Former Network Admin and Former Forum Admin
26th July 2005
I came across this today and just loved the idea behind it. Sinclair launches new Spectrum computer
Geeks and gamers with a fetish for all things retro may soon be able to pick up a new model of the Spectrum, one of the first home computers enjoyed by millions of children in the 1980s and often credited with kick-starting the British tech industry. The initiative marks a return to prominence for Sir Clive Sinclair, Spectrum’s colorful 74-year-old inventor who designed the world’s first pocket calculator and the ZX80, Britain’s first mass-market home computer which was launched in 1980. Sir Clive has unveiled a crowdfunding campaign for the new Sinclair Spectrum Vega, 32 years after rolling out the first ZX Spectrum. It has raised £1,900 and needs £100,000 in the next two months for the initial production to go ahead. A prototype is ready; it takes advantage of huge leaps in processing power to let users squeeze all 14,000 of the original games on to the device, including favourites like Chuckie Egg, Horace Goes Skiing and Jet Set Willy. The new microcomputer will cost £100 and comes with 1,000 games preloaded. Users will be able to download additional games for free online and, like the original Spectrum with its vulcanised rubber keyboard and cheery rainbow branding, plugs straight into the television without the need for a traditional screen or monitor.
The first 1,000 devices will be made in the UK and all the proceeds will go to Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children. It has been marketed by Retro Computers, a Luton-based start-up in which Sir Clive is a shareholder through a corporate entity. Sir Clive started his career as a journalist and left to start his own electronics company. His success with Spectrum was followed by a tumultuous period in his personal and professional life, including the disastrous launch of the C5, an electric tricycle, and a string of relationships with high-profile actresses and models, one of whom – Angie Bowness, he married in 2010. The Spectrum was among the first microcomputers enjoyed by a generation of young programmers in their bedrooms and basements, along with the BBC Micro – the device developed by Acorn computers, the company that was a precursor to Arm holdings, the chip designer that is now one of the UK’s biggest technology groups. Sir Clive’s turbulent relationship with Chris Curry, the brains behind the competing BBC Micro device, was subsequently made into a BBC drama. “The idea that an inventor can come up with some brilliant idea and somebody else will make it all happen is nonsense,” he told The Independent in 2010. “If the idea is good enough, it’s going to appear pretty crazy to almost everybody. Either you do it yourself or it ain’t going to happen.”
I have to say I am very temped although I do have a proper spectrum stashed away.
I take what n0e says way too seriously
20th November 2007
If it can hold all 14,000 why not just ship it with all 14,000 instead of picking 1,000 and having you download the rest?