Broughton, David

aus Schachcomputer.info Wiki, der freien Schachcomputer-Wissensdatenbank
Zur Navigation springen Zur Suche springen

==MY PROFILE by David Broughton== (taken from "ISLE OF WIGHT PC USER GROUP", MONTHLY JOURNAL, Issue 140 – July 2003)

Born in 1934, David spent his childhood in a small mining village in Yorkshire. After leaving school at age 14 he had an assortment of jobs from ophthalmic lens setting to the chemical analysis of metals before entering the RAF where he spent the first 9 months learning about electronics full time. This was a great career booster. On Leaving the RAF in 1957 he joined the BBC as a technical assistant and rose, after 20 years and lots of part-time education, to the status of an Electronics Design Engineer. On the introduction of computers at the BBC in 1962 David took a course in programming the Elliot 803 computer and got hooked on programming. The Elliot 803 weighed 594 kg without any peripherals and consumed 3.5 kW of power.

To learn more about computing David took a part-time degree course at London University to obtain an M.Sc. in Computer Science, gaining professional membership of the British Computer Society. He then set up a new section in BBC Engineering Designs Department providing a scientific computing service to electronic design engineers.

When home computers became affordable in 1978, David purchased a North Star Z80 computer running at 4 MHz for £2,500 (with a massive 32 Kbytes of memory!) and programmed it to play chess. This was a very advanced machine at the time. Communication was via the RS-232 serial port for keyboard input and display monitor output and it had a primitive disk operating system predating even CP/M. The floppy disks could store 180 Kbytes of data. The chess program was entered in the Computer Chess Competition at the Personal Computer World Show in September 1979, winning the top prize for an amateur entry of £1,500 which partly paid for the computer.

In 1980 David left the BBC to become a self-employed programmer and consultant, starting with chess machines for the commercial market. In 1981 his program won the World Microcomputer Chess Championship with the SciSys Mark V chess computer. He later worked for a company producing specialised video effects machines for the television broadcasting industry. These required complex mathematical equations to be solved in real time using very fast microprocessors. You often see the results when your TV picture rotates and zooms off into the distance, and similar effects.