One of the best quotes I was able to write down from Woz was “Where ever really bright people work, they always leave the doors open.” He said it in a literal sense, meaning that the doors to the technical library were unlocked at night, but I like to think it could be taken more metaphorically as well, meaning that the doors of opportunity are open as well. This certainly seems to be a theme for Woz. He is actively involved in sharing information for the benefit of other engineers and young people.
I wrote down a number of other quotes, isolated phrases:
“…the creators – the engineers.” Steve clearly sees engineering as a creative activity.
“This engineering stuff is really cool.” This was from when he was young, and starting to pick up engineering from his father. There is something that makes creating stuff really exciting, not only as an adult career, but also part of the learning experience for kids.
“I got an A+ in the class, but got put on probation for computer abuse.” Pushing past the limits is a necessity if you are going to create something new.
Again, I want to congratulate SolidWorks on an excellent choice in keynote speaker. There was no flash, there was no pretense, but his experience was very relevant to my situation. He made sure we saw him as a normal human being with a normal job, a lack of money, and a real passion for what he was doing. His is an uplifting story at the intersection of creativity and engineering.