The ZX Spectrum on Your PC - print version (and discount)

For those who are interested, 'The ZX Spectrum on Your PC' can now be bought in print (ISBN 9781471676215). You can see some pictures below. I'm rather pleased with it. Yes, I'm biased.

The book will eventually become available on Amazon, although I encourage you to buy it from lulu.com (yes, this will require registration). The retail price of the paperback is ?13.99, however a great deal of this is markup that booksellers need to add in order for Amazon to get their huge (and outrageous) discount. To make it worth your while to buy it from lulu.com, therefore, I'm discounting the book at lulu for a while by 30% (one per cent for each year of the Spectrum's life; see what I did there?). This discount is only available on lulu orders (I couldn't apply it to Amazon orders even if I wanted to).

Buy it at lulu, therefore for ?9.79. http://www.lulu.com/shop/colin-woodcock/the-zx-spectrum-on-your-pc/paperback/product-20075509.html

If you're more of an ebook person, I hope to get Kindle/ePub versions done within the next couple of weeks or so - and, yes, they will be cheaper.

Enjoy!

Colin

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Post edited by woodcock88 on
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Comments

  • edited May 2012
    Looks Fantastic! Can't wait to get me mits on one! :D
  • edited May 2012
    what a beautieful book!!! I ordered one. it will fit perfect with my games bible collection and the classic zx books. :-)
    pritty good
    ZX Everyday in Germany
  • edited May 2012
    It's always nice to see screenshots of my work in print. Thanks for covering ULAplus and mentioning OpenSE BASIC.
  • edited May 2012
    ZX Oxo wrote: »
    what a beautieful book!!! I ordered one. it will fit perfect with my games bible collection and the classic zx books. :-)
    pritty good

    Thanks so much ZX Oxo (and to everyone else who ordered). Hope you enjoy your book!
  • edited May 2012
    aowen wrote: »
    It's always nice to see screenshots of my work in print. Thanks for covering ULAplus and mentioning OpenSE BASIC.

    Thanks for the feedback you gave me on my ULAplus stuff :)
  • edited May 2012
    aowen wrote: »
    It's always nice to see screenshots of my work in print.

    Yep, it always reminds me this quote from TeXbook, though:
    `Tis pleasant, sure, to see one's name in print;
    A book's a book, although there's nothing in 't.
    BYRON, English Bards and Scotch Reviewers (1809)

    :)

    Ordered one myself, hopefully either my dad or son will pick it up and enjoy...

    Patrik
  • edited May 2012
    "Tis pleasant, sure, to see one's name in print;
    A book's a book, although there's nothing in 't."?BYRON

    True enough. I still have four folders of newspaper articles I wrote where I got a byline. I don't think Byron meant *all* books are without substance though.
  • edited May 2012
    Thanks Colin, just ordered mine.

    Is it wrong to admit that part of the reason for buying is because my name and emulator are mentioned?
    I wanna tell you a story 'bout a woman I know...
  • edited May 2012
    Bah! You're all just rubbing my nose in it, aren't you? :cry:
  • edited May 2012
    ccowley wrote: »
    Bah! You're all just rubbing my nose in it, aren't you? :cry:
    Oh yes!!
    I wanna tell you a story 'bout a woman I know...
  • edited May 2012
    Very nice book and spectuculator advertising. :)
    Here are a few observations:
    SpecEmu as the most accurate spectrum emulator is mentioned at the end, along with others, although it definitely deserves much more attention.
    One of the best Spectrum emulator UnrealSpeccy is not even tested.
    It was enough to ask, here on WOS forum and I am sure that many people (including me) could provide links to the latest Windows version and the necessary tips&hints.
    After all, WOS isnt the only place where you can find Emulators, just use google, so for me this explanation is very strange.
    For a future edition, here are the link for latest UnrealSpeccy version with docs:
    http://rghost.net/35825106

    Cheers!
  • edited May 2012
    Pegaz wrote: »
    Very nice book and spectuculator advertising. :)
    Thats a tad unfair, even though Spectaculator is shareware, it is probably the easiest emulator to get to grips with especially for a newbie.
    Here are a few observations:
    SpecEmu as the most accurate spectrum emulator is mentioned at the end, along with others, although it definitely deserves much more attention.
    Agreed.
    One of the best Spectrum emulator UnrealSpeccy is not even tested.
    It was enough to ask, here on WOS forum and I am sure that many people (including me) could provide links to the latest Windows version and the necessary tips&hints.
    After all, WOS isnt the only place where you can find Emulators, just use google, so for me this explanation is very strange.
    For a future edition, here are the link for latest UnrealSpeccy version with docs:
    http://rghost.net/35825106

    Cheers!
    UnrealSpeccy is not that easy to find and Colins book was quite sensibly documenting the more popular and more easily accessible emulators.

