Nolan Bushnell Profile

Named one of Newsweek’s “50 Men That Changed America,” entrepreneur Nolan Bushnell has proven to be a trailblazer in technology.

In addition to being the founder of Chuck E. Cheese Pizza Time Theater and the Atari Corporation, he has started many companies throughout the last 40 years. His companies have created products and services credited with shaping our society today, including the first car navigation system, the first online ordering system and the first technology incubator.

Mr. Bushnell has been called the father of the video game industry and has been inducted into the Video Game Hall of Fame. For his contributions to the video games industry, he was presented with the British Academy of Film and Television Arts Fellowship Award in 2009.

Mr. Bushnell is also in the Consumer Electronics Association Hall of Fame and featured in the California’s Tech Museum of Innovation as one of Silicon Valley’s entrepreneurial icons.

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    Mr. Bushnell is a technology pioneer and is often cited as the father of the video game industry. He is best known as the founder of Atari Corporation and Chuck E. Cheese Pizza Time Theater. Mr. Bushnell is passionate about enhancing and improving the educational process and truly enjoys motivating and inspiring others with his views on entrepreneurship, creativity, and innovation.

    Over the past four decades, Bushnell has been a prolific entrepreneur founding numerous companies, including: Catalyst Technologies, the first technology incubator; Etak, the first car navigation system whose mapping is still the basis for car navigation systems today; Androbot, a personal robotics company; and ByVideo, the first online ordering system, which allowed customers to order and pay for product from kiosks. Additionally, he has consulted for numerous corporations, including IBM, Cisco Systems and US Digital Communications.

    Currently, Mr. Bushnell devotes his talents to his two current companies: Tapcode and uWink. Tapcode develops digital media entertainment and hospitality software and uWink offers interactive restaurants that allow customers to order food, drinks, games and other media at their table through touch screen terminals.

    Over the years, Bushnell has garnered many accolades and distinctions. He was named ASI 1997 Man of the Year, inducted into the Video Game Hall of Fame, inducted into the Consumer Electronics Association Hall of Fame and named one of Newsweek’s “50 Men That Changed America.” He is also highlighted as one of Silicon Valley’s entrepreneurial icons in The Revolutionaries display at the renowned Tech Museum of Innovation in San Jose, California. In March of 2009, Bushnell was honored with the British Academy of Film and Television Arts Fellowship Award, the highest accolade the Academy bestows, for his outstanding creative contribution to the Video Games Industry. Currently a biopic about Bushnell, tentatively titled Atari, is in pre-production. The story was acquired by Leonardo DiCaprio’s production company and is set to star Leonardo DiCaprio as Mr. Bushnell.

    Bushnell received his B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Utah, where he is a Distinguished Fellow and also attended Stanford University Graduate School.

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Nolan Bushnell's Speech Descriptions

Nolan Bushnell motivates and inspires with his thoughts on entrepreneurship and innovation. He provides talks on how to promote innovation, the importance of entrepreneurship and how to create a culture of “intrapreneurship.” Mr. Bushnell also offers insights on the future of the gaming industry, as well as education and how learning will change with the technologies of present-day.

  • Innovation: How to foster it, encourage it and capitalize on it.
  • The Future of Technology and Gaming: Where is the industry going? Why? Where are the pockets of potential? What pitfalls should companies avoid?
  • Intrapreneurship: How to encourage and build a culture of intrapreneurship
  • Entrepreneurship: Why it is essential to business today, what are the key elements of a successful entrepreneur? How do you recognize it and tap into it?
  • Education: What are the trends in education now and moving into the future? How will classrooms and learning be different in the years to come? How will they remain the same? How will education evolve in light of today’s and tomorrow’s technologies?

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