Happy Birthday: Atari turns 40 today

Shawn Knight

Posts: 13,425   +132
Staff member
If you grew up in the 1970s or 1980s, today might very well have a special significance to you. On June 27, 1972, Nolan Bushnell and Ted Dabney filed incorporation papers for Atari, a move that many say single-handedly helped…

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Posts: 3,557   +4,334
I had no idea that ol' Nolan came back to the fold recently. Heck I wasn't certain he was still alive! He's off-base with that whole "private Internet" comment, though: what he would've been creating was another Compuserve or GENIE..and we all know how well they fared. Only AOL and handful of dial-up BBS's remain from that epic period. And you can still log onto quite a few boards via Telnet :)


Posts: 348   +123
?? I was doing the online game thing in 74' using a Control Data terminal and dial up to the mtl. mainframe


Posts: 3,320   +2,068
Boy, that brings back some memories. I even remember the Atari TV ads. But I was a rebel even back then and bought the Intellivision over the Atari. Man I had some fun with that unit...


Posts: 3,122   +1,533
Warner didnt know why people would want to play with people they couldnt see...

I dont know, either. Especially now that most of these people are *****s.

Great job atari.


So this is interesting to hear for all the Jobs haters out there. We find out that Steve has also made an impact in the game industry. So we got computers and games and cartoon movies. We find out that Steve Jobs is like the Michelangelo of the 20th century. I don't get why so many hate him. Actually I do. All the jealousy. He done so much and most humans today just stagnate accomplishing nothing but over due bills. Sorta spinning their wheels if you will going nowhere anytime soon just bitching about the conditions and drowning in negativity. Everything just sucks for most. This whole planet need a conscious shift.


Posts: 710   +1
I bought the Atari 5200 when it first came out. Defender was the game I liked the most. I even had the Trackball unit also that was almost as big as the 5200 itself.


Posts: 385   +10
My son was born in 1972 and was just old enough to agitate for an Atari when it came out. He got one for his birthday and any other presents from well-meaning relatives went right out of his awareness. For weeks after, it was 'bye 'bye kid, hope to see you soon.

I don't know about it being another CompuServe or TheSource, good general-use consumer nets as they were, though. (GEnie was always a hassle to use... IIRC, it was mostly a business service.) A low-cost gaming console that tapped into a purpose-built phone net might have created a very large niche market for itself, given how big a hit the 2600s were. As a net, maybe no competition to the public sector version of the military-developed DARPAnet. How could it be? But as a ready-for-the-Internet, fully developed online gaming center, it could have had an enormous influence a few years later, seems to me.


Posts: 10,606   +464
I know in the 80s, before I had a Nintendo, I had a Commodore 64 with a floppy drive, some of the games for it were C64 on one side of the floppy, Atari on the other.