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iWoz: How I Invented the Personal Computer and Had Fun Along the Way | [Steve Wozniak, Gina Smith]

iWoz: How I Invented the Personal Computer and Had Fun Along the Way

Before cell phones that fit in the palm of your hand and slim laptops that fit snugly into briefcases, computers were like strange, alien vending machines. They had cryptic switches, punch cards, and pages of encoded output. But in 1975, a young engineering wizard named Steve Wozniak had an idea: What if you combined computer circuitry with a regular typewriter keyboard and a video screen?
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Publisher's Summary

The mastermind behind Apple Computer sheds his low profile and steps forward to tell his story for the first time.

Before cell phones that fit in the palm of your hand and slim laptops that fit snugly into briefcases, computers were like strange, alien vending machines. They had cryptic switches, punch cards, and pages of encoded output. But in 1975, a young engineering wizard named Steve Wozniak had an idea: what if you combined computer circuitry with a regular typewriter keyboard and a video screen? The result was the first true personal computer, the Apple I, a widely affordable machine that anyone could understand and figure out how to use.

Wozniak's life before and after Apple is a "home-brew" mix of brilliant discovery and adventure, as an engineer, a concert promoter, a fifth-grade teacher, a philanthropist, and an irrepressible prankster. From the invention of the first personal computer to the rise of Apple as an industry giant, iWoz presents a no-holds-barred, rollicking, firsthand account of the humanist inventor who ignited the computer revolution.

©2006 Steve Wozniak; (P)2006 Tantor Media, Inc.

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  •  
    William Wisconsin Rapids, WI, United States 07-28-11
    William Wisconsin Rapids, WI, United States 07-28-11 Member Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Terribly egocentric, but still a fun read"

    It was hard to tell how much of this was Steve Wozniak and how much was Gina Smith. Perhaps it doesn't matter. Mix in the boyish enthusiasm of the narrator Patrick Lawlor, and you have a narrative that probably pretty well captures Wozniak's persona.

    I liked this book in spite of the self-righteous egocentrism of its subject. I am always amazed at people who are so insecure that they must constantly tell us how great they are...and Steve does this with gusto!

    Still, there can be no doubt about his genius, and it was fun getting the inside story on so much of the early history of computing and the development of the Apple I and ][. The first computer with which I had any significant experience was an Apple ][, and the first computer I ever owned (after a failed affair with a Texas Instruments "toy" that was given to me) was an Apple ][c, so I enjoyed revisiting the "old days".

    All in all there is much to like in this book--especially if Woz' ego trip doesn't particularly bother you.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jacel Miami, FL, United States 07-27-11
    Jacel Miami, FL, United States 07-27-11
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    "Very Techie"

    I'm suppose to be giving 5 star on this because, in the end, the whole book was great. However, Steve just used a lot of technical words in Engineering and did some explaining which made me more dizzy & felt I was taking a course...But again, this book is very inspiring and brilliantly written.

    If you are an APPLE fan, you have to read this...It's the story of the man who invented the APPLE computer...Steve Wozniak.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John Chamblee, GA, United States 07-23-11
    John Chamblee, GA, United States 07-23-11 Member Since 2009

    I'm a lawyer and mediator. I represent businesses in disputes with their insurers and in other complex litigation. I also assist machinery companies and manufacturers (primarily international) with equipment sales, non-disclosure agreements, and business issues. I also mediate commercial disputes.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Pretty Good"

    This is a pretty entertaining and interesting book about a fascinating character. There is a lot of geek stuff here, but it's still pretty entertaining. The narrator gets a little breathless at times, but is pretty good at conveying the material.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Thomas ATHENS, AL, United States 06-24-11
    Thomas ATHENS, AL, United States 06-24-11
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    "Memory lane for computer enthusiasts."

    I enjoyed listening to this book. It is interesting to get an inside perspective to the beginnings of the PC (as a general term). Sometimes the explanations were laborious. At other times it seemed that what may be termed as boasting got old. Of course, it was not without basis. The book also felt a little out of order at times, though this may add to the effect that the book is very personal. After you listen to the book you feel like you know Wozniak. Overall, I think it will have the most appeal and be appreciated by those who have more than a basic knowledge of computers.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael Livermore, CA, United States 05-29-11
    Michael Livermore, CA, United States 05-29-11
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    "Amazing reader"

    Best...reader...ever!

    Thanks Mr. Lawlor!

    The book is pretty good, but it would never have worked as well without Mr. Lawlor reading.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Seth Worthington, OH, United States 05-12-11
    Seth Worthington, OH, United States 05-12-11
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    "You can tell the words were his own"

    The content in the book was interesting. You could really tell that the words were Wozniak's, and not just a ghostwriters, i like that a lot. The voice of the reader was annoying. His voice really bothered me, i much prefer the author to read.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 08-24-10
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    "Required Reading"

    Is it narcissistic? Yes. Can parts be meandering and seem out of place? Sure.
    But this book gives real insight into how the personal computer industry was born.
    In this current era, where Steve Jobs seems more like an Imperialistic Dictator it is easy to forget that Apple really sprang from the genius of Steve Wozniak. It is a really interesting read which explains a great deal about where Apple's sprang from.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nick French Lick, IN, USA 06-22-10
    Nick French Lick, IN, USA 06-22-10
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    6
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    "The Real Genius Behind Apple's Beginning"

    Inspired me as a programmer at my own company (Sabramedia). It all makes sense now. I hope Apple can learn something from this book <wink>. I particularly liked the moral compass Mr. Wozniak tried portraying throughout his life. Couldn't stop listening.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Matt Corona, CA, USA 05-31-10
    Matt Corona, CA, USA 05-31-10
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    "Great!"

    I really enjoyed this book. Its written just as how Woz speaks so the result is a feeling like you're in the same room as him as he tells you how he became who he is today. I totally recommend this book!

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lee Detroit, MI, United States 02-27-10
    Lee Detroit, MI, United States 02-27-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Vey Good and motivational"

    I was captivated buy Steve's story telling. I studied electronics in the past,and now listening to his story makes we want to head to Radio Shack and get a electronics kit again! I was a little disturbed by his pranks and jokes on his peers and the adults he came into contact with though,but nobody got actually injured. A great audio book for anyone who is interested in taking on the great adventure in electronics engineering.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
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