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5.0 out of 5 stars A must have book for any Apple enthusiast.
I eagerly bought Apple Confidential 2.0 after reading a positive article about it on a well known computer news web site. This book doesn't disappoint - I read the entire thing cover to cover in about three days, although in retrospect, it would have been fun to spread it out a bit more to enjoy it longer.
The book is well written and easy to read, and very...
Published on June 22 2004 by rjpryan

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3.0 out of 5 stars Good history, but is lacking in current developments
The other reader reviews all accurately state the positives of this book: the pre-2000 history of Apple is a very interesting read. I picked the book up, however, for a different reason. I wanted to learn more about the current generation of Apple products. Unfortunately, there isn't any detailed information about the development of OS X, the iPod, the G5, or Apple's new...
Published on April 14 2004


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5.0 out of 5 stars A must have book for any Apple enthusiast., June 22 2004
By 
This review is from: Apple Confidential 2.0: The Definitive History of the World's Most Colorful Company (Paperback)
I eagerly bought Apple Confidential 2.0 after reading a positive article about it on a well known computer news web site. This book doesn't disappoint - I read the entire thing cover to cover in about three days, although in retrospect, it would have been fun to spread it out a bit more to enjoy it longer.
The book is well written and easy to read, and very importantly in this often heated subject matter, it appears to be genuinely unbiased. Featuring the story of Apple Computer Inc. from its inception to the present, the book not only gives a general overview of the good and bad times at Apple, but also presents many juicy tidbits. Sidebars throughout the text present numerous quotes from well known players - Steve Jobs, Wozniak, and many others. Pictures of some of the early machines are provided as well as timelines for various products and CEO's.
As another bonus, the resignation letters of several of Apple's CEO's are included in the text.
On the downside, the latter part of the book is not quite as good with several omissions such as mention of the wildly popular XServe and the Virginia Tech supercomputer cluster made with XServe's. This seems like a fairly glaring oversight considering how important the enterprise market is to Apple these days.
Overall, I think any Apple history buff would find the book fascinating, and I can even imagine that the book would be interesting to people who don't know much about Apple at all. The history of Apple is quite interesting and should provide engaging reading material for nearly anyone.
What are you waiting for? Buy the book!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Apple Confidential - A Must Have, April 26 2004
By 
DAVID T CRAIG (SANTA FE, NM United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Apple Confidential 2.0: The Definitive History of the World's Most Colorful Company (Paperback)
Owen Linzmayer's "Apple Confidential 2.0" book is a must have for people interested in the history, culture, people and technology behind Apple Computer Inc.
This book (and Owen's previous Apple histories "The Mac Bathroom Reader" and "Apple Confidential [1.0]") has been meticously researched and uncovers many facts about Apple Computer, its people, and systems that other books don't come close to touching. Instead of rehashing comments from other books which tend to be inaccurate, Owen has spent a tremendous amount of time finding and verifying facts. Instead of just relying on a comment about some aspect of Apple Computer, Owen has taken the time and put forth the effort to communicate directly with those involved with the facts in question. This results in accurate facts, something that many technology computing books about Apple don't always have.
I've been involved with Apple systems since the Apple ][ of the later 1970s and am constantly suprised by the information Owen has uncovered. At one time I thought I knew a lot about Apple's history, but Owen has proven me wrong in a beneficial way.
The end result of Owen's work is an almost definitive book about a fascinating and quirky company that any Apple computer user must have in their book collection.
I'm looking forward to the next Apple Confidential version if such a book will exist in the future.
-David T Craig ( shirlgato AT cybermesa DOT com )
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5.0 out of 5 stars "Definitive" accurately describes this book!, April 19 2004
By 
Alan/Karen (Great Falls, MT USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Apple Confidential 2.0: The Definitive History of the World's Most Colorful Company (Paperback)
Owen Linzmayer's Apple Confidential 2.0 is a great book that gives the reader a fascinating look into the successes and failures of a company that has thrived, survived and continues to make a significant impact on the computer industry.
Linzmayer entertains and educates readers by taking them through pivotal points in Apple's history. From the initial collaboration between tech guru Steve Wozniak and assertively business-minded Steve Jobs, through the development of the Macintosh computer, to the inner workings of Apple's corporate culture, Linzmayer looks around every corner to give many perspectives on the development of the company. Timelines are also presented at the end of most chapters, aiding readers in understanding the pace at which important milestones took place.
