Hi beeb fans

where both new and existing forum members can say 'hi' to each other!
Post Reply
leerayner
Posts: 19
Joined: Sat Jun 20, 2020 8:27 pm
Contact:

Hi beeb fans

Post by leerayner »

Hi there,

My computing world started when my dad brought home a 6502 based UK101 machine from work when I was about 12. I typed in programs in from magazines and eventually something clicked, I became hooked and I learnt Microsoft BASIC from the 'pamphlet' that accompanied it. I wrote some BASIC games for it and did a computer studies O level from home study.

I dreamt of upgrades to allow colour or user defined characters! I dreamt of having a Vic 20, but in '82 we got a beeb, slightly before my school got theirs and just before I left school. I loved that machine it far exceeded my upgrade dreams. We bought a lot of Acornsoft software and I tried to imagine how they were made and tried out my own sprite routines and hobby stuff.

My parents started a company called Datapen from home to make light-pens for home micros. I wrote beeb light-pen software for them in around '84 such as Cirkwik a symbol drawing package (for circuit diagrams, floor plans, garden designs etc). I also wrote a PCB Designer that included a ROM and disk sold by Watford Electronics - I have some promotional material still in the loft. Our beeb manual fell apart in time and we bought a new one!

Eventually I got an archimedes and played with some ARM screen drawing routines but soon my hobby changed to a job. I left my apprenticeship with BT to become programmer and that's where I am today - I currently work with a company making a course work video library for Universities called MEDIAL.

Lee Rayner
User avatar
Bobbi
Posts: 684
Joined: Thu Sep 24, 2020 12:32 am
Contact:

Re: Hi beeb fans

Post by Bobbi »

Welcome Lee!!

(I got the VIC20 instead, back in 1982, but I am making amends now.)
User avatar
Multiwizard
Posts: 2201
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2012 9:03 pm
Contact:

Re: Hi beeb fans

Post by Multiwizard »

Hi Lee,

welcome to this great Forum... :D


Greetings from my little Dutch Atomic Attic, Wim... :-)
User avatar
davidb
Posts: 3186
Joined: Sun Nov 11, 2007 10:11 pm
Contact:

Re: Hi beeb fans

Post by davidb »

Welcome! :D
User avatar
flaxcottage
Posts: 4800
Joined: Thu Dec 13, 2012 8:46 pm
Location: Derbyshire
Contact:

Re: Hi beeb fans

Post by flaxcottage »

Welcome, Lee. :D

And welcome to another UK101 user from BITD.
- John

Check out the Educational Software Archive at www.flaxcottage.com
User avatar
tricky
Posts: 5830
Joined: Tue Jun 21, 2011 9:25 am
Contact:

Re: Hi beeb fans

Post by tricky »

Welcome, your software sounds interesting, do you still have it and any light pens?
User avatar
Pernod
Posts: 2733
Joined: Fri Jun 08, 2012 11:01 pm
Location: Croydon, UK
Contact:

Re: Hi beeb fans

Post by Pernod »

leerayner wrote:
Sat Dec 05, 2020 6:03 pm
I also wrote a PCB Designer that included a ROM and disk sold by Watford Electronics - I have some promotional material still in the loft.
Welcome, and would very much like to hear more about PCB Designer. This was a rather late release and has not been archived, so hoping you still have the software.

First advertised in Micro User April '88:
WE_PCB_MUApr88.png
- Nigel

BBC Model B: ATPL Sidewise, Acorn Speech, 2xWatford Floppy Drives, AMX Mouse, Viglen case, BeebZIF, etc.
User avatar
daveejhitchins
Posts: 6790
Joined: Wed Jun 13, 2012 6:23 pm
Location: Newton Aycliffe, County Durham
Contact:

Re: Hi beeb fans

Post by daveejhitchins »

Welcome to the Forum, Lee . . . Enjoy . . .

Interested to see your PBCB designer program, if you still have a copy?

