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REVIEW: "Revolution in the Valley", Andy Hertzfeld

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  • Rob, grandpa of Ryan, Trevor, Devon & Ha
    BKREVVAL.RVW 20050202 Revolution in the Valley , Andy Hertzfeld, 2005, 0-596-00719-1, U$24.95/C$36.95 %A Andy Hertzfeld %C 103 Morris Street, Suite A,
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 25, 2005
      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
      %D 2005
      %G 0-596-00719-1
      %I O'Reilly & Associates, Inc.
      %O U$24.95/C$36.95 800-998-9938 fax: 707-829-0104 nuts@...
      %O http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0596007191/robsladesinterne
      %O http://www.amazon.ca/exec/obidos/ASIN/0596007191/robsladesin03-20
      %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

      ====================== (quote inserted randomly by Pegasus Mailer)
      rslade@... slade@... rslade@...
      My mind not only wanders, sometimes it leaves completely.
      http://victoria.tc.ca/techrev or http://sun.soci.niu.edu/~rslade
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