The $50,000.00 Apple 1

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I don't think that in 6 days,

I don't think that in 6 days, any one is going to bid on it. Not $50,000, at least. In these economic times, there's no one but no one who can afford to spend $50k on a luxury item which is, for all practical purposes, completely useless.

I mean, for that amount of money, one can buy an entire house; a much smarter and more useful property.

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Crowd pleaser

What's the eBay insertion fee for $50,000?

"Useful" and "useless" is completely immaterial, and you certainly wouldn't want to try to make it useful. You wouldn't want to put any electricity into it at all. This would be an investment in a museum piece, and if not a private collector, then a museum would certainly be the most likely party interested. I can see the Smithsonian investing $50,000 for this. It would be a draw to the museum and worth the money for that and it's investment worth. I'd go to the Smithsonian specifically to see it the next time I'm there. We watched one get snatched up with a Buy it Now a month or two ago for around $16,000, but it was not in this condition and did not have any original papers. This probably is as good an actual artifact as you're going to find, so you might as well start high. I think he's probably going to get it, although yeah, 6 days is a bit short, but $50,000 might even be low. A complete, excellent condition first consumer personal computer in history. Imagine what it'll be worth in 50 or 100 years if it's well preserved. It might even be up there with the Van Gogh's.

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The $50,000.00 Apple 1

I tell you the truth, I have to give it to the seller to start that high. Although with the provenance, the other items with it, and Steve Jobs signature on the sales slip it makes it almost impossible to impeach.
I say again....Whew!! Smile

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The original box...

What's really cool is that this guy still has the original box.
There are 2 or 3 pictures floating around with Woz and Jobs sitting at a coffee table with a stack of these white boxes.
There is another image floating around from "the garage" showing what appears to be a large stack of these on a table.

You can see "Stancor P8380" written on the box too!

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People spend $100M+ on a sing

People spend $100M+ on a single piece of art work, some Russian guy spent $750M on a house in the French Riviera, I can see this going for $100K someday in the near future only it will be at some big name auction house and not ebay.

Give it some time, and the stuff we play with will be worth some money (in choice condition and complete).

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Yes, why go to eBay at all? S

Yes, why go to eBay at all? Sotheby's with a starting bid of $500,000. Place it where it belongs. The original catalyst of the present new age. The original device which has brought about the most major development in human evolution--both technological and biological--since the iron age. At $500,000, too, it would actually be way underpriced. It should be, at a bare minimum, up there with a Navajo blanket.

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As far as the box and other m

As far as the box and other material goes, it is awesome. Keep in mind that there must have been an additional shipping carton, as well as other boxes for the transformers, that are now missing. I wonder what the condition of the motherboard really is, though. If I was going to buy one at what appears to be a record price, I would ask some questions.

1) Does it currently function? - I suspect not
2) What are the date codes on the chips? - this may give some kind of clue about how many have been replaced through the years.
3) Are the original transformers included? - they are not present in any photos.
4) Was there a keyboard?
5) How much hacking really went on to add that additional socket in the proto area - we'll see if the owner actually puts a picture of the back up on the auction site. In my opinion, any cut traces would drastically reduce value. If additional wires were just soldered on, that could be undone.

That said, I suspect that someone will cave in and ante up.

Regards,
Mike Willegal

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Down to the stretch

Only seventeen hours to go and no bidders, but there are people asking him questions, so it might be fun to be there at the close. It looks likes there's going to be some bites. What I would do if I were him is see if the top hotel in Roseville, California would offer a discount on finest accommodations to the winner, with the stipulation that there would be a photo by the local press and Apple-related magazines of the handover in the lobby of the hotel. That is, of course, unless the buyer wants it all to be secret.

Hmm, maybe he could talk Steve or someone from Apple into coming down and playing a part. How far is Roseville from Cupertino?

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2 years in planning?

There's one thing I find a little curious about this auction--not necessarily suspicious, but curious. The seller's eBay ID is "apple1sale." According to his ID history that's the only ID he has used since he opened his account back in August of 2007. You would think he chose that ID specifically because he was going to put up this auction. What's with the 2 year wait? Second thoughts? Or maybe he did put it up back then but got no bids?

Actually, I have no suspicions about this seller. The fact that he's trying very hard to get the buyer to pick it up in person says this is all up and up. Just bring your payment in person too, buyer.

Holy &h^#!! As of right now, he's got 19,200 page hits to his auction! Looks like the word has gone out.

We should place bets on how much it's going to sell for. Something inside me is saying $83K. Something else is saying $124K. Here's what's going to happen: it's going to sell for $143K, the buyer's going to go pick it up, but instead of flying home with it, he or she is going to stop in New York to have it cataloged by Sotheby's and then it's going to sell at auction there in a year for $875K. You heard it here first!

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Ends in 7 min, 30 s. I've got

Ends in 7 min, 30 s. I've got class in 10 min, but I'm going to sit here and watch this.

0 bids so far.

