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on 22 October 2006
Steve at first seems overly self-interested, but this reflects the stage of his life he is recalling. Woz tries to put right some of the half-truths and errors that have been reported about his involvement with Apple. He is rightly proud of the things he has created and makes this very clear in this book. The content of iWoz falls between a biography and a techincal analysis of Woz's designs.It has an easy to read style and although it contains a good bit of geek tech-talk it does not get in the way of the main message.
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on 14 February 2007
Wozniak's non-comformity and considerable achievements are underlined in a fairly self-deprecating way in this book.

The explanation of how he designed and built the Apple I is extremely accessible and makes it sound like anyone could do it. Of course, the reality is that very few people have both the vision and skills necessary to make a quantum leap like the original Apple computer.

He's also included chapters on Phreaking, his development of remote control systems and later Apple products. He sets out his position on the politics within Apple and adds a section on advice for new young inventors and engineers - which is short and to the point. Throughout the book he's constantly referring to the various professional relationships between individuals and companies within the Silicon Valley area - with the intermingling of ideas from Atari, Commodore, HP, Apple and others. These were key points in the development of the Silicon Valley area as an engine of economic growth and also pivoting points on which the IT revolution tilted.

But this is not a text book - so you're reading it like Wozniak is saying it. Don't expect huge amounts of detail or a read that will take weeks. I read this book in a couple of sittings - and it was all the better for it.

In response to those who see this book as a self-serving exercise: Having read the biographies of others (sports personalities, media tycoons and the rest) I'm at a loss to see how Wozniak is trying to big himself up. If you want self-promotion on a huge scale try reading the memoirs of some UK politicians. Wozniak admits to losing vast amounts of money on some of his business schemes, having had failed marriages and crashing a plane! How much more self-abuse do people want from him?
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on 22 November 2007
I thoroughly enjoyed this book, and it only took a few evenings to finish it.
It is written in an entertaining way but is certainly not a linguistic master piece. He manages to get technical details into the book, which are not intimidating to non-electronic engineers. At the same time he still manages to highlight how revolutionary some of the inventions were, from a technical and visionary point of view.
What I found missing, was more about his more recent passed/achievements, but maybe it's not as entertaining as the rest.
It did get a bit repetitive in regards to him claiming to have been the first to have done this or done that. While this may well be true, there is very little credit given to those that came before him; as Newton said: "If I have seen farther than others, it is because I was standing on the shoulders of giants."
Altogether, I can highly recommend this book.
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on 1 October 2007
This is a book I would describe as intriguing rather than interesting. Woz is undoubtably a great guy who has been responsible for some of the key aspects of our life today but reading this you would think he had solely invented just about everything. There is a complete lack of defference in his approach and comments. For me a little more humility and acknowledgement that other people on this planet did contribute something to the world in which he could flourish would not go amiss. The constant barrage of 'the invention of this was entirely down to me'. 'I was the first person to do this' and 'x y or z could only do what he did because of me' gets a bit tiresome after a while. Still, its' a great narrative!
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"Iwoz" offers little insight into the worlds of electronics and business. If you're looking for a text on either, this is not the place to start.

It does, however, tell the not uninteresting story of America's answer to Sir Clive Sinclair. In summary, Wozniak had one brilliant idea (the Apple II) and thereafter went on to invent the universal TV remote. Then there is far too much information about how he organised rock concerts (is this some sort of attempt to try and show that even though he didn't invent the Ipod, he's still hip?) And then he went into teaching. Those who can...?

I'm not sure that we really get to know the real Steve Wozniak from this book. If it IS to be believed, he had a refreshing dislike of corporate culture, was good to his co-workers and was on occasion even known to give stuff away. But on the other hand, he goes through at least 3 wives and without really telling us why - is this what we expect of a nice guy? Do we really, as the cover claims, get "to the core of Apple's inventor"? If we do then fine, but I'm not entirely convinced on the evidence of this.

The big-headed writing style is at first a bit irritating: SW appears to be the perfect human being and knows it. But all that starts to crumble very subtly as the references to the Apple II (which HE obviously rates very highly) increase disproportionately. The expression "Pooterism" springs to mind.

Commendably, he doesn't hide his admiration for the Ipod (which was produced after his effective departure from Apple). In fact I think the subconscious title for this book would be something like "How I failed to invent the Ipod despite the fact I'm really very clever and I'm far too positive a person to be bitter about it".

The FT Magazine review quote ("oddly endearing...") quoted in Amazon's product info, hits the nail on the head.
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on 11 February 2013
(Possible spoilers below)

I found out about this book after reading a blog post about the upcoming jOBS movie about the life of Steve Jobs but in that article they quote Steve Wozniak as saying that some scenes are not accurate and for the "real" story to read his book.

