iWoz, the Steve Wozniak story

I’d written about Steve Wozniak’s (Woz) book a few weeks ago and imagine my surprise when I found the book at Premier bookshop. Intentions, universe, that sort of thing I imagine.

Great cover, which you can see here if you’re interested.

The book covers Woz’s life from when he started tinkering with electronics as a boy to how he created a personal computer that changed the face of personal computing. It’s a fascinating story, narrated by Woz with help from Gina Smith. Woz talks about the Homebrew Computer Club, how he met Steve Jobs, and about how he created the dial-a-joke service, and his other hacks. The story about how he hacked up a way to read floppies is brilliant.

That’s the good news. The bad news is that the writing gets in the way of the story. There are repeated sentences, lots of “I” statements, and this takes away some of the pleasure of reading the book. It’s incomprehensible to me that a co-writer could not spot the glaring errors and even worse, that the editor gave the project a thumbs up. Good editing and a re-write would’ve made this book memorable.

And that’s a shame, because Woz is one of the brilliant minds in technology, and his stories are the stuff of legend. Heck, I would’ve written the book for free if I had the chance to work with Woz and I’ve never even used an Apple product.

In spite of all this, I still recommend that you read the book because you can’t let a writer get in the way of your knowing about the genius that is Steve Wozniak.


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