    If you were Googling ZX Spectrum then the WoS website comes up at number 3 and is obviously going to be the first port of call.

    As for UnrealSpeccy being one of the best emulators then I have to seriously question that, just run Aquaplane and you'll see why.
    Whilst it may emulate the Russian clones very well, remember the book is about the ZX Spectrum and it's emulation of that is not very accurate.
    I wanna tell you a story 'bout a woman I know...
  • edited May 2012
    Bah, can't login to Lulu. Clicked reset password and so far no email received (been an hour) so can't order. Sucks. I only wanted it so I could admire Karingals spud(s) :-o
  • edited May 2012
    karingal wrote: »
    Whilst it may emulate the Russian clones very well, remember the book is about the ZX Spectrum and it's emulation of that is not very accurate.

    Russian emulators super very accurate, precision.
    2788166m.jpg
    ps- дался вам тот aquaplane..
  • edited May 2012
    azesmbog wrote: »
    Russian emulators super very accurate, precision.
    2788166m.jpg
    ps- дался вам тот aquaplane..

    But we were talking about UnrealSpeccy.
  • edited May 2012
    na_th_an wrote: »
    But we were talking about UnrealSpeccy.

    Also AquaPlane is trivial to get right. ZXodus and BorderTrix require much more accurate emulation.
  • edited May 2012
    azesmbog wrote: »
    Russian emulators super very accurate, precision.
    2788166m.jpg
    ps- дался вам тот aquaplane..
    You don't get it, ZX SPECTRUM. It's supposed to be emulating a 48k Spectrum and in that it fails.

    The book isn't called The ZX Spectrum Russian Clones On Your PC...
    I wanna tell you a story 'bout a woman I know...
  • edited May 2012
    I've managed to crowbar my way into Lulu and have ordered a copy. Yay!
  • edited May 2012
    Pegaz wrote: »
    Very nice book and spectuculator advertising. :)

    Advertising, eh? Hmmm.

    In my opinion, Spectaculator is the best emulator there is for the beginner in Spectrum emulation (which, as I've pointed out, is who my book is primarily aimed at). Jonathan has achieved this in a number of small, very subtle ways. First of all, it installs on download, by which I mean you click install and it does everything for you, including puting a link on the start menu and on the desktop if you tick that box. However much you don't want to believe this, the large majority of casual computer users will not know what to do with a zip file. So this makes Spectaculator instantly more accessible.

    Then there is the way that Jonathan has thought about how a novice user might go about accessing files. For example, *all* file types can be opened through the File > Open option, whether they're tape, snapshot, disk, cartridge or recording files (just how it would be on Microsoft Word, for example). *All* media types can be created in blank format using the File > New option. And so on. These things might be trifles to you, but to the novice they will make Spectaculator intuitive in a way that other emulators aren't. If you're creating a Spectrum emulator that's aimed at people who are already part of the Spectrum scene and know what to expect from emulators then you don't need to bother about any of this. But if you want to create something that will draw people in from outside this community - and who might go on to become more skilled users in the long term - then it's worth time investing in such features.

    There are other emulators which I acknowledge in the book do some things better than Spectaculator. I personally like EightyOne's TV screen emulation best of all, for example. And I demonstrate that SpecEmu has the most accurate timing in my ULAplus section.

    In the sense that 'advertising' is promotion, then you are technically correct that my book is advertising for Spectaculator. In that sense, however, it's also advertising for all the other emulators and utilities featured (SPIN is featured at an equal level to Spectaculator, but you don't seem to have mentioned that it was advertising for SPIN). The only way, then, that I could have made it *not* advertising for Spectaculator would have been if I hadn't mentioned it at all.

    I can only assume, therefore, that you're using the term 'advertising' in the sense of paid-for promotion and formed the conclusion that I've received some sort of payment or payment-in-kind for featuring Spectaculator, since it is itself a paid for product. I can assure you that this is not the case. I paid for my copy of Spectaculator and made the decision to feature it without any communication with Jonathan or anyone else. No dodgey B-Sky-B deals to be found here.
    Pegaz wrote: »
    Here are a few observations:
    SpecEmu as the most accurate spectrum emulator is mentioned at the end, along with others, although it definitely deserves much more attention.

