Gerald Lawson, the Black inventor at the origin of the video game market

Gerald Lawson

Gerald Lawson was born in New York in 1940. As a child, a picture of George Washington Carver, great Black inventor, was hanging on the wall near his school table. His teacher told him: “this could be you”. From then on, the young boy ambitioned to follow the footsteps of his prestigious senior.

When he was a teenager, he used to repair televisions to make money as he was a self-educated person. He also created a radio station. With no certificate, he went to the Silicon Valley in the seventies where he worked as a design consultant. He developed a fix game console which operates with coins, “Demolition Derby”. He was teaming with Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak, future Apple founders.

The majority of game consoles were then fix ones and were containing a precise number of incorporated games. It was impossible to introduce new games in a console. Gerard Lawson was therefore at the origin of a revolutionary innovation allowing the integration of new games in a console with no risk of damage. Channel F, the console that he invented in 1976, was the first console in history allowing to play external games. The New-York inventor popularized home consoles and created a video game market worth billions of dollars today.

‘Jerry’ Lawson said: “the only reason I created these videos games was the fact that people were telling me: ‘you can’t do it’. And I am one of those who would do whatever it takes to do something I am told I cannot do”.

Gerald Lawson, in the last years of his life, holding the Channel F.

This genius and giant African-American inventor died of diabetes complications in 2011

Hotep !

By : Lisapo ya Kama ©

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