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Wozniak's Comments on "Pirates" 275

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the stuff-to-read dept.
webslacker wrote in to tell us that Steve Wozniak has posted his commnts on the TNT Movie, Pirates of the Silicon Valley. He notes several things and clarifies other things. As many of you noted, the movie made him out to be one of the coolest guys ever to live. I'd say thats very deserved. And I'm not saying that just because we had an Apple ][ (on a cart wheeled from class to class!) in my elementary school.
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Wozniak's Comments on "Pirates"

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  • by Anonymous Coward
    I also had an Apple II on a cart wheeled around
    from classroom to classroom. Even then, I was
    ahead of my classmates. ;D I still scorn that
    evil woman for never answering my question about
    what it meant by "BROKEN BY A SOFT SECTOR" on the
    LOGO bootup menu. :/ But ooooh, the memories...
    I fear what kids must have to work with today.
    There was a certain innocence attached to the
    Apple II and it's kin...:~(
  • by Anonymous Coward
    I hope you guys didn't miss, there's a second page with comments that were way more interesting

    http://www.woz.org/woz/commets.html

    http://www.woz.org/woz/commets1.html
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Cool is ok praise.
    Calling him ethical is nice.

    But, the best praise I can think of:

    Woz is a wizard.

    (for you youngins, wizards are hardware AND software gurus. The height of the profession.)
  • by Anonymous Coward
    what the industry would look like if Woz had managed to keep the hardware open.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    I was a student at Berkeley in 1987 when Woz graduated with a degree in electrical engineering/computer science. He was the class valedictorian, not surprisingly.

    I don't remember the assumed name he used, but *NO ONE*, at least no one I knew, had any idea who he really was.

    At the graduation ceremony, he gave a nice speach and then casually tossed of at the end that he really was not who he had claimed to be, his real name was Steve Wozniak.

    You could have heard the jaws dropping a mile away. It was a great day, and not one soon forgotten.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    ...but being on the right side politically earns you a "score:1" while the sensible AC you responded to got zilch.

    People don't "deserve their money" for "working harder". They are given money in exchange for something that someone else considers to be of even greater value. If you can provide something of value (say, a good haircut, for example) to somebody, he'll give you somewhat less money than he thinks the haircut is worth TO HIM. How hard you work, what it's worth to you, and all other such considerations are irrelevant to the person who pays you. If he thinks that he'd rather have the money than the haircut, you won't get the money. Simple as that.

    If you provide the same haircut to two people, you'll get twice the money. That's because you've created twice the value, not because you've worked twice as hard. How hard you worked to do it isn't what gets them to pay you. It's solely the sum value you have provided to those two people, IN THEIR OWN OPINION.

    Now, if you can figure out a way to snap your fingers and provide the same haircut to a million people, you'll get a million times the money. Not because you worked a million times as hard, but because you have created a million times the value, as judged by the people who owned the money that was given you. Nobody else's opinion matters, because it was THEIR money. They presumably valued their own money, but they demonstrably valued the haircut even more.

    Huge wealth, unless it is taken by force, is evidence of a lot of people having received a lot of value, in their own opinion. How hard YOU judge the wealthy to have worked couldn't be more irrelevant.

    There. Now the moderators can give me my score:-1 for my politcal shortcomings and we'll be done with it.
  • by Gleef (86)
    SimonK wrote many things I agree with, but he also wrote:

    Give it a few years and you'll be joining the libertarian party, reading Ayn Rand and being beseiged by the FBI in some compound in Montana.

    Hey, painting the stroke of Libertarianism a little broad are we. While many Libertarians admire and agree with Ayn Rand, she does not speak for all Libertarians. Many do not follow her Objectivist philosophy.

    Secondly, those people who form anti-government anti-conspiracy militias have nothing to do with Libertarians. Libertarians generally feel that there is a place for government, it just should be a much smaller place than the one we have now occupies.
  • by Skamille (318)
    I have mad respect for the guy for all that he did, and put up with, etc. But he has no shortage of ego. Maybe it's just me, but I would find him a lot more charming if he let his accomplishments speak for themselves (which they do, hell, they SCREAM for themselves!). He's a cool guy, but certainly not quite as humble as the show seemed to portray him.

    Alright, now I get flamed. Wooooohooooo.
    C
  • Bonus Apple ][ command sequence trivia: What does THIS do? (Hint: Either Language Card or both sets of BASIC ROMs required.)

    ] INT

    > CALL -151
    * F666G
    !

    Mini Assembler!!
    ] CALL -151
    * FAA6G
    Dunno. I'm not ever sure if your still in integer basic or not.
  • Acutally, The Woz didn't design the drive, he used an off-the-shelf drive...but custom circuits and controller was his. And the IWM is actually know as the "Infernal Wozniak Machine"

    He also used a "unique" way to get the drive to find track 0 to read the boot code...since they had 33 tracks, they backed up the stepper motor 33 times to make sure it was a track 0, no matter where the drive head was! That is what what gave the Apple ]['s their distinctive sound upon booting.

    ttyl
    Farrell
    (Long time Apple ][ Hacker, LOGO Teacher and GraForth fan)
  • by Trepidity (597)
    I'd have to agree, Woz rocks. It seems he was into Open Hardware way back in the 70s, giving out free schematics =)
  • Atheists For Jesus [atheists-for-jesus.com], for those who like Jesus but not the "belief in God" or religious fundamentalism stuff =)
  • But we all know ESR is the only person in the world capable of giving speeches in favor of Open Source.
  • I got that impression too. Wozniak reminds me of RMS, only less dogmatic. They both have (or at least had) beards too, and look/looked like hippies.
  • Well he did suffer mild brain damage (amnesia) in that plane accident. However, he seems like an intelligent person today (albeit not doing much technically-related anymore).
  • Hmm, if you go look through that site, the list of Presidents who are Idealists [keirsey.com] says "There are None!"

    Perhaps that's part of our problem.

    FWIW I'm INTP/INFP, depending on my mood.
  • Hmm, when i retake that test thinking of what I'm like online, I get ENTP. The same, except the I (introverted) switches to E (extroverted). Interesting.
  • Good ole' Gerald Holmes. You must admit that he's a mildly talented satirist (grin).

    -E
  • Posted by The Incredible Mr. Limpett:

    AFAIK,
    The Altair had the metal switches and the brushed metal front.

    The IMSAI 8080, an Altair clone, had the red and blue plastic buttons and looked much nicer (It was shown in the movie War Games.)

    BTW this is way before my time, my first computer was a TI99/4A in the early/mid 80's.
  • Posted by 2B||!2B:

    I totally agree. If only it were possible! But it's probably about 5 years too late. At Phase5 in Germany (www.phase5.de) they used to have lots of info on their A\\Box project, which is a modern (and just as leading-edge for its time) version of the Amiga they planned on creating. But the info has gone away, which means it probably won't happen. Gateway makes a bunch of promises about reviving the Amiga, but I'll believe it when I see it. My guess is at best they'll do a faster (PPC) version of the 4000.
  • Hrm... I suppose that would be why you must take the Windows Applications course to graduate from my high school. Microsoft influence at the highest levels of my school!

    Once you take that, you never have to use the PCs again and the other classes (no programming, just graphics) use the mac labs. Not that they're any better or more stable, I think I'm just spoiled since I use linux at home.
  • Anyone else here remember the US Festivals in 1982 and 1983? Woz made thos happen. I got to work at the 1982 US Festival. 10 bands a day for three days. Wanna guess how much the tickets were? $10.00 (ten dollars) per day. That's a dollar an act. And these were not second string acts, they were headliners; The Police, The Kinks, The Grateful Dead, Jerry Jeff Walker, Fleetwood Mac, and amny more I can't remember.

