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Fidelity Electronics (Fidelity International Inc.),
was an American hearing-aid manufacturing company, founded in 1959, and in March 1970 purchased by Sidney and Myron Samole [1] . Among its other cutting-edge technology, Fidelity Electronics produced high-tech, bio-medical products, such as myo-electric hands, prostheses that could actually be controlled by the brain impulses of amputees. Since 1976, Fidelity Electronics developed and produced dedicated chess computers.
Fidelity Logo [2]

Photos

[3]
NelsonEngineer.jpg
Director of Engineering: Ron Nelson

SpracklensAppleICE.jpg
Kathe and Dan Spracklen debugging Challenger with Apple II in-circuit emulator [4]

History

Sidney Samole was the man who dreamed, patented and produced the first commercial chess computer. He closely cooperated with Ron Nelson and later with Dan and Kathe Spracklen. He was credited with inventing the first commercial electronic chess game in the 1970s after watching a Star Trek episode [5] . It seems that he actually had the idea but it was Ron Nelson who really created the machine, called Fidelity Chess Challenger 1 [6] [7] . After building three working models and four non-working models, Sidney Samole decided to promote his new brainchild at Chicago's Consumer Electronics Show in January 1977 [8] . Fidelity prospered. In fact, it seems that the success of the Fidelity Chess Challenger 7 computer [9] , which sold about 600,000 units was responsible for the move from Chicago, Illinois to Miami Florida in January 1981. Fidelity also produced computerized Bridge, Checkers, and Othello games. Fidelity manufactured all its games in the US.

By 1989, a recession was in the wind, and Sidney Samole was sensitive to its warning breezes. He sold Fidelity Electronics at the top of its value to Hegener & Glaser. Sidney's son, Shane Samole, who already started Fidelity Canada in 1984 [10] took a loan from his father and started Excalibur Electronics in 1992. Sidney Samole died on July 30, 2000 [11] .

Achievements

Fidelity chess computers won the first four World Microcomputer Chess Championships: Chess Challenger won in London 1980, Fidelity X in Travemünde 1981, Elite A/S in Budapest 1983, and Elite X in Glasgow 1984. Moreover, they won the first four US Mikrocomputer Chess Championships, all held in Mobile, Alabama, in 1985, 1986, 1987 and 1988. A remarkable performance is its first place in the ACM 1988 Championship, tied with Deep Thought.

People

Programmers

Ron Nelson, Kathe and Dan Spracklen were Samole's protégés and "house" programmers. Nelson programs were all Intel 8080 or Zilog Z80 based, while the Spracklens relied on MOS Technology 6502 and later on Motorola 68000 and successors. Soon after Samole sold Fidelity to Hegener & Glaser, some more programmers were associated with Fidelity chess computers.

Author
List of computers [12]
Kaare Danielsen
Danielsen, Kaare
Frank Duason

Ed English

Richard Lang
Lang, Richard
Ron Nelson
Nelson, Ron
Frans Morsch
Morsch, Frans
Eric van Riet Paap
Van Riet Paap, Eric
Dan Spracklen
Spracklen, Dan & Kathe
Kathe Spracklen
Spracklen, Dan & Kathe
Mark Taylor
Taylor, Mark

Misc


Fidelity Computers

Fidelity had various brand names for their chess computers, most notably Chess Challenger. While competing at official tournaments, development- or experimental versions were called Fidelity X or Challenger X. To expand the list of fidelity computers, create a new engine page with the tag "fidelity".

See also


Publications


Forum Posts


External Links

Fidelity


ICGA Tournaments


Chess Computers

Year
Product Link(s) [18] [19]
Author(s)
Processor
Tournaments
1977
Fidelity Chess Challenger 1
Fidelity Chess Challenger (CC1)
Fidelity Chess Challenger 1
Ron Nelson
8080


Fidelity Chess Challenger 3
Chess Challenger 3, CC1 vs CC3
Ron Nelson
8080, 2 MHz

1978
Fidelity Chess Challenger 10
Ron Nelson
Z80, 4 MHz

1979
Fidelity Chess Challenger 7
Ron Nelson
Z80


Fidelity Chess Challenger Voice
Ron Nelson
Z80, 4 MHz

1980
Fidelity Sensory 8
Ron Nelson
Z80, 4 MHz


Fidelity Voice Sensory Chess Challenger
Ron Nelson
Z80, 4 MHz


Fidelity Decorator Challenger
Ron Nelson
Z80, 4 MHz

1981
Fidelity Chess Challenger Mini Sensory
Ron Nelson
80C50, 6 MHz


Fidelity Champion Sensory Chess Challenger
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
6502, 2 MHz
WMCCC 1980, 1st
1982
Fidelity Super 9 Sensory Chess Challenger
Fidelity Super 9
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
6502, 2 MHz


Fidelity USCF Special Edition
Fidelity USCF Special Edition
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
6502, 2.5 MHz


Fidelity Elite Champion Sensory Chess Challenger
Fidelity Elite Champion
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
6502, 4 MHz
WMCCC 1981, 1st

Fidelity Elegance
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
6502, 3, 3.6 MHz


Fidelity Prestige
Fidelity Prestige
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
6502, 4 MHz

1983
Fidelity Playmatic S
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
6502, 3.1 MHz


Fidelity Elite A/S Budapest
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
6502, 3.2 MHz
WMCCC 1983, 1st

Fidelity Poppy
Ron Nelson
Z80, 4 MHz

1984
Fidelity Elite A/S Glasgow
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
6502, 3.6, 4 MHz
WMCCC 1984, 1st

Fidelity Sensory 12
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
6502, 3, 4 MHz


Fidelity Septennial Chess Challenger
Fidelity Champion Septennial
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
6502, 3 MHz


Fidelity Elite Privat
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
6502, 5 MHz

