Short and to the point
Thank you very much for
Scorpio News Vol 1 Iss 1
received yesterday. May I
congratulate you on an excellent product in the best, traditions of
all of which I fave avidly read and re-read!
Yours sincerely, c.c Woodford, Torquay, Devon.
Gemini – what’s going on?
Dave Hunt’s comments about IBM compatibles
in the first issue of Scorpio News
are timely, to say the least. What a pity that Gemini didn’t exploit the
potential of the 80-BUS to produce a card that would run MSDOS programs and
graphics. It’s too late now and some 80-BUS users will have purchased
(depending upon their financial state) one of the PC clones that are widely
available at present, in spite of the reported lack of technical beckup.
Perhaps we have been spoilt by receiving good service from the majority of
companies supplying 80-8US in the past but I am left with the impression that
even this is declining fast. It’s all rather sad.
Gemini, in spite of promises, don’t appear to have produced any information on
new 80-BUS products or even a price list recently and Lucas – well..! I asked
them if I could have copies of the circuit diagrams for the
boards (really up to date stuff, this!) and was politely told that due to
company policy and copyright laws, they do not issue circuit drawings. How
pathetic! Gemini don’t appear to answer letters these days – perhaps they are
all beavering away on the Challenger. I (and many others) would be very
interested to know what new boards are available for 80-BUS, and the
advertisements from Map 80, EV Computing and Newburn in the first Scorpio News
were most helpful – and Kenilworth Computers are amongst the most courteous and
helpful of dealers.
Sadly, one has to forget about any significant help or new offerings from Lucas
for the Nascom, but I am less willing to accept that Gemini have gone down the
path. Perhaps I am being naive but the 80-BUS (and the Z80) are by no
means obsolete – one of my machines, with the aid of some excellent software
from Map 80, is currently being used to transfer all sorts of software between
different disk formats for both micros and mini-computers. No other
manufacturer has anything even remotely approaching the versatility of this of
the Gemini MFB or Mike York’s All-disk systems. Dave Hunt mentioned the
excellent Gemini modem card – and there are the
boards from Io Research
which have become a de facto industry standard (I’d like one of those but the
piggy bank won’t stand it now I’ve bought an Amstrad PC1512!) The quality of
the customised BIOSs for CP/M 2.2 and Plus are outstanding compared with the
feeble offerings for other machines, thanks to the efforts of Messrs. Beal,
Parkinson and Watkins, to mention just a few contributors.
There’s no point in moaning about the lack of information from Gemini or Lucas’s
peculiar company policies unless one is prepared to do something about it. Lots
of polite letters from users of 80-BUS products to Mr Marshall might persuade
him to reveal the goodies which we were assured were to come from Gemini in
support of 80-BUS – possibly in the form of an insert to Scorpio News. Lucas
are probably beyond hope, but I intend writing to Mr Marmion, the sales
coordinator, to let him know what I think (politely, of course) of company
Yours sincerely, Dr P.D. Coker, Orpington, Kent