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Author Topic: Sir Clive Sinclair  (Read 19843 times)

paul.fr

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Sir Clive Sinclair
« on: 18/02/2007 00:44:13 »
The guy i most admired whilst growing up. The zx spectrum was truely a work of genius, and the machine i first learned to write programmes for..heck, some were even published. one of my goals is to be the proud owner of a C5.

a visionary...

from wikipedia:

Sinclair Research Ltd is a consumer electronics company founded by Sir Clive Sinclair in Cambridge, England (originally as Sinclair Radionics in 1961) to sell hi-fi equipment, calculators, radios and other products. In 1966 Sinclair created but never sold the world's first pocket television. In 1972 they marketed the world's first pocket calculator, the Sinclair Executive. Many other pocket calculator variants followed including the Sinclair Cambridge, the Sinclair Scientific and the Sinclair Oxford.

In the 1980s Sinclair entered the personal computer market with the ZX80 at 99.95, at the time the cheapest personal computer for sale in the UK. In 1982 the ZX Spectrum was released, later becoming Britain's best selling computer, competing aggressively against Commodore and Amstrad. At the height of its success, and largely inspired by the Japanese Fifth Generation Computer programme, the company established the "MetaLab" research centre at Milton Hall (near Cambridge), in order to pursue Artificial Intelligence, Wafer Scale Integration, formal verification and other advanced projects. The combination of the 1984 failures of the Sinclair QL computer and TV80, and the 1985 Sinclair C5 electric vehicle bankrupted the company, and a year later Sinclair sold the rights to their computer products and brand name to Amstrad.[1] Sinclair Research Ltd still exists today, continuing to market Sir Clive Sinclair's newest inventions.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sinclair_Research_Ltd



 

another_someone

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Sir Clive Sinclair
« Reply #1 on: 18/02/2007 02:29:17 »
I well remember the Sinclair executive - in my last year at school, there was a shop soiled example being sold for 70 - and in those days, 70 was a small fortune.

I always thought of Sir Clive as a typical English eccentric - a great visionary, but not the worlds best businessman - still, I suppose he is still doing well enough for himself, even if he will never be in the same league as the likes of Bill Gates.
 

Offline neilep

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Sir Clive Sinclair
« Reply #2 on: 18/02/2007 21:48:09 »
My first home computer was a zx80....1kb of memory ....quality !!..
 

paul.fr

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Sir Clive Sinclair
« Reply #3 on: 18/02/2007 22:28:25 »
I well remember the Sinclair executive - in my last year at school, there was a shop soiled example being sold for 70 - and in those days, 70 was a small fortune.

I always thought of Sir Clive as a typical English eccentric - a great visionary, but not the worlds best businessman - still, I suppose he is still doing well enough for himself, even if he will never be in the same league as the likes of Bill Gates.

I used to own one of the lcd wrist wathces, they illuminated red light and the battery lasted days...my be my memory is wrong here...it seemed like days. You are right about him looking and acting like the stereotypical eccentric.
my other favourites eccentrics were magnus pike and the guy who used to host the great egg race, what was his name?...wolk or heinz?
 

paul.fr

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Sir Clive Sinclair
« Reply #4 on: 18/02/2007 22:34:48 »
My first home computer was a zx80....1kb of memory ....quality !!..

Yes, all white and lovely. smooth scrolling screen.......those small icons above require more memory than the ZX80 had, lol.
The 81 and spectrum were not much better memory wise. peacking at 128k if i remember correctly, and more fun than your play stations and xbox's.

you can get speccy emulators to run on your pc.
http://www.worldofspectrum.org/

my favourite game was school dayz
 

Offline neilep

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Sir Clive Sinclair
« Reply #5 on: 19/02/2007 14:32:43 »
YAYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY !!

Do ewe remember Jet Set Willy ?.....quality !!

I also remember th funky rubber keys of the  Spectrum 48.......then I enjoyed the 128 for a while.....and cripes....I think I went for Amstrad CPC 464...with it's tape drive !!

oh....those were the days !!!!!!!....LOL.........ewe know you're getting old when you start to reminisce !!


