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What happen?

      I have been writing him for a very long time. He even had me send pictures of my fathers things when my Father

worked for Atari Corp. Curt even sent me things as well his book signed by him. He was a close friend to me. He was way to young to

die. He was younger then me. It like loosing a younger brother.

Ok I am sorry this is way too much for me . I am having a hard time believing he has passed away.

I always talked to him about my father. My father only did not work for Atari but he had worked for Texas Instruments.

As well many other companies and Curt would always ask me very detail questions on What my dad did.

I just feel so bad for his family.

Now one of my best friends has died. Ok I cant do this anymore

 

 

 

 

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8 minutes ago, jaybird3rd said:

Absolutely.  The Flashback 2 is almost unique in that regard: just about every other retro console, before and since, has either been based on emulation or re-implementations of the original games.  I have the FB2 and the FB2+, and they'll always have a prominent place in my collection, especially now.

I am probably going to ramble here in my grief.  You have been warned.

 

I have not been active here in many years.  I am sure Curt probably talked about some or all of what I am about to say.  When Curt brought me on the Engineering team, I had known him for 10 years.  I had just gotten divorced and was operating like a rudderless ship.  I will always be thankful for Curt bringing me on and giving me something to focus on to help ease the situation.

 

I wish I could offer some input on FB2+, but I had left Legacy Engineering in 2007 when I was appointed to the Board of Directors at the American Classic Arcade Museum.  FB2+ came three years later.  Post FB2, there were a few things that were examined.

 

Flashback Portable was working in breadboard form.  Curt and I were sending some (bad) hand-drawn sketches to each other of how the unit should look.  I know he posted the photo of the plastic mockup here at some point.  Here is an interesting thing about Flashback Portable....  There was some talk of selling this unit outside of the traditional channel at stores of the era like The Learning Tree and The Discovery Store.  The idea was to build a different SKU that would package Flashback Portable with educational materials to teach people how to make their own games.  Coding would be on a PC and transmission of your game code would be over USB.  Sadly, this idea went nowhere.

 

While Curt was making progress on Portable, Atari had contracted/licensed with a company called PixelPlay to bring some of Atari's arcade library to cable and satellite TV boxes.  Atari wanted Legacy Engineering to work with the PixelPlay crew to make the games look and feel as close as possible to the original source, so Curt put me on that project.  PixelPlay had a management office in NYC and an office with programmers in Tel-Aviv.  I found creative ways to do this work between home and NYC at the same time as my "real" job for about six months.  Honestly, I have no idea what ever ended up happening with the final code.  It may not have been used.  The key problem is that the cable remote was used as your controller and with the exception of one Canadian Bell & Howell satellite box, all of the boxes that were being used only allowed one keypress at a time.  No moving and firing.  No diagonal movement. 

 

After that, I did some work with Curt developing proof of concept cabinets for a company that wanted to build home bartop arcade games based around licenses from SNK and Konami.  We built the cabinets at Curt's home since he was much better equipped for woodshop work.  We did this over two weekends in January with no heat in his garage.  The plan was to, eventually, design an ASIC board for running the games, but for proof-of-concept, we went with Mini-ITX motherboards running an emulator.  These looked fantastic when they were done and they were sent off to retailers like Target, Best Buy, Wal*Mart, etc. for evaluation.  Everyone passed on them.  I think the core problem here was size, weight and cost.  In 2007, the world was still on CRTs, so to build these units around 15 or 17 inch CRTs created logistical issues for storing/transporting and having the games on shelves.

 

 

8 minutes ago, jaybird3rd said:

I remember that, in the years after the FB2, Curt was floating the idea of doing a Flashback 3 based on the 5200 or 400/800 hardware; I did my best to try to push for the idea at the time, and for Curt's involvement, in the hope that someone at Atari would see it.  I'm still saddened that it never came to be; I'm sure that you and he would have done an amazing job with it.