    SpecEmu is a brilliant emulator and I warmed to it a lot whilst I was using it to research various parts of my book. Aside from its accuracy, it has a personality somehow that I adore. I didn't chose it as one of the two main emulators for the walkthroughs because a) it doesn't quite cover the range of hardware that I go through (the main example being microdrives) and b) because it isn't quite as user-friendly in the ways I've already outlined to the novice user. You could argue, of course, that there isn't actually a need to cover microdrives for novices (who probably didn't use these when they were originally released), but this is a personal preference and - I think - a nice way into educating the novice about the Spectrum and its history.
    One of the best Spectrum emulator UnrealSpeccy is not even tested.
    It was enough to ask, here on WOS forum and I am sure that many people (including me) could provide links to the latest Windows version and the necessary tips&hints.
    After all, WOS isnt the only place where you can find Emulators, just use google, so for me this explanation is very strange.
    For a future edition, here are the link for latest UnrealSpeccy version with docs:
    http://rghost.net/35825106

    Cheers!

    As has already been pointed out, UnrealSpeccy isn't a ZX Spectrum emulator, but a Pentagon emulator. Even so, I did want to include it, but the installation didn't work for me. I've since found out that the installation is a bizarrely complex procedure which the maintainers didn't think to provide a help file for in the download. This makes it, in my opinion, the least user-friendly emulator for the beginner. Despite all this, if I had discovered how to install it within the time I had allocated to the project I would still have included it along with these instructions. Your comment about asking for help is fair, but this addition to the text was one of the very last things added to the book and I didn't have the time to seek instruction. As you say, maybe for a future edition (which would also - I promise - feature Beepola!).

    Colin
  • edited May 2012
    Got my copy today, excellent read (especially page 91!!).

    Well done Colin...
    I wanna tell you a story 'bout a woman I know...
  • edited May 2012
    Lulu announced yesterday a site-wide sale to celebrate their ten year anniversary, lasting until Friday 18 May. There's 15% off everything, which would bring the cost of my book down to about ?8.30. Details of this offer can be found on the home page at http://www.lulu.com. You have to claim the additional discount with a coupon code at checkout. In other words, the discount won't automatically be applied like the 30% I've taken off the book myself. The code is TENYEARUK and can be used once per lulu account. The special offer ends on Friday.

    Sorry to those of you who have already placed your orders at the higher price. Lulu don't give advance notice of these offers to authors, otherwise I'd have signalled the upcoming discount in my initial post.

    Incidentally, in the spirit of giving advance information, I'm currently waiting on a proof print of a hardback version. I'll post details of this (and a few pictures) when it arrives in case this is of interest to anyone. This will be a rather costly book, priced at ?24.99.

    Colin
  • edited May 2012
    karingal wrote: »
    Got my copy today, excellent read (especially page 91!!).

    Well done Colin...

    Excellent news - glad you enjoyed it!

    Any chance you could leave a rating on the lulu page for the book? :p
  • edited May 2012
    woodcock88 wrote: »
    Excellent news - glad you enjoyed it!

    Any chance you could leave a rating on the lulu page for the book? :p
    Done and reviewed.

    Was 5 stars enough?
    I wanna tell you a story 'bout a woman I know...
  • edited May 2012
    karingal wrote: »
    Done and reviewed.

    Was 5 stars enough?

    You, Sir, are a gent. Thanks!
  • edited May 2012
    My copy has arrived. I've admired VSOP's spud (page 91). Very nice book. Colin - you popped my Lulu cherry!

    I've added a small rambly review. Hope it's OK.
  • edited May 2012
    MrCheese wrote: »
    My copy has arrived. I've admired VSOP's spud (page 91). Very nice book. Colin - you popped my Lulu cherry!

    I've added a small rambly review. Hope it's OK.

    It's immeasurably better than ok. Thank you!
  • edited May 2012
    Ordered my copy :)
  • edited May 2012
    shammster wrote: »
    Ordered my copy :)

    Wonderful; thank you :)
  • edited May 2012
    Colin: Check out this week's issue of Micro Mart.

    Regards,

    Shaun.
  • edited May 2012
    Purchased!

    ?2.99 postage, so ?12.78 overall. Not bad. And I like the idea of it being printed on demand. Feels simultaneously futuristic and friendly-small-business.

    Oh, and for the record I didn't have to register :) I was offered a one-shot option to buy without registering. That was to a UK address. However, I wonder if it will let me review the product without there being a record of me buying it?

    Looking forward to receiving it. Beginner-oriented it may be, but as I'm mega busy at work these days and have lost track of the scene a bit, I'm sure it will be useful :)
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