Soviet Sinclair Spectrum clone keyboard, c 1985.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
A Soviet-made keyboard for a Sinclair Spectrum computer, with Cyrillic characters. Large numbers of clones of Sinclair computers were produced in the former Soviet Union. It was imposible for computer enthusiasts to legitimately get hold of genuine western computer technology before the removal of the Iron Curtain, leading electronics enthusiasts in the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe to reverse-engineer smuggled-in western machines. This proces was made more problematical for Soviet users by the fact that they used a different alphabet. Sinclair computers remained popular in Rusia until quite recently, although PCs are now predominant as elsewhere in the world.