Zap!: The Rise and Fall of Atari

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9780070115439: Zap!: The Rise and Fall of Atari

The Atari Story is the classic tale of an independent entrepreneur who turned a simple invention into a major cultural, financial, and technological phenomenon. In 1972 Nolan Bushnell, the enterprising young engineer who invented Pong (the great-granddaddy of all video games), founded Atari with a mere $500. By its tenth anniversary, Atari had become a $2-billion-a-year empire--making it the fastest-growing company in the history of American business. Today, however, the company that once controlled over 80 percent of the video-game market has lost its hold over the estimated 17 million American households with video games to its numerous competitors, and scandal has rocked Wall Street. In Zap! Scott Cohen profiles Atari from its humble beginnings in Silicon Valley, California, through its multi-nillion-dollar sale to Warner Communications, to its headline-making present. He has interviewed many former and present employees (both designers and of creative imagination and innovation that enabled Atari to dominate the market for so long and identifies those which, in the end, will determine whether Atari will survive in a highly competitive, growing market. An upbeat, first-hand contemporary history, Zap! is a fascinating blend of computer technology, pop culture. and high-stakes enterprise.

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