History of Game Consoles Caleb Baze 1977 Atari 2600 Introduced Microprocessor-based Hardware Utilized Game Cartridges Allowed unlimited games to be written for the console rather than having to have the games hard coded into the console Simple 2D Graphics Worked by processing what pixels and sprites needed to be displayed before the next line of the television was scanned Atari 2600 Specs Hardware Spec CPU 1.19MHz RAM 128 bytes ROM 4 kB 1983 Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) Also utilized game cartridges Lacked any sort of authentication hardware to prevent unlicensed cartridges from working on the system. This was due to the unreliable 10NES authentication chip used in the console. The circuit ended up being removed from the console with the introduction of the NES 2 Early games were designed by using LEDs on a grid with a digitizer, as no design tools existed NES Specs Hardware Spec CPU 1.79 MHz RAM 16 Kbit Video RAM 16 Kbit Max Cartridge Size 192 Kbit 1994 Sony PlayStation Sony’s first major contribution to the gaming console world Made use of CD-ROM instead of the older game cartridge Introduced external storage in the form of 1MB memory cards to save game data True 3 dimensional games were popular now with the increased hardware capacity PlayStation Specs Hardware Spec CPU 33.8688 MHz RAM 2 MB Storage 1 MB from each Memory Card 2000 Sony PlayStation 2 Built along the same lines as the PlayStation 1, but time allowed for a large increase in hardware capacity Allowed for much higher quality graphics in games Implemented backwards compatibility with PlayStation 1 games. At this point is where we start seeing a major increase in hardware technology. Compared to the PS1, the PS2 included: Around 30 x CPU speed 16 x RAM Dedicated graphics chip PlayStation 2 Specs Hardware Spec CPU 294.912MHz RAM 32 MB Graphics 147.456 MHz Storage 8 MB Memory Cards 40 GB Hard Drive Add-On Connectivity 100 Mbit Ethernet 2005 Microsoft Xbox 360 Start to see a very rapid increase in technology at this generation of consoles The focus of the console merges with other forms of entertainment other than just gaming Apps for streaming videos, music, news and much more Meant the console needed more processing power and storage to efficiently handle games as well as entertainment applications Introduction to high definition games Developers start focusing on realism more and more Xbox 360 Specs Hardware Spec CPU 3.2 GHz RAM 512 MB Graphics 500 MHz Storage 250 GB Hard Drive Connectivity 100 Mbit Ethernet 2.4 GHz Wireless 2013 Microsoft Xbox One The current generation of consoles Acts much more as an all around home entertainment system Multi-tasking with all kinds of apps and games OS integrates fluidly with Windows 8 Much more similar to a personal computer than any console that has come before Development of the Kinect Sensor for the Xbox One has been helpful in other fields of research using any kind of recognition software Xbox One Specs Hardware Spec CPU 1.75 GHz – 8 Cores RAM 8 GB Graphics 853 MHz Storage 500 GB Hard Drive Connectivity Ethernet Wireless Hardware Analysis – CPU Speed CPU Speed by Console (GHz) 3.5 3 2.5 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 Atari 2600 NES PlayStation PlayStation 2 CPU Speed by Console (GHz) Xbox 360 Xbox One Hardware Analysis – RAM RAM by Console (MB) 9000 8000 7000 6000 5000 4000 3000 2000 1000 0 Atari 2600 NES PlayStation PlayStation 2 RAM by Console (MB) Xbox 360 Xbox One Hardware Analysis - Storage Storage by Console (GB) 600 500 400 300 200 100 0 Atari 2600 NES PlayStation PlayStation 2 Storage by Console (GB) Xbox 360 Xbox One Conclusion Moore’s law apparent in hardware specifications of gaming consoles generation to generation In many cases, customer want for gaming consoles actually pushed the research and development of better technology Realism will continue to increase in consoles Will we ever reach a point to where games can’t be distinguished from live video?