Heard on Campus: Woz

Heard on Campus: Woz

By Clay Hamilton

On January 26, 2012, Steve Wozniak addressed a sold-out audience at Mayer Theatre as part of SCU's President's Speaker Series. His talk, "Steve Wozniak—from Garage to Global Importantance: the Rise of the PC" can be viewed below.

A Silicon Valley icon and philanthropist for more than 30 years, Steve Wozniak has helped shape the computing industry with his design of Apple’s first line of products. In 1976, Wozniak and Steve Jobs founded Apple Computer Inc. with Wozniak’s Apple I personal computer. The following year, he introduced his Apple II personal computer, featuring a central processing unit, a keyboard, color graphics, and a floppy disk drive. The Apple II was integral in launching the personal computer industry.

In 1981, he went back to UC Berkeley and finished his degree in electrical engineering/computer science. For his achievements at Apple Computer, Wozniak was awarded the National Medal of Technology by the  president of the United States in 1985, the highest honor bestowed on America’s leading innovators.

In 2000, he was inducted into the Inventors Hall of Fame and was awarded the prestigious Heinz Award for Technology, The Economy and Employment for single-handedly designing the first personal computer and for then redirecting his lifelong passion for mathematics and electronics toward education. He adopted the Los Gatos School District, providing students and teachers with hands-on teaching and donations of state-of-the-art technology equipment. He founded the Electronic Frontier Foundation, and was the founding sponsor of the Tech Museum, Silicon Valley Ballet, and Children’s Discovery Museum of San Jose.

Wozniak currently serves as chief scientist for Fusion-IO and is author of a New York Times best-selling autobiography, iWoz: From Computer Geek to Cult Icon (Norton, 2006). He's also featured prominently in a recent NYT discussion of the virtues of creativity and solitude in the essay "The Rise of the New Groupthink."

To get more information about the President's Speaker Series, visit the website.

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