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(Guardian)   10 PRINT "RIP Sir Clive Sinclair"   (theguardian.com) divider line
    More: Sad, Sinclair Research, Sir Clive Sinclair, ZX models, modern-day titans of the games industry, Clive Sinclair, Sinclair C5, ZX Spectrum, Belinda Sinclair  
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701 clicks; posted to STEM » on 16 Sep 2021 at 5:00 PM (5 weeks ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook



34 Comments     (+0 »)
View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest
 
2021-09-16 2:35:15 PM  
My very first computer was a ZX81 I got at age 10 when my adult older brother upgraded to a Spectrum (which I also later got).  I quickly learned BASIC, and it changed my life.
 
2021-09-16 2:46:59 PM  
I also cut my computing teeth on the ZX81. The number of hours that went down the tubes if someone as much as sneezed near that thing with the 16kb memory expansion attached while I was typing in a program from some magazine are too painful to count. Still, I guess you could call it a character building experience. RIP, brilliant guy.
 
2021-09-16 3:03:49 PM  
That was the first computer I ever saw that was sold in grocery stores.

20 GOTO 10
 
2021-09-16 3:21:00 PM  
Have they tried turning him off and then on again?
 
2021-09-16 3:37:00 PM  
Fark user imageView Full Size




RIP

 
2021-09-16 3:58:17 PM  

bloobeary: Have they tried turning him off and then on again?


Didn't really work on a ZX81. It just wiped the entire memory.

I too had one, bought from WHSmiths for £79 (TFA says it was £69 but IIRC it was still £79.)

Bizarrely I was in a WHS today for the first time in a couple of years and it looked so shabby and empty I thought they'll go under soon. Instead it was Sir Clive.

The Sinclair/BBC Micro story.
Micro Men - 720p (2009)
Youtube XXBxV6-zamM
 
2021-09-16 4:02:48 PM  
And Sinclair had a lot in common with Steve Jobs.

Have a look at one of Clive's first pocket calculators and tell me you couldn't see Apple making something like this?
Fark user imageView Full Size


That was from 1976.

Calculators, pocket TVs, early home computers etc. Even a personal electric transport nearly forty years ahead of todays e-scooters.
 
2021-09-16 5:05:09 PM  
:(
 
2021-09-16 5:38:19 PM  
i'm yet another person who had a zx81 as their first computer.
there's nothing like typing in several hunderd lines of basic on a membrane keyboard and then saving it to audio cassette, am i right?
 
2021-09-16 5:41:30 PM  
Uncle Clive is gone. I'll mark his passing in the best way I know, by playing some Spectrum games.

Hey hey 16k
Youtube Ts96J7HhO28
 
2021-09-16 5:50:15 PM  
Fark user imageView Full Size

My first computer.  I played so much Elite on it.
 
2021-09-16 5:57:51 PM  
Well, Damn.

"Tell me, Sir Clive, why did you use an 8-bit CPU for your new computer?"

"Because I couldn't find a 4-biatchip that I liked."

Fark user imageView Full Size



RIP, QL Guy.
 
2021-09-16 6:01:21 PM  
Addendum:  I never owned a Sinclair (or Timex), and to be honest, I was always slightly contemptuous of the hardware.

But I had friends who *did* have them, and damn if I didn't have to have respect for the fierceness and dedication of the user community, and for the way they pushed those systems *far* beyond what should have been their reasonable limits.

The History of Computing lost a luminary, and the computing brotherhood is a bit poorer for the loss.
 
2021-09-16 6:21:15 PM  
James May had a nice bit about the Sinclair C5 on Cars of the People.  Perhaps they can edit out the part where James says, "And he's still alive today!"

Sinclair C5 infomercial 1985
Youtube l5N937V8ZOw
 
2021-09-16 6:24:45 PM  

Insult Comic Bishounen: My first computer.


I still have my SX-64 in the basement, in its original nylon bag. I ripped the beautiful little color CRT out of it to make a mini tv for college but put it back together later. That thing was frankenstein, I stuffed a VCR tuner into an old Apple ][+ floppy enclosure along with a power supply and stuck the CRT on top giving me a maybe 6 inch color tv. Honestly, the SX-64 is cool and all but that rig was truly unique. IT BELONGS IN A MUSEUM!
 
2021-09-16 6:30:58 PM  

Nicholas D. Wolfwood: Addendum:  I never owned a Sinclair (or Timex), and to be honest, I was always slightly contemptuous of the hardware.

