30 August 1929|
|Died||10 February 2014(aged 84)|
BBC Computer Literacy Project
Ian McNaught-Davis (30 August 1929 – 10 February 2014) was a British television presenter best known for presenting the BBC television series The Computer Programme, Making the Most of the Micro and Micro Live in the 1980s. He was also a mountaineer and alpinist. He was managing director of the British subsidiary of Comshare Inc.
Early life and career
The son of Stanley McNaught-Davis, an ex RAF pilot, he was educated at Rothwell Grammar School in Lofthouse, West Yorkshire (originally built in Rothwell, West Yorkshire), followed by national service in the RAF where his poor eyesight thwarted his ambitions to become a pilot. He achieved a first in Mathematics at the University of Manchester, where he also became an active mountaineer.
After university he had a variety of jobs including : digging ice tunnels for glaciologists on Monte Rosa in Switzerland; fixing roofs and teaching. Eventually he settled as a geophysicist for British Petroleum (BP), specialising in Africa.
McNaught-Davis was a keen climber, hill walker and hiker. In 1956 he was one of the first to climb the "unclimbable" Muztagh Tower in the Karakoram range in Baltistan. He became honorary librarian of the Climbers' Club in 1961.
In the 1960s, he was a climbing partner of Joe Brown both in the UK and in the greater ranges. He took part with Brown in the televised climb of the Old Man of Hoy. He also took part in a climb of the Eiffel Tower, which was televised on the ABC network's Wide World of Sports.
Computing and TV presentation
In the 1970s, he changed career becoming active in information technology, and joined Comshare Inc, where he remained until retirement in 1995. Comshare specialised in software development and resale of redundant operational time on mainframe computer systems. He rose to become chief executive of the European division and managing director of the British subsidiary.
Between 1975 and 1978, he presented the BBC series It's Patently Obvious, a game show in which two panels of celebrities tried to guess the purpose of unfamiliar inventions.
He married twice, having two sons, John and Simon, from his first marriage, and a daughter, Elvira Hurrell, from his second marriage to Loreto Herman.
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- The Alpine Journal, Vol. 66, No. 303, 1961. pp. 250–260, 1960 Greenland Expedition, John A Jackson, A. Blackshaw and I. McNaught-Davis.
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