Thread: QL_Sinclair
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Old 27th Nov 2020, 1:02 pm   #20
Andrew2
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Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Dukinfield, Cheshire, UK.
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Default Re: QL_Sinclair

Ah, the thread is opened again! I'll post what I had laboriously typed out yesterday before realising the thread was closed...

An interesting story from 'The Sinclair Story' (Rodney Dale 1985) concerns the usual 'launched before it was ready' tendency at Sinclair Research.
Apparently the operating system and the BASIC interpreter were meant to live together on two 16k ROM chips, but it was found (at the last minute, natch) that the code could not be squeezed into such a small memory. It would go into 48k, but as there were only two ROM sockets it would require a 16k and a 32k.

32k ROMs were not available (?) and getting them made would have delayed things further, so the decision was made to use three 16k chips. Trouble was there was nowhere to plug a third chip!

Dangling it on the end of a cable and tucking it in some available space inside the machine was deemed risky from a review perspective, as any reviewer worth his salt would almost certainly have whipped the top off the new QL to see the innards, so it was decided to plug the extra ROM into the rear socket designed for a future 'applications' cartridge. And that's the way the machine was launched.

That's what it says here, anyway. Whether a later revision of the QL PCB squeezed in an extra 16k ROM I don't know, but it would have been a good move.
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