TV Game Unit #8, 1968


What do you do after you invent the video game? Try to make it better!

While preparing their video game system prototype, the “Brown Box” to be presented to potential investors, Ralph Baer and his colleague Bill Harrison created TV Game Unit #8. They wanted to demonstrate a more advanced technology that would allow the user’s paddle to determine, in the direction and speed of the game ball, when the two would collide. This would allow for games such as baseball and more realistic hockey game play.

This TV Game Unit #8 interfaced with the "Brown Box," but proved too expensive to pursue in these early stages. Since it was not going to be shown to investors just yet, it was never covered with brown wood grain self-adhesive vinyl to match the "Brown Box." A few years later, this technology was key when Baer and his colleagues started to design and build arcade games.

Date Made: 1968

Patent Holder: Baer, Ralph H.Inventor: Baer, Ralph H.

Location: Currently not on view

See more items in: Medicine and Science: Computers, Popular Entertainment, Baer, Family & Social Life, Computers & Business Machines


Exhibition Location:

Related Publication: Baer, Ralph H.. Videogames: In The Beginning

Credit Line: Ralph H. Baer

Data Source: National Museum of American History

Id Number: 2006.0102.07Catalog Number: 2006.0102.07Accession Number: 2006.0102

Object Name: game chassis

Physical Description: aluminum (overall material)Measurements: overall: 3 1/4 in x 12 1/4 in x 10 1/4 in; 8.255 cm x 31.115 cm x 26.035 cm


Record Id: nmah_1302003

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