    If you got bored with the music there were exposition tents with all kinds of fun computer and technology goodies in them.

    It still amazes me that there were 250,000 people at that show.

    My understanding is that the low ticket prices meant that Woz lost (if you want to use that term) a lot of money on the US Festivals.

    ObComputerComments: I always liked and respected the Apple II but I hated the Mac on sight.
  • People don't "deserve their money" for "working harder". They are given money in exchange for something that someone else considers to be of even greater value.

    I recall, several years back, an article about the annual "top 10 highest-paid entertainers" lists, and Michael Jackson was on top as a result of his Thriller album. (I told you it was a while back.) Jackson had made a few bazillion dollars that year. "No one's worth that kind of money!" is the typical response. The author of the article talked to an exec from Jackson's record company. He wouldn't divulge how much money had been made off of Thriller, but did admit that the few bazillion dollars they paid Jackson was "a bargain."

    That's the point. Jackson contributed more to the economy than he took out. Same with Bill Gates. Are they "worth it"? In an economic sense, yes. In a philosophical sense, we can debate.
  • I think everybody who has concretely contributed to his/her business deserves the wealth he/she receives.
    How could they possibly deserve the wealth they have? Is any one person worth that much more than another?

    You should appreciate the scale of their wealth. This is not like making $20,000 a year vs. $100,000. The wealth is astronomical.

    A very well paid person could make $100/hour. If they work hard -- an average of 16 hours a day every day -- they can reach Bill Gates' wealth within a mere 150 millenia. I'm not sure how much Larry Ellison is worth, but that same honest person would still have to work several millenia to match his wealth.

    Now, did either of these men really work that hard? Is it even possible for one person to work that hard?

    Any sane person would say no. Any reasonable person would say their wealth is beyond justification. Even Wozniak, though he has the soul of a hacker, did not earn his wealth.

    (and don't give me any of that "risk" bull either -- I've yet to see one destitute executive)

    It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God. (Matthew 19:24)
    I'm not myself a Christian, but things like that which make it somewhat seductive. Would that there were any Real Christians left, or at least that fundamentalists would concern themselves with social issues outside of homosexuality and abortion. But that's another issue entirely...
  • My post wasn't about economics. My post wasn't about describing how things work -- that's what economics tries to do.

    I just asked: do these people deserve the money they've made? My claim was that they could not have deserved it. There's no way that their contribution could have been that much more than the average (or even above-average) person's.

    Did they make a lot of money? Obviously, I cannot dispute the facts. The difference between what people deserve and what they get is what distinguishes a just and unjust system. I imply only that this system must be unjust by looking at what it creates.

    Maybe your interpretation based on value and subjective judgement is correct (I don't think it is). Either way it is still unjust if it creates an unjust ends. It is certainly no justification.

  • Your being rather semantic with that first comment. But anyway...

    Sure, some executives have a certain amount of risk. And some businesses fail. But that doesn't leave the execs destitute. When it goes really bad they have to live the middle-class lifestyle, instead of the upper-class lifestyle they were used to or aspired to. Oh, despair.

    But I'm not sure about calling a small-time entrepreneur an executive is quite right. Anyway...

    It's the last bit of wealth that counts most. The drop from upper-class to middle-class is hardly traumatic. It's not hard to regain your position. All you are really losing is a bit of comfort and a bit of ego. It's not that big a risk.

  • With the rampant spread of the cult of personality in the 'puter biz and other areas, it sure is nice to see someone as level-headed as Mr. Woz. He actually did something good for folks, made a good chunk of change, and opted out for a real life. Now that's something I'd like to do. I don't know that much about the man, other than what I've read here and anecdotes from time-to-time. But he sure seems to be a nicer fella than that Gates boy or Jobs or Larry E.
  • Give me the Commodore, X, and the Amiga any day. The Apple II was very overpriced at the time, as are most of Apple's products. NeXT was a very bad (read: incompatible, shoddy standard tools) UNIX.

    ...and any of your examples are better than the iMac. If you sell a computer that's integrated with the monitor, isn't upgradeable, (we haven't gone far since the Apple II) doesn't have a floppy drive (that was at least standard with the Apple II... :) and costs more than an equivalent real computer, then putting in a network card instead doesn't make it "the first viable step towards a network computer". I think the vt100 did that better than the iMac ever will, and for graphics, X Servers did even better. I don't think desktop machines with network cards are anything new, and if Apple does it, that doesn't suddenly make it a 'network computer' any more than all the other ones were.

    Jobs does try to make sure that ideas and people are exploited, and he is ruthless. If Apple were on top, he would be basically a hipper version of Bill Gates. There have been many stories here of Jobs's ruthless exploitation, of Woz in particular. He may have popularized some ideas that caught on, and we might have him to thank for that, but past that, please don't give Jobs any more credit than you absolutely have to... Proprietary software is bad, but proprietary hardware is worse. If you can't release your source code, at least get it to run on more than one platform...
  • But I try to judge people by what they do less than what they say. And he seems to have done good things in the past and continues to, so I'll choose to attribute his puffiness to
    1) the fact that he really did do some amazing things
    2) that he didn't realize how it sounded
  • The movie showed the distinct difference between a company which split its resources between building hardware and writing the software for it and a company which specialized only in software. The company which split its resources drove its employees 50 hours at a time, and virtually drove itself out of business for less than 5% of the PC market. Apple's biggest problem is that they kill themselves building the hardware and software themselves.

    We can only assume Steve really interrupted interviews, put his feet on the table, and asked candidates if they had sex before tearing them apart. It's a perfect explanation for the "think different" campaign. One can only wonder if the intensely competitive computer industry just demands that nihilistic personality of any entrepreneur.
  • Deja vu. I remember wading into those things with hex editor and a disassembler. They had some gnarly copy protection back in the day. Remember the disks with the weak magnetic region, would flip polarity every time it was read? Stuff written in between tracks, past the normal end of the disk, etc?

    I had an Apple II+, my friend won an Apple IIe in a contest from Computerland. We were 14 years old, always dialing in to pirate bulletin boards, downloading programs, which took forever, and 4 out of five times, didn't work right. My dad introduced me to software piracy and the online world several years before that, with a TRS-80 Model 1 and a CompuServe account. At that point, piracy wasn't even illegal!

    The Apple IIe was definitely the coolest computer, until the Amiga came out. I had a Commodore 64 & a 128 for a while, but I could never afford an Amiga. I remember when my friends dad got one of the original IBM XT computers for work (he was an accountant) & we thought it was such crap, no graphics, no good games. It was years before the IBM compats were anything but a joke.

    Anyway, all that early piracy led to a sincere interest in how computers worked, hardware & software, a degree, and some nice, high paying jobs. And it all started with a little software pirates club and a Trash 80 [sniff]

  • I mean dropping out of HARVARD with a 1600 on the SAT's, nobody drops out of the best school for an idea that might never work.

    I did. Well not Harvard per se, but I did skip going to Univeristy of Waterloo and Wilfrid Laurier for computer science, engineering and Hons. Computing and Computer Electronics, respectively. Everyone told me I was stupid but at 23 I'm married, have a little one on the way and make a tidy little salary doing what I love without having to go through all the bullshit and propaganda that University shoves down your throat.

