In a recent interview with the UK newspaper The Observer, computer inventor Sir Clive Sinclair said that he finds computers annoying. In fact, Sinclair said that he doesn't use a computer at all. Emails are read aloud by his assistant, as he finds emails just as annoying.
"I'd much prefer someone would telephone me if they want to communicate," he said. "No, it's not sheer laziness – I just don't want to be distracted by the whole process. Nightmare."
That's surprising given that he co-created the Sinclair ZX80 back in 1980, opening the door to personal mass-market computing in the home like the TSR-80 and the Commodore 64. He admits that the computer-- along with the follow-up ZX81-- made him loads of money. The former computer sold around 50,000 units whereas that newer ZX81, released in 1981, sold around 250,000 units.
Given today's hardware standards, both machines are primitive. The ZX80 had a membrane keyboard, 1K of memory, and used a cassette player to load programs. The ZX81 had a bit more to offer, allowing peripherals such as daughterboards for added memory and external keyboards.
With that said, it would seem that Sinclair would actually embrace the simplicity that today's technology provides. That's not in case. In fact, he blasted the designs of today.
"Our machines were lean and efficient," he said. "The sad thing is that today's computers totally abuse their memory--totally wasteful, you have to wait for the damn things to boot up, just appalling designs. Absolute mess! So dreadful it's heartbreaking."
It's no wonder he avoids the PC. Perhaps he should re-invent today's PC.