Science Museum hosts 'fathers of Beeb' reunionPublished: 20th Mar 2008, 21:04:46 | Permalink | Printable
Record of Acorn history ceasing after 1986 non-shockerA handful of former Acorn grandees who helped bring the BBC microcomputer to the masses held a happy reunion at the Science Museum in London today. The group met up for the first time in 20 years, we're told, at a get-together organised by the museum's Computer Conservation Society to celebrate the legacy of the Acorn 8bit microcomputer.
In attendance were Hermann Hauser and Andy Hopper, pictured, from Acorn and John Radcliffe and David Allen from the BBC, who were among those who oversaw the launch of the computer in 1982 as part of the BBC Computer Literacy Project. Over 1.5 million units were eventually sold and the humble machine was used in schools throughout the UK and beyond. Acorn later went on to design the first generation ARM core and the Archimedes range, lash together RISC OS, and the rest is painfully history.
Backed by the National Museum of Computing at Bletchley Park, the Science Museum will display and run kit generally seen by punters at every RISC OS show: a BBC Model B, a gold-plated BBC Micro (yeah, maybe not that - ed), an Acorn Atom, Archimedes and Electron and a BBC Domesday system.
Computing and information curator Dr Tilly Blyth, who is incidentally penning a book about the BBC Micro project to be published next year, said: "The BBC Micro helped stimulate the imaginations of a generation of children, and inspired them to see computer programming as a career.
"This period of intense creativity is a major reason why the UK is now the fourth largest producer of computer games in the world and a major player in the global interactive market."
Science Museum website
Coverage by BBC News - plus bits and pieces about Acorn's early history. Mysteriously, it originally mentioned RISC OS and open source, and a quote from Castle boss Jack Lillingston pouring cold water on the emulation of Beeb hardware, but this was later cut.
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