    Sure I could have had a great education and a fun time, and in the end have learned a little and spent a lot. Instead I skipped that, am obtaining a great practical education, having tons of fun and getting paid to do it. Not many people my age own a couple cars and a home, nor do many people my age have a career they love.

    No, I'm not comparing myself to Wozinak, there are people far smarter than I, but saying nobody does it is just plain false.
  • Do most modern American women HAVE recipies anymore? I'd imagine that the listing would be something like this:

    1. Order out.
    2. Microwave something.


    my wife cooks wonderful delicious meals that I wouldn't have clue how to make. Mind you I make some pretty decent meals that she can't fathom, either. :-)
  • actually something I've done before that is unfarkingbelieveable:

    - skinless boneless chicken breasts (3 or 4)
    - 1 can of cranberries (whole berries is much better than just jelly, but either works)
    - calorie-wise french dressing
    - 1 package onion soup mix

    get a casserole dish and dump the cranberries in. take the can and pour the salad dressing about 7/8 or so (damn near full) into the can and then dump that into the dish. (the dressing should be almost gone)
    dump the onion powder into the mix.

    At about this point you'll be wondering what you've let me talk you in to. you gotta mix it all up (wooden spoon works great) to get this orangey mess with little lumps of cranberry jelly and mushy cranberries and little crunchy bits from the onion soup mix... when it's all consistent it'll look like someone's got a REALLY bad ulcer problem.

    Dump the chicken into this and cover the chicken with the sauce. throw it in the fridge for 30 minutes, flipping once.

    then put it in your oven at like 275-350 (whatever everything else goes in at) for 45 minutes. flip 'em and put in for another 45 minutes.

    when you go to flip them you'll notice the smell... it will REALLY get you hungry (this part is not sarcasm) -- by the time the second 45 minutes goes 'round you'll be aching to eat this. it doesn't look so good to prepare but GAWD if it doesn't taste awesome! Goes well with beer and if you reheat it the next day it's even better!

    Serve over rice or noodles. My wife couldn't believe what I was doing when I went to make it, but she sure pigged out! :-)
  • What the hell happened to this guy? DAMN!
    If any of you weenie hacker wannabies ever read any of his code, you would see the clear, cool mind of a fscking GENIUS!
    MAN his stuff was elegant! You could sit, pass it around, and just ADMIRE it!
    He got nuked by something. Something REALLY BAD happened to him.
    I went to his site, and his comments don't have any continuity. He keeps repeating how he was the originator of the apple architecture (which is true). If he was as serene as he says he is, he would not complain. I think he's somewhat (justifiably) bitter about the dismissal of his role in mainstreaming computing.
    He does not now seem to remember the warrior he was. That is sad.
    Pete.
  • I'm rather ashamed not to know that. I love his work with kids, dont get me wrong. I just love his work as a great coder. He made that world his. He was a fscking van halen of coding.
    So was Bill Budge. Wonder where he is. He truly hacked. No more? I don't get it. A natural math prodigy. I would've loved him as a friend. BIG PICTURE. He got it, somehow.
  • by Muck (2022)
    After reading some of his comments I got a feeling of arrogance from him... Maybe he's just honest.. its hard to tell sometimes with really smart people if they're arogant a$$es or just being honest...
  • The "MS investment/QT settlement" thing happened at about the same time. The lawsuit was going on for some time before that, but a "smoking gun" turned up in the QT trial, and Microsoft was going to lose bigtime (eventually). But it was in the Bad Days at Apple, so Apple gave MS another option... keep selling Office for Mac, and invest $150 million in non-voting stock, along with licensing the QuickTime code for Windows.

    The QT licensing is the largest part of it overall, and a big reason that Apple keeps making about $50 million more profit per quarter than everyone expects.
  • World hunger is a social problem. It will never be solved by throwing money or technology at the problem. It will go away when we adopt a social system which doesn't allow world hunger. Not until then.

    Same thing with homelessless and poverty.

  • An Anonymous Coward wrote:
    People don't "deserve their money" for "working harder". They are given money in exchange for something that someone else considers to be of even greater value. If you can provide something of value (say, a good haircut, for example) to somebody, he'll give you somewhat less money than he thinks the haircut is worth TO HIM. How hard you work, what it's worth to you, and all other such considerations are irrelevant to the person who pays you. If he thinks that he'd rather have the money than the haircut, you won't get the money. Simple as that.

    In a world where hair stylist are plenty, hair grows on (most) every head, and it's the norm for folks in the workforce to tailor their image through hair style, you're certainly right. Given this there's implicit demand for hair styling, there's many small shops providing a popular service among the community, and in this situation a free market works quite well.

    But your analogy here in comparison to Bill Gates, Larry Ellison, Steve Jobs, and the many other would be technological Robber Barons of the late twentieth falls quite short.

    If you provide the same haircut to two people, you'll get twice the money. That's because you've created twice the value, not because you've worked twice as hard. How hard you worked to do it isn't what gets them to pay you. It's solely the sum value you have provided to those two people, IN THEIR OWN OPINION.

    In a free market, where many barbers provide similar services, one gets competition by price and quality of service. I'm all for this, and find this model of many small shops competing on product and service value quite appealing. By no means do I support government management of production either in the Fascist or Communist model. But by that very token, neither do I support single corporate producers either. This is no different from a single air carrier like Delta monopolizing the Cincinnati airport, locking flyers in to their pricing scheme.

    In this example those wishing to fly into Cincinnati airport don't choose which air carrier based on some imaginary quotient of "value", but simply based on who can sell them the ticket. That is, one air carrier, Delta, who gets to choose the ticket price based on their local monopoly. Where have we seen this kind of behavior in the software industry? Don't you find it relevant to note that Office2000 will be sold at over $800 per license when it's released?

    That's value for you.

    Now, if you can figure out a way to snap your fingers and provide the same haircut to a million people, you'll get a million times the money. Not because you worked a million times as hard, but because you have created a million times the value, as judged by the people who owned the money that was given you. Nobody else's opinion matters, because it was THEIR money. They presumably valued their own money, but they demonstrably valued the haircut even more.

    Ironically, as far as software distribution goes this is exactly the case! It costs almost no more money to distribute 1000 copies as it costs to distribute 1 copy... especially if we're talking about Internet distribution. By arguing that buyers have the economic power to refuse the sale you're simply blinding yourself to the obvious power a proprietary standard can impose upon a whole society, thus forcing us into economic bondage.

    This is no different from how speculative investments ravage our world economy by moving capital without productivity gains across local economies to exploit minor price differentiations. Bill Gates is betting you, the buyer, would rather pay an exorbitant fee in order to stay up to date with his ever changing document format standard, rather than attempt single handedly to overthrow his standards control... but do you honestly think Gates is providing real value to the economy as a whole by these means? I sure don't.

    MIT economist Lestor Thurow discussed a similar issue in last months Atlantic Monthly, where he published a long article on the "New Economy", and how it relates to the monopoly economies of the late nineteenth/early twentieth century. It's a well written and informative article, I encourage others to go to the library and check it out. Anyway, the point I'm pulling from this article is that there's a huge difference between someone who creates a new thing which generates real economic value in the traditional sense, and those who use differences in market evaluations of any arbitrary good across markets in order to generate a false profit through speculation.

    Of course, you're also under the false pretension that people act as rational buyers, which one look at a all the junk for sale at most supermarket checkout counters should dissuade you of such silly ideas.

    Huge wealth, unless it is taken by force, is evidence of a lot of people having received a lot of value, in their own opinion. How hard YOU judge the wealthy to have worked couldn't be more irrelevant.

