KansasFest: Final notes from ‘Nerdvana’

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KansasFest
The future and its foundation have a tense history.
Photo: David Pierini/Cult of Mac

Cult of Mac 2.0 bugCult of Mac’s David Pierini traveled to KansasFest to meet Apple fans intensely devoted to the Apple II computer line. The machine turns 40 next year.

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — It’s rare we hear the term personal computer anymore. Yet personal is the only word to begin to understand KansasFest and a small but feisty community of preservationists who love the Apple II line of computers.

The 28th fest concluded Saturday and within the event’s first hour, attendees were already making plans to attend next year, the 40th birthday of the Apple II.

Apple I charity auction could top $1 million

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This Apple 1 board is one of a kind.
This Apple 1 board is one of a kind.
Photo: CharityBuzz

An incredibly rare and unique Apple I computer is set to hit the auction block next week, and it could break the record for the most money ever paid for one of Jobs and Woz’s first computers.

CharityBuzz revealed today that it will auction off an original Apple 1, with 10 percent of the proceeds going to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. Because the circuit board on the item up for auction is rare even among the 60 or so surviving Apple 1 computers left in existence, it could pull in more than $1 million.

Today in Apple history: Apple’s first ever computer goes on sale

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One of today's surviving Apple 1 computers.
Photo: Christie's

Friday 1 July 1, 1976: The Apple 1 goes on sale, becoming the first computer ever sold by the Apple Computer Company.

Arriving the same month Jimmy Carter was nominated for U.S. president, Family Feud debuted on TV, and the United States celebrated the 200th anniversary of its Declaration of Independence, the Apple 1 is only produced in small numbers, and sells for the unusual price of $666.66.

Woz says that the App Store was Apple’s most important invention

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Steve Wozniak wax sculpture fake eyes
Woz has never been shy about speaking publicly about Apple.
Photo: Madame Tussauds

Woz: Apple should be forced to pay a lot more tax

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Steve Wozniak wax sculpture fake eyes
Steve Wozniak wants Apple to pay its fair share.
Photo: Madame Tussauds

From saying that he doesn’t want to be stuck in the Apple ecosystem to advising Apple to build an Android phone, Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak has said a lot of things that probably don’t go down too well at his former company.

His latest comments, however, put him more directly in the sights of Tim Cook — as Woz uses a new interview to take a shot at Apple’s tax payments. His thoughts? The company should pay more than it does. Half of everything it earns, in fact!

Woz would have disagreed with Jobs about screen time for kids

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Steve Wozniak. Photo:
Woz would never tell his kids to stop being tech addicts.
Photo: HigherEdWeb/Flickr CC

Despite being a veritable genius when it comes to selling the masses on the latest tech product, Steve Jobs once candidly admitted that he set strict guidelines for how much time his own kids were allowed to watch screens at home.

It seems Jobs’ Apple co-founder, Steve Wozniak, isn’t quite on the same page, however — as Woz argues in a new interview that kids should be able to spend as much time on the computer as they want.

40 moments that have defined Apple over 40 years

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Admiring fans check out the first iPhone in its public debut.
Photo: Traci Dauphin/Cult of Mac

Apple turns 40 years old today, and what a journey it’s been: from a promising homebrew startup to an underdog fighting off bankruptcy to an industry-straddling behemoth with $233.7 billion in revenue.

It’s impossible to boil down every significant Apple event into one story, but we did our best to pick out the 40 most significant moments in the company’s past.

Check out these key moments in Apple history below.

Vintage-computer fest celebrates 40 years since our first bite of Apple

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The colorful era of the first iMacs on display in an Apple Pop-up exhibit at the Computer Museum of America in Roswell, Ga.
Colorful early iMacs are among the technological wonders on display in the Apple Pop Up exhibit at the Computer Museum of America.
Photo: Computer Museum of America

Phil Schiller says Apple is too busy “inventing the future” to “celebrate the past” by building a museum.

So if you are in search of history on the 40th anniversary of Apple’s founding, you might want to travel to Georgia. There, a guy named Lonnie Mimms has taken over an old CompUSA building and meticulously crafted a tangible timeline that would make Apple’s futurists — perhaps even Schiller — pause with nostalgia and pride.

Woz in wax: Madame Tussauds unveils Steve Wozniak statue

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Woz poses with his waxwork double.
Photo: Rogers & Cowan/Getty CC

Steve Wozniak sure likes to wax lyrical about the Apple II, and now he can do so with his very own wax figure (sorry for the awful pun!) — which was unveiled over the weekend at the first ever Silicon Valley Comic Con at the San Jose Convention Center.

“I am so honored. I have always wanted to be in a wax museum due to characters we idolize like our superheroes. You live on forever,” said Woz.

Woz reveals formative moment that turned him into a geek

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The Woz has the magic touch with computers.
The Woz has the magic touch with computers.
Photo: Reddit

Before Steve Wozniak co-founded Apple Computers, he was just a super-nerdy kid who loved to operate HAM radios. In a new video interview detailing the most formative moments in his totally geeky life, Woz explains how he went from tinkering with electronics to teaching himself binary by 5th grade, and then made a machine that played tic-tac-toe in 6th grade.

Woz eventually got so good with machines that he could design a mini-computer in two days. Those skills led to his creation of the Apple II computer, which put his and Steve Jobs’ fledgling company on the map.

Watch as Woz recounts his childhood obsession with computers, during the humble beginnings of Silicon Valley, below: