I'm surprised to learn that Pong had no computer, no microcontroller, no software! Just analog and digital circuits.
It didn’t take long to realise that Pong was an insanely clever masterpiece of digital design.
It looks like the simplest thing ever, but it stores and manipulates representations of three objects plus two score fields, composites them into a 2D representation, and converts that representation into two linear video scan signals - all with discrete logic.
It’s mindbendingly brilliant.
Went to explore it, as it was not working, I was amazed to see no CPU. Inside, there was a C sized paper blueprint of the schematic. Wish I still had it.
Timers, latches, etc... the circuit was the game. Very cool.
One of the amazing things about retro arcade games like Asteroids was just how clear and precise all those vector graphics were. When they're being drawn with analog circuitry with those perfect darks and brights, you get a really immersive world from a very simple concept. It was really amazing.
And "The Secret Life of XY Monitors"
(Jed was an Atari engineer during the vector era and beyond)