    Or evidence that those buyers had no choice but to buy from a single source. In that event the monopoly holder must use a form of economic coercion to force buyers and choke out potential competition. This is a form of either gambling or graft and corruption, because such a situation cannot last forever in an economy which favors equilibrium through competition.

    Now, how does this relate to open competition, Free Software, and Steve Wozniack? There are plenty who have argued that the Free Software and Open Source model support competition through meritocracy. While this isn't the same as competition by price and service, it is a foundation for competition among the developers which creates a fitness function allowing for an evolutionary model of development. And how different is this from a traditional economic model, except that what's exchanged is not monetary tokens, but the value of peer support and recognition.

    And Woz most certainly deserves the recognition of his peers for having created many useful things, and also for having behaved responsibly in our community. His support of schools and children stands head and shoulders above anything of "value" the like of Bill Gates and Steve Jobs may have ever created over the course of their lives.

  • An Anonymous Coward wrote:
    People don't "deserve their money" for "working harder". They are given money in exchange for something that someone else considers to be of even greater value. If you can provide something of value (say, a good haircut, for example) to somebody, he'll give you somewhat less money than he thinks the haircut is worth TO HIM. How hard you work, what it's worth to you, and all other such considerations are irrelevant to the person who pays you. If he thinks that he'd rather have the money than the haircut, you won't get the money. Simple as that.

    In a world where hair stylist are plenty, hair grows on (most) every head, and it's the norm for folks in the workforce to tailor their image through hair style, you're certainly right. Given this there's implicit demand for hair styling, there's many small shops providing a popular service among the community, and in this situation a free market works quite well.

    But your analogy here in comparison to Bill Gates, Larry Ellison, Steve Jobs, and the many other would be technological Robber Barons of the late twentieth falls quite short.

    If you provide the same haircut to two people, you'll get twice the money. That's because you've created twice the value, not because you've worked twice as hard. How hard you worked to do it isn't what gets them to pay you. It's solely the sum value you have provided to those two people, IN THEIR OWN OPINION.

    In a free market, where many barbers provide similar services, one gets competition by price and quality of service. I'm all for this, and find this model of many small shops competing on product and service value quite appealing. By no means do I support government management of production either in the Fascist or Communist model. But by that very token, neither do I support single corporate producers either. This is no different from a single air carrier like Delta monopolizing the Cincinnati airport, locking flyers in to their pricing scheme.

    In this example those wishing to fly into Cincinnati airport don't choose which air carrier based on some imaginary quotient of "value", but simply based on who can sell them the ticket. That is, one air carrier, Delta, who gets to choose the ticket price based on their local monopoly. Where have we seen this kind of behavior in the software industry? Don't you find it relevant to note that Office2000 will be sold at over $800 per license when it's released?

    That's value for you.

    Now, if you can figure out a way to snap your fingers and provide the same haircut to a million people, you'll get a million times the money. Not because you worked a million times as hard, but because you have created a million times the value, as judged by the people who owned the money that was given you. Nobody else's opinion matters, because it was THEIR money. They presumably valued their own money, but they demonstrably valued the haircut even more.

    Ironically, as far as software distribution goes this is exactly the case! It costs almost no more money to distribute 1000 copies as it costs to distribute 1 copy... especially if we're talking about Internet distribution. By arguing that buyers have the economic power to refuse the sale you're simply blinding yourself to the obvious power a proprietary standard can impose upon a whole society, thus forcing us into economic bondage.

    This is no different from how speculative investments ravage our world economy by moving capital without productivity gains across local economies to exploit minor price differentiations. Bill Gates is betting you, the buyer, would rather pay an exorbitant fee in order to stay up to date with his ever changing document format standard, rather than attempt single handedly to overthrow his standards control... but do you honestly think Gates is providing real value to the economy as a whole by these means? I sure don't.

    MIT economist Lestor Thurow discussed a similar issue in last months Atlantic Monthly, where he published a long article on the "New Economy", and how it relates to the monopoly economies of the late nineteenth/early twentieth century. It's a well written and informative article, I encourage others to go to the library and check it out. Anyway, the point I'm pulling from this article is that there's a huge difference between someone who creates a new thing which generates real economic value in the traditional sense, and those who use differences in market evaluations of any arbitrary good across markets in order to generate a false profit through speculation.

    Of course, you're also under the false pretension that people act as rational buyers, which one look at a all the junk for sale at most supermarket checkout counters should dissuade you of such silly ideas.

    Huge wealth, unless it is taken by force, is evidence of a lot of people having received a lot of value, in their own opinion. How hard YOU judge the wealthy to have worked couldn't be more irrelevant.

    Or evidence that those buyers had no choice but to buy from a single source. In that event the monopoly holder must use a form of economic coercion to force buyers and choke out potential competition. This is a form of either gambling or graft and corruption, because such a situation cannot last forever in an economy which favors equilibrium through competition.

    Now, how does this relate to open competition, Free Software, and Steve Wozniack? There are plenty who have argued that the Free Software and Open Source model support competition through meritocracy. While this isn't the same as competition by price and service, it is a foundation for competition among the developers which creates a fitness function allowing for an evolutionary model of development. And how different is this from a traditional economic model, except that what's exchanged is not monetary tokens, but the value of peer support and recognition.

    And Woz most certainly deserves the recognition of his peers for having created many useful things, and also for having behaved responsibly in our community. His support of schools and children stands head and shoulders above anything of "value" the like of Bill Gates and Steve Jobs may have ever created over the course of their lives.
  • Just as Woz says:

    I designed the computers just to do it and show the world that it could be done and help them happen. Later Steve Jobs suggested starting a company to make money from it. I'd been giving out schematics for free at the Homebrew Computer Club. That's what I believed in. It was hard for me to even start the company when it looked like there might be real money in it.

    He is the proverbial compassionate hacker. He was perfectly happy to just give out the schematics, and found ethical dilemma in building a business which might turn into a serious money maker. This is no different from the likes of rms, Linus, Eric Raymond, Larry Wall, and the now very large number of people out creating such wonderful things as gnome and KDE, GIMP, Python, Apache, and the list just goes on.

    Doesn't it just blow your mind that this guy is out teaching high school instead of finding new ways to make himself richer? Don't you wish you could have been lucky enough tp have taken classes from this guy? He does these things because he enjoys the labor, and wants to help others enjoy the success of creating new things! What better lesson would you want your children to learn?

    That he made enough money to comfortably live in ease for the rest of his life may be blind luck -- but don't you think he deserves it more than Gates, Jobs, Ellison, and all the other blowhards who probably haven't written a line of code in 20 years?

    Woz is a man I can respect.
  • I recently read Infinite Loop, which is a great book on Apple's history, although there are a couple of factual errors. It also makes Jobs look like a total jerk, but that's no error.

    Anyhow, in sections 3.4 and 3.5 the story of Breakout is related. According to the author, Jobs was a technical moron; he could learn things rapidly if he needed to, but had only gotten the job with Atari by using the Woz's resume, more or less. The only reason he didn't lose his job was probably due to force of personality. And in designing Breakout, he puttered around during the day, then had the Woz come in at night (note that the Woz had a day job as well at this time!), fix Jobs' mistakes and then work on getting the board made.

    Eventually the Woz finished, and Jobs (who was thought by his bosses at Atari to have done the work single-handed) got a $7000 bonus. He told the Woz that it was only a $700 bonus, which they then split 50-50. The Woz ultimately got on $350 out of his rightful $3500 (or more).