"Definitive" accurately describes this book! Apple Confidential 2.0 offers readers a deeper understanding of the company, and shows the complete story of how this shining apple helped turn the fruit orchards of Cupertino into what we now call Silicon Valley. Readers will clearly see how Apple created a revolution by the development of the personal computer industry, and fought to make a significant dent in a technological market that continues to grow at a pace unequal to any other advancement in history.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Gossip, History, Trivia, Legends & Lore, April 18 2004
By 
therosen "therosen" (New York, NY United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Apple Confidential 2.0: The Definitive History of the World's Most Colorful Company (Paperback)
This book combines gossip, history, trivia and the legends & lore of one of America's most fascinating companies. The story starts with the two Steves making and selling boxes to confuse the phone system into granting free calls. It chronicals the development of Apple computer from the first Apple through the Lisa, endless varities of Macintosh and today's iPod. Throughout the story, the massive ups and collosal failures of this American instution are laid bare.
The layout is interesting as well. As characters are introduced, the reader frequently wonders "What happened to them?" More often than not, the question is answered in a sidebar. This showed that Apple wasn't just a great product developer, but also a great developer of silicon valley talent.
The book details the extremes of the players personalities:
- How Jobs agreet to split the proceeds of an Atari deal with Woz, only to keep 90% of the income himself.
- How Woz forced the company to go public early by sharing his stock with too many employees.
- How Gasse talked folks out of liscencing the technology until it was too late.
- How several successive CEOs tried in vain to save the company.
The book also details some lesser known stories from Apple's storied past:
- How the 1984 commercial almost never made it.
- How the company decided to abandon Copland. (& Why!)
- How the company got sued by Carl Sagan, and how they dug their ditch a little deeper.
There's a lot of "Hows" here, which really shows how deep the author gets into the company's history and soul. You come away with not just a knowledge of the people, but their personalities and why exactly things turned out the way they did.
This book is excellent reading for anyone interested in the world of technology, and an absolute must for fans of Apple.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Good history, but is lacking in current developments, April 14 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: Apple Confidential 2.0: The Definitive History of the World's Most Colorful Company (Paperback)
The other reader reviews all accurately state the positives of this book: the pre-2000 history of Apple is a very interesting read. I picked the book up, however, for a different reason. I wanted to learn more about the current generation of Apple products. Unfortunately, there isn't any detailed information about the development of OS X, the iPod, the G5, or Apple's new business stance as the 'hub of digital life'. (These are all mentioned briefly in the book, but there is no detail about how they came into being.) Surely there are some interesting stories to be told about how the iPod came out of a [then] struggling computer company that only had roughly 5% of the personal computer market. How about the decision to base the next-generation operating system on Linux? (To be fair, the book chronicles the influence of the NeXT and Be operating systems, but it doesn't connect the dots to OS X.) What sorts of decisions were made to develop a 64-bit processor? Who made these decisions and what technological challenges were faced in the process? These are all topics for version 3.0, I suppose. (And I imagine that I will be charged for this upgrade.) Bottom line: an interesting read for those interested in pre-iPod/G4 Apple. However, you shouldn't buy this book if you are mainly interested in their recent technological developments.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Apple Confidential 2.0, April 11 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: Apple Confidential 2.0: The Definitive History of the World's Most Colorful Company (Paperback)
Apple Computer has always been a fascination for me. Ever since I heard of them, I thought they were a top-notch company, providing quality computers for the consumer with a lot of disposable cash. Computers in general were much more expensive when they first hit the market and Apple offered the first home machines. I've never owned a home computer until 2000. I remember doing so much research. As my wife is a photographer, Apple came to the front, with their reputation for excellent image handling. We decided to purchase an iMac. This purchase was followed with buying an iBook in 2001 for my wife.
To this day, I continue to be amazed by our Macs and what we've been able to do and learn since we got them. Now, if only the budget had room for a loaded G5, I know where we would be headed.
Shortly after our Mac came home, we found The NorthWest of Us, a Chicago area Macintosh User Group and joined up. There has been no better source of support for whatever troubles needed troubleshooting. Beside the support, I was struck with the passion of these people who used Mac computers and could not really understand the profound enthusiasm they had for their platform of choice. Simply, I felt that Macs were very efficient and quite easy to use and that's what we hoped for when we purchased ours. I was looking for something that would help me to understand a bit more about the mystique surrounding Apple Computer and it's products. I found Apple Confidential 2.0.
This book covers the how's and why's of Apple's start up and the passion of the founders, especially Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs. You can see the genius of them as they put everything they owned on the line to create the first personal computers-Woz for his passion to create and design, Steve for his desire for perfection and success. You can easily understand how their personalities first nurtured each other and how they would come to necessarily separate themselves from each other.
