Sir Clive Sinclair: Pioneer of home computing dies aged 81

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Sir Clive Sinclair: Pioneer of home computing dies aged 81

According his daughter Belinda, Sir Clive died at home in London on Thursday morning after a long illness. He was best known for popularising the h

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According his daughter Belinda, Sir Clive died at home in London on Thursday morning after a long illness. He was best known for popularising the home computer, as well as for inventing the pocket calculator. 

Born July 30 1940 in Richmond, Sir Clive left school at 17.

He worked for four years as a technical journalist to raise funds to found Sinclair Radionics.

In the early 1970’s, Sir Clive invented a series of calculators designed to be small and light enough to fit in the pocket.

His first home computer, the ZX80, released in 1980, revolutionised the market and sold for 79.95 in kit form and £99.95 assembled.

It was about one-fifth of the price of other home computers at the time.

Belinda, 57, told the Guardian about her father, calling him a “rather amazing person”.

She said to the outlet: “Of course, he was so clever and he was always interested in everything. 

“My daughter and her husband are engineers so he’d be chatting engineering with them.”

She added: “He wanted to make things small and cheap so people could access them.”

Tributes to the pioneer flooded in after news of his death.

Director Edgar Wright said: “For someone whose first glimpses of a brave new world were the terrifying graphics of 3D Monster Maze on the ZX81, I’d like to salute tech pioneer Sir Clive Sinclair. 

“He made 21st Century dreams feel possible. Will bash away on the rubber keys of a Spectrum in your honour. RIP.”

Julian “Jaz” Rignall, video games journalist, said: “Sad to hear that pioneering technologist Sir Clive Sinclair died today.

“His groundbreaking ZX Spectrum and ZX81 home micros helped kickstart the British computer industry and usher in a new era of interactive entertainment. 

“His products inspired and delighted millions.”

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