Ralph Baer (Handheld Video Game Controller)
Ralph Baer was born in Germany in 1922. Escaping to the United States before the beginning of World War II, Baer became interested in the growing field of electronics. As the price of televisions began to drop in the 1960s, Baer started to think about using the household television as a gaming device. He invented the "brown box" that became the Odyssey home game system. It was the first handheld game controller. Baer continued inventing throughout his life, and also created the popular electronic game Simon. He was awarded the National Medal of Technology in 2004 and much of his work is on display at the Smithsonian. He died on December 6, 2014.