The first magazine appearance of the NASCOM-1 was on the cover of the first issue of a brand new computing magazine called Personal Computer World, in an interview with Kerr Borland.
Almost all technical information came via user-supported newsletters or magazines. I prefer to think of them as magazines, as the content was often diverse, dealing with hardware, software and company matters! Some of the technical content was particularly well produced – probably as most of the writers were very technical people!
As we have since discovered, new computers tend to spawn a whole collection of magazines dedicated to them. The NASCOM machines only support at first was via an occasional newsletter which improved its status and became a slightly more reliable newsletter called INMC NEWS. This was really a method of letting customers know how to get their NASCOM-1 running! From issue 2 it was run by a committee rather than by Nascom and all input was from users. It didn’t carry advertising. The original committee consisted of:
- Kerr Borland – Nascom Sales Director – as president
- Dave Hunt – A Nascom dealer – as chairman
- Richard Beal – Systems analyst ” consultant – as software co-ordinator
- Howard Birkett – Film editor – as hardware co-ordinator
- Paul Greenhalgh – Nascom Engineering – general dogsbody (it says here… – but rather unfair to the engineering manager!)
Some of these names were to become major figures in the future fortunes of Nascom and Gemini. (For all you Netscape fans, no, its not That Richard Beal! – this was the guy that wrote the monitors). Paul was actually the editor of the magazine/newsletter.
This newsletter eventually became INMC80 News (101k) to reflect the change from a Nascom product magazine to the support magazine for the 80-BUS. It was still membership rather than advertising supported.
The next change was to 80-BUS NEWS. This carried a cover price of 1.5UKP but I don’t think it was ever sold other than via 80-BUS dealers, although a subscription service is offered. Content was for Nascom and Gemini systems and was quite heavily disk-based. Policy had now changed, and there were a few advertisements.
My last issue of this is Volume 3 Issue 1 dated January/February 1984. Constantin has provided additional cover scans up to Summer 1985. If anyone happens to have any after this would you please let me know? Of course, If you want to get rid of any since Mar/Apr 1984 then you know where to come… 🙂
Program Power published their own magazine Micropower. From April 1982 they formed a new company, Micro Power Ltd to handle marketing of their hardware side. The new company also took over publication of the magazine which was renamed to Nascom Newsletter after three issues. This carries the Lucas Nascom logo on the front and contains a few adverts.
In November 1979 a dealer in Liverpool, Microdigital, published the Liverpool Software Gazette. This, as its name implies, was heavily software-biased. This had been the source of a lot of Nascom programming knowledge. The boss man (Bruce Everiss) obviously ensured that there was plenty of advertising between the covers too! Unfortunately they later sold the magazine to an Apple user group and it was renamed “Windfall”.
For a bit more information on the magazines see the “The Company” History Book section of this web site.