Steve Jobs left Apple on his own, wasn't forced out, Wozniak says

Posted:
in General Discussion edited September 2015
The popular narrative that Steve Jobs was removed from Apple by board fiat after losing a war for control with then-CEO John Sculley is not entirely accurate, according to Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak.


Wozniak and Jobs in Apple's early days


"Steve Jobs wasn't pushed out of the company. He left," Wozniak wrote on Facebook. "After the Macintosh failure it's fair to assume that Jobs left out of his feeling of greatness, and embarrassment about not having achieved it."

Wozniak's comments came in the midst of a larger discussion centering on the new Aaron Sorkin-penned, Danny Boyle-led movie about Jobs's life that is set to hit theatres next month. Wozniak has praised that film --?for which he consulted --?as the best screen adaptation of Jobs and Apple since 1999's Pirates of Silicon Valley.

The real story surrounding Jobs's first departure from Apple may never be known, as several company insiders have given varying accounts over the years. In a 2005 commencement address to students at Stanford, Jobs himself offered a different point of view:

"We had just released our finest creation -- the Macintosh -- a year earlier, and I had just turned 30. And then I got fired," Jobs said. "How can you get fired from a company you started? Well, as Apple grew we hired someone who I thought was very talented to run the company with me, and for the first year or so things went well. But then our visions of the future began to diverge and eventually we had a falling out. When we did, our Board of Directors sided with him. So at 30 I was out."

Sculley has disputed Jobs's version of events and offered his own take, which more closely aligns with Wozniak's perspective.

"It was after making the pitches [regarding Macintosh Office] that the Apple board asked Steve to step down from the Macintosh division for being too disruptive in the organization," Sculley said in an interview earlier this year.

"Steve was never fired. He took a sabbatical and was still chairman of the board. He was down, no one pushed him, but he was off the Mac, which was his deal - he never forgave me for that."

Wozniak added that on balance, the latest attempt to chronicle Jobs's life does well to straddle the line between entertainment and accuracy:

"This movie does a good job with accuracy of issues even if all the scenes with myself or Andy Hertzfeld talking to Jobs never happened at all. The issues were real and did happen, even if at different points in time. [...] The acting is very good compared to other movies about Steve Jobs. The movie doesn't try to be another one of the story we all know. It tries to make you feel what it was like emotionally, as Jobs and those around him."

Steve Jobs, starring Michael Fassbender in the titular role, will debut at the New York Film Festival Oct. 3 in advance of a wider release Oct. 9 in North America.
«1345678

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 142

    So the “leave or you’re fired” scenario was a lie, or did Woz just get a new book of lawyer tactics?

  • Reply 2 of 142
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 5,115member

    Sorry, but Woz is so full of shit. I don't believe a word that comes out of his mouth, especially since it's all in service of promoting himself and shitting on Apple and Jobs. 

     

    Quote:


     "Steve Jobs wasn't pushed out of the company. He left," Wozniak wrote on Facebook. "After the Macintosh failure it's fair to assume that Jobs left out of his feeling of greatness, and embarrassment about not having achieved it."


     

    Oh, so he's ASSUMING, and actually doesn't know a damn thing, but feels the need to blurt out horse-shit anyway. Got it. 

    SpamSandwichMacsAlways
  • Reply 3 of 142
    slurpy wrote: »
    Sorry, but Woz is so full of shit. I don't believe a word that comes out of his mouth, especially since it's all in service of promoting himself and shitting on Apple and Jobs. 

    Oh, so he's ASSUMING, and actually doesn't know a damn thing, but feels the need to blurt out horse-shit anyway. Got it. 

    1) I have no reason to doubt Woz here.

    2) His assuming is in regards to what Jobs was feeling, which is the correct way to word that.
    Flyguy4949
  • Reply 4 of 142
    jonljonl Posts: 210member

    Wozniak has been a pile of randomly firing neurons for the last 30+ years. He's a court jester whose ancient accomplishments somehow keep him relevant. I don't understand it.

    MacsAlways
  • Reply 5 of 142
    Originally Posted by jonl View Post

    Wozniak has been a pile of randomly firing neurons for the last 30+ years.

     

    All I’ll say about Woz in this regard is that I think that plane accident may have done more damage than was thought (or identifiable) at the time.

  • Reply 6 of 142
    In a way he's right, but this is not news. After losing his fight with Apple's board of directors, Jobs was banished to an off-site office location and stripped of power and responsibilities at the company. So technically he did quit, but so would anyone else under the same circumstances.
    SpamSandwichMacsAlways
  • Reply 7 of 142
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SolipsismY View Post





    1) I have no reason to doubt Woz here.



    2) His assuming is in regards to what Jobs was feeling, which is the correct way to word that.



    Different people's recollection of events are almost always different to some degree or another.  And if Woz was not even present for some of the discussions, it would be virtually impossible for him to know if it was presented to Steve as a "leave or your fired" scenario.  Such a message is often given as much with body language and tone as it is with express words.  Usually to try to allow the person being booted to save as much face as possible, out of respect.  Always better to let the person leave with as much dignity as possible.  And besides, hasn't Woz pretty much made it clear that the never wanted anything to do with any of the executive, management type aspects of the business?

    MacsAlways
  • Reply 8 of 142
    Jobs left, but that's because he was sent to what he called Siberia and stripped of all power in the company. He took several people with him and went to found NeXT. And I'm pretty sure Markkula was chairman of the board.
    MacsAlways
  • Reply 9 of 142
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 5,115member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SolipsismY View Post





    1) I have no reason to doubt Woz here.