 

 

I cannot tell you how disappointed I was that this did not make it to market.  Think about that period of time....  Over the years in the 80s/90s, Atari had quietly been swallowing up the rights to multiple companies that had gone under.  They already had APX.  MicroProse & Accolade were swallowed up at various points.  This opened up a whole world of game possibilities for FB3 since Atari owned so many gems of the 8-bit library.  I know the thing that Curt was trying to get across is that people are only going to buy Centipede so many times, so FB3 had to be different.  I still have my notes from those days on my server and I went back to refresh my memory tonight.  We were looking at games like Getaway!, Caverns of Mars, Star Raiders, Fight Night, etc.  Atari had no idea what they owned.  Curt told me that at one of his meetings at Atari, their people were shocked.....SHOCKED.....to know what they owned.  They had no clue.  The phrase "We own that?" was uttered multiple times.  Curt produced the proof.  Despite this, Curt's vision for FB3 never happened.

 

Curt was a wonderful person.  More so than many people will know.  He always approached these projects based on what the gamer would want....hence stuff like the cart port solder points on FB2.  I am grateful to have known him and worked for him.  

 

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Rest in peace old friend.  :(

 

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Shocked to hear this news this morning. Curt had already done so much and would have continued for many years.

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Damn, any time I listened to him on a podcast his passion for Atari shone through. RIP. 

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I was so bummed to hear about this earlier on Twitter. :(

 

Curt was a heck of a guy. My prayers and condolences for his family. ❤️

 

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What??

 

I just spoke to him the other day via the Facebook group..

 

He was a man brimming with life, this isn't right...

 

What a kind and gracious man he was, a legend in our community...This is such a sad day..

 

RIP Curt....May you find peace and more proto types in your travels now...Truly shocked..

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I'm very sad to hear this, I always looked up to Curt with his vast Atari knowledge and always wished I could visit and met him in person one day.  Spent many hours browsing the Atari History website from the earliest days.  The Atari community has lost so much vast Atari knowledge with his passing, but even worse, His family have lost Curt.  RIP mate.

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Oh my. I have not been on here for a few days, I am usually too busy with other stuff.

 

Then I decided to take a look tonight (Australia time) and I could not believe the headline. What the hell was my thought.

 

I have never met Curt, I think he has answered a few things of mine on here though. And I bought a book.

 

I cannot quite believe it. But thank you Curt for all you have done for the community. It has been appreciated.

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Just to update, it's not been formally revealed but a close friend (Marty Goldberg) said it was a heart attack, he had been operated on 7 times for his heart and everything was going well...

 

Still can't get my head around it, he oozed life when you saw him on video's....

 

Source of info, the Atari Museum facebook channel..

Edited by Mclaneinc
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Such a sad loss for the community, his contributions were immeasurable and will not be forgotten.

Best wishes to his friends and family.

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I am so shocked to hear this. Curt was a fantastic part of this community for many decades. My heart goes out to his family left behind.

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I mentioned in my last post that I had only met Curt a couple times, and had some interaction with him outside of those times, but when I saw him at VCF East last year he had a way of making it feel like we had been long time friends. He knew I was a hardware guy and I remember him excitedly showing me an interesting hardware feature of one of his Atari 800's. His excitement for Atari was infectious! 

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9 hours ago, mstulir said:

I am totally OK with reposting that interview.  Thank you.

 

Curt was the genius behind those consoles & he is the one who deserves all of the credit.  All of it.  Yeah, Flashback was not what anyone wanted.  We can thank Atari for that.  However, the sales of Flashback is what paved the way for Flashback 2 to happen.  I know I am totally biased, but I am so proud of what was accomplished with Flashback 2, particularly the cartridge port hack and running Atari hardware in ASIC.  No emulators there.

 

Hopefuly, COVID-19 restrictions in New York will not prevent me from attending any service that Michele & the family is planning.  There was once a time I was driving to Curt's from Philadelphia every other weekend to do Flashback work.  Driving to his funeral is going to be upsetting.

 

It might be a nice idea to do a Zoom call with the Atari community in a few weeks where we can all share our memories. 

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Although I personally never had the honor of talking or meeting with Curt, he certainly was a giant among men. RIP to you, Curt, and may your family find peace.

 

Steve

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I wrote earlier on this but could not finish.

 

      I just want to say take care my Dear Friend and RIP . I will truly miss you

being around since you were not only a friend to me but acted more like my brother.

This meant so much to me and I cannot say that about anyone else.

 

 

 

 

 

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