• Dec 1, 1940
    (b.) -
    Apr 9, 2011
    (d.)

Bio/Description

A lifelong engineer and tinkerer, Lawson was born in 1940 and grew up in a federal housing project in Queens, New York. As a kid, he operated a ham radio; as a teenager he earned money by repairing his neighbors’ television sets. During development of the Channel F in the early-mid 1970s, Lawson was Chief Hardware Engineer and director of engineering and marketing for Fairchild Semiconductor's video game division. He also founded and ran Videosoft, a video game development company which made software for the Atari 2600 in the early 1980s, as the 2600 had displaced the Channel F as the top system in the market. Lawson was the sole black member of the Homebrew Computer Club, a group of early computer hobbyists which would produce a number of industry legends, including Apple founders Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak. Lawson also produced one of the earliest arcade games, Demolition Derby, which debuted in a southern California pizzeria shortly after Pong. Lawson later worked with the Stanford mentor program and was preparing to write a book on his career.
  • Date of Birth:

    Dec 1, 1940
  • Date of Death:

    Apr 9, 2011
  • Gender:

    Male
  • Noted For:

    Inventor of the video game cartridge and the Fairchild Channel F console
  • Category of Achievement:

  • More Info: