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Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
26014 Posts

Posted - 10/06/2011 :  04:32:35   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by marfknox

I'm sure someone else would have come up the theory of evolution if Darwin hadn't.
That'd be Alfred Russel Wallace.

- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
Evidently, I rock!
Why not question something for a change?
Visit Dave's Psoriasis Info, too.
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Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
26014 Posts

Posted - 10/06/2011 :  07:18:58   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I think I owe my career to Jobs and Wozniak.

In the summer of 1978, my dad brought home an Apple ][ computer, which came with a primer on AppleSoft BASIC. I sat down with the book and the computer and taught myself some pretty basic BASIC programming.

Two summers later, my dad took me into the place he was working for a day. They had many Apple ][s, so my dad parked me in front of an unused one while he went and did real work. The machine I was sitting at was in the office of a guy whose job was to take topological maps and determine where the company could place microwave communications towers such that the towers would have line-of-sight between them, without being blocked by hills or other geography.

Map Guy was in there doing his thing, not talkative at all. So I sat for a bit and decided to start tinkering with some code on the computer, knowing it was likely my code wouldn't be saved or anything. I came up with a program that created rudimentary isometric 3D wire-frame projections of a grid of a couple hundred points with random heights. If you pressed a key, it'd generate another random display of points. Not a big deal, I was done before lunch, and trying to figure out how best to hide some of the lines that should be hidden when Map Guy spoke up. "Hey, can we enter specific heights into that thing?"

So right after eating, I starting changing the code so that data could be entered into the program, instead of it picking randomly, while Map Guy took one of his topo maps and drew a grid on it. We spent the next couple of hours with him giving me altitudes from the map and me typing them in carefully. After the last number was typed, I hit Enter and a beautiful display of a gap in a section of the San Bernadino mountains slowly filled the screen ("beautiful" for 1980s Apple ][ graphics). Map Guy said, "This is exactly what I need!" We made a few print-outs of the display (I still have one, somewhere) and Map Guy left the room while I deliberately saved my code to a couple different floppies.

Towards the end of the day, my dad came and brought me into the office of the President of the small company. And this rather intimidating man wrote a check to me for $150 and shook my hand. Holy cow!

He asked me if I could create a database with which they could track their inventory, and over the next month I did just that and earned another $250. My family and I then went to the beach for a vacation, and I was on top of the world. A 14-year-old kid with the means to play 1,600 games in the boardwalk arcades!

So Jobs and Wozniak's garage creation was central to the start of my career. Of course, five years later I was working with IBM PCs and Microsoft all the damn time and I've hardly touched any Apple products since then. I don't even personally own an iAnything (my wife got me an iPod last year, but I knew I wasn't going to use it and so we returned it without even opening the box).

Edited to say that actually, it's pretty obvious I owe my career more to my dad, but this thread isn't about him.

Edited to make my Wosniaks into Wozniaks. Derrrr...

- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
Evidently, I rock!
Why not question something for a change?
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Kil
Evil Skeptic

USA
13470 Posts

Posted - 10/06/2011 :  07:37:47   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Kil's Homepage  Send Kil an AOL message  Send Kil a Yahoo! Message Send Kil a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by Dave W.

Originally posted by Kil

Aside from largely inventing personal computing, with a user friendly interface that anyone could use, (Mac had the first mouse in home computing along with the graphical interface that would be copied later by MS)...
Actually, the Macintosh's GUI and mouse were copied from the Xerox Alto, created 11 years prior.
Yeah. I know. But Xerox didn't know what to do with it. Jobs also took some of the Xerox people to work at Apple. He didn't invent every technology that they used, but his team certainly refined it. A part of his talent was to see the potential of a technology and run with it. He is rightfully given credit for bringing a user friendly interface to the Mac, revolutionizing personal computing.

Uncertainty may make you uncomfortable. Certainty makes you ridiculous.

Why not question something for a change?

Genetic Literacy Project
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H. Humbert
SFN Die Hard

USA
4574 Posts

Posted - 10/06/2011 :  09:47:17   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send H. Humbert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Where Steve Jobs Ranks Among the Greats:
Jobs's death has touched Apple customers, and many others, in a heartfelt way that's unusual for a business leader--especially today. Encomiums have flowed from practically everybody with a blog or Twitter account. "He was our Thomas Edison and our Henry Ford, all in one brief life," wrote political commentator David Frum in his Twitter feed, summarizing the thoughts of many.

But was he? Edison and Ford devised innovations so profound they transformed whole societies and materially improved the lives of people who never even purchased a Ford or Edison product. Edison lit public places, while also providing electricity that helped heat them and power other machines. The automobiles that rolled off Ford's assembly lines swept putrid piles of horse manure off of urban streets and made cities more liveable. Edison and Ford, like other historical giants, created progress that could be measured every day in the humblest of homes, while also laying the foundation for entirely new industries.

But many Apple products remain high-end indulgences for people with the money to spend on an enhanced digital experience. Yes, Steve Jobs has done the masses a service by showing his utilitarian competitors how to devise an artful user interface, which usually trickles down to cheaper generic devices once Apple has moved on to version 4 or 5. But Macs and iPhones and iPads remain too pricey for many mainstream consumers, who might read about the wonders of Apple gizmos the way they read about luxury cars or fancy dinners: Sounds nice, and I hope I can afford one some day. Meanwhile, you'd have to stretch to define a way in which Steve Jobs has materially improved society, enhanced public life or broadly shared his gifts with people who can't afford to be his customers. (Cue the outrage of Apple Nation.)

Jobs was truly a brilliant designer, marketer and technologist--all in one. But it's worth keeping in mind that the digital revolution would have carried on without him. Robert Noyce and Gordon Moore, the founders of Intel, invented much of the circuitry that powered Jobs's devices over the years, along with many other computing machines. Bill Gates developed software that has powered far more computers than Apple ever built. Larry Page and Sergey Brin, the co-founders of Google, have provided an Internet search service that's arguably more useful to more people--for free--than anything Apple has rolled out. Jobs helped make the first 30 years of the mass-computing era colorful and even fun. But it didn't take him to make it possible.

"A man is his own easiest dupe, for what he wishes to be true he generally believes to be true." --Demosthenes

"The first principle is that you must not fool yourself - and you are the easiest person to fool." --Richard P. Feynman

"Face facts with dignity." --found inside a fortune cookie
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marfknox
SFN Die Hard

USA
3739 Posts

Posted - 10/06/2011 :  11:50:34   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit marfknox's Homepage  Send marfknox an AOL message Send marfknox a Private Message  Reply with Quote
HH wrote:
I was recently watching a program that discussed the phenomena of Lady Gaga which pointed out that she--whether you like her music or not--has become an icon of our times. She's not just a singer with a few hits. It's her entire persona. The attitude. The outrageous outfits. The tremendous media exposure. The public role she's assumed in the fight for gay equality. All of it adds up to make her more than just an entertainer. She's an icon.
Well put. This reminds me of how I felt when Michael Jackson died. I didn't care, and I was confused at first about all the media coverage and hubbub about his death. But then a friend of mine (who isn't himself even a big fan of Jackson's music) made all these points you've just made, and I got it.

"Too much certainty and clarity could lead to cruel intolerance" -Karen Armstrong

Check out my art store: http://www.marfknox.etsy.com

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marfknox
SFN Die Hard

USA
3739 Posts

Posted - 10/06/2011 :  11:57:01   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit marfknox's Homepage  Send marfknox an AOL message Send marfknox a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Just listened to Steve Jobs commencement speech at Standard from 2005. Incredibly inspiring. If you have the time to listen, it is available online here.

My favorite line from the speech is when he's talking about the knowledge that we're all going to die. He says, "You are already naked. There is no reason to not follow your heart."

"Too much certainty and clarity could lead to cruel intolerance" -Karen Armstrong

Check out my art store: http://www.marfknox.etsy.com

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Valiant Dancer
Forum Goalie

USA
4826 Posts

Posted - 10/06/2011 :  11:59:52   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Valiant Dancer's Homepage Send Valiant Dancer a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Not to pass up the passing of an innovative icon, Westboro has announced that they will picket Steve Jobs' funeral.

Can we get the Westboro Baptist Church put next to the definition of "douchebag" in the urban dictionary?

Cthulhu/Asmodeus when you're tired of voting for the lesser of two evils

Brother Cutlass of Reasoned Discussion
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marfknox
SFN Die Hard

USA
3739 Posts

Posted - 10/06/2011 :  20:06:32   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit marfknox's Homepage  Send marfknox an AOL message Send marfknox a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Val wrote:
Not to pass up the passing of an innovative icon, Westboro has announced that they will picket Steve Jobs' funeral.
At this point Westboro protesting a funeral is just a testament to how important the deceased was. Is anyone even shocked anymore by their insanity?


"Too much certainty and clarity could lead to cruel intolerance" -Karen Armstrong

Check out my art store: http://www.marfknox.etsy.com

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marfknox
SFN Die Hard

USA
3739 Posts

Posted - 10/06/2011 :  20:08:38   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit marfknox's Homepage  Send marfknox an AOL message Send marfknox a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Here's a video of that commencement speech.

"Too much certainty and clarity could lead to cruel intolerance" -Karen Armstrong

Check out my art store: http://www.marfknox.etsy.com

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Randy
SFN Regular

USA
1990 Posts

Posted - 10/06/2011 :  20:32:59   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Randy a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Have a link to that speech on the first page of this thread.
:)

"We are all connected; to each other biologically, to the earth chemically, to the rest of the universe atomically."

