Love Your iPhone 6s? You’ve got two Steves to thank for that.

If you are one of the 13+ million people who recently purchased the new Apple® iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus, you have two Steves to thank for your iHappiness – Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs, the co-founders of Apple. The two Steves met when Wozniak was in college and Jobs was in high school, and they instantly connected over a love of everything electronic.

Working out of Jobs’ bedroom and later, the family garage, Jobs and Wozniak (affectionately known as “Woz”) were passionate about creating a computer that was user-friendlier than anything else on the market. Woz was in charge of inventing, Jobs was in charge of marketing, and together they revolutionized the way the world connects.

Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs
Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs

How fitting, then, that Leadercast will welcome Steve Wozniak to the Leadercast Live stage in May, 2016 – a true Architect of Tomorrow! Woz pioneered the age of personal computing with his design of the Apple I – the founding product launched under the Apple Computer brand. Next came Wozniak’s Apple II – the first all-inclusive personal computer, complete with a CPU, keyboard and color graphics (previously unheard of!). For the Apple II, Woz also developed the floppy disk drive (if you have no idea what I’m talking about, take a look at the “save” icon on your toolbar) and invented a way for the Apple to connect to a printer. (Yeah, it didn’t do that in version 1.0 and sold-out anyway.)

Computers for Everyone from the “Wizard of Woz”

Wozniak has always had a love of mathematics and computing and a desire to share that passion with everyone. When the Apple II was unveiled, it was designed for everyday, average consumers, not just techies and engineers. The iPhone and Macs we know today come from that same desire to bring people together through technology.

Describing those early days, Wozniak has said, “Our first computers were born not out of greed or ego, but in the revolutionary spirit of helping common people rise above the most powerful institutions.”

In December 1980, Apple stock went public and sold out in minutes. That same year, Woz got his pilot’s license, but unfortunately, just months later, he crashed his plane and suffered severe injuries. Woz took a year to return to Apple and join development on the first Macintosh. The plane crash had deeply affected his perspective on life, work and family, and in the year following he went back to college, got married, and produced a series of festivals that were a blend of rock concert and tech conference.

Today, Woz is a cult icon in the technology world and says that he “never imagined he would have this good a life.” For millions of Apple fans, Woz has helped them simply imagine.

“In the most staggering burst of technical invention by a single person in high-tech history’ (BusinessWeek), Steve Wozniak invented the first true personal computer. When Wozniak teamed up with Steve Jobs, and Apple Computer was born, the two ignited the computer revolution and transformed the world. Thirty years later, Wozniak, the mischievous genius with the low profile, treats readers to a rollicking, no-holds-barred account of his life—for once, in the voice of the wizard himself.” – Bookpage review of Wozniak’s NYT bestseller, iWoz: Computer Geek to Cult Icon: How I Invented the Personal Computer, Co-Founded Apple, and Had Fun Doing It


Want some Woz Wonders about our newest Leadercast Live speaker?
Here are a few facts to get you started:

• Following his plane-crash recovery, Wozniak founded several companies, including CL 9, the company responsible for the first programmable universal remote control. Sure makes binge-watching easier, doesn’t it? Today he is the Chief Scientist for Fusion-io.

• Although he is known as being shy, Woz loves humor. If you missed his recent appearance on The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon, where Woz joined Jimmy and Seth Rogen at the True Confessions game, check it out here.

• Woz competed in Dancing with the Stars in 2009 where he danced with Karina Smirnoff. Woz does quite an impressive knee-spin! He says it was “the most incredible, fun thing I have ever done,” and Karina says he is “the nicest man alive.”

• Woz was a consultant on the Steve Jobs film, released to select theaters on October 9, 2015 and opening U.S.-wide on October 23, 2015. It stars Michael Fassbender, Kate Winslet, Seth Rogen. What does Woz think of the movie? According to an online article by BBC News, he calls it “an award-winning job.” “In some prior movies, they didn’t really make me feel like I was in [Steve Jobs’] head, understanding what was going on inside of him—his personality. This movie absolutely accomplishes that,” Woz told the BBC.

• He is dad to three kids with his previous wife, former Olympic kayaker Candi Clark.

• Along with Marvel Comics’ Stan Lee, Wozniak conceived the upcoming Silicon Valley Comic Con for fans of comic books, pop art and technology. The inaugural event will be held in March, 2016.

• Woz is the author of the best-selling autobiography, iWoz: From Computer Geek to Cult Icon. Guy Kawasaki, a visionary himself and formerly of Apple and Google, says, “The book takes you inside the mind of someone who was truly instrumental in one of the great revolutions of our time. After reading it, I was even more proud of having worked for Apple.”

• Today, Woz is following his other passions— teaching 5th and 6th-graders the joys of computer technology, donating to children’s charities and supporting science/tech museums. Woz often gives money away to random people who need a little extra help.

In 2000, Woz was awarded the Heinz Award for Technology, The Economy and Employment, for “single-handedly designing the first personal computer.” In 1985, Wozniak President Reagan awarded Wozniak the National Medal of Technology, the highest honor bestowed upon America’s leading innovators.

Join us at Leadercast Live on May 6, 2016 for a lively presentation and exclusive interview with one of the most visionary leaders of our time!

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