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Letters-General Questions Answered  

 

 

Comment from E-mail:
I was an electrical engineering student using the 6502 Kim kit in lab when I saw my first AppleII. I was blown away, that you could make a real computer from a simple inexpensive processor and limited instruction set. There were platform wars then between the students over calculators (TI and HP, I was an HP guy) and microprocessors (6502/6800 or 8088/Z80, style processor camps, little endian or big endian) and programming languages (assembly, Fortran, basic, cobol - I was agnostic). I got a job working for the ME department upgrading their AppleII data acquisition system to an AppleIII. I spec'd it out, placed it on order and graduated. I heard that it worked well in spite of a little over heating problem. I went on to design a few control systems programmed in assembly on 6502 and few other now obscure processors. I got my dad to buy one of the original IBM PCs, 128K Macs, and eventually introduced my MacPlus to NASA's Stennis Space Center which eventually led to an entire Rocket Test Facility that was run on Macs. It was our answer to Dan Golden's(NASA's Director) personal challenge to me and my team to build the most technically advanced and cost effective test facility in the world. (Imagine mission control with a bunch of G4's equipped with dual Apple Flat panels.) I got a real kick out of doing things with Macs that "they" said couldn't be done.
Before I left NASA to join my Dad in a technical services business I won a few awards, the last and most significant being NASA's Medal for Exceptional Engineering Achievement, NASA's highest pure engineering award due leading the team that designed and built that control room. I, like you decided to stay on the technical side and out of management.

Woz:
I'm jealous and envious. I'm jealous because it's obvious that you had a fun computer youth dating back to your early computers. I'm envious because of your great accomplishment at NASA. It takes a lot of sweat to make things better than what would just get by.

Comment from E-mail:
I'd like for you to know that next to the engineers I knew personally (My Dad and Uncle are both great engineers) you (although I don't know you personally) have been a great inspiration. The other Steve certainly deserves some credit for the success of Apple, but I credit you for your personal hands own engineering that started a legacy of great design coming out of Apple to this day.
Woz:
I'm glad to know that we both have fathers and uncles that are engineers. To me, that was the highest position anyone could have. Being an engineer is sometimes hard, with the rest of the people not understanding why you are interested in such things and why you want to talk about them. They prefer to classify engineers as 'geeks' rather than as 'different'. They see our issues as boring when we see them as exciting. I'd never have wanted any other life.

Comment from E-mail:
So is there a question in here somewhere? No not really, other than could you send an email just saying Hi? I would be like getting your autograph and I would be the envy of my other engineering buddies. :-)
Woz:
Well, I hope that we do meet somewhere someday, even if just for a coffee.


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