Apple co-founder to visit NZ
Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak is visiting Auckland on May 21 to present a seminar called "The Apple Story: Disruptive Innovation, Inspiration and Entrepreneurial Wizardry."
While the late Steve Jobs was regarded as Apple's creative force, the more reclusive Mr Wozniak was regarded as the engineering brains behind the company's early products.
The pair had a tortured relationship, Walter Isaacson related in his official biography of Steve Jobs.
Mr Jobs passionately believed that good design and user-friendliness could only be achieved if a company controlled hardware, software (and, later, online services).
"Woz", on the other hand, thought Apple's operating system should be licensed to other hardware makers - a path that Microsoft took, allowing it to surge ahead in software during the 1980s and 1990s.
But with the runaway success of the closed-system iPod, iPhone, iPad and iTunes, Woz started started to come around to Mr Jobs' thinking.
Mr Jobs' A-to-Z control meant the iPod, and iTunes, were the only system record companies would trust.
But as phones based on Google's Android software moved ahead of Apple in the mobile market, Mr Wozniak swung back to the open camp.
“My primary phone is the iPhone,” he said earlier this year during a surprise visit to Google's headquarters. “I love the beauty of it. But I wish it did all the things my Android does, I really do.”
Woz visited New Zealand in 2006 for a Segway Polo tournament that saw his team, “the Silicon Valley Aftershocks” take on NZ's “Pole Blacks” (whose members included Steve Simms, Rod Drury, Rodney Prescott, Jo Pitts, Roscoe Brown and Hayden Judd).
Many of the Pole Blacks travelled to California for a repeat engagement in 2008.
"We may have to reform the pole blacks. Represent!," Mr Drury offered when NBR broke news of the Apple co-founder's visit.
Like some of Apple's products, Mr Wozniak is intriguing, but doesn't come cheap. Individual tickets cost cost between $795 and $995 (about the same as an iPad).
Woz Live will be held at the Viaduct Events Centre. More: www.stevewozniaklive.com.