Apple's longest-serving employee looks back over 34 years with Steve Jobs

Apple's longest-serving employee has reminisced about his 34 years at the fruit-flavoured computer company.

Apple's longest-serving employee has reminisced about his 34 years at the fruit-flavoured computer company. Chris Espinosa started at Apple alongside Steve Jobs and Steve 'Woz' Wozniak as employee No. 8 while still in high school, and has been there ever since.

Espinosa clocked in for his first day as an official employee of the company on St Patrick's Day in 1977, although he had been working there part-time for a couple of months. Apple was founded in a garage on April Fool's Day in 1976. As a semi-official employee, Espinosa was present when the company was incorporated in January 1977.

Espinosa's first official work for the company was to test the Apple II BASIC operating system over his Christmas holidays, ready for the software to be installed on the Apple II computer, although later tasks included breaking into Steve Jobs' office. He's now a manager working on Apple's developer tool Xcode.

When Steve Jobs left Apple in 1985 to found education computer company NeXT, Espinosa was the senior employee at Apple. Upon El Jobs' return when Apple bought NeXT in 1997, his employment status was backdated to make him the senior employee. Jobs became CEO in 2000, and the rest is history.

The company has come a long way from the hand-built wooden Apple-1 to the iPhone 4 and iPad 2. The Apple-1 recently sold for £133,250 at auction in London.

Apple's closest rival Microsoft was established in 1975, with Microsoft Windows appearing 25 years ago . 34 years seems like an eternity in this day and age: Mark Zuckerberg wasn't even born in 1977, and Facebook has created six billionaires in just the last six years. Even your friendly neighbourhood CNET UK is barely out of short trousers .

About the author

Rich Trenholm is a senior editor at CNET where he covers everything from phones to bionic implants. Based in London since 2007, he has travelled the world seeking out the latest and best consumer technology for your enjoyment.


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