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"Due to the irreplaceable nat

"Due to the irreplaceable nature of this item, I am placing a $3,000 additional fee if the item is chosen to be shipped. I do not do this for the money, I do it to discourage shipping."

This is ridiculous. Clearly he is doing it for the money, or he wouldn't charge so much. And it's probably against eBay's rules anyway. What a scam artist!

2 min, 30 s. Still no bids.

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30 s, still no bids...

30 s, still no bids...

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It's over.

All over. 0 bids.

Bidding has ended on this item.
Item:Original Apple 1 computer for sale

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Re: 2 years in planning?

Hawaii Cruiser wrote:

We should place bets on how much it's going to sell for. Something inside me is saying $83K. Something else is saying $124K. Here's what's going to happen: it's going to sell for $143K, the buyer's going to go pick it up, but instead of flying home with it, he or she is going to stop in New York to have it cataloged by Sotheby's and then it's going to sell at auction there in a year for $875K. You heard it here first!

One of these things sold for a "Buy it Now" of $17,950 a month ago. Based on that alone someone I'd think you would of have to be a complete and utter idiot to spend $50k on this one. Allegedly one sold for that much in 1999, I guess, but on items like this it's almost impossible to really set a "fair market price". As everyone knows, from a practical standpoint it's completely worthless, and as a semi-rational person I find it difficult to stomach the idea that a 30 year old piece of fiberglass could fetch anything in the same ballpark as a decent Ming Vase.

Of course, given enough hype a burnt piece of toast can sell for $28,000, so what do I know? Still, the fact that the last one traded for so much less then $50k, let alone eight-tenths-of-a-million-bucks, argues pretty heavily against Sotheby's setting an action reserve price much over the 20-30K ballpark. As much as I'd love finding an Apple I in the basement myself I think it's fair to say that such a find would be in the "Yay, free car!" category, not "Yay, free mansion!".

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Appraising

I was just having fun. I was going to say he should give me a cut if it went over $100K. I did a lot of work here for him. But definitely, it's worth $50K, and sooner or later he's going to get at least that much if he keeps his nerve. We're not talking about just a computer here anymore. We're talking about an artifact. "Completely worthless" in the way you mean it is completely besides the point. A Ming vase is just some clay and glaze. A Van Gogh is just some canvas, various pigments, and hardened linseed oil.

What makes value in the art and rare artifact world are various factors. First you start with rarity. There were 50 of these Apple I's made, correct? Out of that 50 how many survive? Out of those survivors how many have the original documents. Out of those with documents, how many have the original packaging? Out of those with documents, how many have the signature of the famous artist? So how many other examples of this artifact with these attributes remain in the world? Do you know of any other examples so complete? That's rarity. This one leaves those other examples way behind in the dust. Differences like these can make a difference in value in factors of 10x, 100x, 1000x when appraising an artifact. The price another fetched on the market may have little to do with the value of a more complete version, or a version which has certain other factors the other does not have. And comparing it to a Buy-it-now purchase is really absurd because you will never know how much it would have sold for in a true auction. That Buy-it-now option was, in my opinion, probably foolish, but how will you ever know? An appraiser is looking for what they sell at open auction as the best determinant.

Another factor is emotional appeal. How much is the world attached to their personal computers? How many Apple faithful are there out there and how many are there amongst the world of collectors? How many people know the legend of the two Steves and their little garage beginnings? How many will know that legend in the future and attach significance to it? How much will the legend form in the heart of the culture?

Significance is another factor. How significant is this artifact in history? How will that significance develop in the future? How significant will the artifact be appraised by the intellectuals?

Another factor is fad. What's the current fad amongst collectors? Collectors are scooping up more than Van Gogh's and Ming vases, and increasingly so, they are snatching up items outside of the world of art. Technology is one of the hot items.

Another factor is the prestige of owning an item. What prestige is there when, in fifty years, you pull out the first personal computer with a signature of the Steve when he was an unknown? Steve will forever be a legend in the history of American business, and his legend may increase with time and his passing. The things legends touch become valuable. What will it mean to a businessman in the future to own the beginnings of one of the most famous businessmen in history? Businesswomen too, of course. Prestige and emotional appeal being a couple of participants in an open auction.

Yes, I'd say it's a little more than a 30 year old piece of fiberglass. One man's mansion is another man's outhouse, and three quarters of a million does not buy a mansion where I live. The house I'm sitting in right now is worth more than that, and let me assure you, it's no mansion. I'm having a problem keeping the little inflatable pool in the front yard inflated. Is a 30 year old piece of fiberglass worth more than this plot of land and frame of sticks? You and I are not the ones in the position to determine that. And I don't think the vintage systems sub-category in the Apple computers section of eBay is the greatest place to determine value on an object of significant rarity, either.

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But unfortunately, "Hawaii Cr

But unfortunately, "Hawaii Cruiser," none of those factors persuaded one to part company with 50 grand.

