New York: Items from the birth of Apple, home computing and video gaming are up for grabs at an auction, which will conclude on March 17.
The top lot from “The Steve Jobs Revolution: Engelbart, Atari, and Apple” auction is a July 1976 cheque to pay $3,430 for parts for the Apple 1 computer, signed by Apple founders Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak.
“This is before they had any investors,” explained Bobby Livingston, executive vice president at RR Auction, which is conducting the sale. “The reason it’s signed by both of them is in their charter. Any expenses over $1,000, they both had to agree and here’s the evidence.” The auction includes many items relating to Jobs, including high school photos and an application he had filled out for a job at Atari, which will also come as an NFT (non-fungible token).
“Steve did not sign very many things. He didn’t like to sign objects. So his signature is very rare. It’s actually one of the rarest signatures that collectors are interested in. So any time something comes up with Steve’s signature on it, it goes for a lot of money,” said Steven Levy, editor at large for Wired magazine, which focuses on emerging technologies.
The auction house said the items, including a quarter taken from one of the first Atari Pong video game machines and a 1960s Douglas Engelbart mouse, help tell the story of computer history.
“What makes these computers and video games so special is they’re prototypes and they’re very early models that are difficult to find. These items are being consigned to us by people from the Silicon Valley that were there when this whole computer revolution started,” said Livingston.