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iWoz: Computer Geek to Cult Icon: How I Invented the Personal Computer, Co-Founded Apple, and Had Fun Doing It
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iWoz: Computer Geek to Cult Icon: How I Invented the Personal Computer, Co-Founded Apple, and Had Fun Doing It

3.79  ·  Rating Details  ·  7,284 Ratings  ·  588 Reviews
"iWoz traces the life and times of a brilliant, gifted... individual whose contributions to the scientific, business and cultural realms are extensive."—Bookpage

Before slim laptops that fit into briefcases, computers looked like strange, alien vending machines. But in "the most staggering burst of technical invention by a single person in high-tech history" (BusinessWeek)
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Paperback, 313 pages
Published October 17th 2007 by W. W. Norton & Company (first published 2006)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Jackie
Jan 27, 2014 Jackie rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
I gave up.

Edit: To give this a bit more depth, let me explain. Steve Wozniak is a brilliant man, a kind man, a wonderful man. I'd love to have him as a friend, family member, coworker (I said the opposite of Jobs when reading his biography). He just simply cannot write. Every page reads like an excited little boy who just came home from school (And then I built this project. And then I pushed the "on" button. And the lights didn't work. But I learned a lot. And I tried a new project for the scie
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Gale Jake
Woz...One hell of a big ego, almost too mich to bear.

Although this book is an interesting glimpse at the early Apple days and the Apple I and II, many of Woz's claims did not ring true for me.

I was with Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC) from 1973 to 1983 (2nd largest computer company at the time) and many of the "1sts. or breaktgroughs" claimed by Woz had been already done by DEC and others.

In my opinion, Apple' s world game-changer was the Lisa. Its graphics windows user interface and its s
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James Williams
Dec 04, 2013 James Williams rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who loves Woz, and reads at a third grade level
Steve Wozniak is one of my heros. He's a brilliant engineer who changed the world just by doing what he loved to do and doing it well. His sense of humor is legendary and wonderful. I love me some Woz.

So I pre-ordered iWoz as soon as I heard about it and couldn't wait for the Amazon box to arrive at my door.

Boy was I disappointed. The writing for this book is atrocious. It uses small words and basic, repetitive sentence structure. It's boring to read. The stories are interesting but definitely
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Deanna
May 01, 2008 Deanna rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: no one
Recommended to Deanna by: brother-in-law (but even he wasn't impressed with the book)
Ok, I do have to admit that I haven't finished the book (nor do I want to at this point - but someday I may pick up where I left off.) I was first interested in reading this because I thought that the guy who invented Apple "must" be a pretty interesting guy. Maybe he is...but it doesn't come across in this book. He comes across as the most arrogant, self-centered, self-important person EVER! I know that autobiographies are about one's life - but I guess I am more drawn to people who can give an ...more
Ken
Mar 27, 2011 Ken rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
One of my favorite literary genres is the origin story. How did a great thing get invented, how did a great person become great. This one is the story of how Steve Wozniak invented the personal computer at a very young age, and helped found Apple Computer.

This is a very breezy read, pretty obviously dictated and barely edited. It’s like sitting in a room with Steve Wozniak as he tells you his life story, with some diversions and some humorous anecdotes thrown in. I finished it in a weekend, and
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Joel
Aug 24, 2011 Joel rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Steve Wozniak = Crazy Technical Genius. I'm glad I ignored most reviews about this book. Anyone starting to read this book expecting to be wowed by a literary genius or amazing elaborate stories need to a reality check.

What I love about this book is that you totally get that Steve Wozniak is a pure bred engineer and anyone who has spent any significant amount of time with engineers would understand that his commentary is not about boasting or arrogance, it's simply the way engineers think! He e
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Gayle
Jan 25, 2009 Gayle rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
A personal memoir, and a important counterpart to all the Svengali-like portrayals of Steve Jobs as the evil genius behind Apple. Because in the beginning there were the Two Steves, each a necessary part of the original Apple, and in this book, Steve Wozniak steps out from behind Jobs' shadow with a grin and a wave.

Woz is a study in stereotypes--a brilliant engineer who thinks in electrons, and a socially-inept geek who can't talk to girls. A guy who wants to change the world for the better, and
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Ken
Nov 21, 2012 Ken rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
iWoz was a good autobiography of an interesting man. Many comments in other reviews mention the self-centered and/or patronizing sound, but it may not be his intention, and for those who know him, it may not be seen that way. Maybe the editors should have told him how it was coming off to strangers, but I tried to give him the benefit of the doubt. It may be that he possesses genius of a level that crowds out some social conventions, so he doesn't know that explaining things that are very techni ...more
Gil
Oct 23, 2012 Gil rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book is a very difficult read. I have tremendous respect for Woz, but this book was so poorly written and had such a conceited narrative that I struggled big time. I can't believe he had a co-author. This book grates on my nerves because of the writing style. I've tried to read it twice now unsuccessfully. iWoz is pretty arrogant and annoying.
Peter Tieryas
Oct 23, 2013 Peter Tieryas rated it it was amazing
I actually heard Wozniak speak at Berkeley more than a decade ago and had always been curious to learn more about him. And while I've read a ton of material about Steve Jobs, this was a fascinating portrayal of Wozniak by Wozniak. I wrote some of my thoughts over on my blog and it was less of a review and more me just quoting some of the things I loved from the book:

