ZX81 nostalgia

Saturday, February 17th, 2007

Quasimondo has a beautiful set of macro photos of the ZX81’s keyboard. I was only a kid when my father brought one home. The ZX81 is the first computer I ever used and I have fond memories of it.

We used the 16K expansion kit which expanded our computational horizon to unthinkable length, like painting the screen black! The standard 1K would only let you paint about half the screen before running out of memory!

The keyboard was really unpractical so we used a mechanical keyboard laid out on top. This improved the ergonomy slightly. Slightly is the key.

My father also built a wooden cradle to protect the beast and dramatically improve its stability. Indeed, without it, even a light impact on the table would reset the machine.

These were the days…

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