Every now and again, AiB reverts to some Acorn reminiscing. Formative teenage years spent compiling assembler to load into sideways memory banks, getting a programme published (incomplete) in Acorn User, and being taught how to make letters fall down people’s screen by an IT teacher.
So my eye caught the Technology section’s headline on BBC News online this morning ...
'Beeb' creators reunite at museum
Bit late notice unless you’ve got a few hours free in London this afternoon. But you could do worse than head around to the Science Museum and join in the seminar being hosted by their Computer Conservation Society.
It’s in the Fellows Library of the Science Museum, Exhibition Road, London, SW7 2DD. An exhibition of BBC micro hardware is available from 1.30pm, while the main event runs from 2.30pm until 5pm.
At selection of the original Acorn/BBC Literacy teams will be speaking:
- The role of the micro within the BBC Computer Literacy Project - the genesis, scope, and impact of the project, and the role of the Micro within it. John Radcliffe, the Executive Producer for the BBC Computer Literacy Project will illustrate his talk with extracts from “The Computer Programme”.
- Its legacy for the BBC - Micro applications, telesoftware, Domesday, and further innovations- led by George Auckland, Head of Learning Innovation at the BBC.
- Its technological legacy - ARM processor applications, the Cambridge phenomenon, computer architecture research. Steve Furber, CBE, Professor of Computer Engineering at the University of Manchester, and one of the key designers of the BBC Micro will lead the discussion, including mention of the ARM microprocessor that is the dominant architecture in today’s mobile and embedded systems, as well as unpacking the cluster of companies and investors that continue to work in the high-tech economy around Cambridge.
- Its educational legacy - Computer hardware and software in schools, standards and applications. The lead speaker is Mike Bostock, a key educational adviser in the 1980s, who will talk about the educational impact, its ease of use in schools, the take-up of hardware and software, innovation and consolidation, BBC Micros, Macs and PCs, and the continuing influence today of the 1980s generation of teachers.
Herman Hauser is also due to attend the event.
The exhibition this afternoon
“... will be displaying and running several computers from its collections as part of the meeting: a BBC Model B, a gold-plated BBC Micro, an Acorn Atom, Archimedes and Electron and a BBC Domesday System.”
Watch out for a fuller BBC Micro exhibition in the Science Museum in 2009, coinciding with Dr Tilly Blyth’s book about the BBC micro project which is due to be published next year by Macmillan. Curator of Computing and Information at the Science Museum , Dr Tilly Blyth will be attending this afternoon, no doubt picking up some more history and background about the machine and the literacy project that surrounded it.
Ah ... just remember the deafeningly loud beep when you turned the machines on, or using Shift-BREAK to boot off a floppy.