    Where the book shines though, is in connecting this event to the creation of the Apple I. He says that the Intel 8080 was the microprocessor of choice at that time, especially after having been used in the Altair. Well, they were fairly pricey, and the Woz was somewhat familiar with the Motorola 6800, which was a little cheaper and perhaps easier to work with. But the 6502 was a knock-off version of the 6800 that sold for $20. The Woz went straight for it.

    So, one can imagine that if the Woz had had a few extra grand, he might have splurged on the Intel chip. And while I don't want to get into a debate over the relative merits of different chip families, it probably would have helped out Apple to have worked extensively with the Intel cpus, given that IBM started using them not too far down the line with their first desktop. Sure, no one could have forseen it, but still, it would probably have helped out Apple quite a bit.

    Anyway, it's a good book, and I heartily suggest it to people. But maybe get Where Wizards Stay Up Late to counter the depressing effect of Infinite Loop

  • Speaking of which, a pal back at work showed me a bit of a component library for VB. IMHO the concept was way cool. Now *nix is all about components laying around like legos in kids' rooms, but if we'd be able to provide a consistent visual interface for combining events, that would provide the end users with something useful


    Your describing GNOME :). take a look at it sometime! theres the control stuff, and some people are programming a kind of control-panel-ish type thing for system stuff.

  • I'm not myself a Christian, but things like that which make it somewhat seductive.

    Trust me, there's plenty there to turn you off.. How about the Crusades? The Spanish Inquisition? The history of corruption and greed?

    I'd say stick with the ideals but don't let them draw you into the Organization or the Dogma..
  • In the back of the Apple ][ Reference Manual, they published the source code for the system monitor.

    Had "S JOBS" at its head, afaik. . . I think both Steves wrote the monitor, tho...

    I had to suffice with the "What's Where" book.

    I'd love to have a copy of _What's Where in the Apple_ again... very nice reference.

    Lack of inner workings for the "PC" class of computers turned me off to hacking on it, as I was used to scraping the bare metal. Only now am I getting into programming again (Thank You, Linux!).

    --

  • 1.What was did "20 ED FD" do?

    Printed a character via CSWL.CSWH (an indirect JMP to wherever $36.$37 pointed to, in fact, usually $FDF0)

    Disassembled, it's "JSR $FDED"

    2.What routine was at $FCA8?

    Waited an amount of time based on what was in the Accumulator. Forgot the quadratic equation for the wait time, but. . .

    3.What were the RESET interrupt vectors?

    $3F2.$3F3 is the actual place jumped to when CTRL-RESET is pressed. $3F4 is a checksum (EORd with $A5) of $3F3 that makes CTRL-RESET reboot if it's wrong.

    --

  • I would wager Woz is an INFP ... a rare type of person. He seems very cool, perhaps even uninterested in things unless he can give it an ethical purpose. I just kind of pick that up from him; the way he was uninterested in the business, and the fact that he teaches children now.

    I wonder what his take on OSS is.

    Stallman .. what do you think? INFJ? INTJ? INTP?
  • The story goes that for the Apple ][, Woz wanted a floppy drive to go with it, instead of using cassette tapes. He was strongly discouraged, since everyone knew that floppy drives and controllers were really expensive, and would cost several times the cost of the Apple ][ sold for.

    He didn't listen and completely designed the first 5 1/4 floppy disk drive and controllers for personal computers . The reason he gave for his design, which was much faster and cheaper than anything previously available, was that he didn't know how to build a floppy drive, and didn't know that what he was doing was 'impossible'.

    I always think of this when I start any project. The way everyone else has always done it is not necessarily the best way.


    Note: I remember reading this in an A+ magazine some years ago. The only actual "proof" that I have is that the floppy chip in the Apple ][gs and most pre PowerPC Macs is called the IWM, or "Incredible Woz Machine", which he also designed.

    jf

  • Coolest ever is a matter of opinion :)

    Bring back the Amiga.
  • I remember learning typing in our school's lab -- we had several Apple IIs hanging around. I was so lazy, I coded Basic programs to help me complete whatever typing excercise we were doing at the time if I could . . .

    The teacher thought I was amazing. I told her that I had learned how to type coding on my dad's old Atari 800 (later 800XL) at home.

    Come to think of it, that actually IS how I ended up learning to type . . .

  • Woz wrote Integer BASIC.

    Applesoft BASIC was written by Microsoft. Part of Apple's deal w/ MS was to rename the Microsoft basic to Applesoft. Dunno if they had to pay extra for that, but considering that most of the machines of the day had MS basic but few proclaimed "Microsoft" directly, this makes some amount of sense.

    --Joe

    --
  • Actually, the drive recalibration you refer to was pretty common amongst alot of floppy drives. Every hear a PC recal the drive when it can't read a sector? Brrr-RRRRt!

    The IWM (which I heard expanded to the "Incredible Woz Machine") was little more than a state-machine driven by some TTL gates and a PROM on the old Apple ]['s. (Somewhere in my vast collection of 'stuff', I have the schematics and PROM dump for upgrading from the 13-sector '5+3' format to the 16-sector '6+2' format.) But, it was a heck of a lot cheaper than the microcontroller-driven floppies of the day.

    One drawback, of course, is that your CPU had to run at exactly NTSC colorburst divided by 3.5 in order for it to work. The various CPU speedup chips that came later all slowed down to this speed (1.023MHz) when accessing the disk. :-)

    Another legend has it that the infernal Apple ][ memory map was much, much closer to being linear in the original design, but it required a couple more chips. Woz, interested in saving some $$, designed these chips out, introducing the world to the Venetian Blind fade effect so common in Apple ][ programs.

    Ahh, the memories come rushing back... I could babble for hours on the intricasies of the Apple ][ hardware (but I won't).

    --Joe

    --
  • ...infernal Apple ][ memory map ...

    I meant, of course, the infernal Apple ][ display memory map, which was interleaved 3 or 4 different ways depending on which mode you were in.

    (And, there were 8-byte holes every 120 bytes that you could use for program variables. How nice.)

    Bonus Apple ][ command sequence trivia: What does THIS do? (Hint: Either Language Card or both sets of BASIC ROMs required.)

    ] INT
    > CALL -151
    * F666G
    !

    Or this?

    ] CALL -151
    * FAA6G

    --Joe

    --
  • by Mr Z (6791)

    It'd be cool if he were INFP. Then we'd have something cool in common (aside from a love for hacking, that is).

    I'm INFP/INTP ... depending on mood or situation. More INTP in work matters, INFP in daily life.

    The confused can go to www.keirsey.com [keirsey.com] to be suitably enlightened. (Or, if you're into the more traditional Meyers-Briggs (sp?) tests, you can find out there too. I think there's a x-based version called xmbti, but I don't remember for sure.)

    --Joe

    --
  • by Mr Z (6791)

    It'd be cool if Woz were INFP. Then we'd have something cool in common (aside from a love for hacking, that is).

    I'm INFP/INTP ... depending on mood or situation. More INTP in work matters, INFP in daily life.

    The confused can go to www.keirsey.com [keirsey.com] to be suitably enlightened. (Or, if you're into the more traditional Meyers-Briggs (sp?) tests, you can find out there too. I think there's a x-based version called xmbti, but I don't remember for sure.)

    --Joe

    --
    • F666G, w/ Integer BASIC enabled: Mini Assembler. You are correct.

