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Ralph Baer, Father of Video Games Is Dead

His "Brown Box" started the gaming revolution

1 min read
Ralph Baer, Father of Video Games Is Dead
Photo: Jens Wolf/AP Photo

Ralph Baer, the engineer considered the father of the video game died on 6 December at age 92. He invented the “Brown Box” in 1966,  a hardware-based prototype game system that plugged in to your television.

Baer received the IEEE Edison Medal this year, the U.S. National Medal of Technology and Innovation in 2006, was inducted into the U.S. National Inventors Halls of Fame in 2010 among other awards. Oddly enough, he was only elevated to the rank of IEEE Fellow in 2013.

For the whole story of Baer’s fascinating life and inventions see an obituary in our sister publication The Institute.

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Digging Into the New QD-OLED TVs

Formerly rival technologies have come together in Samsung displays

5 min read
Television screen displaying closeup of crystals

Sony's A95K televisions incorporate Samsung's new QD-OLED display technology.

Televisions and computer monitors with QD-OLED displays are now on store shelves. The image quality is—as expected—impressive, with amazing black levels, wide viewing angles, a broad color gamut, and high brightness. The products include:

All these products use display panels manufactured by Samsung but have their own unique display assembly, operating system, and electronics.

I took apart a 55-inch Samsung S95B to learn just how these new displays are put together (destroying it in the process). I found an extremely thin OLED backplane that generates blue light with an equally thin QD color-converting structure that completes the optical stack. I used a UV light source, a microscope, and a spectrometer to learn a lot about how these displays work.

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