So I did.

Popular culture would have us believe that Steve Jobs was the real "ego" and that Wozniak was in the shadows actually making the computers and being shy and humble . But this book will make you realise just how much of a jerk Wozniak was as well. Playing stupid pranks into adulthood.

Of all the Autobiographies I've read never come across such ego and arrogance. If you were naive Mr Wozniak would have you believe he invented everything in the world years before everyone else but never got the credit. Significant details are missing as well, like how he says he designed breakout but they didn't actually use his design because it was too impractical. (Source Wikipedia) he also claims that all known history and reporting of apple was wrong. Whatever Steve....

Overall the book was an interesting read to see some of the other side of the story which might not have been gleaned from Walter Isaacson's - Steve Jobs Book (which I highly recommend you read if you have not already) but have given it the score I have due to the juvenile writing style along with the aforementioned arrogance and massive ego.

Whilst the above might make someone think twice about reading the book, I would still suggest reading it, just be prepared to read about how much Wozniak thinks of himself.
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on 6 April 2010
I rented this book from my local library and would recommend anyone who is interested in this book to do the same!

This book is strangely written, shoots backwards and forwards in time and contains fair too much technical jargon to be easily read in certain sections. It also includes precious few pages on Apple, whether it be his involvement beyond the Apple II or his real relationship with Jobs. However, it does include everything he was/is amazing at, which is practically everything he touched.

What made me think this was more than a little self-centred was the fact that Apple made this man who and what he is. It made him his hundreds of millions of dollars, but they seem to be largely ignored for his efforts to make festivals profitable (failed) his universal remote (failed) and a couple of other ventures which failed also.

He also talks (quickly) about how he left Apple, returned and left again on a couple of occasions. As a major shareholder he can obviously do this, but that must have cheesed off the management so much that he stayed until he wanted to try something new then left again.

Overall, I wanted to learn more about Wozniak and I did. I don't think he was the amazing driving force behind Apple and I'm not sure it was Jobs either. I think there are far too many people who have been lost in history who made Apple work (some of whom are mentioned in his book) it would be nice to see an Apple related book with some of these guys mentioned also.
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on 23 June 2008
I'm not going to give this book a "rave" review. It was very average and whilst parts of it were very interesting, most of it was very dull.

Its a very easy read, if it wasn't I probably would have abandoned it altogether, but often is quite intricate in the explainations of electronics, which was not only above my head but left me cold.

As I said, some parts of it were interesting and funny (his pranks), but despite the back cover you dont get the sense that this was so HUGE REVOLUTION that he uncovered.

Very average and not highly recommended.
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on 30 December 2015
I was expecting more. It seems Steve Wozniak is writing this book to 'set the record straight' in his own words, so there are a few repeats of the same thing, that he did not quit Apple because he was upset, or his marriage collapsed because he was too much at work.
There is a lot of detail about the teenage years and the effort he put in by himself to produce innovative engineering designs. I was hoping for more details about his work at Apple, but maybe he is saving them for another book. The majority of this book is about the first years at Apple (Apple I and II) and then his move to the TV remote control company, he doesn't go into any details about later work at Apple. So this book is a bit lop-sided in my opinion. It reads like a transcription of interviews given by him, so he concentrates on the things he thinks are important, rather than tell the whole story. There is a lot missing. I liked Steve Jobs book by Walter Isaacson much more, maybe because he is a professionally writer and writing from a distance, instead of Steve Wozniak doing it in his own words.
If you are a child of the '80's and remember messing about with HP calculators, or home computers, or building electronic circuits in your bedroom, then this book will revive some memories (TRS-80? Atari ? Commodore PET? ) but not that interesting to someone wanting to read the whole Apple history.
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on 23 March 2009
A lot of people have commented on Steve being completely self absorbed in his writting, which I agree with. After a while I got tired of reading how amazing he was at what age and what amazing things he's achieved all by himself and how great it is to beat everyone else at everything. I did enjoy the book though. It was a fairly easy read when it comes to the language.

It can get quite hairy when it gets into the technical terminologies, especially if you're not as familier with them. I picked it up thinking it'll be more about Apple and his career with them but to tell the truth he was over that in barely a few chapters if even that and most of the way through. Majority of the time he just made it as though he wanted to be this low grade engineer 'guy' that tweaks things at the office, a grade up from his bedroom and doesn't actually want anything to do with the other bits and pieces.

Over all I feel that he skips around quite a lot from the subjects and time periods he is writting about. We ran right through most of the 90s and barely a mention of the 2000s. Overall I feel it's a generally interesting book, especially if you're interested in what I feel is a biased view about the start of Apple, but I wouldn't rely on this book to fully understand Apple's beginning years at all.
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