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give it time

Well, not this time around. 50 grand to you is comparatively 5 dollars to some others, and that 5 dollars when invested correctly can bring high yields. Because it sounds absurd to you, doesn't make it so. There are other worlds within this world. Sometimes it takes a little while for them to intersect.

There are other "wild card" factors, too, which you might put in the obsessive or eccentric category. Someone needs to fill a gap in his collection or his soul identifies with a particular object. They will pay a premium. Intersecting with them could take quite awhile. I'd say there's high potential for that kind of sale here, too.

Still, like I say, who I'd like to see buy it is the Smithsonian. I'd love to go see a display with a recreation of the garage with wax figures of Steve and Steve and that other guy standing around this thing. That would be a fun sight.

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Re: Appraising

Hawaii Cruiser wrote:

Significance is another factor. How significant is this artifact in history? How will that significance develop in the future? How significant will the artifact be appraised by the intellectuals?

To be bluntly honest, I think the "significance factor" is being overplayed here. In the grand scheme of things the Apple I *wasn't* a particularly significant computer. Yes, it was the first product churned out by the "Two Steves", but it was just one of many single-board hobby computers on the market at the time, and compared to some of its rivals it wasn't even a particularly good seller. As a technological relic it's a dud. (If you're looking for "first", look at the Altair. If you're looking at "First for the Masses", look at the Apple ][/Commodore PET/TRS-80 Model I trifecta for your museum.) The only thing that makes it special is the Apple name.

Which is why frankly I think it compares well to the Virgin Mary Toast. It's a religious icon, not a technological milestone. If Apple had shriveled up and died like Commodore or Processor Tech it'd be worth a lot less the $50,000. ;^)

--Peace

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Hail Mary

Nope, if that were the case, it wouldn't be worth $50,000 (maybe). But that wasn't the case, and they weren't the machines that went on to significantly revolutionize the world. The revolution was not only in technology, it was in the culture in many of the most profound ways. Like Steve said, do you want to keep selling sugar water, or do you want to change the world--or whatever the line was. You keep looking at it with your computer engineer eyes. When I say intellectuals, I mean partly engineers, etc., but more importantly, anthropologists, sociologists, historians, and other such ilk. How important was Steve's determination and vision? Wallace came up with the theory of evolution too, and was an instigator for Darwin's ideas, but who knows who he was? What do you think is more valuable, Wallace's notes, or Darwin's notes from the Beagle? Wallace may have been the better scientist, but that doesn't make his artifacts more valuable. Darwin's reputation survived. That makes what remains of him more "valuable" than what survives of Wallace. The Virgin Mary Toast was a product of hysteria and hysterical, not much like the Apple I, but you could certainly argue a case of religious icon for the Apple I as well, but it would only be one factor--maybe an important factor to the buyer--amongst a lot of factors, the primary being the place in history of the development of the human race as a whole. I don't think anyone's going to think an Apple II is more valuable than an Apple I even though it was possibly more instrumental in the great change. They're both part of the Apple legend and the Apple I is more rare and closer to the Big Bang.

But Eudi, I consider you an important intellectual and your opinion certainly has significance in the evaluation, but it probably doesn't have much in the sale. It's all a game, after all. Value is all a magic trick, much like the value of the dollar. In the world of fiat currency and Fractional Reserve Lending all is based on nothing except what you can convince others what nothing is worth. Smoke and mirrors--that's how value is actually determined in the modern world and what people finally buy into. The world of collection is the same. Yes, it's just a piece of fiberglass. Isn't that funny? The Liberty Bell is just a hunk of metal that sits there doing nothing, and it's not a great example of good manufacturing. It's got that big crack, after all.

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It is significant not so much

It is significant not so much because of it's technology, but because it was the first of a breed, the same way that a Ford Model A 1903 is significant. Rarity contributes to value also. Note that there were far fewer Apple 1's made than 1903 model A's. Those model A's go for hundreds of thousands of dollars these days.

I expect that autos will always have more widespread appeal than computers, so I don't expect to see 5 figure Apple 1's anytime soon.

Regards,
Mike Willegal

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Five bucks says this guy will

Five bucks says this guy will relist it within 6 months, again for $50k. When that auction fails to attract any bidders, rinse, repeat, wipe hands on pants.

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I never thought.....

I never thought that my little Sunday morning eBay report would spark such controversy. lol

Personally, I think that the Apple I was the culmination of the "Dream" of the two Steves. The Apple II was the "Reality".
You have to remember that Woz had been working the hardware design angle for years before they decided to finally build one.

I'm just glad that folks are still interested in the dream and the reality after all these years. Smile

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Re: Five bucks says this guy will

Dr. Webster wrote:

Five bucks says this guy will relist it within 6 months, again for $50k. When that auction fails to attract any bidders, rinse, repeat, wipe hands on pants.

He ought to dry up and keep it for himself. If his Apple I were truly so valuable and significant and full of worth, then he'd want to keep it!

But no! He's just a greedy little grubber who wants to make a quick $53,000 dollars off of it so he can spend the money on God knows what.

