Sinclair computers

Glen Goodwin acme_ent at
Fri Jan 6 17:22:06 CST 2006

Tony Duell wrote:
> I really don't understand the love of Sinclair products. IU'd much rather 
> have nad use something DEC or HP, or one of the many other companies that 
> didn't cut every possible corner and then some impossible ones. But then 
> collectores are often strange.

Okay, I'm a little behind on reading the list . . . Still, I
feel compelled to reply.

Tony, there's a soft spot in my heart for Sinclair and Timex Sinclair
machines because the TS1000 (aka ZX81) was my first.  It was the only
computer I could afford at the time.  My exposure to this machine
changed my life.  The changes might have also occurred if my first
computer was a C64, or a PDP-11 -- I'll never know.  But I *do* know
that using the TS1000 forced me to learn good programming technique
in order to get the most out of a minimalist machine.

It also taught me that there's almost always *some way* to make
things work, despite the limitations of a given piece of hardware.
Many people who use Sinclairs today do things with them that the
designers themselves said was impossible without hardware
modifications -- high-res graphics and high(er) speed data transfer,
for example.

Just like you, I would have rather had a DEC or HP machine, but,
at the time, it was the TS1000 or nothing -- there was simply no
other system available for USD$100.

Of course, today I have lots of other computers which I use and enjoy,
and which are superior in almost every way to the TS1000.

But it was my first, so I'm sentimental about it.


Glen Goodwin

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