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Acorn System 1
Acorn Computers was one of the bright stars in British IT in the 1980s, but faded with the onslaught of IBM PC compatibles. Uniquely, it had one ace up its sleeve — the ARM chip architecture, which has gone on to take over the mobile world. Follow the rise, fall and rise again of this unique Cambridge institution, courtesy of the National Museum of Computing's collection at Bletchley Park.
Acorn's first product was the Acorn System 1, based on an automated cow feeder designed by Sophie (nee Roger) Wilson as part of her degree course at Cambridge in 1977. The System 1 (pictured) took shape over the summer of 1978, and Acorn Computers Ltd was formed in November that year in order to sell it.
Built on two standard Eurocard-sized boards, the System 1 had a 1MHz 6502 processor, 1,152 bytes of RAM, 512 bytes of ROM, a 300bps cassette interface, and it cost £70.
An emulator and much more information is available here.
Photo credit: Rupert Goodwins
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