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Re: Hail Mary

Hawaii Cruiser wrote:

.... How important was Steve's determination and vision? Wallace came up with the theory of evolution too, and was an instigator for Darwin's ideas, but who knows who he was? What do you think is more valuable, Wallace's notes, or Darwin's notes from the Beagle? Wallace may have been the better scientist, but that doesn't make his artifacts more valuable. Darwin's reputation survived. That makes what remains of him more "valuable" than what survives of Wallace...

Honestly, I think you're running off the rails here.

Outside of the little circle of aging fanatics who really *love* Apple computers Steve Jobs just isn't that important. There's a powerful mythic story surrounding him inside that group but outside of it nobody cares. I'm willing to grant that, say, 100 years from now, when historians are writing the history books there's probably a fair chance that his name will come up... historians love finding "personalities" to work into their sepia-tinted fairy tales to give them life. But he's no Charles Darwin. If anything he's more of an Andrew Carnegie or John Pierpont Morgan. Not to say that "Captains of Industry" and railway tycoons and other such characters aren't "interesting", but there will have been a serious miscarriage of historical justice if a greedy, self-centered twit like Steve Jobs is the name parroted as "Father of the Computer Age" by our great, great grandchildren in history class. For crying out loud, I'd rather have it be Bill Gates. For all the damage he's done at least he's akin to Carnegie when it comes to making charitable donations to atone for his cutthroat capitalistic indiscretions.

(Perhaps the fact that Steve Jobs is such a profoundly *unlikable* person might actually up his chances of making the history books, but can't help hoping that his true nature is accurately reflected in the accounts. Maybe he'll make it "all right" by donating all his billions of bucks to charity when his new liver wears out, but so far we're not seeing much "nice" from that guy.)

And with that said, I'd also make the argument that (assuming our culture lasts that long) an Apple ][ or, even better, an original toaster-shaped Macintosh, would be a wiser museum purchase in 100 years than an Apple I, assuming the "museum" in question here is an educational institution and not someone obsessive personal collection. Either of those is a thing that would be recognized by a visiting child's great grandparents, grandparents, or possibly even parents (depending on how quickly and in what direction user interface technology eventually evolves) as a "computer". Primitive but recognizable in the same sense that a Curved Dash Oldsmobile is still a "Car" to modern eyes, albeit a strange and alien one with obvious ties to a previous technology. (aka, horse-drawn carriages.) A bare Apple I is just a circuit board, indistinguishable to untrained eyes from one ripped from a stereo or television set or any number of other things. It makes a *lousy* public display. No one can relate to that.

(That well-known example of an Apple I housed in a wooden console complete with keyboard and crude woodburned/routed "APPLE COMPUTER" sign affixed to the top of it would be an *excellent* display, on the other hand. And for the record, that one is *already* in the Smithsonian. So no, they don't need to buy this guy's.)

Anyway. My personal opinion certainly doesn't count for anything, and I'm sure some more Apple I's are going to change hands for ridiculous prices before I'm dead and gone. But I do think there's a lid on just how high they'll go. As noted on the web pages of the creator of the "Rev 0 Apple II replica" motherboard, the prices of good condition early Apple II's are already lapping the "multi-thousand dollar" waterlines. Will they ever sell for "as much" as an Apple I? I'll grant not, but they will trade hands much more often, and thus it will eventually be "predictable" about how much a given one is worth. (Similar to how it's roughly possible to predict how much a given Model T or 1956 Bel Air Chevy can fetch, based on rarity and condition.) Something as rare as an Apple I, and with such limited appeal is almost impossible to price accurately. To make another analogy to car collecting, a bare Apple I isn't a "whole car". It's not even like having a (1903) Model A Ford... it's almost like having the engine from one of Ford's early racing cars or one of the vehicles he built for the failed "Detroit Automobile Company" venture in 1899. Certainly rare, certainly interesting, but something that sort of depends on the viewer having a personal interest in Henry Ford's life and career, not a general interest in automobiles. Find the right guy it's a gold mine, but the total population of people lusting for this object is going to be small. I'm sure it's rough having something "worth" a zillion bucks that you can't find a buyer for. My heart breaks for him.

In the end, is it worth $50,000? Sure, whatever. If you want it that bad, go nuts. (And chances are that, yes, someday some obsessive collector with more money than sense will want it that bad.) It's simply my personal opinion that the curator of public institution would have no business wasting that much money on it. Spend it on a fossil or Grecian mural or something else genuinely worthwhile instead. The Smithsonian has one already, one's enough.

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Why so exited?

Dogcow,

I don't understand the anger that you seem to have towards this guy.
It belongs to him. He can do with it what he wants. You make it sound like it's yours and he is trying to sell your stuff for more than what you paid for it.

Chill. Smile

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Re: Five bucks says this guy will

Dog Cow wrote:

But no! He's just a greedy little grubber who wants to make a quick $53,000 dollars off of it so he can spend the money on God knows what.

I really don't think it's fair to insult the seller because he/she doesn't place the same emotional value to an Apple 1 as others may, and not everyone's in the same financial boat.

Heck, if it came to "pay off the majority of my mortgage" or "have a historically interesting 30+ year old computer around the house", believe me, I'd soon have a much smaller mortgage. If I could only get $5K rather than $50K, I'd still sell it.

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Re: Five bucks says this guy will

eeun wrote:

Heck, if it came to "pay off the majority of my mortgage" or "have a historically interesting 30+ year old computer around the house", believe me, I'd soon have a much smaller mortgage. If I could only get $5K rather than $50K, I'd still sell it.

Dang, I wished I lived somewhere where $50,000 was the better part of a mortgage... ;^b

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The apotheosis of Steve

Eudi, I wasn't trying to imply there were any similarities between Jobs and Darwin. I was only trying to point out that the history of invention is replete with examples of two independent characters coming up with the same "invention" contemporaneously, but only one of the two becomes famous in popular history as the inventor, and so it went with Apple Computer. Apple Computer gets the crown for inventing the personal computer even though that's not the accurate truth, and the main reason it gets that crown is because the Apple story is a good story. It's something that people can remember after they've been told it. Legend becomes myth. The story enters the cultural mythology up there with Graham Bell, Henry Ford, Elvis, and Marilyn. When the American masses conceive of the development of the computer, it'll pretty much go something like, huge military mainframes, punch cards flying through a conveyor system, the HAL 9000 singing "Daisy," the Apple Computer garage, and the internet. Something like that is the popular history of the American computer in people's minds. It's what the mind grasps and carries around. Apple is entrenched there in the mythology. You might say the two Steves, but the truth is, the amount of people who know who Woz is is probably 1% of those who know who Steve Jobs is, so whether he deserves it or not, Steve, and Bill, are the poster boys for the invention of the computer, since in popular conception, the computer means the personal computer. If Andy Warhol was still alive he might be making large prints of multi-colored portraits of Steve and Bill.

It's very interesting to hear you dissing Steve so vehemently. I've heard he's difficult, but this is the first time I've heard he's despicable. Columbus and Captain Cook come to mind. Evidently, despite their popular depiction, both of them were actually real creeps. Captains of ships, captains of industry--they've both got total command, so some form a tyranny is available. Somebody fairly recently--Time magazine?--called Jobs the most important leader in American business. I'll keep your depiction under consideration until I stumble on other first-hand experiences. I don't know what he does with his money. You'd have to have the details to try to pass judgment on that, and frankly, I wouldn't myself, bother spending any time trying to pass judgment on Steve Jobs. I really don't care so much, and that kind of judgment is so often based on hearsay. Fire an employee because he was unproductive or not part of the plan, and you immediately have a tyrant at the helm.

The wood frame for the Apple I. Where did that come from? Are those all custom made by the buyer?

I think the documents this guy's got is probably the most fascinating part of his collection. That letter from Steve typed out on lined binder paper is pretty funny. It just plays right into the mythology. A garage business on the brink of huge success. A character playing the part of a businessman but not yet capable of realizing the need for the proper trappings, or also, someone so determined for success, he doesn't stop to attend to niceties like the correct stationary, but just keeps moving along despite what others may think. This is the kind of stuff that makes a good story and an entertaining sight. The other fact that all there is in hardware is that circuit board plays well, too. People will say, is that all it was? But then you look at the documents and the shipping box and you realize, it's not just the board, the packaging is as important as the board, because that's what the personal computer is, it's a packaging concept. And also, even though it's all packaged, it's not complete in our preconception of complete. There isn't a housing for the board. That's fascinating too. The package requires the buyer to complete the setup--another aspect of the message, "don't worry about EVERYTHING--just get it out there!" You see in that garage, clear as day, the popular conception of the American formula for success. That's why Apple is firmly entrenched in the mythology. It's an easily understandable example with rich characters. I'd rather see that than simply the board in a custom made frame in a glass museum box. The fact that this guy's got the whole picture in his collection is what makes it so valuable, because the board alone says very little except, this is all there was, unless of course, you're a computer engineer and know what you're looking at, and 99.999% of the people out there, aren't.

I also really love seeing on the actual receipt the $666.66 price. That'll get the Apocalypse fanatics gasping. That was intentional by Jobs, so yeah, maybe he is the devil, or couldn't help himself from pricking people with the idea.

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Re: The apotheosis of Steve

Hawaii Cruiser wrote:

When the American masses conceive of the development of the computer, it'll pretty much go something like, huge military mainframes, punch cards flying through a conveyor system, the HAL 9000 singing "Daisy," the Apple Computer garage, and the internet. Something like that is the popular history of the American computer in people's minds.

You're making an incredibly broad assumption regarding what pieces of the story will end up winning the popular imagination. All I'll say is even now if you pick up a book the early era goes:

1971 Federico Faggin and Ted Hoff "invent" the microprocessor
1975 Altair makes the cover of Popular Electronics. Some kid destined to own the universe named Bill Gates writes BASIC for it. The "Homebrew Computer Club" is founded in Silicon Valley, including a couple guys named Steve who were later involved in launching one of...
1977 "The Trifecta", the "first *real* personal computers".
1981 IBM introduces the "PC", asks that Bill Gates kid for an OS, thus spawning the biggest software monopoly in history
1984 Apple and Steve Jobs introduces the first "affordable" example of a GUI operating system, which employed ideas stolen from the Xerox Parc research center.
1985 Microsoft introduces Windows based on stolen goods stolen from Apple, thus marking the beginning of the end of history.

There are a whole slew of colorful names that turn up in that 1971-1985 timeslot, such as Gary Kildall, Paul Allen, Dan Bricklin... Steve Jobs isn't actually that important until you get to 1984, and my guess is *that* is what he'll be remembered for. In any case, in a hundred years I doubt he'll exactly be a household name. How many people remember names like Lee De Forest, Edwin Armstrong, or David Sarnoff? Or how about Paul Gottlieb Nipkow, John Logie Baird, or Philo Farnsworth?

(For that matter, exactly how much would an original 1927 Farnsworth "Image Dissector" tube be worth on eBay? A thousand bucks? A million? Absolutely nothing or absolutely priceless? The answer of course is "If you think it's priceless eBay would be a stupid place to sell it." And of course, whatever you might think it's worth now, what do you think it was worth in 1957? That's how removed we are from the Apple I. It's *way* too early to be judging its place in history.)

Anyway, I'm not going to argue the point anymore. If you think it's such a fabulous buy then why not take out a second mortgage and buy it yourself?

Quote:

It's very interesting to hear you dissing Steve so vehemently. I've heard he's difficult, but this is the first time I've heard he's despicable.

I have absolutely no personal investment in Steve Jobs. Never met him, have no interest to. His reputation as a narcissistic egomaniac is well known and a simple Google search will reveal that about the only donations Steve Jobs has ever gone on public record with is campaign contributions to the Democratic party. Maybe he's actually a lovable kitten at home and stuffs local church's donation plates with thousand dollar bills whilst wearing clever disguises every Sunday. In which case I take it all back.

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Its BACK !!!!!!!!
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By the way....

By the way, Apple1sale (the person selling said Apple 1) joined Applefritter almost five days ago.

I hope he has enjoyed watching the discussion progress. Smile

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It's only a three day auction

It's only a three day auction, so he probably has very good reason to believe someone overseas might have been ready to bid. More power to him.

Eudi, I said I think it's worth $50,000. I didn't say it was necessarily a good deal. It might be a good deal. A good deal would be less than it's worth, and enough less than it's worth that the profit from eventually reselling it would justify the purchase and all the cost and hassle that purchasing and preserving would entail. There are people who do this regularly and are able to weigh all those factors. There are collectors who specialize in technology and know what they're doing and what they're buying and the financial risks involved. If you want to sit at the table, you should know how to play poker.

And yeah, it's way out of my price range. I'd have a really hard time buying a collectable Apple II.

And you were talking about people in the history books. I'm talking about the people we carry around in our heads, and more importantly, the people the general public carries around in their head. Someone has to get credit for inventing the computer--Bill Gates isn't really associated with any computer, but I wouldn't doubt that a lot of people think he was in that garage too. Collecting is definitely a gamble. Jobs may be remembered more for inventing the iPhone. It's a calculated guess.

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Now I'm kind of curious what

Now I'm kind of curious what the sellers motivation is. Since he seems to have been planning this for some time, why would he choose now to sell it? Maybe he needs $50000 and this is the only thing he has of value? And now he follows up the unbid auction with a 3 day listing?

The only rationale I can think of is he is trying to tempt foreign bidders due to the low dollar valuation. Still it comes to 33000 Euros or 30000 GBPs, and that's shooting quite high in my opinion. It's kind of fun to speculate, but I suppose we'll never really know. And I noticed it doesn't have the power supply. Maybe I should offer the power switch and transformers from my Obtronix for $10000.

Dave...

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"Please accept my apology to

"Please accept my apology to those outside the United States, who were
accidentally excluded from bidding when this item was first listed."

This is obviously the reason for the three day auction. Maybe he needs the money for the hospital bill for his suffering child. Maybe to keep the banks from foreclosing on his house. Maybe because he's found the most beautiful hooker of all time. Maybe he's been putting it up on eBay for the past two years and for some reason no one here has noticed it before.

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Re: Its BACK !!!!!!!!
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Re: By the way....

gsmcten wrote:

By the way, Apple1sale (the person selling said Apple 1) joined Applefritter almost five days ago.

Good.

Quote:

I hope he has enjoyed watching the discussion progress. Smile

I hope so too.

Maybe he'd like to make a post and explain himself, since the only thing that we mere mortals who don't own Apple I's can do is speculate.

