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CNET News Video: Steve Wozniak remembers Steve Jobs
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CNET News Video: Steve Wozniak remembers Steve Jobs

9:23 /

Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak remembers his friend Steve Jobs.

-So, how are you gonna best remember your friend, Steve Jobs? -I'm gonna go back to, you know, the little-- how young and naive we were in thinking out our original ideas and we would look back now and say "Oh my god!" That sort of person, that sort of thinking could actually lead to what it led to. I'm gonna remember him as always being very quick in mind and almost all the time that we had discussions about what-- how something should be done in a company, he was almost always right, and he had thought it out. He had thought out why a product should go to the left instead of to the right. So, you know, just really his intelligence, common sense, knowing what made sense in a product, what wasn't gonna sell and what was gonna sell, and when you should implement a new technology and be ahead of the world, and when maybe you should be a little bit of a follower when you know-- a lot of that, you know-- just-- and-- it almost all boils down to the way he-- comes across-- For him, it's common sense. Nobody else had the common sense though, so it was a lot more. -How close were you to him? -And-- We were best friends for all the years leading up to Apple maybe 5 or 7 years after we met. We would just go driving off far away places to explore, you know, music catalogues of Bob Dylan and people that had fair-- rare photographs of him and we'd go to concerts together and we talk about, you know, where the world was going, and philosophies, and the counterculture movement, and sort of this idea of young people and revolution; and we'd just do everything together that-- that-- friends do. Go to movies and concerts, and driving him up to college in Portland, Oregon. I remember that. -Sure. Sure. What do you think his legacy is gonna be? -His legacy is pretty solid just mostly being able to run the business, Apple, take it so far and create such great products. And I think creating a great product is what people remember the most, and I think that's what brings them something in their hearts and makes people happy. How many things do you own in the world that are "I just have to have this, I have to use it" and how many of you actually "Oh I love, I just depend on this, I actually enjoyed doing my work on this product" and that's what Apple brought to so many people. And that's why there are so many strong fans and they associate Steve with it because he was such a manager of the little details mattered. And little details, tiny little nuances in between 1 product and another made a huge difference. When we grew up, it was like Sony. Compared to maybe 10 other companies that made electronic products, Sonys were always just a little bit finer and you could notice it. You couldn't put it in words. It's sort of something you feel and that's how Apple products turned out. -Think about Steve Jobs as a first time-- I think about-- most people they think of Steve Jobs they think Apple computers-- -Uh-huh. -Apple the brand, but what about him as a man? What was he like? -He was a very good friend to me. He was always respectful, never once did anything impolite to me like they say he did to other people. We-- When Apple started-- up to when Apple started, we were very similar. And when it started, he is-- his direction was to go into running the corporation, learning how to run every little aspect, and be in control, and be in charge, and the main thinker in a company and mine was just to do excellent engineering for, you know, my face of the role. So, from that point in time, we were like different people in different categories. I'm shy. I don't wanna run things. I don't want the big highlight role. I like to stay in the background. So-- and Steve was always also a little bit afraid of competition and trying to push ahead, and we had to get there before somebody else does, and we have to go on the new technology direction, and we have to believe that our way is right even though they're sticking with the old way. The Macintosh experience hurt him a lot because we took the good approach to computers having mouses and menus whereas all the old, the PCs running on Microsoft software were gonna stick with the old way and it's just why didn't the world go the new way? Why didn't Microsoft go the new better way? And it was probably just too expensive, you know, for what they could do at the time, but-- but-- but from then on-- from then on, he always wanted to somehow find the way to do the different thing better and make it successful, not-- and not sort of fail like the Macintosh in terms of market share. -Yeah. You know, many people have compared him to Walt Disney, Edison, even Einstein-- -Uh-huh. -do you think that that's fair to put him in that kind of category? -I would put him more of those in-- in the Walt Disney category. Edison was a real in the lab designer who