Foreword Review — Mar / Apr 1999
“Apple has some tremendous assets, but I believe without some attention, the company could, could, could…I’m searching for the right word—could, could die.” Steve Jobs
At the present moment, Apple is on the rebound, but this quote seemed to define the situation for Apple not that long ago. In this timely book author Owen Linzmayer looks very deeply into the history of the famously cantankerous corporate misfit which is Apple Computer. What one sees is remarkable, depressing and ultimately fascinating. Linzmayer, ignoring much of the company’s official history, digs under the carefully crafted official picture to show the genius and wasted opportunity that has equally marked the rise, fall and rebounds of one of the most important technology companies in America.
Looming over this history are the doppelgangers of Steven Jobs and Bill Gates. Brilliant, ruthless, funny, inept and shrewd, the history of Apple is the chronicle of the minuet of these two fiercely original men. It is hard to escape the observation that Apple, creative and innovative to a fault, never can seem to capitalize on their superiority, while imitators, feeding on Apple’s innovations have carved up large portions of the market for themselves at Apple’s expense. It is also important to remember that the company that brought us the MacIntosh also brought us the Mac III, Lisa and the Mac portable; not exactly huge successes.
Linzmayer makes this an interesting book, packing it with quotes, photos and anecdotes that humanize the history of the company that brought us the mouse-driven MacIntosh, the laser printer, the personal assistant and numerous other innovations. Definitely for anyone with an interest in the history of technology.