    2) His assuming is in regards to what Jobs was feeling, which is the correct way to word that.

     

    He's directly contradicting what Jobs stated on multiple occasions, and basically calling him a liar. Sorry, I lost respect for Woz after the years he spent shilling for Android, bashing Apple and its management, and dragging Jobs out of his grave on multiple occasions in order to rewrite history in a way that gave himself more influence and credit, and Jobs less. If Woz had an ounce of class, the LEAST he could do is not publically trash Apple every chance he gets, and just keep quiet, since he's still being paid a salary by the company and is filthy rich because of Steve Jobs and Apple's success. The guy was there at Apple's inception, and that's about it. Yet, he loves to pretend like he should get credit for the company's current success and performance. 

    MacsAlways
  • Reply 10 of 142

    Becoming Steve Jobs made it pretty clear that Steve himself approached the board and told them his plans to start a new company with a few "low-level" Apple employees. 

    Of course we cannot take the book as Gospel, but I see no reason to doubt that.

     

    Steve saying that he was fired from the Company in his Stanford commencement speech is probably just him being succinct about the circumstances. Being marginalised in the Company you co-founded really seems like the Board was trying its best to get him out, but without actually dirtying its own hands.

    MacsAlways
  • Reply 11 of 142
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Slurpy View Post

     

     

    The guy was there at Apple's inception, and that's about it. Yet, he loves to pretend like he should get credit for the company's current success and performance. 


     

    You do know he basically designed the Apple I and Apple II right?

     

    Read "Fire in the Valley" to get some background on the two Steves and the history of Apple.

  • Reply 12 of 142
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by imac.usr View Post

     

     

    You do know he basically designed the Apple I and Apple II right?

     

    Read "Fire in the Valley" to get some background on the two Steves and the history of Apple.




    He or she was just saying that he was important to the inception of the company.  Of course he designed those, and that was important.  But that has nothing to do with the current success of the company.  He admittedly wanted nothing to do with running the company.  Products themselves don't make a company survive or do well.  Someone has to figure out how to market them and make people want them.

    The commodore, amiga, and other computer of that era were also great and popular computers.  Those companies aren't around.  Apple has thrived because it evolved and created new products that are dominating their markets.  Woz has nothing to do with that.  

    MacsAlways
  • Reply 13 of 142

    I always understand that he left of his own accord but it was just that the Apple board moved him into a position at Apple with no real power. So in essence, he felt he'd been "fired."

    MacsAlways
  • Reply 14 of 142
    adamcadamc Posts: 568member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by tknull View Post

     



    Different people's recollection of events are almost always different to some degree or another.  And if Woz was not even present for some of the discussions, it would be virtually impossible for him to know if it was presented to Steve as a "leave or your fired" scenario.  Such a message is often given as much with body language and tone as it is with express words.  Usually to try to allow the person being booted to save as much face as possible, out of respect.  Always better to let the person leave with as much dignity as possible.  And besides, hasn't Woz pretty much made it clear that the never wanted anything to do with any of the executive, management type aspects of the business?




    Good point.

  • Reply 15 of 142

    Woz is such a jerk, and probably always has been. No wonder Steve gave him a hard time, I couldn't deal with such a moron either.

    MacsAlways
  • Reply 16 of 142
    Woz is such a jerk, and probably always has been. No wonder Steve gave him a hard time, I couldn't deal with such a moron either.
    The guy who invented the freaking personal computer itself is far from a "moron."

    What have you accomplished to compare to that?
  • Reply 17 of 142
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Durandal1707 View Post





    The guy who invented the freaking personal computer itself is far from a "moron."



    What have you accomplished to compare to that?

     

    Invented the PC is probably too much praise. There were many people involved in advancing various aspects of the PC. Primary designer of the first successful 'Apple PC' is the more correct description. A lot of the stuff they used in Apple II was commonly available, and there were other companies that were making stuff which was in the same ball park.

    MacsAlways
  • Reply 18 of 142
    iamnemani wrote: »
    Invented the PC is probably too much praise. There were many people involved in advancing various aspects of the PC. Primary designer of the first successful 'Apple PC' is the more correct description. A lot of the stuff they used in Apple II was commonly available, and there were other companies that were making stuff which was in the same ball park.
    Everything I've read says that the Apple I was the first computer to be sold as a complete package (as far as the circuit board goes, at least — you still had to put it in a case yourself along with a few other components, but it was a lot more complete than what had existed at the time), instead of as hobbyist kits that you had to build yourself. Prior to this, computers were thought of as too geeky to reach a wide audience. Woz tried to pitch the idea to HP, and they didn't see the value in it, so he and Jobs did it on their own.

    The Apple II, of course, shouldn't be discounted either, as it played a huge role in bringing personal computers into the mainstream. Woz designed many of the hardware and software components of it as well.
  • Reply 19 of 142
    I have dozens of employees who left with Steve after the board voted no confidence and stripped him of his position. Steve Wozniak is a coward and a chickenshit who gets $120k/year for life doing nothing for Apple.
    MacsAlways
  • Reply 20 of 142
    iamnemani wrote: »
    Invented the PC is probably too much praise. There were many people involved in advancing various aspects of the PC. Primary designer of the first successful 'Apple PC' is the more correct description. A lot of the stuff they used in Apple II was commonly available, and there were other companies that were making stuff which was in the same ball park.

    Apple II was their mainstream, mass market success, but the Apple I was a pretty significant advancement.
Sign In or Register to comment.