THANKS for the website Paul..........YAYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY !!!!
 

paul.fr

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Sir Clive Sinclair
« Reply #6 on: 19/02/2007 15:24:50 »
YAYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY !!

Do ewe remember Jet Set Willy ?.....quality !!

I also remember th funky rubber keys of the  Spectrum 48.......then I enjoyed the 128 for a while.....and cripes....I think I went for Amstrad CPC 464...with it's tape drive !!

oh....those were the days !!!!!!!....LOL.........ewe know you're getting old when you start to reminisce !!


THANKS for the website Paul..........YAYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY !!!!

That is possibly the best speccy site around, i still go there for games now and again. reliving the youth....
Jet set willy, i think i have the game on my phone. hated the music and the game, well not so much hated but could not do :-)

i always prefered the 48k mainly for the rubber keys. when they introduced the +2 and others i stuck with the 48 as it did not seem right having plastic keys.

i love the language also, BASIC, it was so easy to learn. i used to spend many hours writing games, and sending them in to the speccy mag. most people went on to amiga's or commodore. i still bare a grudge against them...oh and apple, bbc and apricot...what was the point of the apricot and the dragon!

I was gutted when the schools introduced the bbc computers, and always thought they should have had speccys if for nothing else that they were british.

Paul
 

paul.fr

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Sir Clive Sinclair
« Reply #7 on: 19/02/2007 15:38:12 »
Neil,

do you have a mobile phone with the symbian operating system?
 

another_someone

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Sir Clive Sinclair
« Reply #8 on: 19/02/2007 16:17:24 »
I was gutted when the schools introduced the bbc computers, and always thought they should have had speccys if for nothing else that they were british.

So was the BBC Micro - produced by Acorn Computers of Cambridge (the same town as Sinclair Research Ltd).
 

paul.fr

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Sir Clive Sinclair
« Reply #9 on: 19/02/2007 16:38:47 »
wow, i never knew that. a quick google and the BBC Micro, was indeed produced by Acorn Computers of Cambridge.

That is something i never knew, the BBC bit should have given it away, doh. I hang my head in shame....

I know Sir Clive was given money from the government for various projects, i still feel they should have backed him by introducing the spectrum in to schools.

Paul
 

Offline neilep

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« Reply #10 on: 19/02/2007 17:25:40 »
Neil,

do you have a mobile phone with the symbian operating system?

Chum,

I have been through so many phones that the only one I use *hangs head in shame* is my trusty old Nokia 3300...I must have dropped it about a zulillion times and it works fine....Hang on though....I do have a Sagem MX5-2.......but would not know about the operating system !!...*le sigh*....me so wants to receive gamey joy from Le Paul.fr !!!
« Last Edit: 19/02/2007 17:28:34 by neilep »
 

lyner

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Sir Clive Sinclair
« Reply #11 on: 28/02/2007 13:43:36 »
The nice thing about the Spectrum and BBC micro was that ONE PERSON had a chance of knowing almost everything there was to know about them - the circuit and the operating system.
After that, it got out of hand and just too hard for one brain. That's why DOS was such a dog's dinner - not enough knowledge  and forethought went into the start. It was 'bottom up' development rather than 'top down' in order to get it all on the market fast. This was, surely, because, up until then, one brain could hold all the major factors in developing an operating system (for a micro computer).
Think of the lead time, developing Mac  OS X or Windows Vista - the   problems are worse than exponential - they are factorial, with operating systems.
I think Sir Clive would have done loads better if he had had a good partner to tame his loopy ideas and make him concentrate on the really good ones. C5 - I ask you!
 

another_someone

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Sir Clive Sinclair
« Reply #12 on: 28/02/2007 18:37:40 »
http://inventors.about.com/library/weekly/aa033099.htm
Quote
The "Microsoft Disk Operating System" or MS-DOS was based on QDOS, the "Quick and Dirty Operating System" written by Tim Paterson of Seattle Computer Products, for their prototype Intel 8086 based computer.

QDOS was based on Gary Kildall's CP/M, Paterson had bought a CP/M manual and used it as the basis to write his operating system in six weeks, QDOS was different enough from CP/M to be considered legal.

Microsoft bought the rights to QDOS for $50,000, keeping the IBM deal a secret from Seattle Computer Products.