"So you're made of detritus [from exploded stars]. Get over it. Or better yet, celebrate it. After all, what nobler thought can one cherish than that the universe lives within us all?"
-Neil DeGrasse Tyson
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Kil
Evil Skeptic

USA
13470 Posts

Posted - 10/06/2011 :  20:35:54   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Kil's Homepage  Send Kil an AOL message  Send Kil a Yahoo! Message Send Kil a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by marfknox

Val wrote:
Not to pass up the passing of an innovative icon, Westboro has announced that they will picket Steve Jobs' funeral.
At this point Westboro protesting a funeral is just a testament to how important the deceased was. Is anyone even shocked anymore by their insanity?


Westboro Baptist Church uses iPhone to announce protest at Steve Jobsís funeral


Uncertainty may make you uncomfortable. Certainty makes you ridiculous.

Why not question something for a change?

Genetic Literacy Project
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Kil
Evil Skeptic

USA
13470 Posts

Posted - 10/06/2011 :  22:49:46   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Kil's Homepage  Send Kil an AOL message  Send Kil a Yahoo! Message Send Kil a Private Message  Reply with Quote
The truth about Steve Jobs and Xerox PARC

The common thread of the multiple and often conflicting versions told me by the participants was that Apple's team paid very close attention to what they were seeing displayed on PARC's pioneering personal computer, the Alto. PARC scientist Larry Tesler, who was working the Alto's keyboard and mouse, recalled that Apple engineer Bill Atkinson leaned so closely over him while staring at the screen that he could feel Atkinson's breath on the back of his neck.

But Apple had already developed its own version of the graphical display before the PARC visit -- it's just that its engineers kept running into problems that PARC had plainly solved. Atkinson later said that he didn't steal PARC's version, but that seeing there was a solution "empowered" him to invent his own solution, which went into the original Mac.

The Jobs visit may not have inaugurated the exodus of technology from PARC, but it did launch the exodus of brainpower -- starting with Tesler, who jumped to Apple a few months later, deeply impressed that Jobs had been appalled Xerox was keeping its great technology under wraps.

"Why hasn't this company brought this to market?" Jobs had exclaimed during the demo. "I don't get it!" That was a testament to Jobs' ability to detect the promise in a novel technology several steps ahead of anyone else. The same idea wasn't lost on PARC's frustrated innovators. Recalled Tesler: Apple "understood what we had a lot better than Xerox did."

Uncertainty may make you uncomfortable. Certainty makes you ridiculous.

Why not question something for a change?

Genetic Literacy Project
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Valiant Dancer
Forum Goalie

USA
4826 Posts

Posted - 10/07/2011 :  07:11:38   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Valiant Dancer's Homepage Send Valiant Dancer a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by Kil

Originally posted by marfknox

Val wrote:
Not to pass up the passing of an innovative icon, Westboro has announced that they will picket Steve Jobs' funeral.
At this point Westboro protesting a funeral is just a testament to how important the deceased was. Is anyone even shocked anymore by their insanity?


Westboro Baptist Church uses iPhone to announce protest at Steve Jobsís funeral




Irrrrrroooooonnnnnnyyyyyyyyy.......

Cthulhu/Asmodeus when you're tired of voting for the lesser of two evils

Brother Cutlass of Reasoned Discussion
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Randy
SFN Regular

USA
1990 Posts

Posted - 10/07/2011 :  14:28:51   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Randy a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by Valiant Dancer

Originally posted by Kil

Originally posted by marfknox

Val wrote:
Not to pass up the passing of an innovative icon, Westboro has announced that they will picket Steve Jobs' funeral.
At this point Westboro protesting a funeral is just a testament to how important the deceased was. Is anyone even shocked anymore by their insanity?


Westboro Baptist Church uses iPhone to announce protest at Steve Jobsís funeral




Irrrrrroooooonnnnnnyyyyyyyyy.......


Looks like the Westboro fucktard's chance has come and gone.

"We are all connected; to each other biologically, to the earth chemically, to the rest of the universe atomically."

"So you're made of detritus [from exploded stars]. Get over it. Or better yet, celebrate it. After all, what nobler thought can one cherish than that the universe lives within us all?"
-Neil DeGrasse Tyson
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Randy
SFN Regular

USA
1990 Posts

Posted - 10/07/2011 :  19:16:20   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Randy a Private Message  Reply with Quote
The Onion's take on Job's passing.

"We are all connected; to each other biologically, to the earth chemically, to the rest of the universe atomically."

"So you're made of detritus [from exploded stars]. Get over it. Or better yet, celebrate it. After all, what nobler thought can one cherish than that the universe lives within us all?"
-Neil DeGrasse Tyson
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