Who Was Steve Jobs? | Chapter 7 of 17

Author: Pam Pollack | Submitted by: Maria Garcia | 1700 Views | Add a Review

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Who Was
Steve Jobs?

 

Steve Jobs always loved machines. His father repaired machines for a living. As a child, Steve loved to watch his dad build and fix things.

 

 

When Steve grew up, he started a company that built machines. Not just any machines, but a machine Steve was sure would soon become part of daily life, just like cars and TV sets. What was this machine?

 

A personal computer.

 

Today, millions of people own personal computers. But back in the 1970s nobody did.

 

The first modern computer came out in 1938. A computer built in 1946 was as big as a room! When Steve was a kid, computers were still too big and complicated for the average person to use. The government used them to gather information.

 

 

 

Steve was going to change that. Steve and his friend Steve Wozniak started Apple Computers in the Jobses’ garage. Their computer, the Apple II, was the hit of a West Coast computer fair in 1977.

 

Why?

 

It looked fun to use.

 

In 1979, Steve visited the research center of the tech company Xerox. It was in Palo Alto, California. He walked around, looking at the new computers the engineers were working on.

 

“What’s that?” Steve asked one man. He pointed to a small gadget by a computer. When the engineer moved the gadget with his hand, an arrow on the computer screen moved, too.

 

“This is a point-and-click graphical user interface,” the man explained. That sure was a complicated name for a gadget that did something very simple—and very amazing. Every time the man moved the pointer to a picture on the screen and clicked, it opened a program on the computer.

 

Steve stared at the little gadget.

 

In 1979, computers were operated by punching in keys on a keyboard. To work the computer, you had to know the right keys to push. This little gadget made using the computer so much easier. Steve couldn’t believe it. He imagined having something similar for his computers.

 

 

“When are you going to sell it?” he asked the engineer.

 

“We’re not,” he said. “It’s fun, but there’s no market for it.”

 

Steve Jobs knew differently. As he stared at the little gadget, he could see the future rolling out in front of him. Billions of people pointing and clicking on their home computers. He would have to improve the gadget. He would make it better. And he wouldn’t call it a “point-and-click graphical user interface.” He would call it by its friendlier nickname: the mouse.

 

That day, Steve knew the world was going to change. And he, Steve Jobs, was going to make it happen.

 

EARLY COMPUTERS

 

 

AS ELECTRONIC TECHNOLOGY AND COMPUTERS ADVANCE, THEY GET SMALLER AND SMALLER. A COMPUTER YOU HOLD IN YOUR HAND TODAY CAN DO MORE THAN A COMPUTER THAT SAT ON A DESK TEN YEARS AGO.

 

THE FIRST COMMERCIAL COMPUTER PRODUCED IN THE UNITED STATES WAS THE UNIVERSAL AUTOMATIC COMPUTER—OR UNIVAC—IN 1951. IT WEIGHED 29,000 POUNDS AND TOOK UP MORE THAN 42.5 SQUARE YARDS OF FLOOR SPACE. YET IT ONLY PERFORMED 1,905 OPERATIONS PER SECOND. TODAY, AN IPAD CAN PERFORM 1.65 BILLION OPERATIONS IN THE SAME SECOND.

 

 
 

Comments

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Alice
Great book, nicely written and thank you BooksVooks for uploading

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