Apple Confidential 2.0 gives you insight to many corporate business decisions, both amazing and really stupid. As I read, I found myself wondering how this company managed to survive at all. The book contains many time lines following the life cycles of the Apple I and II, the ill-fated Apple III and Lisa, the multitudinous computer variations offered for sale (my gosh, how confusing!) and the Mac OS. Yes, there's more, but these were the most interesting for me. I found the fumbling that went on within the company to be nothing if not infuriating, the misdirection, the false starts and, most of all, the loss of product quality and innovation. Lately, I often wondered why one of my coworkers hated Macs. After reading about the thousands of defective Macs put on the market instead of in the garbage heap, sure enough, it was one of those that she had to put up with and could not wait to dump! If I had been a Mac user then, I'm sure I'd be in her camp too.
The business decisions made over the years at Apple can make your head spin. The issue of licensing the Mac OS is a fascinating read; back and forth, over and over again. If Apple had licensed their OS early on, I'm sure we would be in a 'Windows-free' world. After all, that's what Bill Gates would have preferred anyway. (Of course, you have to wonder just how virus-free the Mac OS would be if it were on 95+% of the computers out there too.)
Then, there's Bill Gates and his ties to Apple-something I thought could never have occurred, but I didn't realize that he was NOT the competition in the first place. Rather, it appears that he was one of the foremost proponents of the Apple computer. Again, I'm relatively new to owning a home computer, but I knew all along that Mac people could not stand Microsoft. I was really surprised to learn that Word and Excel were originally Macintosh programs. I never knew that, but it makes sense when you consider the vastness of the installed base of those Office products-and just how much $$$ Bill gets from Office for Mac users.
Apple Confidential 2.0 is a very good read. You don't have to read it cover-to-cover, although once I picked it up, there was no way I was going to skip around. My wife, who's more disconnected from OS platforms that I am, picked it up and I had to insist she give it back so I could finish it. Owen's writing style is excellent, giving just enough humor to keep you interested. Although you could consider it a course study book, this book is for anyone who is a Mac enthusiast or someone interested in touching on business history. It has many pictures and great sidebar information and quotes, many of those really surprising and funny.
As with any history book, Owen has placed in it what he saw as the most salient issues surrounding Apple and not everything, by his admission, is included. One issue I think should have been touched on was drugs. I remember a made-for-TV movie that was broadcast several years ago. It may have been called 'Pirates of Silicon Valley', but I'm not sure. The movie was spun toward Bill Gates and what he did with regard to Apple. In it, several major players were depicted to have been pretty deep into LSD and other drugs. True? Or not? I'm leaning toward true. If you read this book, I think it's the only thing that would make sense of the really strange turns the company took.
Everything considered, I highly recommend Apple Confidential 2.0 both for it's "definitive history of the world's most colorful company" and for it's easy, fun readability.
Thank You, Owen!
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5.0 out of 5 stars MyMac.com Book Review, Feb. 29 2004
By 
Tim Robertson "Publisher MyMac" (Battle Creek, Mi United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Apple Confidential 2.0: The Definitive History of the World's Most Colorful Company (Paperback)
Back in 2000, I had the pleasure of reading and reviewing Mr. Linzmayer's first Apple Confidential book, and thought that he had done an outstanding job of presenting the visible and the behind-the-scenes story of Apple Computer. Mr. Linzmayer, a freelance writer and author, had taken his time to delve into the depths of the company that we all love to hate and produced a great book that worked to explain the mysteries of Apple.
Fast forward to 2004 and he has done it again. Taking the original book, Mr. Linzmayer has updated the story to the present day, continuing the journey from where he left off with Mac OS 8.6 and the original iMac to the present day Mac OS 10.3 and the G5, the iPod and iLife.
Apple Confidential 2.0, from start to finish, is a continual source of information on Apple Computer and the people involved, from the beginnings in a bedroom (you have to read the book to find out) to the present day activities of Steve Jobs as head of Apple and Pixar. It delves into how the original Apple was taken to numerous companies, like Hewlett-Packard, Atari and Commodore Business Machines in an attempt to sell the Apple computer concept. It covers all the twists and turns that Apple has experienced along the way. Apple Confidential 2.0 provides the reader with information on how Apple came to be, who thought of what, who never got the credit that they justly deserved, or who took the blame when things went wrong. The book includes time lines for Apple from the start of both Wozniak and Jobs in college to the computers, operating systems, peripherals and software from the very start to the present day.
If you want an easy to read book on the story of Apple and the people involved, get yourself Apple Confidential 2.0. The book is packed with everything you need to know, provides the background on people, and places and things, and it does so without being boring or preachy. A very good read, you'll find yourself totally engrossed. If you didn't buy Mr. Linzmayer's first book, take the time to get the second. Apple Confidential 2.0 will make a great addition to your home library - a must-have for Apple lovers.
