The history of video games
Video games are a real revolution in the world of computers, programming and amusement. It all started from a small experiment of a programmer and has exploded into a great unstoppable industry producing even video games addicts.
A video game is an electronic game that involves human interaction with a user interface to generate visual feedback on a video device. The word video in video game traditionally referred to a raster display device, but following popularization of the term “video game”, it now implies any type of display device. The electronic systems used to play video games are known as platforms; examples of these are personal computers and video game consoles. These platforms range from large mainframe computers to small handheld devices. Specialized video games such as arcade games, while previously common, have gradually declined in use. Video games have gone on to become an art form and industry. 
The history of Video Games goes as far back as the 1940s, when in 1947 Thomas T. Goldsmith, Jr. and Estle Ray Mann filed a United States patent request for an invention they described as a “cathode ray tube amusement device.” Video gaming would not reach mainstream popularity until the 1970s and 80s, when arcade video games, gaming consoles and home computer games were introduced to the general public. Since then, video gaming has become a popular form of entertainment and a part of modern culture in the developed world. There are currently considered to be eight generations of video game consoles, with the sixth, seventh and the eighth concurrently ongoing. 
In 1952, A.S. Douglas wrote his PhD degree at the University of Cambridge on Human-Computer interraction. Douglas created the first graphical computer game – a version of Tic-Tac-Toe. The game was programmed on a EDSAC vaccuum-tube computer, which had a cathode ray tube display.
William Higinbotham created the first video game ever in 1958. His game, called “Tennis for Two,” was created and played on a Brookhaven National Laboratory oscilloscope. In 1962, Steve Russell invented SpaceWar!. Spacewar! was the first game intended for computer use. Russell used a MIT PDP-1 mainframe computer to design his game.
In 1967, Ralph Baer wrote the first video game played on a television set, a game called Chase. Ralph Baer was then part of Sanders Associates, a military electronics firm. Ralph Baer first conceived of his idea in 1951 while working for Loral, a television company.
In 1971, Nolan Bushnell together with Ted Dabney, created the first arcade game. It was called Computer Space, based on Steve Russell’s earlier game of Spacewar!. The arcade game Pong was created by Nolan Bushnell (with help from Al Alcorn) a year later in 1972. Nolan Bushnell and Ted Dabney started Atari Computers that same year. In 1975, Atari re-released Pong as a home video game. 
Good computer and video games like System Shock 2, Deus Ex, Pikmin, Rise of Nations, Neverwinter Nights, and Xenosaga: Episode 1 are learning machines. They get themselves learned and learned well, so that they get played long and hard by a great many people. This is how they and their designers survive and perpetuate themselves. If a game cannot be learned and even mastered at a certain level, it won’t get played by enough people, and the company that makes it will go broke. Good learning in games is a capitalist-driven Darwinian process of selection of the fittest. Of course, game designers could have solved their learning problems by making games shorter and easier, by dumbing them down, so to speak. But most gamers don’t want short and easy games. Thus, designers face and largely solve an intriguing educational dilemma, one also faced by schools and workplaces: how to get people, often young people, to learn and master something that is long and challenging–and enjoy it, to boot. 
BradyGames’ _Power-Up: How Japanese Video Games Gave the World an Extra Life_, by Chris Kohler, is a unique book that gives readers an entertaining and authoritative look at the indelible influence the video gaming, particularly, Japanese gaming, has had on the world._Power-Up_ is the first English-language work of its kind to examine the reasons behind the success of Japanese video games, rather than focusing on the history of video games. Just some of the features readers will find in this book include: * Profiles of some of the most fascinating Japanese video game designers in the industry, along with a critical look at Japanese video games from their earliest beginnings to new, exciting trends that ride the bleeding edge of popular culture. * Explanations on why Japanese video games are unique and why they resonate so well with young American players. * Fresh insight into classic Japanese video games and the elements that made them so different from American games, the origin of Nintendo, Japan’s oldest and largest video game producer, Japanese Role-Playing Games, and much more! * In addition, the future of the Japanese gaming industry is also explored. This product is available for sale worldwide. 
This paper has two main aims. Firstly to conceptualize the production networks of the video games industry through an examination of its evolution into a multi-million dollar industry. Secondly, to use the video games industry to demonstrate the utility of Global Production Network approaches to understanding the geographically uneven impacts of globalization processes. In particular, three key notions of value, power and embeddedness are used to reveal the most powerful actors in the production network, how they maintain and exercise their power, and how the organization of production is manipulated as a result. It is argued that while hardware production is organized by console manufacturers using truly global sourcing strategies, the production of software is far more complex. In fact, software production networks are bounded within three major economic regions: Western Europe, North America and Asia Pacific. This paper seeks to explain how and why this has occurred. 
Here is a list of the most popular arcade games in July 2012:
- Strike Force Heroes
- Stick Wars
- Swords and Sandals 2
- BoxHead 2Play
- Nerd vs Zombies
- Raze 2
- War Elephant
- Plazma Burst 2
- Dogfight Aces
- Ultimate Assassin 3: LP
Besides being great amusement, video games can have educational purposes. Some of them are designed to develop the gamers’ logical thinking, the others to prepare gamers for war and some are just for past time amusemet. However their power, importance and influence on gamers’ lives mustn’t be forgotten.
 ”What video games have to teach us about learning and literacy” by: James Paul Gee University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison
 ”Power-Up: How Japanese Video Games Gave the World an Extra Life” by: Chris Kohler
 ”Video games production networks: value capture, power relations and embeddedness” by: Jennifer Johns