July 20, 1982: Hertzfeld Listens to Alan Kay

by Chris Seibold Jul 20, 2011

The programmer behind a lot of what was good about the original Macintosh was Andy Herzfeld. While Herzfeld had a rebel streak and couldn't abide corporate politics he was also smart enough to appreciate good ideas when he heard them.

Herzfeld heard many good ideas when he attended a lecture given by Alan Kay. His notes on the talk read like a collection of sage computer advice including such gems as:

The best way to predict the future is to invent it
Best is the enemy of better
It's all software-It just depends on when you crystallize it
Appreciate mundanity- a pencil is high technology

The lecture strongly influenced Hertzfeld and, by extension, the Mac. Andy Heztfeld attended the lecture that would, eventually, become a page of photocopied notes passed out to the Mac team of July 20,1982.


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