    • FAA6G. You weren't sure whether I was in Integer or Applesoft BASIC. The prompt was an Applesoft BASIC prompt, although it doesn't matter. FAA6G reboots the Apple.

    And now some 6502 trivia... What does the hex sequence 2C 30 C0 assemble to, and what does that instruction do on an Apple ][?

    --Joe

    --
  • I thought SWIM was the version that was in the Mac, and IWM was the version in the Apple ][GS.

    Or am I smokin' clovers?

    --Joe

    --
  • by pqbon (7033)
    I have a friend (a family friend) who is very important at Mac World. He regularly gets yelled at by steve jobs when MW publishes i'll towards apple. I have heard from friends of lisa (she grew up with some of my friends from school...) that he can be a jerk (although all kids think their parents can be jerks.) From every romur/story I have heard steve jobs is a jerk and woz is a hacker in the MIT sence of the word.


    "There is no spoon" - Neo, The Matrix
    "SPOOOOOOOOON!" - The Tick, The Tick
  • i remember in the very early eighties when the only online community i participated in was 'the source' and people were using this apple II program called locksmith to un-copyprotect apps and trade them - he wrote in to some journal about how he favored such practice, as it led to people learning about decryption and whatnot. these days (as back then) i purchase apps that are used for mission critical purpose that have have a license that dictate that this is the Only Legal Way, but increasingly i find this isn't the case. the mission critical apps are more and more open. beer and a shot for everyone!
  • by SimonK (7722)
    I know most libertarians are not also conspiracy nuts, and that objectivists and libertarians only overlap slightly (and argumentatively). Many libertarians also have a less slavish view of capitalism to the guy I replied to. There is an intersection though - and the slightly paranoid tone of the post I followed up suggested that this person might be in it.

    I actually was quite close to being a True Believer in the Libertarian thing at one point, but I always though Ayn Rand was silly, and I never touched the conspiracy stuff except in jest. I still think a libertarian world might be a good thing to try - but I do not have the same conviction that its the only morally justifiable world that some people have.
  • There is a difference between economics the sort-of-science and the normative interpretation of capitalism you are relying on to disparage people.

    Economics says nothing about whether people deserve their wealth or whether they have any control over other people's. It is a science, and therefore makes no value judgements. It is not a very good science either, and therefore does not seem like a good basis for your morality.

    Nice to see you've got a good persecution complex going there as well. Your post is a +1, insightful, which I have to say is not where I would have put it, since it has no relevance. Give it a few years and you'll be joining the libertarian party, reading Ayn Rand and being beseiged by the FBI in some compound in Montana.

    To get back to the subject in hand, Economics says nothing about whether people 'deserve' their wealth. It most certainly does not say that people's wealth corresponds to 'how much value they've provided' (which incidentally is pretty close to being as daft as saying it corresponds to how hard they've worked). Thats a conclusion you can only reach by assuming all markets are perfect, which they domonstrably are not, and that people judge value correctly, which the do not.

    The economic system, and most especially the stock market by means of which most fabulously rich people get that way, is a human construct, and as such we can change it. If we want to change so people are rewarded for working hard, so be it. Personally I don't, but I can see the appeal of the idea.
  • His hose is seemingly full of us by now :I
    Shall we give it a rest?

    Shame, I was hoping to find out what he's up to now except for the teaching and stuff. Would he like to do something for free software movement for instance?

    Speaking of which, a pal back at work showed me a bit of a component library for VB. IMHO the concept was way cool. Now *nix is all about components laying around like legos in kids' rooms, but if we'd be able to provide a consistent visual interface for combining events, that would provide the end users with something useful.

    I got the idea from the festival speech synthesizer I installed today. If there was an easy way for lusers to combine such events as arriving email with noisy notifications, that'd wake up some stir about what *nix can do for you on the desktop.

    Required would be a linuxconf-style centralized event control panel with interfaces to such things as procmailrc, crontab, irc client, write (yes, the command), widget sets (add a visual widget builder), A/V players and speech synthesizers. Let people connect signals to responses with drag&drop. Add a, say, XML RPC service for remote connections and you'd get something a perl kiddie can build any day, just finally available for the average luser.

    Gosh. Maybe I'll just sign in for KDE one of these nights...
  • Thankyou for that info, I'm glad to see that Apple is getting some real value from that settlement. This generally doesn't happen. Microsft usually steals technology and puts the owner under so much financial pressure (lost sales) that they have no choice but to sell/settle out of court for a fraction of the potential sales.
    If any one of us patented an idea that would put $10, for every computer sold, in our pocket
    do you think we would ever get close to that value from the product? No way! Microsft would tell the world your idea sucks then come up with something pitifully resembling it. They would force it into Windows, on OEMs, and tell the press to thrash your product. You would take them to court on patent infringment but you would have little money to fight them. You walk away with all your employees out of work and maybe you get a small fractional percentage of your ideas REAL potential. The innovators of the world aren't rewarded in this model.
    I wonder if Microsft has a virtual graveyard somewhere on their campus that represents all the people and businesses they have put under in this manner?
  • Woz's comments are very good! I agree, Woz seems to be one of the coolest people, and he is shown well in the movie. It's good to see him get some recognition.

    We must form a "WozClub" :-) Of course I submitted this last night... no hard feelings. Just want my 2p. :-)
  • I recall reading on Slashdot maybe a year back that the 150 million deal was an under-the-table type agreement having to do with a Quicktime-related lawsuit Apple was going to file (or had filed).

    If I remember right, it had to do with either quicktime code appearing in microsoft products, or maybe something about microsoft making it so that quicktime movies wouldn't play well in Windows...

    Anyone know the exact deal?
    W

    -------------------
  • they didn't really say much of anything about his technical innovations.

    Like remember six months ago when Microsoft was puffing itself up over that "font smoothing" technology it "invented" called (I think) ClearText...

    I haven't heard anything about it since it was pointed out on SlashDot that "prior art" existed using the same technique years earlier on the Apple II...

    And let's see... who invented it first?
    -------------------

  • Of course! Shoulda been on my list...

    That thing could copy ANYTHING... and fast!

    Now who remembers Caztle Smurfenstein?

    Or Dung Beetles? ("We Gotcha!")

    W
    -------------------
  • by VValdo (10446) on Wednesday June 23, 1999 @05:44PM (#1835614)
    Haven't seen _Pirates_ yet, but just wanna reminisce just 1 sec about the late 70s/early 80s, being about 10 years old, using my friend's Apple II, and knowing my life would never be the same. I'd later get a Franklin Ace 1000 (Apple II clone w/lower case & 64k!!) and that was it, I was hooked. Jobs may have been running the business, but to us kids "Woz" WAS Apple.

    Woz had an attitude which, I can't fully say how, sublimated itself into my young conciousness. He was a cool, almost fatherly role model who set an example of what it meant to do the "Right Thing"... A crazy, bearded silicon Jedi Knight, a Wizard...I'll never forget going to the computer store to check out the IIgs "Woz" limited edition and seeing his handwriting...thinking "how cool!"

    Oh, and YES, who can forget (in no particular order) Locksmith, Dalton's Disk Disintigrator, The Beagle Bros., H-Wings in Sneakers, The Novation Apple Cat, Castle Wolfenstein, 80-column cards, GBBS, Ruski Duck, Cat-Fur, G-files, Space Eggs, The Wizard and the Princess, peeks & pokes, "cracked by" splash screens, Ascii Express, Lemonade Stand in lo-res, call -151, 300/202/212, tape drives... ah, those were the days.