"You know, it’s strange, but right around the time I started working on what later became the Apple I board, this idea popped into
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Brooks
Dec 04, 2013 Brooks rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
What a goody-two shoes. I was not very impressed – a little light on the insights. The only areas he went into detail was on some discoveries – like when he built a middle school science project that used logic circuits, the original Apple II board, his work with Attari, and his design for a universal remote. He went through two divorces and raised two kids and we have a total a few paragraphs on these events. The one area I wanted to know more about was the start up of Apple. He goes into some ...more
Hriday
Aug 23, 2011 Hriday rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
I am not an Apple fan boy. I liked this book.

I agree with most other reviewers who claim that this book does sound a bit braggy, i know it all types but hey, it is Steve Woz! I also agree that the writing style is not very literary but again, the co author has left it the way Woz would probably talk. This book doesnt claim to be a literary masterpiece nor is it lining up for the Booker/Pulitzer. Try Orhan Pamuk or Salman Rushdie if all you want is literariness. This is a book for Engineers/Techn
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Rohan
Apr 30, 2013 Rohan rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history
I do not think this book does justice to what Steve Woznaik and Steve Jobs accomplished. In fact, reader must know that this book is about Woznaik as a person and not about Apple or Steve Jobs.

From an engineers point of view, this book is interesting in parts. You get a good understanding of what goes on within an engineer's head. You get a good personal account of interesting stories involving Woznaik. One story really bothered me: Woznaik's investments with the concerts which ended up with hi
...more
Gypsy
Nov 30, 2011 Gypsy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: biography
iWoz is a MUCH easier book to read than the Steve Jobs biography. I picked up this book because I was so irritated with Steve Jobs through the things I read in his biography, that I really needed to hear from another voice from the people that created the Apple computers.

This book came out in 2006, 5 years before Job's authorized biography was published. It was written in the first person so it feels like you're having a cup of coffee with Woz himself & just listening to him tell you his st
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Bob Oliver
Jan 31, 2013 Bob Oliver rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed the majority of this book. But what I enjoyed was the part a lot of the reviewers complained about. I was fascinated with Steve's childhood and the forces and events that led him to co-found Apple. I couldn't get enough of the technical details and descriptions of the state of technology in the early days of computing. The quirky style of writing gives you insight into the way Wozniak thinks and was very valuable in understanding him. If it sounded more polished, it wouldn't be ...more
Jack Treml
I was a little shocked with Woz' casual arrogance throughout his narrative. Several instances of this attitude shine through from his recollections of his childhood and the founding of Apple in the mid 70s, clear up to more recent work with the US festivals. Overall, this autobiography is written from a very personal perspective and in a conversational tone that was easy to read, but didn't suggest that much thought went into his past. On the positive side, it does a great job of providing a win ...more
David Natiuk
I really enjoyed Steve's book. It made me want to be an engineer so much that I actually opened up and played with my son's SNAPCircuits set! I think I missed my calling. But seriously, Woz is a fascinating character... a mix of brilliant engineer, and positive free-spirit, change-the-world man.

I was growing up at the time of the computer revolution and I'm now curious about the computers behind all those video games I used to play. The story of Wozniak's original creations and advancements tie
...more
Kim
May 18, 2011 Kim rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
For anyone thinking about reading this book, I would highly recommend doing the audio version. While Woz is a engineering genius, he is not an English major. If you are a person who requires perfect grammar, then this book is probably not for you. But, if you like history of technology and are curious about a huge icon in the tech world, then give the book a try. Sure, like most autobiographies and memoirs, it is pretty self congratulatory and a little over the top in some parts. Autobiographies ...more
Matt
Nov 30, 2008 Matt rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Steve Wozniak is a fascinating personality and the father of the modern personal computer. His story deserves to be told in a manner befitting the impact he and his inventions have had on the world.

However, Woz, despite his genius with electronics, is not a writer. Nor, apparently, is his co-author. This book's writing is amateurish and unengaging. In the hands of a qualified biographer, this could have been one of the most arresting biographies of the last 30 years. Instead, it reads like a ver
...more
Kurtbg
Jul 20, 2015 Kurtbg rated it it was ok
Steve Wozniak is the guy who made Steve Jobs. You never would have heard of Jobs if it wasn't for Woz, but most assuredly you would have heard of Woz. ...

