Apple’s Woz jailed for building fake bomb

Wozniak_photoIt is just as well for technology history that all round nice bloke Steve Wozniak grew up in far more reasonable times.

According to a new Steve Jobs biography, Wozniak was jailed for building a fake bomb in high school.

Wozniak built an electronic metronome—one of those tick-tick-tick devices that keep time in music class—and realized it sounded like a bomb. So he took the labels off some big batteries, taped them together.

He then put it in a school locker and rigged it to start ticking faster when the locker opened. Later he was called to the principal’s office and was confronted by the police.

The principal had been summoned when the device was found, bravely ran onto the football field clutching it to his chest, and pulled the wires off.  Woz was sent to the juvenile detention centre, where he spent the night.

Apparently he taught the other prisoners how to disconnect the wires leading to the ceiling fans and connect them to the bars so people got shocked when touching them.

Given that the US tends to want to jail kids for building their own clockwork experiments, it is more likely that Woz would have got 100 years for his bomb-making prank and there never would have been an Apple.

The recent case of police wanting to jail Ahmed Mohamed for the crime of building a clock and bought it to school to show his teacher is being seen as punishing engineering genius. Just as well Woz is white and didn’t go to school in Texas in 2015