REVIEW: "Revolution in the Valley", Andy Hertzfeld
- BKREVVAL.RVW 20050202
"Revolution in the Valley", Andy Hertzfeld, 2005, 0-596-00719-1,
%A Andy Hertzfeld
%C 103 Morris Street, Suite A, Sebastopol, CA 95472
%I O'Reilly & Associates, Inc.
%O U$24.95/C$36.95 800-998-9938 fax: 707-829-0104 nuts@...
%O Audience i+ Tech 2 Writing 2 (see revfaq.htm for explanation)
%P 291 p.
%T "Revolution in the Valley"
The subtitle of the book, indicating that this is the story of how the
Mac was made, isn't really correct. It's a series of anecdotes, in
roughly chronological order, surrounding the creation of the
The stories are generally amusing and entertaining. There are, at
times, tantalizing references to interesting solutions to technical
challenges, but those resolutions are not provided in detail, and the
technical content is a bit frustrating.
I suppose the target audience is Mac fanatics, who will never get
tired of the constant refrain that this was the computer that changed
the history of the cosmos. Still, it is ironic to note the story, on
page 139, of how advertising agency Chiat-Day filmed interviews with
the design team for a series of launch ads. These were never aired
because the advertising people felt that the "too self-congratulatory"
tone would grate on viewers. Having read the book, I can fully
sympathize. Rather late in the text (page 261), it is admitted that
some mistakes were made. The justification? They didn't realize that
the machine that would "shape the lives of humans for hundreds of
years" would last so long.
An interesting item is the perspective on Steve Jobs. Towards the end
of the work he is creditted as the true father of the Macintosh. This
doesn't really fit with the rest of the volume, where he is described
as petty, vindictive, and not really understanding of either the
technology nor the process of development.
Still, a lot of the stories are cute.
copyright Robert M. Slade, 2005 BKREVVAL.RVW 20050202
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