Gates then talked IBM into letting Microsoft retain the rights, to market MS DOS separate from the IBM PC project, Gates proceeded to make a fortune from the licensing of MS-DOS.

In 1981, Tim Paterson quit Seattle Computer Products and found employment at Microsoft.

As for the C% being a bad idea - not really sure it was a bad idea so much as an idea before its time, and without adequate support technology, and poorly implemented.

All the C5 was, was a battery powered tricycle with pedal assist. Battery powered bicycles are becoming ever more popular (maybe not so much tricycles), but the technology for them is constantly improving, making them more viable.
 

lyner

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Sir Clive Sinclair
« Reply #13 on: 05/03/2007 22:59:00 »
Question: Did YOU buy one?
Nuf said.
 

another_someone

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Sir Clive Sinclair
« Reply #14 on: 06/03/2007 00:23:56 »
Question: Did YOU buy one?
Nuf said.

It doesn't follow.  I don't own a television, but many people would dispute that television is a bad idea (although others might argue that it is a bad idea).

In any event, my own actions aside, I said it was poor implementation because it was an idea that was hatched before the technology for it was mature - that is good enough a reason for the venture to fail, but the technical concept is not inherently bad.

BTW, the C5 has become quite a collectors item (although not for the reasons that should have made it popular at the time).
 

Offline chris

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Sir Clive Sinclair
« Reply #15 on: 09/06/2007 22:03:49 »
I lived in Sir Clive Sinclair's old house in Cambridge for a few years...
 

paul.fr

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Sir Clive Sinclair
« Reply #16 on: 09/06/2007 22:45:16 »
I lived in Sir Clive Sinclair's old house in Cambridge for a few years...

did you find any old transister kits tucked away?
 

Offline DoctorBeaver

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Sir Clive Sinclair
« Reply #17 on: 11/06/2007 18:19:28 »
I remember QDOS, CP/M, DR-DOS, COS & all the other now-defunkt operating systems. CP/M & DR-DOS were my favourites as it was so easy to write progs that would run under them.

MS-DOS was a total dog's dinner. Not only that, but Windows was still using the DOS interrupts & file system right up until, I believe, XP. All that was happening was that MS were bolting more & more on the top of it and it was a very shaky foundation on which to build.

Going back to DR-DOS, the last time I used that was when MS-DOS 5.0 was released. That heralded things to come. DR-DOS would do everything that MS-DOS could and it was only a fraction of the size. I could happily run 200K programs on a 256K PC. MS-DOS 5.0 used a lot more RAM and was much slower.

I believe the Dragon was released for its graphic programming capabilities. Its implementation of BASIC included some very advanced BASIC graphical functions that were not available on other machines. It used the 6502 CPU (favoured by Commodore & Apple) rather than the 8080 or 6800.

The machine that was introduced at about the same time that I could never figure out a use for was the Jupiter. It had the LISP language built in. LISP? Eh? That was intended as an artificial intelligence language. Why on Earth would anyone want that on a  home computer?

Then, to make matters worse, the Jupiter II dropped Lisp & used Forth. Yeah, good move, that.
« Last Edit: 21/06/2007 13:27:04 by DoctorBeaver »
 

Offline dentstudent

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Sir Clive Sinclair
« Reply #18 on: 12/06/2007 11:35:50 »
I well remember the Sinclair executive - in my last year at school, there was a shop soiled example being sold for 70 - and in those days, 70 was a small fortune.

I always thought of Sir Clive as a typical English eccentric - a great visionary, but not the worlds best businessman - still, I suppose he is still doing well enough for himself, even if he will never be in the same league as the likes of Bill Gates.

I used to own one of the lcd wrist wathces, they illuminated red light and the battery lasted days...my be my memory is wrong here...it seemed like days. You are right about him looking and acting like the stereotypical eccentric.
my other favourites eccentrics were magnus pike and the guy who used to host the great egg race, what was his name?...wolk or heinz?

It was a bit of both - Heinz Wolff - he was a lecturer at the Brunel university in Uxbridge in the mid 1990's - met him a few times, and he really did speak like that! Nice guy too.
 

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Sir Clive Sinclair
« Reply #18 on: 12/06/2007 11:35:50 »

 

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