    Thanks Woz!
    W

    -------------------
  • iPS. Can anyone else think of a another M$-developed product that was burned into ROM?

    Well, there's the aptly-named WinCE, the early versions of which were ROM, rather than flashable. I'm not sure if whatever Microsoft wrote for the... (Altair? I've gotten my early PC history mixed-up, I think) was ROM or just paper tape or disk.

  • PS. Can anyone else think of a another M$-developed product that was burned into ROM?

    Well, there's the aptly-named WinCE, the early versions of which were ROM, rather than flashable. I'm not sure if whatever Microsoft wrote for the... (Altair? I've gotten my early PC history mixed-up, I think) was ROM or just paper tape or disk.

  • I think, more importantly, that Jobs made the PC accessable to people who couldn't build their own my his "crass commercialism." If it just remained Woz handing out schematics for free to his buddies in the homebrew computer club, how many PC would have been made? Very few. Only the hardcore EE nerds would have built them. By selling them, Jobs actually spread Woz's vision of a PC to the masses. I think many people who got into computers in the late 70's and early 80's, and later went on to get jobs in the industry, have to thank Jobs as well as Woz. Well, OK, we'll thank Woz a whole lot more than Jobs ;)

    The same can't be said of Gates. Granted, Microsoft did create an early monitor system for one of the first PC's, but that didn't really trigger the PC revolution. By the time he scored his major coup, tricking IBM into buying his non-existant DOS, the PC revolution was set to happen anyway. Whether he or someone else (such as Gary Kildall) supplied the DOS was irrelevant.
  • Wow, this whole thing makes me want to go out and buy either an iMac or one of those nifty new B&C G3s (alas I don't have that kind of money). 'Course I almost feel bad having this Mac SE in the corner. If only Woz (or anyone for that matter) was charitable enough to donate some RAM, a mouse, and a floppy drive...

    As much as everyone but Woz and Balmer were portrayed as jerks, at least Jobs was a jerk with flair (and Balmer a thick necked moron with a sticky stack of Playboys).
  • OK, I'll take the bait.

    Engineers get the big picture. Some of them are just too honest and moral to do what needs to be done to make it happen. Jobs obviously does not suffer from these imparing traits and the world is a better place for it in my opinion. I don't know if he's a hero or a demon.... a hero as long as you don't actually get to know him maybe?


  • Pretty good Linux advocacy parody!
    --

  • Microsoft Multiplan for the TI 99/4A on cartridge.

    --

  • Microsoft also made a 8080 card for the Apple II that allowed you to run CP/M. That and the old Bus Mouse adaptor card is the only internal MS hardware I know of.
    --
  • Yes,

    history in the making: Slashdot users crash Steve Wosniak site.. :-|

    Maybe rob will be the pirate in the sequal.. :-)

    (can anyone mirror the thing, or post it as a comment?)
    --------------------------------
    ( my music [mp3.com])
  • the kissinger story is true, and that friend was the other steve. I don't know the story about the spreadsheet. But I remember reading that he actualy wrote a version of visicalc that run faster then the original.. Maybe that's what you refare too.

    As for why he was worring about getting fired from apple.. Hmmm.. look what happened to that other founder.
    --------------------------------
    ( my music [mp3.com])
  • ahh the memories come back too me..

    the peeks and pokes the one line BASIC programs.. ahhh.

    Anyone know who exactly were the Beagle Bros, btw?
    --------------------------------
    ( my music [mp3.com])
  • Whatever other comments are made in response to this, I think you're absolutely correct.

    To add my thoughts: How can a person ever deserve money? Who makes that judgment and by what criteria?

    As an example, say that an evil and stupid man purchases a plot of real estate at a very low price, then, months or years later, demand for that land increases and he sells it for a lot of money. Does he deserve that money?

    As another example, let's say that an evil and stupid man writes a mediocre operating system and begins to sell it to computer manufacturers. He becomes the richest man on the planet. Does he deserve that money?

    In both cases, my answer would be "no." Clearly, I deserve more money. I would spend it wisely and use my wealth to be with my wife and daughter more often. My wife would do endless hours of charity work, because she's into that.

    The problem, what I think is irrelevant to their wealth.

    You don't need to get anyone's permission to get rich.

    BTW, for all his faults, I would not describe Bill Gates as either evil or stupid.
  • I guess we'll all know who's a MacBigot now...

    Quoting from my copy of "The Mac Bathroom Reader" (now renamed "Apple Confidential" [netcom.com] by Owen Linzmayer:

    "I was on a plane going to a user group club in Fort Lauderdale to promote the Mac, along with some other members of the Mac team," recalls Wozniak. "Andy Hertzfield had just read Zap, a book about Atari which said that Steve Jobs designed Breakout. I explained to him that we both worked on it and got paid $700. Andy corrected me, 'No, it says here it was $5,000.' When I read in the book how Nolan Bushnell actually paid Steve $5,000, I just cried."

    I don't doubt this story for an instant, but still, it's apocryphal at best. The fact that it has been butchered so many times in so many ways says a lot. It's like all of those quotes that have been attributed to Bill Gates ( e.g. "No one will ever need more than 640k" ).

    What kind of authority is Zap! anyway?
  • I just noticed something wierd, comments was mispelled "commnts" and the name of the file its linked to is spelled commets. Something weird there, or am I being paranoid. Anyway, do I get brownie points for pointing out this oddity, or just flamed?
  • It looks like woz.org is down this morning... hmmm... did we /. the woz himself?





    This is my opinion and my opinion only. Incidentally, IANAL.
  • If Wozniak and RMS would get along well. Both are brilliant, and both have made incredible contributions to the field of computer technology. Both dislike suits that are in it for greed. But Woz is like a more docile, fun loving version or RMS.

    RMS: "ALL SOFTWARE MUST BE FREE FOR EVERYBODY OR I WILL BE (am) ONE VERY UNHAPPY CAMPER. IF YOU'RE NOT WITH US, YOU'RE AGAINST US!!!"

    Woz: "Wow! This is cool! What would happen if i tried doing this? Neat! Heay, come check this out! What would be a cool practical joke I could pull off using this?..."
  • Steve Jobs got an assignment from Atari to design the circuitry for the sequel to Pong, which would be called Breakout. After a while, Jobs decided he was in over his head, so he asked his friend Woz to help him finish. Jobs told Woz that if they could design it with less than 50 chips, they'd get $700, and if they could design it with less than 40 chips, they'd get $1000. After four days of work, they got it down to 42 and decided sleep was more important than the 300 extra bucks they would've gotten. Jobs turned in Breakout, and wrote Woz a check for his half of the $700.

    It wasn't until 1984 that someone showed Woz a chapter in Zap! (a book about Atari) where Steve Jobs got credited for making Breakout. Woz explained to the guy that he and Jobs worked on it together and they got paid $700. The guy says no, it says right here in the book that it was for $5000.
  • The quicktime lawsuit was settled beforehand for an undisclosed sum. People estimate it at $400 million, but that's just speculation.
  • by webslacker (15723) on Wednesday June 23, 1999 @03:14PM (#1835637)
    Suck.com [suck.com]
  • by webslacker (15723) on Wednesday June 23, 1999 @05:45PM (#1835638)
    AFAIK, the commitment was that for 5 years, Microsoft would publish Office for Mac on parity with Office for Windows. Since the commitment was made in 1997, it follows that it'll expire in 2002. And yeah, I also wonder what'll happen after that...
  • Wow... for someone who had such a big part in personal-computer history, he sure looks like a pretty down-to-earth guy.

