The Business Software Alliance tries to fight against software piracy. Founded in 1988.

BSA worldwide members include Adobe, Autodesk, Bentley Systems, Corel, Lotus Development, Macromedia, Microsoft, Network Associates, Novell, Symantec and Visio. BSA regional members are Apple (Europe) and Inprise (Asia). BSA's Policy Council consists of the aforementioned worldwide members and the following companies: Apple Computer, Compaq, IBM, Intel, Intuit and Sybase.

At one point, usually at SMAUs, BSA was giving away a diskette containing PC software for detecting unauthorized/copied/cracked stuff on your hard disk.
The idea was that you would run back to your cubicle warren and start swiping the diskette through the company machines, severaly reprimanding your fellow drones that had gotten out of line.
At that point, I didn't even have a PC, but I made a point of leeching as many diskettes as I could from their booth, so that I could put Mac software on them. I don't even need to tell you what kind of software that was.

On a totally different tack, the BSA are also the Boy Scouts of America.

The Birmingham Small Arms Company, despite its name, really came into its forté when it started manufacturing motorcycles. The factory had been producing high quality parts for motorcycles since the very earliest years of the 20th Century, and in 1921 they produced their first complete bike, a 770cc V twin model.

In the following two decades BSA rapidly became one of the largest and most respected motorcycle manufacturers in the world. They produced a variety of models, single- and twin-cylinder powered, and both four stroke and two stroke models.

In 1938 they introduced the Gold Star machine. This was probably the first publically-available machine capable of speeds over 100 mph (with a little bit of home tuning), and sold in large numbers for 20 years or so after the end of World War II. As well as being fast and reliable by the standards of the day, it was comparatively cheap and by the mid-1950s BSA was the largest motorcycle manufacturer in the world.

BSA's fortunes, like those of the rest of the British bike industry, were completely destroyed when the first Japanese machines started to be shipped over. Unwilling to move away from designs which they had faithfully built for decades and plagued by poor management decisions, BSA saw its devotees leaving in droves as bikers started buying the cheaper, faster and more reliable Hondas and Suzukis. By 1971 the BSA factory closed the doors of its Small Heath factory for the very last time.

Of course this meant that within ten years any extant BSA machines were looked upon with the misty-eyed glow of nostalgia and became recognised as the "classics" that they rightly were. Talk to any British rider of a certain age and they'll get a far-away look in their eyes as they talk about the Gold Star or Bantam they used to own, or the Lightning which was the first machine they "did the ton" on. Unless they were Triumph owners of course, which is a whole different story.

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