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Letters-General Questions Answered  

 



Comment from E-mail:
Hi Mr. Wozniak, I have a few questions. Why do you not have Steve Jobs listed on your site...is there tension between you two? Also if Steve Jobs asked you for a job at Apple would you accept it? Could I get a intern job with you so I could get some expierence under my belt before I get out of highschool or when I do? I don't live that far from you. Thanks for taking the time to read my letter. Take Care.

Woz:
I offer links to some friends that want them but I have no reason to suspect that Steve Jobs would want or need such a link. If I was aware of a personal home page of his, I'd most certainly include such a link.

I do sense some hard to define tension between us but I can never come up with any direct explanable reason. We have been cordial and respectful of one another. I don't live with any feeling of this tension, so maybe it's just there as a construct of the media that would want it to be.

I don't work directly inside of Apple and I have no intern jobs available. I have hired a few young people in the past to help me with my classes, but those classes are near their end unless I figure out a way to get the time again. I can't do the amount of email that I get these days and classes too.

Comment from E-mail:
Interesting story about Apple I board number 1 ... which was bought and paid for ... I see little inclination by anyone to 'help' anybody unless there was a 'profit' in it.

Woz:
I assure you that I passed out schematics and code and even went to the homes of others that I met at the Homebrew Computer Club and helped them solder such machines together. Everything was in the spirit of today's freeware and shareware. I am very celebrated as a 'giver' in ways that I don't proclaim so you are probably referring your negative sentiments towards others.

I do believe that if what you are doing is the good and worthwhile thing that people, consumers, really want, then you'll make a profit. If you can't make a profit, then you're not building what the consumers want and you should quit...Woz

Comment from E-mail:
The intelligence and engineering 'wit' to 'assemble' those early devices is laudable. As to the rest; Quark would be SOOO proud.

Woz:
I don't understand this very well. The Apple I came about very quickly and had good engineering and the specialness was largely in the terminal subsection.

I know that the Apple ][ was engineering art for it's time. I had very special engineering talents that were respected in many places including my employer, Hewlett Packard's calculator division. You might be referring to the PET and TRS-80 computers, which were engineered by large companies but forgot things like color, graphics, hi-res bit mapping, paddles, sound, buttons, plastic case, switching power supply, home TV compatability, RAM expansion, peripheral slots, etc. Even BASIC in ROM was the first use anywhere of the 2K Byte ROMS (from Synertek). Dozens of other companies missed the boat entirely, leaving the computer as a complete kit with an industrial look and feel. They all used static RAMS too, even though the 4K dynamic RAM was the first to surpass core memory in pricing. The engineering 'wit' of those machines is laudable, with a couple of exceptions.

Comment from E-mail:
I'm wondering if you could enlighten me as to what has happened within the educational system in our country that has resulted in so many people being unable to spell or punctuate properly. I remember when I first went online with AOL it was a dead giveaway that, if you could spell and punctuate, you were at least thirty-five years old!

Woz:
It costs money to deliver education. If it weren't a government bureaucracy you'd assume better education for more money. While that may or may not be the case, there's a certain amount of money that is right in some natural terms to devote in this direction. Are we over or under nature's intended amount?

Well, schools are funded by government. Education is a major budget item. But governments are headed by politicians and government moneys are apportioned according to votes. The more votes in a given direction, the more money that will be allocated.

Education is very important. That's where we take young children and turn out dropouts or success stories. That's where we train those that will make the future better than our past. But the children that are being helped don't have a vote in our one-person-one-vote system of democracy and equality. This shows up in California a lot when a 2/3 majority is needed to pass property tax override bills, to aid schools, while only 1/3 of the families have children. The results would be more universally fair if each child had a vote.

A family of five should have five votes. Until then, we'll continually be facing issues such as you present.

Comment from E-mail:
Hey, Woz, jjust stumbled on to your site. great idea. I heard sometime ago that you said that if someone committed a murder and then lied about having done it that the lie woudl be more wrong than the murder. Is this true and if it is could you please explain? Thank you.

Woz:
You've got it right. Honesty and truth are the only things that make everything else about you trustable and worthwhile. There is such a thing as a solemn oath, where this applies much more than in simple cases. An oath sworn to in a court falls into this category but there are other cases. A person, say a friend, can make a statement to you in such a way that it is the extreme truth. You can detect this quality because it doesn't come out in a normal tone. In the face of this you most often have to give up whatever accusations you have and accept the statement as truth. It can't be described in these words, you actually have to hear it some time in your life to know what it is. Now, if you accept such a solemn pleading and later find out that it wasn't the truth, the hurt would be too great to describe. This sort of lie is much worse that whatever it was about.

In the case of a murder, some terrible thing has occurred which may or may not get rectified. That hurt cannot be changed. It has to be dealt with in rational ways. If a murderer gets off with a lie, you could argue that the lie was worse than the murder because it prevented justice to the extent that murder requires. The lie is always equally bad, no matter what the result of it.

These are just the ways my father taught me. There was one case in my life where I was doing wrong things, using electronic blue boxes to make free phone calls. Because of my upbringing I told my parents everything that I (and Steve Jobs) were doing. By forcing myself to be honest about it, I remained an 'ethical' phone phreak who only did what I believed had some justification. This also kept me from making my own personal calls with a blue box; I paid for those. I only used the blue box to explore how far I could get in the phone system and to show off. Never to save money.


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