But I had friends who *did* have them, and damn if I didn't have to have respect for the fierceness and dedication of the user community, and for the way they pushed those systems *far* beyond what should have been their reasonable limits.

The History of Computing lost a luminary, and the computing brotherhood is a bit poorer for the loss.


You had to be very good at writing good, lean, code. With only 1k of storage, and that was shared with the display, you had to be good. People got "flight simulators" to run on ZX81s. Of course it was just a horizontal line for the horizon, but you could bank, dive, climb, loop etc.
 
2021-09-16 6:37:05 PM  
Flight simulator for the ZX81.
Flight Simulation for the ZX81 from Sinclair Research (1982)
Youtube 60twpQJQEY8


This is a far more advanced version, and you needed the 16k expansion pack.
 
2021-09-16 6:38:27 PM  
Quite a few game developers cut their teeth on the ZX81 and Spectrum, so even this bloody colonial owes him a debt of gratitude.

RIP, wunderbahbox man.
 
2021-09-16 6:40:45 PM  
I miss PEEK and POKE. Kids these days with their implicit ladida and objects and abstraction and optimizing compilers have no goddamn idea what it's like to directly fark with the electrons in silicon. In my day Real Men wrote binary digits directly to specific locations in memory because we had actual penises.
 
2021-09-16 6:55:15 PM  

Pernicious Q. Varmint: I miss PEEK and POKE. Kids these days with their implicit ladida and objects and abstraction and optimizing compilers have no goddamn idea what it's like to directly fark with the electrons in silicon. In my day Real Men wrote binary digits directly to specific locations in memory because we had actual penises.


In high school, we had PETs and I did something like

10 I = 1
20 POKE(I, I)
30 I = I + 1
40 GOTO 20

It lasted surprising long before there were characters sprayed across the screen, followed by a hard crash.
 
2021-09-16 7:09:35 PM  
If only he'd have come up with something like a modern e-bike.

Fark user imageView Full Size


Oh wait, he did. That is a Sinclair Zike.

From 1992.

Nearly thirty years ago.
 
2021-09-16 7:16:48 PM  

OtherLittleGuy: [Fark user image 425x438]

RIP


Fark user imageView Full Size
 
2021-09-16 7:51:20 PM  

bikkurikun: My very first computer was a ZX81 I got at age 10 when my adult older brother upgraded to a Spectrum (which I also later got).  I quickly learned BASIC, and it changed my life.


My older brother got a TRS-80 Model III.  I quickly learned Z80 assembly language and it warped my brain^W^W^W changed my life.
 
2021-09-16 8:14:28 PM  

Olympic Trolling Judge: Quite a few game developers cut their teeth on the ZX81 and Spectrum, so even this bloody colonial owes him a debt of gratitude.

RIP, wunderbahbox man.


tvovermind.comView Full Size
 
2021-09-16 8:39:15 PM  
Elon Musk, the tesla and SpaceX chief, commented on Twitter on an article calling Sir Clive the father of the ZX Spectrum

And if anyone knows about the spectrum, it's Elon Musk.
 
2021-09-16 8:55:31 PM  

lilbjorn: Elon Musk, the tesla and SpaceX chief, commented on Twitter on an article calling Sir Clive the father of the ZX Spectrum

And if anyone knows about the spectrum, it's Elon Musk.


Or Bernie Parent.
 
2021-09-16 9:18:11 PM  

Carter Pewterschmidt: And Sinclair had a lot in common with Steve Jobs.

Have a look at one of Clive's first pocket calculators and tell me you couldn't see Apple making something like this?
[Fark user image 600x600]

That was from 1976.

Calculators, pocket TVs, early home computers etc. Even a personal electric transport nearly forty years ahead of todays e-scooters.


Compared to this from four years earlier? It doesn't compare.

Fark user imageView Full Size
 
2021-09-16 9:37:37 PM  

flamark: Carter Pewterschmidt: And Sinclair had a lot in common with Steve Jobs.

Have a look at one of Clive's first pocket calculators and tell me you couldn't see Apple making something like this?
[Fark user image 600x600]

That was from 1976.

Calculators, pocket TVs, early home computers etc. Even a personal electric transport nearly forty years ahead of todays e-scooters.

Compared to this from four years earlier? It doesn't compare.

[Fark user image 302x512]


I meant the design. Like Jobs and later Apple products the look of the machine was a huge feature. From the first Macintosh to today's Macs Apple, under Jonny Ive, cared a lot about the look.
That Sinclair calculator, and even his earlier ones from 1972, also had a clear style.