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Re: Five bucks says this guy will

Dog Cow wrote:

He's just a greedy little grubber

This is inappropriate here.

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bite, Fido, bite

Yes, it's NOT necessarily greed when you put a high price ON SOMETHING NO ONE HAS TO BUY. If it sells, that's the new going price. If you can't handle it, and realize you're out of the game, then here's some advice:
http://new.wavlist.com/movies/028/lkg-pain.wav

If a little girl comes up to your popsickle stand and wants to buy a popsickle and you charge her $5, that's greed. If someone prices his very rare, one of a kind, historically significant computer at $50,000, that's intelligence.

Your anger is misplaced. There's plenty of genuine "greedy little grubbers" in the world that your anger would be appropriately directed at. For example, you might consider those who gamble hundreds of billions on derivatives, and when their bets all go bust, they extort the government to sign off their losses onto YOU the taxpayer, and your children, and your grandchildren. These people might deserve your contempt in relation to the topic of greed. Then there are others (or maybe not others) who might, um...control a Congressman from North Carolina and get him to enter into committee a bill that would have, if it had passed, undermined the Paul/Grayson bill to audit the Federal Reserve. These too, might be people to get really really angry at for the greed in the world, but of course, these are just examples, and I in no way intend to enter politics into the discussion, Wink but yeah, get really really angry at the greedy, but realize who you should actually be really really angry at.

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Re: It's only a three day auction

Hawaii Cruiser wrote:

And you were talking about people in the history books. I'm talking about the people we carry around in our heads, and more importantly, the people the general public carries around in their head. Someone has to get credit for inventing the computer...

There probably is someone out there with $50,000 who has the wrong idea in his head that Steve Jobs invented in the computer, sure. That doesn't mean he's right. ;^)

Anyway. I still think you're too close to the Steve Jobs story to judge it accurately, but again, that's just my opinion. It would be interesting to conduct a random poll asking shmoes on the street "Who is Bill Gates?" and "Who is Steve Jobs?". My gut tells me Bill Gates is going to win the name recognition award.

(A couple years ago IT Workers were polled as to who they considered the "Most Influential personality" in the IT industry and Bill Gates won. Jobs scored number two. And that's among people who darn well know who Steve Jobs is.)

If nothing else consider the fact that, to be blunt, Steve Jobs is on borrowed time. He's living on someone else's liver *and* he's a cancer survivor. If it was *just* the liver transplant statistics say he has roughly a 75% chance of living long enough to see Apple Computer's 40th anniversary. Liver transplant patents *have* survived 25 years, but frankly the odds suggest there's just not that much time left for him to secure his legacy, whatever it is. Unless his will has a great "just one more thing" paragraph in it there's a distinct chance that no one is going to miss that man when he's gone. (Other then the board of directors at Apple, Inc., of course. I do worry what will happen to Pixar without him, but that's another story.)

On the other hand, unless there's something wrong with him we don't know about there's a really good chance that Bill Gates is going to be kicking around for another third of a century. Furthermore, the Bill and Melinda Gates foundation will probably be around long after that. (Andrew Carnegie has been dead for ninety years and yet his name still turns up as a sponsor for *all sorts of things*.) Bill Gates' obituary is going to name him as "one of the" fathers of the personal computer, and he's going to be listed that way on the books of his foundation for perpetuity. There's going to be a *strong lobby* for Bill Gates' case that's likely to last well beyond our lifetimes.

And if someone has to be erroneously named "Father of the PC", history points to Bill Gates having a *much* better claim anyway. Two out of three of the 1977 PC introductions came with a variant of Microsoft Basic (three out of three if you count Applesoft), meaning that Mr. Gates' software was the first thing most people who bought a computer ever saw. Gates porting BASIC to the Altair set *the standard* for what an early personal computer was. The Apple I was an evolutionary copy of that template, a stepping stone that *many feet* were hitting at the same time on the path toward real PCs for the masses. And Steve Jobs didn't even build it, he promoted it. Sorry, he loses.

Anyway. All that said, best of luck to the seller. The only thing I might suggest (coldly and brutally) is unless you simply *must* sell it maybe you should sit on it for a few years and, uhm... wait for the "Michael Jackson" moment to put it up for auction. That's the window in history where someone might give you a million bucks for it. ;^b

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Re: It's only a three day auction

Eudimorphodon wrote:

(Other then the board of directors at Apple, Inc., of course. I do worry what will happen to Pixar without him, but that's another story.)

Pixar will likely be fine.

Apple, on the other hand, will crash and burn. Not because it would have lost Jobs' supposed "technological vision" (which is a crock; he's a salesman who simply says "yes" and "no" to ideas that his employees present him), but because Apple shareholders would dump their investments as quickly as they could. Apple shareholders aren't computer experts; they're fat cats (and a few Joe Schmoes too) whose only expertise is how to make money; the only knowledge of Apple they have is what they get from CNN. They hold onto the false belief (as do many ignorant Apple fanboys) that Jobs is the lifeblood of Apple, and without him, Apple will stop innovating.