1985
Fidelity Classic
Ron Nelson
Z80, 4 MHz


Fidelity Excellence
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
6502, 3, 4, 5 MHz

1986
Fidelity Silver Bullet
Ron Nelson
Z80


Fidelity Elite Avant Garde
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
6502, 5 MHz


Fidelity Elite Avant Garde 2100
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
6502, 6 MHz


Fidelity Par Excellence
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
6502, 5 MHz


Chess Challenger X
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
Ron Nelson, Danny Kopec
Z80, 16 x 68000
ACM 1986, 7th

Fidelity X
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
Danny Kopec
68020
ACM 1986, 10th
1987
Fidelity The Gambit
Ron Nelson
80C50, 6 MHz


Fidelity Gambit Voice
Ron Nelson
Z80, 4 MHz


Fidelity Excel 68000
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
68000, 12 MHz


Fidelity Excel 68000 Mach II
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
68000, 12 MHz

1988
Fidelity Excel Display
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
6502, 3 MHz


Fidelity Designer 2000
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
6502, 3 MHz


Fidelity Phantom
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
6502, 5 MHz


Fidelity Designer 2100 Display
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
6502, 6 MHz


Chess Challenger X [20]
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
Ron Nelson
68030
ACM 1988, 2nd

Fidelity Excel Mach III
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
68000

1989
Fidelity Elite Avant Garde V2
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
68000, 16 MHz


Fidelity Elite Avant Garde V6
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
68020, 20 MHz


Fidelity Excel Mach IV
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
68020, 20 MHz
Aegon 1989

Fidelity Elite Avant Garde V9
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
68030, 32 MHz


Fidelity X [21]
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
68030 [22]
WCCC 1989, 6th

Fidelity Chess Card
David Levy, Mark Taylor
HMCS40, 0.5 MHz, 4 Bit


Fidelity Chess Pal
David Levy, Mark Taylor
HMCS40, 0.6 MHz, 4 Bit

1990
Fidelity Elite Avant Garde V10 [23]
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
68040, 25 MHz


Fidelity Chesster Challenger, Kishon Chesster
Fidelity Chesster Phantom Eyeball
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
6502, 5Mhz
65C02, 3.6 MHz


Fidelity Designer 1500
Ron Nelson
Z80, 4 MHz


Fidelity Designer 2265 Master
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
68000, 16 MHz


Fidelity Marauder
Eric van Riet Paap
M50743, 8 MHz


Fidelity Genesis
Kaare Danielsen
6301V, 7.2 MHz

1991
Fidelity Tiny
Eric van Riet Paap
M50743, 8 MHz


Fidelity Chess Challenger Micro
David Levy, Mark Taylor
HMCS40, 0.6 MHz, 4 Bit


Fidelity Designer 2325 Master
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
68020, 20 MHz

1992
Fidelity Travel Master
Frans Morsch
H8/330, 10 MHz


Fidelity Eldorado
Ron Nelson
80C49, 6 MHz, 8 Bit


Fidelity Elite Premiere
Fidelity Elite Premiere
Dan and Kathe Spracklen,
Richard Lang
68000, 16 MHz

1994
Fidelity Elite Avant Garde V11
Fidelity Elite Avant Garde V.11
Dan and Kathe Spracklen
68060, 75 MHz


References

  1. ^ The Fidelity Story, Image hosted by Schachcomputer.info Wiki
  2. ^ Fidelity from Schachcomputer.info Wiki (German)
  3. ^ 16.Fidelity ..The Golden Years | Flickr - Fotosharing by Chewbanta
  4. ^ John D. Ferguson (1983). In-Circuit Emulation for the Apple II Computer. Byte Magazine, September 1983, pdf
  5. ^ Göran Grottling (1988). Thank you Mister Spock! Ein Interview mit Sid Samole. Modul 4/88, pp. 36-38 (German), pdf hosted by Hein Veldhuis
  6. ^ Fidelity Chess Challenger 1 from chesscomputers.org
  7. ^ Fidelity Chess Challenger (CC1) from Chess Computer UK by Mike Watters
  8. ^ Lev Alburt and Al Lawrence (2000). "How About a Nice Game of Chess?" - Any Time. Sidney Samole (1935-2000). Chess Café, October 17, 2000, pdf
  9. ^ Fidelity Chess Challenger 7 from Schachcomputer.info Wiki (German)
  10. ^ Fidelity Electronics Inc. - About Us
  11. ^ The Editor (2000). SIDNEY SAMOLE (1935-2000). ICGA Journal Vol. 23, No. 4 - December 2000
  12. ^ Schachcomputer.info Wiki
  13. ^ Furstenberg (Dutch)
  14. ^ Levy, David from Schachcomputer.info Wiki
  15. ^ Fidelity Electronics from chesscomputers.org
  16. ^ Lawyer in Miami, Myron M. Samole, Esq - Samole, Berger & Hicks, PA
  17. ^ Fidelity Electronics from chesscomputers.org
  18. ^ Fidelity from Schachcomputer.info Wiki (German)
  19. ^ Chess Computer UK by Mike Watters
  20. ^ Monty Newborn and Danny Kopec (1989). Results of The Nineteenth ACM North American Computer Chess Championship, in The Twentieth ACM North American Computer Chess Championship from The Computer History Museum, pdf
  21. ^ Fidelity X chess computer at the 6th World Chess Championship in Edmonton, Alberta, The Computer History Museum
  22. ^ Kings Move - Welcome to the 1989 AGT World Computer Chess Championship. Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, Courtesy of Peter Jennings, from The Computer History Museum, pdf
  23. ^ Frederic Friedel (1990). Elektronischer Sekundant ein Fidelity-Computer bei der Schach-WM in New-York. Computerschach und Spiele 6/90 (German)

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