Ian ‘Mac’ McNaught-Davis (1929-2014)


I was saddened to hear the news this morning that Ian McNaught-Davis had passed away at the age of 84. He was best known for presenting The Computer Programme, Making the Most of the Micro and Micro Live in the 1980s. He was also president of the UIAA (International Mountaineering and Climbing Foundation) for nine years between 1995 and 2004.

Although I wasn’t around in the 1980s at the time of the original broadcast of his programmes, the programmes that he presented were the first place I looked to learn more about the BBC Micro when I started becoming interested in them a few years back. He was such a wonderful presenter, and was one of the driving forces behind my interest.

R.I.P Mac.

Ch-Ch-Cheese Wedge

Today I received an item that I have always wanted for my still-young Acorn computer collection:

I purchased this towards the end of January 2014. The only problem is it seems that one of the capacitors in the power supply has blown, as the seller said he plugged it in and it started emitting horrible electrical smells. This is similar to what happens to a lot of BBC Micros after around 20-30 years. Replacing the capacitors in the Beeb’s power supply is something of a rite of passage for an Acorn collector, so I’m hoping that it’s a similar problem with this 6502 second processor. The theory goes I should be able to get it working again by changing the capacitor which failed in the same way that one does to a BBC Micro.

I briefly opened up the processor to see if there was something glaringly obvious wrong with the power supply, but this first glance of the processor proved inconclusive. There is definitely quite an unpleasant smell reminiscent of a failed BBC Micro power supply, though. If all else fails, I believe that these can be run with a BBC Micro power supply, but ideally I want it to all still fit in the original box.