General Category

Ralph H. Baer, Father Of Video Games, Passes Away At 92

December 8th, 2014 by Dieter in General

“Dieter: Just came across your website…very nice! Would you mind telling me who or what you are: A business ? An individual ? I am Ralph H. Baer, the ‘father’ of the video game industry…yes, I’m still around! If you are interested in video game history, contact me. English or German…either will do. RHB”

This is an email that I received on the 2nd December 1998, exactly sixteen years ago! First I thought someone was kidding me, but soon I learned that Ralph had contacted other video game collectors and institutions too. We developed an intense email conversation that went on for many years. Ralph had fascinating stories to tell and allowed me to publish a part of his forthcoming book on my website. He even invited me to his place in New Hampshire several times in the early 2000s, but unfortunately I didn’t have the money to fly to the USA back then. It is a pity that I never was able to meet him in person.

Ralph Baer passed away on the night of December 6, 2014 in his home.

What I will cherish is a signed copy of his book “Videogames In The Beginning” and a signed copy of his never released Pinball game for the Odyssey2.

Without Ralph Baer, my life since 1982 would have been a completely different one, with much less fun, much less excitement. And I wouldn’t have met many great people.

So thank you very much Ralph, and R.I.P.

No Kangaroos In Austria!

January 3rd, 2012 by Dieter in General

Missent to Melbourne, AustraliaIt’s not always easy to live in a small country like Austria, especially when you await a parcel from a big country like the United States of America. There is small Austria and there is big Australia, which sounds and spells very similar, except for those two small letters that make the difference.

So if you live in Austria and your parcel from the USA is much overdue, that doesn’t necessarily mean that it got completely lost somewhere over the Atlantic. It might also be that, even if the sender wrote the correct address on it (Austria, without “al”!), to some unknown reason your parcel makes its way over the wrong ocean (Pacific instead of Atlantic) to Melbourne, Australia (with “al”!).

It might also be that some unknown but conscientious and well-educated post clerk in Australia knows the difference between the continent he lives on and the small country in the heart of Europe, and forwards the parcel to the correct addressee. So even if you live in small Austria, you might face a happy end with your overdue parcel.