Dave H.
User avatar
Becky
Posts: 58
Joined: Tue Nov 17, 2020 10:15 am
Location: Birmingham
Contact:

Re: Hi beeb fans

Post by Becky »

I'd never heard of the UK101 before and had to look it up. Looks like it would have been an interesting piece of kit at the time. I think I would have trouble with the shift lock and reset keys being about where I would expect RETURN / ENTER or NEWLINE.
BBC Model B
"From little Acorns...."
leerayner
Posts: 19
Joined: Sat Jun 20, 2020 8:27 pm
Contact:

Re: Hi beeb fans

Post by leerayner »

Bobbi wrote:
Sat Dec 05, 2020 6:18 pm
Welcome Lee!!

(I got the VIC20 instead, back in 1982, but I am making amends now.)
Haha, I still remember staring at the front cover of Your Computer with the Vic20 and Breakout game - drooling!
leerayner
Posts: 19
Joined: Sat Jun 20, 2020 8:27 pm
Contact:

Re: Hi beeb fans

Post by leerayner »

Multiwizard wrote:
Sat Dec 05, 2020 6:55 pm
Hi Lee,

welcome to this great Forum... :D


Greetings from my little Dutch Atomic Attic, Wim... :-)
thanks Guys!
leerayner
Posts: 19
Joined: Sat Jun 20, 2020 8:27 pm
Contact:

Re: Hi beeb fans

Post by leerayner »

tricky wrote:
Sat Dec 05, 2020 9:52 pm
Welcome, your software sounds interesting, do you still have it and any light pens?
Thanks, I'll dig it all for you.
leerayner
Posts: 19
Joined: Sat Jun 20, 2020 8:27 pm
Contact:

Re: Hi beeb fans

Post by leerayner »

Pernod wrote:
Sat Dec 05, 2020 10:34 pm
leerayner wrote:
Sat Dec 05, 2020 6:03 pm
I also wrote a PCB Designer that included a ROM and disk sold by Watford Electronics - I have some promotional material still in the loft.
Welcome, and would very much like to hear more about PCB Designer. This was a rather late release and has not been archived, so hoping you still have the software.

First advertised in Micro User April '88:
WE_PCB_MUApr88.png
Amazing to see this advert clip, not seen it before the day, thanks. I will pop into the loft and dig out what I have. I always saved the disks etc. I'll add a new thread for you guys and try to get the software running. I'm really surprised is says 32K PROM on the advert - I certainly wrote some 6502 machine code but not that much!
leerayner
Posts: 19
Joined: Sat Jun 20, 2020 8:27 pm
Contact:

Re: Hi beeb fans

Post by leerayner »

daveejhitchins wrote:
Sun Dec 06, 2020 9:12 am
Welcome to the Forum, Lee . . . Enjoy . . .

Interested to see your PBCB designer program, if you still have a copy?

Dave H.
I think so, i'll start a thread on it thanks ...
leerayner
Posts: 19
Joined: Sat Jun 20, 2020 8:27 pm
Contact:

Re: Hi beeb fans

Post by leerayner »

davidb wrote:
Sat Dec 05, 2020 9:10 pm
Welcome! :D
thanks!
leerayner
Posts: 19
Joined: Sat Jun 20, 2020 8:27 pm
Contact:

Re: Hi beeb fans

Post by leerayner »

flaxcottage wrote:
Sat Dec 05, 2020 9:18 pm
Welcome, Lee. :D

And welcome to another UK101 user from BITD.
thanks to fellow UK101'er!
leerayner
Posts: 19
Joined: Sat Jun 20, 2020 8:27 pm
Contact:

Re: Hi beeb fans

Post by leerayner »

Becky wrote:
Sun Dec 06, 2020 12:07 pm
I'd never heard of the UK101 before and had to look it up. Looks like it would have been an interesting piece of kit at the time. I think I would have trouble with the shift lock and reset keys being about where I would expect RETURN / ENTER or NEWLINE.
I'm sure I pressed reset on the UK101 by mistake quite a few times! It was actually a decent machine. I think the best things were having 8K and a decent array of interesting characters (like on a PET), some that you could use for aliens ;-)
User avatar
DaveLecky
Posts: 384
Joined: Mon Jul 08, 2019 7:52 am
Location: Airdrie, Scotland
Contact:

Re: Hi beeb fans

Post by DaveLecky »

Electron Plus 3 and plus 1, AP6 and Home made MMFS PP SD interface
Electron Plus 1 Pres AP3/4
Beeb issue 7 with IFEL 16 socket Rom/Ram board
Master 128, BooBip multi OS,IFEL SD card
StrongA RPC,
Atom
leerayner
Posts: 19
Joined: Sat Jun 20, 2020 8:27 pm
Contact:

Re: Hi beeb fans

Post by leerayner »

I love the manual there £50 unsold - One of the things I loved about it was the sheer lack of documentation you needed! In around 2000 I bought a load of second hand computers gradually (quite cheap then). I had 4 archimedes (from a school) at one point! I sold most of the stuff on in the end. I bought a UK101, is was working but when I tested it for sale it didn't work. Strange thing was I had these bunch of people all waiting for me to test it and post the result - once I had done that and said it didn't work they all then started bidding and I still got like £200! But of course I kept the beeb, and a spare mint beeb, an unbuilt zx81 kit and a commodore 64. More recently I have an early mono apple mac classic.
RobC
Posts: 3312
Joined: Sat Sep 01, 2007 10:41 pm
Contact:

Re: Hi beeb fans

Post by RobC »

Welcome Lee.

Looking at pictures on the web, I'm sure I have a Datapen light pen but I've a feeling it may be branded as Watford Electronics. I'll have to dig it out to be sure though. DId they rebrand your design at some point?

Best wishes,

Rob
gavinlew
Posts: 62
Joined: Sat Dec 12, 2020 3:37 pm
Location: South Gloucestershire
Contact:

Re: Hi beeb fans

Post by gavinlew »

Hi Lee

(Haven’t done my welcome post yet sorry)

I think I’ve found one of your pens this afternoon, I don’t have a beeb at the moment to try it out on . I’ve also found a Rom marked Pendown - not sure if that’s related?
Attachments
2F0A0D93-E71C-4A13-B8CB-F6F4B32C5CC6.jpeg
--
Acorn Electron, +1, +3, Wifi, SDCard
BBC B Issue 4, Sideways Ram/Rom, 5.25 , 3.5 Floppy
BBC B+ , MMCSD
BBC Master Retroclinic Quad OS, External Datacentre
BBC Master Compact , 3.5in, Gotek
BBC Model B with Torch Z88 Disc Pack
leerayner
Posts: 19
Joined: Sat Jun 20, 2020 8:27 pm
Contact:

Re: Hi beeb fans

Post by leerayner »

RobC wrote:
Sat Dec 12, 2020 2:51 pm
Welcome Lee.

Looking at pictures on the web, I'm sure I have a Datapen light pen but I've a feeling it may be branded as Watford Electronics. I'll have to dig it out to be sure though. DId they rebrand your design at some point?

Best wishes,

Rob
Maybe they did rebrand it - they certainly branded my PCB Designer. I'll ask my dad about that. My pen looks like the other post here. I'm going to post my PCB designer photos in the software section later ....
leerayner
Posts: 19
Joined: Sat Jun 20, 2020 8:27 pm
Contact:

Re: Hi beeb fans

Post by leerayner »

gavinlew wrote:
Sat Dec 12, 2020 7:49 pm
Hi Lee

(Haven’t done my welcome post yet sorry)

I think I’ve found one of your pens this afternoon, I don’t have a beeb at the moment to try it out on . I’ve also found a Rom marked Pendown - not sure if that’s related?
thats it the same lightpens we used to make, thanks for posting!
not related to the Pendown ROM see here for that?:
viewtopic.php?t=18418
brianmartin_2001
Posts: 18
Joined: Mon Jun 14, 2021 7:39 pm
Contact:

Re: Hi beeb fans

Post by brianmartin_2001 »

Hello Lee ,

I have a Datapen and would like to try using it. I remember buying it mail order in the 80's although
the cassette software that came with it was unfathomable for me ( maybe I was a bit young).
Is there any software available (even online) that I could download and bringing some life
back into it?

thanks for your time
Brian
Post Reply

Return to “introduce yourself”