back to article Super-rare wooden Apple 1 hand built by Jobs and Wozniak goes to auction

Anyone interested in an Apple I hand built by Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak circa 1976 has until 11:30 am PST today to make a bid as the rare computer goes up for auction at John Moran Auctioneers outside Los Angeles, California. The vintage machine is one of the few Apple-I versions encased in koa wood, from the Acacia koa …

  1. trevorde Silver badge

    Some things don't change

    Overpriced and still no decent software

    1. Lord Elpuss Silver badge

      Re: Some things don't change

      Gets the coveted First Comment, and lands with that. Sigh.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Some things don't change

      Still faster than Micr0$oft Windoze.

  2. coconuthead

    iHand

    For a moment I thought it was a wooden hand, until I realised the hyphen in "hand-built" was missing.

    1. b0llchit Silver badge
      Linux

      Re: iHand

      Doesn't matter. It burns just as well. The hole in your wallet, that is, of course.

    2. Hubert Cumberdale Silver badge

      Re: iHand

      Well, I did a double take when I glimpsed both "hand" and "jobs" while scanning the headlines.

  3. 45RPM Silver badge

    It looks very nice, aesthetically, in that wooden case. And there’s no doubting that these machines are historically important - especially if you consider that they evolved into the Apple II, which ran VisiCalc, and in so doing became the first desktop business computer mega hit - and prompted IBM to take this whole microcomputer thing seriously, giving us the IBM 5150 (and its descendants)

    It belongs in a museum where everyone can enjoy it.

    As to whether it’s overpriced, that depends on whether you’d consider articles like the Wright Flyer, Puffing Billy, Colossus and other early examples of their type have an intrinsic value based on their historical provenance.

    1. AMBxx Silver badge

      My household is 'Apple free', but I'd still like to own this. Just to have a piece of history. Just a shame about the price!

    2. Aristotles slow and dimwitted horse Silver badge

      "These machines are historically important"

      Yes, but only to a very very, very small number of people. The real driver for the ridiculous costs attributed to these things is people hoping to make a future profit on it, rather than any overarching altruistic concern to preserve it for future posterity.

      1. AMBxx Silver badge

        I'm not convinced that profit is the motive. Someone spending this much on something with so little intrinsic value is more interested in the ownership. Chances are they have plenty of money already and aren't interested in a relatively small 5 figure increase in value.

        1. A. Coatsworth

          I'm quite sure Aristotles slow and dimwitted horse is right and here is why:

          A job application by Steve Jobs, pbuh, has been sold 4 times since 2017, with each auction multiplying the sale value several times.

          One could argue that a paper application has even less intrinsic value than a working computer.

          But re-selling this highly collectible item almost on a yearly basis? That's nothing but speculation.

          Edit: Source https://www.theregister.com/2021/07/29/steve_jobs_nft_auction_race/

        2. Cuddles Silver badge

          The thing about people with plenty of money is that they tend to get and stay that way because they care about exactly that sort of thing. as the saying goes, look after the pennies and the pounds look after themselves. A relatively small five figure increase in value might not be much to a millionaire, but a couple of hundred such increases absolutely does mean something to them. Most people involved in such auctions aren't there because they happen to be interested in one particular piece, they buy up lots of things in lots of auctions as part of a broad investment strategy. It's like saying that someone gambling on the stock market doesn't care about the tiny profit from a single share; the point is that you trade rather more than just one and those tiny amounts quickly add up.

    3. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Yes, when I read "koa wood", I was wondering where Jonny Ive was back then.

      (Was he a 10 year old child prodigy design genius back then?)

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    with wood chips made from genuine hand-carved Koa rather than TTL (Teak Trunk and Leaves)

    1. Dr Scrum Master

      Ah the good old days, when goods were made of recyclable and biodegradable materials.

    2. Antron Argaiv Silver badge
      Unhappy

      Original capacitors...well, that sold m e, I'll be bidding!

