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Stephen Wozniak (born August 11, 1950 in San Jose, California ) is an American computer engineer who founded Apple Computer, Inc. (now Apple Inc. ) with Steve Jobs and Ronald Wayne. His inventions and machines are credited with contributing significantly to the personal computer revolution of the 1970s. Wozniak created the Apple I and Apple II computers in the mid-1970s.
Wozniak has several nicknames, including "The Woz", "Wonderful Wizard of Woz" and "iWoz" (a reference to the ubiquitous naming scheme for Apple products). "WoZ" (short for "Wheels of Zeus ") is also the name of a company Wozniak founded. He is sometimes known as the "Other Steve" of Apple Computer, the better known Steve being co-founder Steve Jobs. His ancestors are of Polish descent.
- Began at Hewlett-Packard
- Met Steve Jobs and started manufacturing Apple 1 in a garage
- Opened up a computer store called the byte shop
- Left Apple on February 6, 1987, after 12 at the company
- Was a participant in Dancing with the Stars
- Had a webcam of his office that could be viewed at any time of the day
- Survived a plane crash in 1981
- Had the top score in Tetris in Nintendo Power issue #26 (1991) with his name spelled backwards.
- Still carries around GameBoy Lights and keeps buying Tetris cartridges off of eBay
He explains the reasoning for this in a Gizomodo Q&A:
“I only play the original Gameboy Tetris. I buy cartridges on eBay when needed. I have had some stolen and lost. My kids got too good at newer games so I only focus on a few puzzle-like games to be good at them.
I was always #1 in the Nintendo Power listings in 1988, and after they said my name had been in there too many times and wouldn’t print it again, I spelled my name backwards (Evets Kainzow) and sent in a photo of my score.
When I got the magazine, I’d forgotten doing this and was worried that a foreigner from the next city over (I used Saratoga instead of Los Gatos so they wouldn’t catch on) had a score up in my range. I got worried but then remembered my joke. Whew! It’s in some old issue of Nintendo Power magazine - Gameboy Tetris score, name Evets Kainzow).”