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Bravo

Eudi, you just now hit the bull's eye.

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We've got a winner!

Well, he got a bid...by someone with no feedback who probably created an account just to bid on the Apple I. Legit? Would be interesting to hear about what happens next.

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Re: We've got a winner!

Hawaii Cruiser wrote:

Well, he got a bid...by someone with no feedback who probably created an account just to bid on the Apple I. Legit? Would be interesting to hear about what happens next.

"Cult of Mac" published an "interview" with someone claiming to be the seller, explaining why he put the item up for sale in the first place.

Assuming that article is legit, I hope he did find his sucker for real. A guy in Sacramento selling off everything he has of value... he's probably desperately trying to stave off the inevitable foreclosure of his stupidly over-mortgaged dream McMansion. (Heck, it was probably the HELOC-ed bubble "equity" from said McMansion that bought him the Apple 1 in the first place, back when America suffered from this mass delusion that 1/8th of an acre of grass-covered landfill and a pile of sticks would appreciate 20% a year simply because it existed.)

The real question is what profile fits the buyer: "obsessive computer collector", "insane Apple/Steve Jobs zealot", or "Shrewed/Stupid Investor". It had better darn well not have been a museum curator, at least not the curator of a museum funded by public money. :^b

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Re: We've got a winner!

Eudimorphodon wrote:

back when America suffered from this mass delusion that 1/8th of an acre of grass-covered landfill and a pile of sticks would appreciate 20% a year simply because it existed.

But...prices will never go down! The guy on MSNBC said so!

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Re: We've got a winner!

eeun wrote:

But...prices will never go down! The guy on MSNBC said so!

And Alan Greenspan and Ben Bernanke did too, in so many words and actions. Now the all-wise and far-seeing Ben is going to save us all.

In the interview, the guy mentions an Apple I that sold for $43,000. Anyone know what he's talking about?

On that interview page, there's also a link to this book:
Inside Steve's Brain

From the product description:
"It's hard to believe that one man revolutionized computers in the 1970s and '80s (with the Apple II and the Mac), animated movies in the 1990s (with Pixar), and digital music in the 2000s (with the iPod and iTunes). No wonder some people worship Steve Jobs like a god."

There you go.

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Re: We've got a winner!

Hawaii Cruiser wrote:
eeun wrote:

But...prices will never go down! The guy on MSNBC said so!

And Alan Greenspan and Ben Bernanke did too, in so many words and actions. Now the all-wise and far-seeing Ben is going to save us all.

He's doing a fine job protecting the people he actually works for. (Hint hint, it's not "us". But that's neither here nor there in this context, is it?)

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I just cannot believe it........

It makes the mind boggle to think that there are actually folks who think that Jobs came up with the ideas and schematics for the Apple I,the Apple II, and the Mac.

He was a salesman for cripes sake. Woz did all the thinking when it came to the actual building of the I and II, and several other folks for the Mac, but Jobs gets all the credit. It's kinda like the vikings getting to the new world first and Columbus getting all the glory and a national holiday.

Ooops. I shouldn't say that. Someone will want to have a Steve Jobs Day and make it a national holiday. lol

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Re: We've got a winner!

Eudimorphodon wrote:

The real question is what profile fits the buyer: "obsessive computer collector", "insane Apple/Steve Jobs zealot", or "Shrewed/Stupid Investor". It had better darn well not have been a museum curator, at least not the curator of a museum funded by public money. :^b

Call me a cynic, but I'm going with shill.

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Re: shill

I calculate a final value fee of $771. That would be a pretty expensive shill. They could mutually cancel the transaction to avoid the final value fee, but that would put them back at square one, so I don't see any purpose in a shill.

Actually, I guess it could have been a shill, if he knew someone were very seriously interested and he wanted to stimulate that person with the idea of not letting it get away. If he did that, that was a big mistake, because now, if he does put it back up for auction after canceling it, then everyone is going to suspect it was a shill, and then everyone is indeed going to be screaming fowl.

But as of right now, I'm a little mystified at all the strong urges here to crucify this guy. Where's it all coming from?

There's some aspect of a high tide raises all boats, after all. If the Apple I's start selling high, then that might raise the value of all your Apple II's, so you might want to be cheering this guy on.

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Re: shill

Hawaii Cruiser wrote:

But as of right now, I'm a little mystified at all the strong urges here to crucify this guy. Where's it all coming from?

I'm not seeing that at all. In fact, most of the sentiment I'm getting from this thread is that the buyer of a $50k Apple I is an idiot, not the seller. Plenty of people sell crap for much too high of a price (e.g. Bose, Sharper Image, and some even argue Apple) but how is it the seller's fault for wanting to make as much money as they can? Caveat emptor, after all.

Remember the immortal words of P.T. Barnum -- this guy can relist the auction as many times as he wants, but ultimately the sucker will be the person who falls for it. I fail to see how the saga of this particular computer is so captivating.

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