Talk:Sophie Wilson

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Name/sex change[edit]

This could do with a brief explanation of the confusion re: her name. Did she change sex? Evercat 18:05 7 Jun 2003 (UTC)

Yes, but references to this have been removed from the talk page, for some reason. I respect people's privacy but this is an encyclopedia and facts should take precedence over pointless over-sensitivities. -- (talk) 21:17, 30 September 2008 (UTC)

Silly question, as I've seen mentions on other sites of both Roger Wilson and Sophie Wilson; could someone add the date on which she first publically identified as female? 12:53, 6 August 2007 (UTC)

I always end up getting confusing with this kind of stuff, but for "In 1978 she designed the Acorn Microcomputer", wasn't this before she was known as a she? Or is it considered proper to retroactively apply the she back to the times before the change? Stoive 02:08, 7 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Personally, I think it's a lot less confusing if we consistently use one pronoun throughout the article. Since "she" would appear to be her pronoun of choice, I'd go with that. --Alynna 02:16, 19 October 2005 (UTC)
She was on the board of my company for a number of years from 1990. I think she is the best pronoun for the whole article. Stephen B Streater 07:17, 15 September 2006 (UTC)

Someone has removed a lot of information recently (albeit, much of it off-topic). However, now there is no mention, as far as I can see, that she was once a man and had a sex change. Wikipedia is supposed to be factual, and not walking-on-eggshells politically correct, so can we at least be a bit more clear about this? Right now, anyone could rightly think that it's a man who changed his name and wanted to be referred to as a female. It's utterly ambiguous. -- (talk) 21:17, 30 September 2008 (UTC)

I do agree that this information should be present and more clear, though I do want to point out that "she was once a man" may very well be an inaccurate statement given the current understanding of transsexualism. People with said condition have been shown to literally have the "wrong" brain structure for their body (ie pretty much a female brain in a male body, or vice versa) before any hormone (or other) treatment. Well, to be more precise - some brain structures become "male" or "female" depending on hormones, but some are fixed at birth, and the ones fixed at birth are the brain structures of the opposite gender to the body they were born in, in people with this condition. So "she once had a male body" would be somewhat more accurate, at least under the theory that a person's mind defines who they are more than the shape of some flesh. Xmoogle (talk) 13:08, 2 October 2008 (UTC)
I'm not sure why everyone is concentrating on what is actually only one facet of the subject of the article. I'm sure Sophie would prefer to be remembered for her work at Acorn. I don't really understand why a person's sex or sexuality is of any greater encyclopaedic relevance than, say, the colour of their eyes. Why, for example, is this article classified as LGBT-related material when there isn't even a category for right-handed people? (talk) 18:20, 18 November 2008 (UTC)
It is relevant to mention that Wilson is transgendered and for much of her early career identified as Roger - after all, many of her greatest achievements were made under the name Roger, and someone reading an old article from the 1980s may not realise that Sophie and Roger are one and the same person. In a sense, it's no different to Cat Stevens becoming Yusuf Islam, or something along those lines. For what it's worth, I think the current wording of the article is fine. (talk) 13:36, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
I notice that this article cites an article at The Guardian for the transgender statement. However, that article links to Wikipedia when mentioning 'Sophie Wilson (formerly Roger Wilson)'. Do we have a case of Wikipedia citing an article that was citing Wikipedia? --TheSophera (talk) 13:10, 13 June 2010 (UTC)
Yes. Well spotted. --Joshua Issac (talk) 23:50, 19 June 2010 (UTC)
"current understanding of transsexualism" huh? Would that be hard science or writings by people walking on those exact same 'politically correct eggshells'? The article seems wrong to me in terms of the balance of information. It might be interesting if all the (superb) work in Acorn and on ARM was done as'Roger', or if it made no difference and the work continued. It wouldn't be what anti-free speech leftists would want to hear about, but if science and scholarship are only done the way they tell us to do it then we are really going nowhere.-- (talk) 11:24, 19 November 2011 (UTC)
A late reply, but yes, that's based on multiple, peer reviewed neurological studies. If you're interested, check Causes of transsexualism, specifically the biological based theories. The psychological theories (that some form of mental disorder or sexual fetishism cause transsexualism) have no actual evidence and are the nonsensical hypotheses of people who had a pre-determined idea of trans women either being incredibly gay men, or men with a fetish for the idea of having a female body, and massaged what little "data" they had to fit their inherently rather transphobic notions. The biological theories, on the other hand, have gathered rather a lot of pretty firm evidence that transsexualism is caused by brain structure differences. Of course this reply being three and a half years late, you may never see this... but it's worth trying! Xmoogle (talk) 17:40, 28 June 2015 (UTC)

