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Steve Jobs Movie Clip Historically Inaccurate, Says Woz 330

Posted by Soulskill
from the movies-aren't-burdened-with-trivialities-like-accuracy dept.
Yesterday saw the release of a clip from the upcoming movie jOBS, a biopic about the life of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs. The clip shows Jobs, played by Ashton Kutcher, having a conversation with Steve Wozniak, played by Josh Gad, about how influential an operating system for a personal computer would be. The real Steve Wozniak commented on the clip, saying the situation it portrayed was "totally wrong." He said, "Personalities and where the ideas of computers affecting society did not come from Jobs. They inspired me and were widely spoken at the Homebrew Computer Club. Steve came back from Oregon and came to a club meeting and didn't start talking about this great social impact. His idea was to make a $20 PC board and sell it for $40 to help people at the club build the computer I'd given away. Steve came from selling surplus parts at HalTed he always saw a way to make a quick buck off my designs (this was the 5th time). The lofty talk came much further down the line." Wozniak was quick to add that he isn't making any judgment on the quality of the movie based on a single, 1-minute clip, and that the rest of the movie may or may not be more accurate. He also says he hopes it's entertaining.
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Steve Jobs Movie Clip Historically Inaccurate, Says Woz

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 25, 2013 @06:36PM (#42696831)

    Jobs is the new Edison. They were both self-loving monsters who stole and borrowed, then claimed credit.

  • by Aryeh Goretsky (129230) on Friday January 25, 2013 @06:38PM (#42696849) Homepage

    Hello,

    The company Woz mentioned, Halted Specialties Company [halted.com], is still around. Great source of electronics surplus and I have any fond memories of visits there over the past decades and wandering around their dusty shelves. I had no idea they were so instrumental in the founding of Apple Computer.

    Regards

    Aryeh Goretsky

  • Halted isn't HalTed (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 25, 2013 @06:43PM (#42696899)

    The original place was sold many, many years ago. The original location on Fair Oaks is under condos now.

  • by onyxruby (118189) <onyxruby&comcast,net> on Friday January 25, 2013 @06:46PM (#42696933)

    True enough on what you have said. The sad thing is Edison /was/ a genius and did invent quite a few things on his own. He didn't need to steal ideas from other people like he did in order to be one of the greatest inventors in history.

    Unfortunately he was an incredible asshole and went ahead and stole other peoples ideas anyways. I have heard it said that Edison was histories first great patent troll, and I think you could make a fair argument for that.

  • by kamapuaa (555446) on Friday January 25, 2013 @06:49PM (#42696957) Homepage

    He also hold the record for Tetris on a Gameboy. When Nintendo Power magazine stopped accepting his high scores (he'd confirm by mailing in Polaroids of the screen), he started submitting his name spelled backwards.

  • by whoever57 (658626) on Friday January 25, 2013 @06:54PM (#42697023) Journal

    Since when is Hollywood historically accurate?

    Hollywood inaccurate...... film at 11.
    Wait, what?

    But seriously, when did anyone expect historical accuracy from Hollywood. Another example that outraged many Brits [wikipedia.org]

  • by ganjadude (952775) on Friday January 25, 2013 @07:55PM (#42697563) Homepage
    when you think about it, jobs /woz and edison /tesla is a damn good comparison. I would say that tesla did the "hard work" not that edison didnt do much hard work, but tesla was the brains. Edison had the marketablility. You can make the same argument with jobs woz. I dont think anyone can argue that woz was the brains behind the technical side of things while jobs was the mouthpiece, he was the salesman. not that jobs was not technical but he was no wheres near woz on that level.
  • by Charliemopps (1157495) on Friday January 25, 2013 @08:08PM (#42697663)

    You mean the part where he stole all of his ideas from existing works by some of the first "open source" people before there was even an "open source" or the part where he parked in handicap spots for most of his life using his money to keep his Mercedes unregistered, just so he could... because simply getting his own parking slot wouldn't show the world just how big his dick really was?

  • by Bing Tsher E (943915) on Friday January 25, 2013 @08:18PM (#42697735) Journal

    One of the big differences that breaks down your equivalence theory is that Edison really did invent some things, just not everything he claimed. Jobs, not so much. He was pretty much entirely a braggart/thief.

    Also, Edison was a notorious eccentric slob. Jobs, you get the feeling he always wore a fresh black turtleneck each day.

  • Re:Oops (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Darinbob (1142669) on Friday January 25, 2013 @10:23PM (#42698341)

    This is more than just details. It's actually presenting Steve Jobs as a different person than he was. A hero figure instead of a businessman.

    Though it depends on how realistic they make it. "Pirates of Silicon Valley" had a whole lot of inaccuracies in it, but on the surface it didn't appear to be a documentary. If this new movie is similar and appears to be just a generic movie with lots of hand waving then it won't be a big deal either. But it if is presented in a way that makes it appear to be factual then it will mislead a lot of people.

    Ie, I watched Oliver Stone's "W" about the president, and it was clear from start to end that it was bullshit, loosely based on actual events. But it told a story with fictional characters using broad brush strokes. No one would confuse it for a documentary.

  • by Bing Tsher E (943915) on Saturday January 26, 2013 @03:57AM (#42699333) Journal

    Being as we're all geeks here, I think we'd vote for the guy who knew how to use a wire-wrap gun over the slick marketing guy.

    You don't have to like everything about a company, even if you like the products they produce.

  • by tyrione (134248) on Saturday January 26, 2013 @06:48AM (#42699735) Homepage

    ... that 50 years from now the media will have deified Jobs and next generations will believe he was a much much larger than life superhero who bootstrapped the entire computer industry and singlehandedly created new innovative products and touched so many people on a deep and personal level through his enduring work. And the real heros, Woz and the hundreds of Apple engineers and designers, will remain a footnote in some obscure appendix in a seldom read computer book, if that.

    Makes me sick, this cult of the Jobs personality and posthumous canonization of a glorified $20-profit salesman.

    The only people complaining of any fame are fans of Woz. Follow Wozniak's track record once the Macintosh [which he had nothing to do with] arrived. He completed a double B.S., got married, and did nothing but small, mindless little startups while getting paid today $120k a year [honorarily by Apple] for simply being alive. The real talent at Apple are the guys who Steve cultivated and who demanded he create NeXT when the board ousted him. I worked around them at NeXT. They dwarf Wozniak in knowledge, skills and capabilities to create great products. That same zeal was brought back to Apple. Wozniak had decades to extend his respect technologically by actually pioneering research in design of CPUs, GPUs, etc. He doesn't know it. He never did. Technology blew past Steve Wozniak and he decided to play Steve Jobs as a CEO and failed miserably every single time. The guy holds 4 patents in his entire engineering career, while being given Willy Wonka's Chocolate Factory of resources to create. He isn't that genius. He's a celebrity who will always be the fat kid who Steve Jobs pulled out of his shell [Wozniak is quite clear on this point] and made him wealthy.

Maybe Computer Science should be in the College of Theology. -- R. S. Barton

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