Saying that, this is a brief feel-good piece about having accomplished something. This is not a blow-by-blow account of Apple or the man Woz. For instance, Woz designs and builds the first two Apple computers (alone) culminating in the company being created. He then disappears from the halls of Apple without much detail. He also happens to have
...more
Robin
Mar 02, 2014 Robin rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I know this one's been out for a while -- We recently watched the Steve Jobs movie. Sadly, it focused on what a schmuck Jobs appears to have been. I was hoping to learn more about the development of the personal computer and of apple as a company. Maybe this book does that? Wozniak looks happy in all the pictures.

Reluctantly, I have to agree with reviewers who put the book down because it is written so badly. Truly. It reads as though someone wrote down Wozniak's casual conversation. I wish the
...more
Khairusy  Syakirin
very inspiring!!! got the true view of Apple revolution and its history
Jean Poulos
Feb 28, 2015 Jean Poulos rated it really liked it
This is the memoirs of a computer engineer so the book has a lot of technical information. The author tells about growing up in Sunnyvale, California and working on creating or should I say designing a personal computer. He tells about his group of computer nerds, belonging to a computer club and the founding of Apple Computer Company. It was great to hear from Woz how many of his teachers had a positive effect on him. Helping him push ahead of his class in math and giving him self-confidence in ...more
Ismael Galvan
Jun 09, 2014 Ismael Galvan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
First off, I don't care about computers or engineering. I'm also not a Apple whore. That being said, I loved the book. Wozniak is cool dude with a ton of brains. I don't agree with everyone accusing him of being arrogant. The guy is passionate about what he does, and the rest of the world can kiss his ass.

Wozniak begins when he was a kid just crazy about electronics. He, along with his friends, built an intercom system connecting their houses. That's every kid's dream when they're in elementary
...more
Mike Ogilvie
Dec 01, 2010 Mike Ogilvie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a great book for anybody at least mildly interested in techno-geek stuff, the history of our information age, or if you just like a good autobiography.

I knew previously that Steve Wozniak was part of the force behind building the original Apple PC products. But I actually had no clue that he is all but single-handedly responsible for inventing the world's first Personal Computer. As an I.T. aficionado myself, that story line was inspiring. It's very uplifting for anyone who's got great i
...more
Jason Butz
Apr 26, 2013 Jason Butz rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you're reading this, you owe it to a guy named steve. If you're peering at this through a finger-smudged screen, thank Steve Jobs. If you have a crumb-filled keyboard in front of a display, you owe Steve Wozniak.

According to his own account in iWoz, everything in his life groomed him for his role in shaping the personal computer. His father was an engineer for Lockheed that instilled him a love of technology and a strong moral compass. He could see from a young age that computers were somethi
...more
Pablo Honey
May 07, 2013 Pablo Honey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a worthy read for anyone interested in early personal computers and Steve Wozniak's development of the Apple I and Apple II, though people looking for a history of Apple the company or a general history of the PC revolution may be disappointed.

As mentioned in other reviews, this book basically reads like an extended conversation with Wozniak, which is both good and bad. The writing is straight forward and easy to follow, but it definitely could've used some editing (for example, when Woz
...more
Matt Bibby
This book was an interesting read. I wanted to get a different view of Apple, one that didn't center around Steve Jobs and I feel I got that. In fact, I think he did a little too good of a job there. One of the main reasons I wanted to get a different perspective is to see the relationship between Woz and Jobs. This book talks about Jobs, but as it goes on and Apple begins, he is hardly mentioned. I can understand his reasoning behind this, as I'm sure there would be resentment toward the man th ...more
Maggie
wozniak was most definitely a player and made a huge difference in the early years of development of the personal computer, and the book is an excellent history of this developmental period as well as giving readers a solid explanation of how the pc works. kudos. beyond that though (although that alone is a good reason to read the book!) it is amazing how smart and clever (in a most positive meaning) this computer engineer is while at the same time having such a juvenile understanding of life. j ...more
Melinda
This is book is very worthwhile to read... but perhaps for not the most obvious reasons. It is not well written. Understanding Steve Wozniak's distrust of people who tell the story of the founding of Apple and get it wrong, I think he decided to write this book himself and not trust anyone who might twist it into something else. He is an engineer, in the truest and best sense, and he is an introvert. These things come out in the book, and make it a much different read perhaps than might be expec ...more
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Steve Wozniak has been inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame and has received numerous awards, including the National Medal of Technology and the Heinz Award. He lives in California.
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“Artists work best alone. Work alone.” 46 likes
“I hope you're as lucky as I am. The world needs inventors--great ones. You can be one. If you love what you do and are willing to do what it really takes, it's within your reach. And it'll be worth every minute you spend alone at night, thinking and thinking about what it is you want to design or build. It'll be worth it, I promise.” 14 likes
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