    Of course, with a name like Woz, you just can't help but be lovable :-) I, for one, can attest to having encountered a great many hamsters named after him.

    P.S.: Sharp-looking site, too!
  • You're misremembering.

    The MITS Altair (the original) had the metal toggle switches. The one with the red and blue plastic switches (which I thought looked cooler, because they looked like the switches on the front of a PDP-8 or PDP-11) was the Imsai, a different company. (And perhaps the first microcomputer "clone", being essentially the same as the Altair behind the front panel.)

    (And having toggled my share of PDP-8 and PDP-11 programs in through the front panel, I'd guess that the Imsai was easier to program -- less wear and tear on the fingertips than those metal toggle switches! :-)
  • by digitac (24581) on Wednesday June 23, 1999 @04:21PM (#1835659) Homepage
    I see the woz.org has been slashdotted. So I've posted a mirror at
    http://www.discover.net/~still/
    No images, just the important stuff. I expect woz.org to be back up soon.

    Jonathan
    --------
    The day Microsoft makes something that doesn't suck is the day they start making vacuum cleaners.
  • People who make their own fortunes do work extremely hard. They eat, drink, breathe, and sleep their business. They work 24/7 and take naps in their rented offices. It is a specific personality type.

    There is a reason why Bill Gates stays constantly busy running Microsoft, even though most of us, with his money, would buy a gigantic compound outside of a major city, have it networked with 1000-or-so top-of-the-line workstations, and hold a non-stop LAN party for the rest of eternity (well, at least, that's what I would do). It's not because he wants to get richer. It's because doing work, building businesses, etc. is what people with a personality like Gates' live for.

    I'm not justifying his riches, just explaining how you get to be worth $50B

  • by fremen (33537) on Wednesday June 23, 1999 @05:54PM (#1835690)
    Did anyone see this? This was buried a little more deeply on his page, and refers to the auction of the first Apple I.


    WOZ: I wanted to give the first Apple I, on a PC board, to Liza LO*OP of the LO*OP Center in Cotati, California. I took Steve [Jobs] up there and she showed us how she rolled a PDP-11 around to elementary schools and told the students how a computer was just a collection of programs written by people and didn't have a mind of it's own. 4th through 6th graders. I admired this and wanted to give her the first one. Jobs actually made me buy it, if you can believe that, for $300. I did and gave it to Liza. The one being advertised must be number 2.


    This is very interesting. I wonder if the auction house realizes that it isn't selling the original Apple I like they claim? Supposedly, Jobs had identified it as being authentic, so I guess Woz disagrees. Hmmmm...
  • by razorwire (35010) on Wednesday June 23, 1999 @06:10PM (#1835694)
    One more story I've read (and I don't know if this is true) is that during their early days together, Jobs told Woz they'd split a payment 50-50. But he lied about the amount and told Woz it was $500, when it was actually twice that, while pocketing the rest himself. Apparently Woz found this out, and things were never the same between them again. (Can somebody confirm if this is true?).

    The full story was published in Next Generation magazine a few months back. Jobs was working for Atari at the time, and the company was designing the mainboard for the Breakout arcade game. Breakout was a pre-microprocessor machine, built with discrete logic, so it was to Atari's advantage to optimize the design to use as few chips as possible. Jobs took the problem to Woz, who did a phenomenal job of optimizing the board in exchange for half of Jobs' bonus. Jobs told Woz that he got $500 out of it and paid him accordingly... but Jobs really got $5000! Woz literally cried when he found out, several years later, what his friend had done.

    The punchline (if you can call it that) was that Woz's changes worked, but were totally incomprehensible to the engineers at Atari, so his design never went into production. Sad but true.
    --

  • Ruthless exploiter and brilliant visionary are not necessarily mutually exclusive. I'm not arguing that Jobs was more than a mediocre techie (although, he was hireable by Atari...). But consider:

    Apple - graphics, keyboard, and BASIC
    PARC - limited GUI, mouse, computing by metaphor
    NeXT - microkernel, advanced OOP libraries
    Pixar - digital media done well
    Apple - iMac - the first viable step towards a network computer

    Jobs seems to have a pretty good knack for seeing something cool and then imagining how it could be even cooler, and exploited more fully. He's tried to articulate his ideas and sell people on them. That's what a visionary does, and it's hard to think of anyone else in the computer industry who does it better than Jobs. Contrast Jobs' ventures with Microsoft, which has shown itself to be a purely reactive, paranoid corporation.

    To a certain extent, Jobs reminds me of Miles Davis. He's restless, demanding, smart, and temperamental. I love Davis' music but I'm not sure it'd've been easy to be friends with him.

    Btw, he's only come of his business skills of late. He's learned those the hard way and I think he's still probably learning. And if he cared so much about business, he'd be worth a lot more than he is now (ie. he gets paid $1/yr. by Apple and he dumped off all but one of his shares of Apple stock long before they rebounded; not that he isn't a billionaire...).

    So, y'know, don't want this to be a stereotypical "Macs suck!" thread or anything; this is just how I see things.

    Jon
  • by TerryMathews (57165) on Wednesday June 23, 1999 @05:55PM (#1835730)
    Hey, if those are still out.. does that mean I can build my own Apple I?
    I don't know this for sure, but I think the chips that the Apple I used are hard to come by anymore (Like memory chips, processors, etc.) I'd imagine that your best chance would be to partially redesign it to use modern-day, easily available parts. That might be something worth writing to Woz about.
    Oh, wait a sec, it might violate US Supercomputer Export laws... Sorry, couldn't resist.
  • by Lucius Lucanius (61758) on Wednesday June 23, 1999 @03:48PM (#1835743)

    In an article (I think it was in Byte) there's a story about Woz going back to college to continue his academic education. Of course, by then Apple was a billion dollar company so he enrolled under a false name. During an economics class, the lecturer went on a rant about how companies only try to cheat and steal from customers with bad products, and Woz stood up to disagree, but was cut down by the teacher. He says something along the lines of - "Here I was, the founder of one of the most successful companies in history, and he was telling me I didn't know what I was talking about and I had to just sit there and listen." Cracked me up.

    Another really good one - Woz hacked the phone to make free international calls, and as a prank, he and his buddies called up the Pope. The bishop who answered asked them who wanted to speak to him in the middle of the night.

    Woz: "Henry Kissinger".
    Bishop (now suspicious) : "You don't sound like Henry Kissinger".

    There's another story he relates about writing a spreadsheet at Apple, and being the nice guy he is, he's nervous about the deadline and worried about being fired. Woz. Worried about being fired from Apple. Well, he had some Star Wars contacts call his boss and tantalize him with some rare memoribilia. I forget what exactly it was, but it was a pretty funny trick he played.

    One more story I've read (and I don't know if this is true) is that during their early days together, Jobs told Woz they'd split a payment 50-50. But he lied about the amount and told Woz it was $500, when it was actually twice that, while pocketing the rest himself. Apparently Woz found this out, and things were never the same between them again. (Can somebody confirm if this is true?).

    L.
  • For those of us who don't get TNT or missed it. I have the move in RA, on my web site.

    http://kozmik.guelph.on.ca

    Enjoy.
  • Oh boy if you wants to see a cartoon I mades for pirates of the siliconium valleys you should looks at http://www.fre eyellow.com/members7/geraldholmes/MScartoon1.html [freeyellow.com] its pretty funny theres also other cartoons and some good stuff about how Bill Gates is the smartest man ever to live ever.

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