Steve Wozniak interviewed by Pesco
As the writer-in-residence for UC Berkeley's College of Engineering, I recently had the opportunity to interview Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak. Steve graduated from UC Berkeley in 1986, but the name on his diploma is Rocky Raccoon Clark. From the interview (photo by the amazing Bart Nagel
Q: You're quite the prankster.
SW: After my initial year at Berkeley I started the first dial-a-joke in the Bay Area. Back then you couldn’t really get an answering machine unless you were a movie theater. Even then, you’d have to lease it from the phone company. So that’s what I did. I met my first wife when she called the dial-a-joke line. Usually I’d just turn the machine on, but I happened to answer that time. I said, “I bet I can hang up faster than you,” and hung up. But she called back and we talked. I’ve always been extremely involved in pranking. Some of my pranks are so complicated that they take days, even months, to work out. I think humor is a creative act. Pranks are just a creative form of logic. My iPod is filled with comedy as well as songs...
Q: Are you pleased with the evolution of the personal computer?
SW: When we started, the focus was on doing as much as possible with as little as possible, in terms of resources. Our first products, the Apple I and Apple II, were tools that you could learn to use and write programs to solve your challenges to become more of a master in your life and work. But as the revenues of this new market grew, lots of other people wrote the programs for you. So our users learned to use those programs rather than write their own. Many advances in computers, the GUI [graphical user interfaces] first implemented well by Apple with the Macintosh, were so much more important in giving us the things we appreciate about a computer today.