Apple I: Function over Form

By Ed Uthman - originally posted to Flickr as Apple I Computer, CC BY-SA 2.0,
An Apple I computer with a homemade case (Photo by Ed Uthman via Wikimedia Commons)

On this date in 1975, Steve Wozniak tested the first prototype of the Apple I computer.

Here are some things you may not have known about the beginning of Apple.

Steve Wozniak met Steve Jobs in 1971 while working during the summer at Hewlett-Packard.

Wozniak, inspired by the first meeting of the Homebrew Computer Club, built the first Apple I prototype and tested it for the first time on June 29.

The Apple I consisted of an assembled circuit board containing about 60 microchips. The customer would be responsible for adding a case, power supply, keyboard and a composite video display, such as a television. The computer came with 4 kilobytes of memory and a 1 megahertz CPU.

There were about 200 Apple Is built, originally selling for $666. Wozniak claimed to be unaware of any Satanic connotations of the number. The price eventually dropped to $475, before the computer was discontinued in 1977. Because Wozniak was the only person who could answer most support questions, the company offered discounts and other incentives for customers to trade in their Apple Is for the newer Apple II. The company then destroyed the trade-ins, leading to the original machines becoming highly collectible.

Only 63 Apple Is are known to exist today. Of those, only six are believed to be in working condition. In 2014, an early Apple I sold at auction for more than $900,000.

The Apple II, introduced in 1977, was succeeded by the II Plus in 1981. Later landmark products for the company include the Macintosh in 1984, the iMac in 1998, and the iPod in 2001.

The iPhone was released on June 29, 2007, 32 years after the first Apple I test. How’s that for symmetry?

Wozniak left Apple in 1981 following the crash of a plane he was piloting. He returned in 1983, but left for good in 1985.

Our question: Who was pictured in Apple’s first logo?

Today is Veterans’ Day in the Netherlands, Engineer’s Day in Ecuador, and Independence Day in the Seychelles.

It’s unofficially National Almond Buttercrunch Day, National Camera Day, and National Waffle Iron Day.

It’s the birthday of “Locomotion” singer Little Eva, who was born in 1943; actor Gary Busey, who is is 72; and comedian Richard Lewis, who is 69 today.

This week in 1975, the top song in the U.S. was “Love Will Keep Us Together” by Captain and Tennille.

The No. 1 movie was “Jaws,” while the novel “The Moneychangers” by Arthur Hailey topped the New York Times Bestsellers list.

Weekly take-home test

What was the name of the writing system Braille was based on?


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