Cases for Critical Thinking Apple Computer, Inc.: Passion, Design and the Future Introduction Apple Computer paradoxically exists as both one of America's greatest successes as well as one of its greatest failures. It single-handedly created the personal computer industry, bringing such behemoths as IBM and Digital Equipment almost to their knees. At the same time, Apple is an example of opportunities lost due to large personal egos and poor management decisions. It represents a fascinating microcosm of American business.
Corporate History The history of Apple Computer is a history of passion among its founders, employees, and loyal users. Started by a pair of Stevens, Steven Wozniak and Steven Jobs, both had an interest in electronics at an early age, with Wozniak at Hewlett-Packard and Jobs at Atari. Wozniak constructed his first personal computer, the Apple I, and along with Jobs, created Apple Computer on April 1, 1976. 1 However, it wasn't until 1977 and the introduction of the Apple II, with its plastic case and color graphics, that things began to take off.
The addition of a floppy drive in early 1978 added to the popularity of the new computer. By 1980, the release of the Apple III found the company with several thousand employees and Steven Jobs at the helm.
Early on Apple Computer exhibited an extreme emphasis on new and innovative styling in its computer offerings. Jobs' eccentric personality pervaded the culture of Apple and all the people who worked there. He took a personal interest in the development of new products, including the Lisa and the legendary MacIntosh, with its graphical interface and 3.5 inch floppy disk.
The passion Apple is so famous for was clearly evident in the design of the MacIntosh. Project teams worked around the clock to develop the machine, in addition to its...