Steve Wozniak On Steve Jobs, Apple’s Early Days

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Steve Wozniak On Steve Jobs, Apple’s Early Days

And we do it with a little device called a “mouse.” We call it a mouse because it
has this little wire that runs back to the computer. And we can make the
Macintosh do different things just with the click of the mouse.
At Apple computers annual meeting, Apple founder and chairman, Steven jobs
unpacked Macintosh. In 1970, in between college years when I was working at a
company to earn money for college, I managed to get the parts given to me
to build a computer of my own design. The friend, down the block that helped me do
this, also knew Steve Jobs. And he introduced us he said you’ve got to meet
Steve Jobs because he knows this digital electronics. He builds devices with
flashing numbers that can count strings on a guitar and what note they’re
playing and things like that. And he likes to play pranks. I was a very
much a fun humorist all my life. And Wow! So Steve Jobs came by and I would have
been too shy to go meet him but he came by and we started talking and sure
enough we hit it off. He could describe things that he had done in electronics. I
could just describe myself and my computer interest in designs. And we just
became, you know, best friends for a long time. The Apple I is a bad comparison
to today’s computer. Partly because it was not designed as a computer. It was
taking a little device that was designed to talk to computers by typing on a
keyboard and getting your answers back in text over a slow modem. And it was
designed to save cost in parts to work very slowly. Now the Apple II is a better
example of – compared to today’s computer and it was very different. You
would turn it on. Beep! It would boot up and it would be ready for you to start
typing in the computer language. They were not finding files or anything. Files
were stored on a cassette tape. One at a time. Every tape was just one little file.
One program. Was a very infantile computer. What it did bring to the world
was the idea that computers can have color. They can have human appreciative
things. Color! They can have graphics. So they can play like arcade games. They can
even have pixels— individual dots on the screen for higher resolution pictures
that look more natural. They can have game controls and games are okay to
build into computers. The Apple II set a big tone on that world that helped be a
step towards today’s computers. But today’s personal computers are
based on much deeper thinking. First of all prices of memory to run today’s
computers would have made the Apple— if we tried to build that computer back,
instead of the Apple II, it would have cost like 50,000- 100,000
of today’s dollars to buy it. It was unachievable then. But as Moore’s
Law caused the price of silicon chips and especially memory to fall, and fall,
and fall, the computer like say the Macintosh became possible. In the
meantime, Microsoft came about. And IBM invent started up with a computer based
around Intel chips and Intel microprocessors. And they basically
hooked them together in the standard way. They worked very much like the Apple I
and the Apple II. They they incorporated eventually a little graphics and
eventually they got up to the Apple II level of graphics even. But you would
type in commands. You would think them out. You would memorize how to use a
computer and you would use it. You had to teach yourself. You had to take a little
personal course to even know how to use a computer. Today computers are almost
like telephones. You kind of walk up, turn it on and you start looking around and
you’ll find little clues on the screen that lead you to the actions that make
them work. In the timeframe, of the Apple II being such a wonderful world that had
really excited people about how beautiful and colorful and fun computers
could be and then IBM had jumped in with their PC. And they never to this point in
time had done quite as good a job. They weren’t as well accepted in schools, in
the homes. But they had marketing inroads into the enterprise. Into the big
businesses that, all of a sudden, could justify a thousand computers at once to
purchase unheard-of numbers. So we kind of saw them as just marching in and just
trying to use their prowess to take over the business and we were the rebels who
had created it all. Who were really leading the world and people were
looking to us for leadership. It’s almost like today’s Apple. And so Steve called
me over to the Macintosh building one night and said you got to watch
this commercial. And he put in a tape into a U-matic machine. And I watched the
1984 commercial where this this young colorful, you know, woman is running and
she throws an anvil And it hits the screen. On the screen, it’s
somebody that sort of reminds you of those big companies.
(Robotic voice:) “There will be no contrary thought.”
You know, they do all the thinking for you.
And blew it up. And, you know, it basically it meant it symbolized what we
were. You know, we were talking about, you know, we stand for getting rid of the
past. And you don’t have to go down the roads that everybody says you do. And
there’s a new brighter future. And we’re the leaders in it. That’s what it said to
me. And I turn to Steve and I said “Wow we’re gonna show this on the Superbowl?”
and when he said that “No, the board had voted against it.” And why and one of the
reasons was money, I said, well, I’ll tell you what I’ll put up $400,000, if you’ll put up $400,000. And that was half-and-half.
And we could show this commercial. It should be shown because this is who we
are. And I said that to Steve. I was so naive thinking that’s how the world
worked and that’s how boards worked. And that it was that simple. It was just a
matter of money. But, eventually thank God, there were a lot of creative people
in our advertising agency that knew how great an ad that was. It won all the
awards to this day. The Clio award for “Best Ad of the Year.” It’s won the “Best Ad of the Millennium.”
Unbelievable science fiction mentality
behind it. And the creative people that produced it did everything they could to
make sure that, you know, we still had a chance to show it on the Super Bowl. Which we did.

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