Time for a pulp countdown now, and today it's my top 10 forgotten home microcomputers!

Let me just plug this tape recorder in and tune the TV set...
At #10: the 1982 Sharp X1! Possibly the most '80s looking 1980s computer ever created, it sold very well in Brazil. MSX really was the future once...
At #9: the 1982 Oric! rashed games more times than it loaded them and felt like typing on bubble wrap. Blakes 7 fans bought it because it sounded a bit like Orac...
At #8: the 1981 Texas Instruments TI-99/4A! This was basically bludgeoned to death by the VIC-20 in a ruthless price-cutting war, as payback for TI cornering the pocket calculator market in the 1970s and nearly bankrupting Commodore...
At #7: the 1978 Philips Videopac G7000! I know, I know, but it said it was a 'computer' on the box. Look, it's in big letters and everything...
At #6: the 1979 Luxor ABC 80! The most powerful computer ever made in Sweden...
At #5: the 1982 EG2000 Colour Genie. Dads with mullets thought it was like a Tandy CoCo. Kids knew it wasn't...
At #4: the 1983 Spectravideo SV-318 and SV-328. Said it was an MSX but wasn't really. Had a built-in joystick in the worst place ever for left handers. No software. No sales support. Even Roger Moore couldn't shift 'em...
At #3: the 1984 Oric Atmos! This was huge in Bulgaria I understand. Which is nice...
At #2: the 1984 Sinclair QL! "There's no comparison chart" because nobody had one delivered on time. Launched the term 'stringy floppies', which were as bad as they sounded...
And at #1: the 1983 Mattel Aquarius. From the makers of Barbie came the 'future proof' home computer, packing all the technology the mid-1970s had left behind.

It lasted 4 months before production ceased...
More tech from the World Of Tomorrow* anither time...

(*hours of business may vary)

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More from @PulpLibrarian

18 May
Today in pulp I look back at New Zealand's home-grow microcomputer, the 1981 Poly-1!

Press any key to continue...
The Poly-1 was developed in 1980 by two electronics engineering teachers at Wellington Polytechnic, Neil Scott and Paul Bryant, who wanted to create a computer for use in New Zealand schools. Education Minister Merv Wellington liked the idea and gave it the green light.
Backed by government finances, and in partnership with Progeni Computers, Polycorp was formed in 1980 to began work on the prototype for the official Kiwi school computer.

It was an interesting approach...
Read 8 tweets
17 May
Many readers have asked me over the years what my definition of pulp is.

I've thought about it a lot, and the one I keep coming back to... well it may surprise you.

Let me try and set it out...
There are lots of definitions of pulp out there: in books, in academic papers and on the web. And most circle back to the same three points: the medium, the story type and the method of writing.
Pulp is of course a type of cheap, coarse paper stock. Its use in magazine production from the 1890s onwards led to it becoming a shorthand term for the kind of fiction found in low cost story magazines.
Read 29 tweets
16 May
Today in pulp I'm looking at some of the many illustrators who worked for Ladybird Books.

The following thread may bring back memories...
Ladybird Books began in 1914, but they really hit their stride from the 1940s onwards. Their distinctive hardback design with a bright, bold cover illustration made them hugely appealing to young readers.

Let's look at some of the people who helped make those iconic covers.
Angusine Jeanne (A.J.) Macgregor illustrated many of the early Ladybird titles. She was born in Birmingham in 1879, where she later studied art before becoming a children's book illustrator. She began working for Ladybird in 1940.
Read 21 tweets
15 May
No tweets today. I have some painting to be getting on with...
Wow, snortlings are the worst! Trying to get the greens not to merge into one...
My dry brushing is now approaching God Level.
Read 4 tweets
14 May
Today in pulp I try to decipher 1980s Japanese street style, with the help of Olive: The Magazine for Romantic Girls!

This may involve frills... Image
Street style is an ever changing mix of styles, brands, attitudes and poses with various influences. And you normally have to be in the right place at the right time to capture it. Image
Which is where magazines come in! Photograping, documenting and deconstructing fashion never goes out of style, and in the late 1970s Japanese youth had one key guide to help them: Popeye! Image
Read 14 tweets
12 May
Time for a pulp countdown, and as it's #InternationalNursesDay here's my top 10 strangest settings for nurse romance novels!

Seriously, did you think they were all set in hospitals?
At #10: nurse in society! Privilege and palliatives amongst the well-to-do and the well-to-dont..
At #9: nurse in a TV studio. Oh the heartache and danger of being an, er, erm, what do producers actually do again?
Read 12 tweets

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