      I suppose for that price, the thing will rest inside a glass box for the rest of its life, and will never be powered on, lest one of those original "rare" capacitors fail and decrease its value by $1k. A bit sad, really. Those things were made to be used.

      1. Bartholomew Bronze badge

        The active, and shelf, life of an electrolytic capacitor is about 20 years, so plugging that in without replacing them all would not be a good idea.

        That Apple 1 is now an archaeological relic, you can not replace the failed bits with era appropriate parts because they are all bad now and if you replace them all with modern parts so that the board functions you end up with the Ship of Theseus paradox!

        Best that can be done is backward engineer the board with test probes and dump all the ROMS, digitise all the original datasheets for the IC's from the era used to preserve that information for future generations of archaeologists. Doing that and including it now would increase the value next time it is sold on.

        1. that one in the corner Bronze badge

          > dump the ROMs, digitise the data sheets

          Bundle all of that lovely digital data into an NFT, then bung that into the next auction. Ka-ching.

          1. This post has been deleted by its author

          2. Bartholomew Bronze badge
            Coat

            A physical binder filled with the paper datasheets, and maybe a dot matrix style printout of the ROM hex dumps. Although far less practical would probably fetch a higher price. Maybe even seal the binder in UV protective cover filled with nitrogen to preserve it longer. And throw in a few 8 inch floppy disk backups of the ROMs just for the fun factor ("We have included a fully digital archive copy for your convenience!").

      2. Spoobistle
        Joke

        rare and valuable 0.01 ceramics

        I think I'd better get some bars put on the garage windows...

      3. John Brown (no body) Silver badge
        Coat

        "I suppose for that price, the thing will rest inside a glass box for the rest of its life,"

        Well, yes, of course. At that age, there'll be DANGEROUS LEAD in the solder. Elf'n'Safety dontcha know. There's probably a hint of CARCINOGENIC chemicals too! (Note the SCARY CAPITALS)

        Coat, rather than Joke icon, since to some, it might not be a joke, especially if the buyer is in California.

        1. Neil Barnes Silver badge
          Coat

          And those nasty high-current TTL chips, not LSTTL - think of the environmental damage of actually turning it on!

          ---> The coat is green, right?

          1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge
            Thumb Up

            No, it's white. The background is green. Look closer :-)

        2. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

          In California the wood probably requires a Prop65 warning

        3. Robert Carnegie Silver badge

          Half of the work force that built it have subsequently died.

      4. doublelayer Silver badge

        "I suppose for that price, the thing will rest inside a glass box for the rest of its life, and will never be powered on, lest one of those original "rare" capacitors fail and decrease its value by $1k. A bit sad, really. Those things were made to be used."

        I'm not troubled by that, especially if the glass case was visible to the public (it probably won't be). There's nothing you can do with a 1976-era Apple I which can't be done with greater ease on something everyone already has. If you really like the computer and you want to spend money, run an emulator on some hardware you've put into a wooden box and you get the same experience. While I'm no collector, I would find it a little sad that a piece of computing history was destroyed after its importance was known just because someone wanted to try their hand at 1976-era basic.

    3. Dwarf Silver badge

      Perhaps they used Cutting Material Ordinary Saw (CMOS) tools to manufacture the case

  5. garrettahughes

    THEY WOULD HAVE TO PAY ME TO TAKE IT HOME

    Spent many hours trying to use this thing in a classroom environment through the Apple II. Writing software for it was a nightmare. I never really understood the fascination that school districts had for this product, especially the "networked" version. I was writing code for the Amiga and Commodore at the same time. By comparison they were far and away better machines. Thank God the IBM personal computer came along for personal computing. When windows appeared on the scene it was another step backwards. I still have a picture of a little girl sitting in front of one of these machines smiling while she typed *EBDTA5:PGM.MAC $Y$$ or something like that. Yeah, sure.

  6. Nick Sticks
    Joke

    I made a PC out of mahogany once, it wooden boot.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Way more

    I bet some nutter ends up paying over $1m for this easy

  8. Efer Brick

    Obsolete?

    Or will it run BigSurly?

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