WikiProject RISC OS[edit]

--trevj (talk) 20:32, 13 December 2010 (UTC)

Article development[edit]

Just noting a few additional sources here. I'll work them in when I've collated a few more. [1][2][3] -- Trevj (talk) 09:21, 18 October 2013 (UTC)


Claim that 4 MHz DRAM was used is dubious[edit]

The article claims that 4 MHz DRAM was used. This implies that the DRAM was synchronous. The article elaborates that these were sourced directly from Hitachi, implying these were new devices whose availability was constrained. This however contradicts DRAM history; that there were some DRAMs from the early 1970s that were synchronous, but by the mid- to late-1970s, these had been replaced by asynchronous DRAMs. It is highly unlikely that such DRAMs were still being developed in 1981 or in the years before 1981. AZ1199 (talk) 05:39, 31 January 2016 (UTC)

According to Steve Furber around 8 min, they needed 4 MHz 16 megabit single rail DRAM. Maybe was the availability of this specific type constrained. --Egel Reaction? 09:05, 1 February 2016 (UTC)
I haven't got sound where I'm editing now, so the video isn't particularly helpful. Do you have another source, preferably text? Regarding the DRAM as being 4 MHz 16 Mbit, that is even less consistent with the history of DRAMs. 16 Mbit DRAMs didn't appear until the early 1990s (circa 1993). In 1981, the largest DRAMs were 256 Kbit. AZ1199 (talk) 11:02, 1 February 2016 (UTC)
It looks like even Steve Furber is mixing up Mbit and kbit. Oral History of Sophie Wilson page 18 "So this would be a 4-megahertz memory system, four million accesses per cycle. Four million-- yes-- four million access cycles per second, I mean to say. And to do that, we needed some very special DRAMs. Hitachi were the only people who made a DRAM that went that fast, at the time. So we got hand-carried by the rep the only four 4816s in the country. " data sheet HM4816. I'm no expert, but can you find what was fast on the 4816? --Egel Reaction? 12:59, 1 February 2016 (UTC)
The oral history transcript clears up the issue. The computer Sophie Wilson was designing at the time required the memory system to be capable of performing four million access cycles per second. "Access cycles" refers to the series of actions that must be performed in order to read from or write to a DRAM. The Hitachi HM4816, according to its data sheet, is a 16 Kbit page mode DRAM. Its size and type (page mode is a type of asynchronous DRAM), is consistent with the technology of 1981. What is special about the HM4816 is that its minimum access cycle is 200 ns, so in one second, it could perform at least five million reads or writes to any location.
Now that the issue about the type and size of the DRAM is cleared up, the question is what to do with the article. I'm not familiar with the subject of this article, but it does not seem that the exact details of what was special about the DRAM is really that important. What appears to be important is the role the design of this computer had in Sophie Wilson's career: she had to design a new computer in a short period of time; and that the computer required DRAM ICs that were not widely available at the time, so they had to be specially sourced. I've edited the article so it just says fast DRAMs were needed, and removed the mention of "4 MHz" from the article. I think the detail about the memory is more appropriate for the article on the computer that Sophie Wilson designed (the BBC Micro?). AZ1199 (talk) 03:05, 2 February 2016 (UTC)

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