Triumph of the Nerds

A superb genesis story about that most essential invention, the personal computer. Before it was an industry, the personal computer was a strange hobby for nerds, who were definitely not cool back then. In three parts, tech gossip columnist Robert X. Cringely gives a very personal, breezy, witty, and remarkably lucid technical summary of the origins of Microsoft and Apple. Even better, he focuses on the forgotten founding companies and figures who did not make it. Cringely turns this story about hardware into one about humanity. By taking you step by step through the process of invention, counter-invention, claim of theft, bankruptcy, and bad timing, you see how accidental success was for the winners. And how vital their ability to listen to the technology. This classic documentary series should be required watching for anyone who uses a computer — that is, everyone. It’s that good.

-- KK  

Triumph of the Nerds
1996, 165 min.
Directed by Robert X. Cringely
$50

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Rent from Netflix