actually did work and then-- and then became pretty much just a person who ran a successful company project after project so that's not a totally unfair comparison, but Steve wasn't like a laboratory guy. Part of the problem was he was around me, his best friend, and I could just design anything and build up and write all the code and so he never did the real write down the guts of-- of the technology, the actual design, hardware/software, but managing it, you know, understanding it, knowing who's got the true stories and who doesn't about what is possible and which technologies are good and can be applied to a new product. And he's also the sort of person who would see a technology and think this is what it can give a real person in the world a user. So, psychology wise, he related so well to the users, the buyers of products. So marketing, I would say, was his greatest strength. -Now, did you ever talk to him recently when he-- did you ever both kinda reflect on your early days in the garage in creating Apple? Do you ever have that conservation with him recently? -You know-- Actually, for-- for last couple of years when he was calling, he always kind of brought up those days as being so important and fun and I'd-- like he wanted to talk about them, but I never-- never took the time to get into it because he has gone so far in his life. It's hard to go back to those little simple base when we were just, you know, clowning around and just thinking "oh, we might make a few bucks here" and we're just doing things moonlighting. Yeah, so we didn't-- we didn't get into it deeply, but he spoke about that almost every time and he was even-- when he was onstage with Bill Gates talking about those days with kind of a smile in his heart. You could see it. Yeah so I-- I think-- I think it was on his mind in the last days. -What do you think his legacy is gonna be like here in the Bay Area? -Well, legacy as a young person who had basically nothing, no money, but had a brain-- -Uh-huh. -and developed-- and started a company and started a company to bring the world new things that it never had before and to challenge the existing ways. -Uh-huh. -Do you think it's gonna be hard for anybody to sort of fill his shoes as the leader of Apple, the leader of that industry? -Well, one thing they've got going against him is it's-- he's already built up like a cult icon and so a new leader that doesn't-- kind of comes in a little bit might be in an un-trusted category. How much of Apple's brand is due to the product it makes, at what price, and it's marking and everything and how much of it is due to this mysterious image of Steve Jobs being there? I don't think-- I don't think in the short term. I mean, all the-- all the reports are really in the short term nobody expects Apple to decline. So in the long term, I hope we always have a way to remember the formula and it's gonna really depend very strongly on the person at the top. Tim Cook is a really good person, but in the future, if Apple got a wrong person at the top, the company can fall down so fast and, you know, lose the greatness that Apple has. So, I just hop that the-- what Steve wanted is something that we all should live up to forever. -Uh-huh. Any one little memory of you guys together when you were younger that just sort of always bring a smile on-- -Oh my God! A lot of 'em. Most of them were pranks and some of them were-- if they were legal. Yeah, putting little-- little pranks in our high school, having big signs come down when the seniors graduated with the sign flipping them off. You know, both of us would still laugh at those sort of things or trying to turn-- get the sprinkler valve into the building where the sprinkler valves were to turn the sprinklers on the parents during graduation, that sort-- Yeah. A lot of those, those fun things. I laugh-- I laugh at humorous things and Steve being the businessman didn't have as much room for humor in his life. I could go on playing pranks my whole life 'coz I wasn't running a company. -One last question. What can we expect in the coming days as far as memorials go? What's gonna go on in Apple? -I don't know. Right now, it's pretty much prewritten statements that are just clean and get the message across, you know. The-- and I don't-- so I don't know if there'll be memorials or whatever. Steve would have planned that. I'll just keep my-- my ears to the wind just like everyone. -Alright. Anything else that you would sort of miss about your friend that you think really-- that people that didn't know him should know about him? -He was critical of people that didn't perform well. Well, I guess everyone would know that and I think that was a big part of Apple's success. And he clamped down very much on-- on leaks and-- and privacy. In other words, in the company, you don't leak information out and I think that was really important to developing great products. They come from-- great products often come from very different ways of thinking as the whole world is around seeing it. You don't have a chance to even test it.

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