Join author Laine Nooney for an IN-PERSON reading from their new book, followed by a conversation with historian Finn Brunton.
“The Apple II Age is a joy to read and an extraordinary achievement in computer history. A rigorous thinker and a bright and witty writer, Nooney offers a compelling account of the initial attempts to make computers inviting to the public. The Apple II Age, like the old microcomputer itself, is bound to intrigue both experts and newcomers to the subject.” ―JOANNE MCNEIL, author of ‘Lurking: How a Person Became a User’
Join us for an engrossing origin story for the personal computer—showing how the Apple II’s software helped a machine transcend from hobbyists’ plaything to essential home appliance.
6:00 PM — Reception
6:30 PM — Book Talk: The Apple II Age
7:30 PM — Book Signing
Please note that this event will be held in person at the Internet Archive.
If you want to understand how Apple Inc. became an industry behemoth, look no further than the 1977 Apple II. It was a versatile piece of hardware, but its most compelling story isn’t found in the feat of its engineering, the personalities of Apple’s founders, or the way it set the stage for the company’s multibillion-dollar future. Instead, historian Laine Nooney shows, what made the Apple II iconic was its software. The story of personal computing in the United States is not about the evolution of hackers—it’s about the rise of everyday users.
Recounting a constellation of software creation stories, Nooney offers a new understanding of how the hobbyists’ microcomputers of the 1970s became the personal computer we know today. From iconic software products like VisiCalc and The Print Shop to historic games like Mystery House and Snooper Troops to long-forgotten disk-cracking utilities, The Apple II Age offers an unprecedented look at the people, the industry, and the money that built the microcomputing milieu—and why so much of it converged around the pioneering Apple II.
Laine Nooney is assistant professor of media and information industries at New York University. Their research has been featured by outlets such as The Atlantic, Motherboard, and NPR. They live in New York City, where their hobbies include motorcycles, tugboats, and Texas hold ’em.
Book Talk: The Apple II Age
May 11 @ 6pm
IN-PERSON @ 300 Funston Ave., San Francisco
Register now for the free, in-person event