The HP model you posted is, to be blunt, bland. It's just a box with buttons. The styling could be a mechanical calculator from the fifties.

/I had the Cambridge Memory Type 3, the red one, at school. I still remember the bump on the back that they had to do to fit the PP3 battery.
 
2021-09-16 10:10:38 PM  

Carter Pewterschmidt: flamark: Carter Pewterschmidt: And Sinclair had a lot in common with Steve Jobs.

Have a look at one of Clive's first pocket calculators and tell me you couldn't see Apple making something like this?
[Fark user image 600x600]

That was from 1976.

Calculators, pocket TVs, early home computers etc. Even a personal electric transport nearly forty years ahead of todays e-scooters.

Compared to this from four years earlier? It doesn't compare.

[Fark user image 302x512]

I meant the design. Like Jobs and later Apple products the look of the machine was a huge feature. From the first Macintosh to today's Macs Apple, under Jonny Ive, cared a lot about the look.
That Sinclair calculator, and even his earlier ones from 1972, also had a clear style.

The HP model you posted is, to be blunt, bland. It's just a box with buttons. The styling could be a mechanical calculator from the fifties.

/I had the Cambridge Memory Type 3, the red one, at school. I still remember the bump on the back that they had to do to fit the PP3 battery.


I suspect Sinclair's calcs were a smidge more affordable than HP's, too.
 
2021-09-16 10:26:53 PM  

SansNeural: Carter Pewterschmidt: flamark: Carter Pewterschmidt: And Sinclair had a lot in common with Steve Jobs.

Have a look at one of Clive's first pocket calculators and tell me you couldn't see Apple making something like this?
[Fark user image 600x600]

That was from 1976.

Calculators, pocket TVs, early home computers etc. Even a personal electric transport nearly forty years ahead of todays e-scooters.

Compared to this from four years earlier? It doesn't compare.

[Fark user image 302x512]

I meant the design. Like Jobs and later Apple products the look of the machine was a huge feature. From the first Macintosh to today's Macs Apple, under Jonny Ive, cared a lot about the look.
That Sinclair calculator, and even his earlier ones from 1972, also had a clear style.

The HP model you posted is, to be blunt, bland. It's just a box with buttons. The styling could be a mechanical calculator from the fifties.

/I had the Cambridge Memory Type 3, the red one, at school. I still remember the bump on the back that they had to do to fit the PP3 battery.

I suspect Sinclair's calcs were a smidge more affordable than HP's, too.


I had one as a twelve year old kid, but I can't remember how much it cost. I think my parents got it for me as a present.
 
2021-09-17 7:46:35 AM  
I had a ZX81, and it was cool because there was no other fully functioning computer at that price, somethjng like 5% of an Apple II cost, and its tokenized BASIC was surprisingly good.
The touchpad keyboard and weak video were serious limitations...
 
2021-09-17 9:30:05 AM  

Short Victoria's War: Pernicious Q. Varmint: I miss PEEK and POKE. Kids these days with their implicit ladida and objects and abstraction and optimizing compilers have no goddamn idea what it's like to directly fark with the electrons in silicon. In my day Real Men wrote binary digits directly to specific locations in memory because we had actual penises.

In high school, we had PETs and I did something like

10 I = 1
20 POKE(I, I)
30 I = I + 1
40 GOTO 20

It lasted surprising long before there were characters sprayed across the screen, followed by a hard crash.


That would work for the first 255 bytes. I put a reset switch on the front panel of my PET 8032 (grounded the RESET pin on the CPU) because I would crash it so often.
 
2021-09-17 11:51:39 AM  
Ironically, my keyboard died yesterday, possibly giving it's own life in memory of Sir Clive.

He really was quite the maverick mind, and a lovely man to boot.
 
2021-09-17 7:21:03 PM  

aarond12: Short Victoria's War: Pernicious Q. Varmint: I miss PEEK and POKE. Kids these days with their implicit ladida and objects and abstraction and optimizing compilers have no goddamn idea what it's like to directly fark with the electrons in silicon. In my day Real Men wrote binary digits directly to specific locations in memory because we had actual penises.

In high school, we had PETs and I did something like

10 I = 1
20 POKE(I, I)
30 I = I + 1
40 GOTO 20

It lasted surprising long before there were characters sprayed across the screen, followed by a hard crash.

That would work for the first 255 bytes. I put a reset switch on the front panel of my PET 8032 (grounded the RESET pin on the CPU) because I would crash it so often.


Ha.  This proves the TRS-80 Model III was superior.  It had a recessed RESET button built in, right by the keyboard.
 
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