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Review: Revolution in The Valley

Reading this book, I kept seeing a comparison to the early days of computing and the early days of punk rock. Andy Hertzfeld’s account of the design and engineering of the Macintosh computer certainly takes you back to early 1980’s California.

I remember going to computer shows back then with my dad, who seemed to buy any new product that showed any promise. I mean, we had a laser printer in the house when most people still had typewriters. To switch fonts, you had to shove in a new font cartridge (and those were like, $100 each). And I’ll never forget how we put our name on the waiting list for the Atari 2600 version of Pac-Man. The day we picked it up, my parents also bought the family an Apple II computer. I woke up at 5am to play with it before school, where all the other kids thought I was a liar for claiming to have Pac-Man and the computer.

Back to the book, you have to admire Apple’s then anti-corporate approach- like when the engineers rigged up a pirate flag over their building. Okay, that seems pretty tame, doesn’t it.

Bottom line, if you’re into computers and software design, this book will be interesting. Fans: B. Others: C.

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