Highly Recommended.
My Mac Rating: 5 out of 5
[...]
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5.0 out of 5 stars THE encyclopedia of Apple pop culture, Feb. 26 2004
This review is from: Apple Confidential 2.0: The Definitive History of the World's Most Colorful Company (Paperback)
I purchased this book (Apple Confidential 2.0) to learn the technical, business and cultural history of a subject on the "other side" of the fence in contrast to my personal history. Having been a wintel user back from the days of the original 8086 up to today's huge MS shops I had little knowledge of where Apple came from (beyond the basic folklore). Now a Mac/Apple fan with iPod in tow and a "switch" in my future I dove into this book as my historical introduction of choice.
Owen does an excellent job of adding in other industry events of the time, which helped me (as an historical IBM user) to build a complete industry picture. While the division into subjects departs from what one might view as a traditional all-linear biography, it fit suprisingly well and played out in a very unbiased fashion.
Owen paints a fair picture, not always shining Jobs in the best light and defining his character for what it was. Men like Jobs and Gates weren't always out there to be "nice." They were out there to make deals and create their visions.
The pictures were very cool, but I would have liked to see even more and in color. Maybe this book needs a full color pictorial history sister companion?
Owen's use of timelines was very informative, however the repitition at the end of most sections became tedious to examine and I found myself "skimming" them. Seperating them did allow a simplifiction of the information, but a master timeline may have been less intrusive.
The recent events felt a bit rushed. I've not read the original "1.0" version of this book so I'm assuming the items from 2002/2004 were part of the newer updates. I would have liked more detail (there are many empty blank pages at the end ;) ). Still, a kudos for having the book up to date at its time of publishing (not at easy feat...he says, pointing his finger at O'Reilly as he waits for OSX Panther in a Nutshell...jeez when will we see it in print, when 10.4 comes out???).
A metal band once said there were three sides to every story: mine, yours and the truth. This book falls onto the third. If you want the most truthful unbiased history, read this book. If you're a fan of Apple, read this book. Heck, just read this book! :)
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5.0 out of 5 stars Even Handed Real History, Feb. 25 2004
By 
Welles (Santa Cruz, US, Canada) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Apple Confidential 2.0: The Definitive History of the World's Most Colorful Company (Paperback)
I've just finished Apple Confidential 2.0 and am convinced that there is no better history of Apple Computer. The accuracy lies in the careful presentation of factual information without an editorial slant which tends to fictionalize for the sake of entertainment. The story of Apple Computer is interesting enough without embellishment and in the style of the best historians, most of the information comes directly from first person perspectives and from Owen Linzmayer who has written and reported on apple since the early 1980's and is a legitimate first person source himself.
I found online a sincere, if begrudging, compliment to Owen Linzmayer's work in otherwise rather testy remarks by Jeff Raskin whose work in creating the Mac is often given short shrift. High praise indeed.
For myself, an avid Mac user, learning of the importance of Bill Gates to Apple and the long history between Microsoft and Apple was a real eye opener. There is one long memo from Bill Gates which is worth anyone's reading who might wish to grow beyond a typical knee-jerk anti-Microsoft sentiment.
I recommend this book without reservation.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Well organized and fun to read, Feb. 25 2004
By 
Gerald L Jones (Orlando, Florida United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Apple Confidential 2.0: The Definitive History of the World's Most Colorful Company (Paperback)
I have not been an Apple Computer fan for long. I used Apple ][s in High School but didn't use a mac again until my work put one on my desktop a few months ago. I fell in love with OS X and recently purchased 2 Mac Laptops.
I have been a fan of Apple Computer's philosophy and Steve Jobs for years. The recent return of Apple, due to Jobs, has been facinating and the hardware is the best available today. I wanted to know the history of the company, how it began, the down years, the people and how it got back on track.
This book gave me all I was looking for and more. It is not organized in a linear time format. It takes topics like the Macintosh, individuals, and even the 1984 advertisment and devotes a chapter to them, from concept to finish. This makes the book something easy to read without getting confused in the complex history of the company. Each chapter touches on things covered in prior or future chapters but stays true to the topic at hand.
The great quotes, stories and insights are fully referenced and when conflicts in stories appear, all possible sides are covered. The book doesn't draw conclusions without hard facts or multiple colaborating testimony.
I highly recommend this book. Even if you are not a Mac fan, it's a great story of one of the great technology companies. It exposes the successes and mistakes without holding back.
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