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Lot #8021
Steve Jobs Signed Job Application and NFT

The 18-year-old Steve Jobs seeks employment at as an "electronics tech or design engineer"

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Estimate: $300000+
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UPDATE: Note: RR Auction has received new information that Jobs had part-time employment in 1973 as a repair technician in Reed College’s psych lab. As such, we can no longer definitively state that this is his Atari job application.
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The 18-year-old Steve Jobs seeks employment at as an "electronics tech or design engineer"

Incredible Atari job application questionnaire filled out and signed by Steve Jobs, one page, 8.5 x 11, annotated 1973 in another hand. Jobs fills out the document with his name, "Steven jobs"; address, "reed college"; phone, "none"; and major, "english lit." In the middle section, he writes "yes" in response to 'Driver's License?' and "possible, but not probable," in reply to 'Access to transportation?' With regard to his skills, next to 'Computer' and 'Calculator,' he writes, "yes (design, tech)." At the bottom, he describes his 'Special Abilities' as "electronics tech or design engineer. digital.-from Bay near Hewitt-Packard [sic]." In very good condition, with intersecting folds, overall creasing, light staining, and some old clear tape to the top edge. Accompanied by full letters of authenticity from PSA/DNA and Beckett Authentication Services.

Jobs was perusing the tech industry's help-wanted classifieds in the San Jose Mercury when an Atari headline caught his eye: 'Have fun, make money.' When the unkempt teen showed up in Atari's office-and refused to leave until they gave him a job-the personnel manager didn't know whether to let him in or call the cops. Knowing that the dropout youngster would be cheap to hire, Atari's chief engineer-Pong creator Allan Alcorn-said: 'Send him in!'

Includes a letter of provenance signed by Alcorn, in part: "This is to establish the authenticity of this document as the actual job application that Steve Jobs submitted to Atari when he applied to be a technician. In 1973 Atari was about a year old and we were now dominant in the coin operated amusement industry and growing fast. I was the vice president of engineering and had two or three engineers each working on individual video game projects. A team would consist of an engineer who would design the circuitry for a new game and a technician who would build the prototype of that game. One of my engineers needed a technician so we ran an ad in the local paper. Our personnel manager, Penny Chapler, said we had a candidate but he was very young and would I be interested in interviewing him. He was a college dropout and a bit of a hippie but he could solder and wire wrap. So, I hired him."

Now employed at Atari, Jobs put his technical skills to work while relying on the help of his friend Steve Wozniak. Jobs famously farmed out the engineering of the 'Breakout' prototype to Woz, who implemented several innovative cost-savings circuit designs-earning a $5000 bonus for Jobs, who reportedly kept it a secret. At Atari, Jobs learned to keep user interfaces simple and intuitive-after all, the company's success was rooted in Pong's simplicity: 'Deposit Quarter, Avoid Missing Ball for High Score.' This sort of elegant user-friendliness would become a hallmark of Jobs's later products-from the one-button mouse to the touchscreen iPhone.

In 1976, Jobs and Wozniak set out on their own and founded Apple, introducing the personal computer to the masses. This remarkable employment questionnaire reveals Jobs's early aspiration to work in the fledgling tech industry, which he would soon revolutionize forever.

NFT Description:

In addition to the physical job application, the winning bidder will receive a minted NFT on the Ethereum blockchain that includes a high resolution image of the document. This NFT will be transferred to the winning bidder.

Just as Steve Jobs helped to revolutionize communication and commerce in the digital realm, NFTs are transforming the art and auction world through technology. With both the physical and digital versions of this job application offered together as a single lot, this unique opportunity melds past and future in the present.

Auction Info

  • Auction Title: The Steve Jobs Revolution: Engelbart, Atari, and Apple
  • Dates: #632 - Ended March 17, 2022