Steve Wozniak, more fondly known as Woz, co-founded Apple with his friend Steve Jobs (and the help of Ronald Wayne). He invented the Apple I and Apple II in the 70s before leaving Apple in 1987, but that certainly wasn’t the end of Woz in the media. He’s quite the chatterbox, and, here at Macworld, we rather enjoy trying to guess what on Earth he’s going to say next.
It’s Steve Wozniak’s 70th birthday today (11 August 2020) so we thought it would be a good time to revive this article which includes 10 facts about Steve Wozniak that you may not have known. Some are entertaining (see number six) and others are impressively geeky (see number nine). How well do you know Woz? Let us know in the comments section below or on Twitter.
10 facts about Steve Wozniak that may surprise you
1. An aeroplane crash in 1981 left Woz with memory loss that caused him to forget the crash and his time in the hospital afterwards. Woz was piloting the plane that crashed shortly after taking off from Santa Cruz Sky Park. Thankfully, he eventually recovered from the amnesia.
2. Woz has been awarded a total of 11 Honorary Doctor of Engineering degrees.
3. Woz’s start-up company CL 9 developed the first universal remote control, the CORE, in 1987. The company was in business for three years, from 1985 to 1988.
4. A street in San Jose, California, is named Woz Way in his honour, thanks to his contribution to the Children’s Discovery Museum located there.
5. Woz made a guest appearance in The Big Bang Theory season 4. The episode, titled ‘The Cruciferous Vegetable Amplification’, Sheldon spots Woz having dinner in the Cheesecake Factory, and sends a robotic version of himself to chat with the Apple co-founder about the Apple II. Unfortunately, the episode ends with Sheldon tripping and breaking both the Apple II and his ankle as he rushed to take the computer to Woz for him to sign.
6. Woz competed in Dancing with the Stars season 8 in 2009. He pulled a hamstring and fractured his foot during the experience. Despite his impressive worm dance moves (see the video below), Woz didn’t win the series.
7. Woz is a member of the Silicon Valley Aftershocks – a Segway Polo team, of course. He says that he takes his Segway almost everywhere with him.
8. Woz has been married four times, and once dated comedian Kathy Griffin who documented their relationship on her reality TV show, My Life on the D-List. Start the video below at 6:30 to see Woz (and his Segway, of course) in action.
9. In the 90s, Woz submitted so many high scores of the classic Gameboy game Tetris to Nintendo Power magazine that they eventually refused to print them. So, Woz began sending them under the name “Evets Kainzow”. Smart.
10. In 1971, Woz appeared briefly as an extra (he played a hippie) in car chase movie “Vanishing Point”. [Update – while this ‘fact’ is documented on IMDb, Woz himself has told us that it’s not true. So sorry about that. Although we’re still pretty excited that Woz is reading our articles about him!]
If you are interested in Apple History why not read: The story of Steve Jobs and Apple. We also have some Apple themed book recommendations, and film recommendations too.