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Zebra Systems, Inc.

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Home / Companies - Zebra Systems, Inc.

Incorporated in February 1983, and founded by Stewart Newfeld, Zebra Systems started life manufacturing hardware for the Timex/Sinclair line of micro-computers. Being affiliated with Alpha Products, and Colorware (the idea was products from "A" to "Z", and since the T/S 1000 was a black and white computer, a Zebra seemed like a good mascot) Zebra Systems did contract manufacturing for Spectrum Projects.

Zebra Systems made Light Pens, the Spectrum Voice Pak, and other items for Spectrum Projects. Zebra also purchased lots of surplus electronic and computer hardware items that they adapted for various markets like Koala Pads, WICO Trackballs, and Atari Compatible Joysticks.

When the Timex market looked as if it were going to start tapering off, Stewart looked at other markets. Since Zebra was already serving the CoCo market, Stewart decided to develop products under the Zebra Systems banner.

The first such product was the CoCo Greeting Card Designer, written by two Zebra employees; Tom Gee, and Al Hartman. The program was well received based on a review in Rainbow Magazine in the April 1986 Issue, pg 202.

That was followed by the CoCo Graphics Designer, which added Banners, and Signs to the ability to produce custom greeting cards. Several disks of clipart, fonts and borders were released to expand the program. The clipart included software to create disks of the clipart that could be used with CoCo Max, CoCo Max II, CoCo Max III, and Max 10.

Programmer Jeff Street was hired and began a year-long project to write the newest iteration of the CoCo Graphics Designer series, the CoCo Graphics Designer Plus. At the time, programs like CoCo Max were very popular due to their Graphical User Interface that resembled the Apple Macintosh, the Atari-ST, and the Commodore Amiga computers.

The CoCo Graphics Designer was re-written from the ground up in fast 6809 machine code, and given a makeover. Where the previous versions were hybrid BASIC and Assembly programs and keyboard driven, the new CoCo Graphics Designer Plus had a GUI and used either a joystick, trackball, or Tandy Mouse to operate it's new intuitive menus.

The CoCo Graphics Designer Plus was reviewed in Rainbow Magazine in the May 1989 Issue, pg 110.

Other products in the series were the Label Designer, the Car Sign Designer, and First Class.

Zebra Systems attended several RainbowFests and sold its products there.

Zebra Systems was located in Woodhaven, New York in a storefront that used to be a Beer Distributor.

Zebra Systems was interviewed for Television by the New Tech Times, and the Wall Street Journal Report:

Zebra Systems closed the Woodhaven location and continued selling existing products from a Brooklyn, NY location and a State College, PA location. Eventually, licensing it's products for sale by others.

Zebra Systems still exists as a Web and Computer consulting company, and still has a small supply of Sinclair ZX-81 kits, software, and manuals.

Zebra Systems Website