Well to quote Yes Minister, Rome wasn't built in a day and in any case, the Dragon was rubbish while Acorn offered the BBC the closest high quality spec they liked. You couldn't even type fast on the Dragon, it had no lowercase, no 80 columns and no serial.
What do you make of this?
DRAGON DATA'S PLANS TO move upmarket this year. launching two bigger machines,
will bring it into an even stronger position to attack the educational market. This is one
area in which the Conservatives are particularly proud of their achievements, through the
micros-in-schools scheme. But how justified is their pride? And, more importantly for
Dragon Data, how free and open to attack is this market?
In fact, the Conservative record is less bright than they are willing to acknowledge, and
their achievements are tarnished rather than burnished, Many school children are still
never getting near a computer, or are finding that their interests are not being matched
by the Conservative policies. So far most secondary schools have no more than one
micro, and half the UK's primary schools are still left without a machine. The scheme's
declared aim is to provide schoolchildren with the instruction and hardware to prepare
them for the future. Obviously the Conservatives have a low expectation of schoolchildren's
survival — and high hopes of a fall in the birthrate.
The shortage of machines is compounded by divided government responsibilities.
The micros-in-schools scheme is sponsored by the Department of Industry but the actual
use of the machines is more the responsibility of the Department of Education and
Science. The junior Education Minister acknowledged this spring that it was no good
having the computers without the right software and admitted that a great deal more was
still needed. He also admitted that not all local education authorities had been able to
benefit in equal measure. The Industry Department's response was to add small-scale
robots to the list of hardware that it is willing to subsidise.
The micros-in-schools scheme is also put forward as a prime example of what the
Conservatives call enlightened public purchasing, or what others call buying British.
Doubtless Clive Sinclair has some unprintable opinions about how enlightened the
scheme was when it excluded his machines, And Dragon Data, by most counts the third
most successful British home computer manufacturer, is still excluded. For a party which
professes to believe in the virtues of the free market, the Conservatives are remarkably
keen to indulge in high publicity persuasion from above, while ignoring surges in popular
interest from below.
http://www.retro8bitcomputers.co.uk/Con ... l_1983.pdf