture field includes one or more selectively addressable areas and the data is impressed on these areas as digital, binary-coded brightness modulations at rates greater than the vertical field rate. At the receiving end of the system, the viewer positions one or more light sensors opposite these screen areas. The light sensors respond to the binary-coded brightness modulations by developing corresponding binary-coded digital electrical signals. The data stream from a light sensor can then be decoded by a demodulator/decoder operated by the viewer. Here are links for the second patent: https://patents.google.com/patent/US3993861 ------------------------------ I have opened and glanced through all 46 of these patents, but I have not really read them, nor even browsed most of them. If you find anything interesting, then please leave some comments. Adam
  7. Working for Atari in Contemporary Culture Writing Retro Video Games for the Atari VCS What follows is a story of modern retro detailing the recent work I did for Atari writing retro Video Games for the iconoclastic console of consoles, the Atari VCS, and for the equally iconic Pong Legend Nolan Bushnell himself. And, the fortuitous circumstances by which it came about! This took plenty of time away from lucrative SQL contracts but that didn't matter, it was something I always wanted to do since the 80's and everyone here, will fully understand Enjoy the Tale Download and read this interesting story! Working for Atari in Contemporary Culture.pdf Let's help Atari Then add your insight, comments and ideas for Atari; there's a blank section we're going to fill out together to help Atari be Atari - strategies of trying to be Zygna or Facebook gaming obviously didn't work for Atari, but Atari fun and moreover Atari Brand Recognition is ingrained throughout modern culture; Atari will always be the King of Retro - let's help them ace the Flashback 5!
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