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The Sinclair Spectrum – 25 years young!

Those were the days. Watching the pretty patterns on the tv screen waiting for the latest game to load. The kids today dont even know they’re born! The Sinclair ZX Spectrum turns 25, see BBC News article How the Spectrum began a revolution. I started with a Sinclair ZX80, one of the predecessors of the ZX Spectrum. With its 1k memory and optional 16k ram pack you could control a nuclear reactor! Well, I very much doubt many did that! Most were used for playin games, typing in programs printed in the back of the cumputer magazines of the time. Those were the days!

How many kids these days know the Z80 instruction set, in hexadecimal and can hand assemble what was called machine code? A lot of the early games developers were started this way, some are still going now although the bedroom coding days have long since gone!

I never actually owned a ZX Spectrum at the time, I progressed from the ZX80 to a BBC Micro Model B, with a massive 32K of RAM. It still had the tape drive, but had the luxury of an optional floppy disk drive. It was later in life that I actually aquired a number of ZX Spectrums from various boot sales, along with a few ZX81’s and other old computers. I never managed to come across a ZX80 though. These are harder to find than rocking horse droppings! If you do see them they are very expensive. I still have the manual though.

It brings back the memories of my early computing experience. Those Were the days!

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