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Microprocessor Developments Ltd.

PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2008 10:05 pm
by Bob Doran
Does anybody know anything about this company or have any of its computers? It was based in Auckland, founded by John Lovelock, if I remember correctly. It made a big splash when it got the agency for Olivetti ATT PCs - gala opening by David Lange - then crashed.

PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2008 10:32 pm
by tezza
The name sounds familar Bob. Next time I'm browsing some late 80s Bits & Bytes Mags at the local library, I'll check a few around that year and see if I can find anything.

Quite a few computer companies came and went very quickly during the eighties if I remember rightly.


PostPosted: Wed Aug 13, 2008 6:53 pm
by TRS80
MDL had their own range of S-100 bus machines in the late 70's/early 80's. I remember my Father (who worked at Auckland University) had a number of these that they used to run some lab experiments. They had two 8" floppy disks and ran CP/M 2.2. Inside was fairly standard Z-80 S100 bus stuff. User interface was a standard serial video terminal (MDL rebadge but can't remember the original manufacturer).

I seem to also remember late in the piece MDL did multi user business systems based on MP/M and possibly a *NIX variant.


PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 1:22 pm
by Selwyn
I may have some further info in my back issues of NZ MICRO, did they have the Altos agency?


PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 6:44 pm
by TRS80
I don't think so. It has been a while but didn't the Ellis brothers have the Altos agency before they started Computer Imports?

Re: Microprocessor Developments Ltd.

PostPosted: Tue Jul 06, 2010 11:45 pm
by muzza2009
I worked at MDL from 1982/84
John Lovelock a consulting engineer, he ran practice at large house on corner of Manukau Road and Pah Road (at Greenwoods Corner); said practice occuied the upper floor, MDL the ground floor.
MDL moved closer to New Market, and then back to Epsom (near Sanitarium).

Primary agent of Epson MX-80 dot-matrix printers (they came in by the truckload - very popular)
California Computer Systems (CCS) S-100 bus cards, with either Shugart 8" floppies, then MPI 5.25"). CP/M OS. S-100 chassis' and power supplies were locally made, and went through a number of changes.

Chief engineer a seriously talented bloke called Ron Sykes.. he nailed the single user CP/M build, and ironed out the bugs to get MP/M working on a huge S-100 frame. MDL leveraged a software company to target the medical market on newer smaller hardware... MDX-6?

Some graduates from Auckland Varsity joined up, just before I left (to work with TAB) ... they had been working on a developing a home PC based on the 6809

Left for OZ '85, then came back for a in'87.. met up with John Lovelock... seems MDL developed an EFT/POS terminal from scratch, but the viable sales proposition to capitalise on the surge in EFT got stifled when Radio Rentals pitched a 'rent-only' version...

Re: Microprocessor Developments Ltd.

PostPosted: Thu Jul 08, 2010 10:28 pm
by tezza
Thanks for posting muzza, and welcome to the forums.

Re: Microprocessor Developments Ltd.

PostPosted: Thu Oct 21, 2010 8:41 pm
by ljw
I bought the components for my first (S100) computer from Ron Sykes, an 8080 CPU board, 8k RAM, Serial I/O, sometime around 1978. That would be when MDL were at Greenwoods Corner. Is Ron (ZL1AHO) still around?
I made the motherboard and power supply; I seem to recall that MDL would also sell you the S100 connectors etc.
I bought an MPI B51 (or B52?) 5.25" drive from MDL, in 1981 or so - it cost an absolute fortune (for a student!)

More as I remember it...

(P.S. Hi to everyone I haven't seen in 25 years)

Re: Microprocessor Developments Ltd.

PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 10:18 pm
by SirDrXargle
I know the thread is old, but I stated in the IT industry back in 1981.

MDL initially CP/M for the single CPU S100 boxes and migrated to TurboDOS for the multi-user machines. I was involved in the Computers For Schools project in which MDL obtained a computer from OKI (the BMC if-800) which was networked using (RS488 serial network) again TurboDOS. My involvement was developing the video and printer drivers. MDL did look at unix machines (real unix) with the Olivetti ATT, but they didn't sell. One of the Senior Developers did kind of blow one up (a mini mainframe) by taking the I don't need to read the assembly manual :lol:

Re: Microprocessor Developments Ltd.

PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 10:26 pm
by tezza
Welcome to the forums.

I would like to get an S100 CP/M box at some stage to add to the collection!