Building a Lego Apple

April 1st, 2013 2:26 PM
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Filed under Hacks & mods;
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Creativity in one discipline does not necessarily lend itself to others. My tenures at Computerworld and Juiced.GS have developed my imagination such that I have no trouble pulling ideas for feature stories from thin air. But one area in which I have always gone strictly by the book, doing exactly what I'm told without deviation or desire for variance — is Legos. The lethally edged gouging objects taught me to follow step-by-step instructions, a skill that, as an adult, has proven handy in the kitchen. But it was always the picture on the box, not in my mind, that I was driving to make a reality.

So I'm all the more impressed by Chiukeung (CK Tsang), who used the Lego building blocks to create a model Apple II.

2013_LEGO_APPLEII01e2

Just like Woz intended, you can even open the machine for direct access to its motherboard and expansion slots.

2013_LEGO_APPLEII04e

CPU, lid, keyboard, floppy drive, monitor — this machine has it all! Everything except for scale, actually — there's nothing to compare its size to, though I suspect it's smaller than Steve Weyhrich's virtual Minecraft Apple.

The Apple II is not the first computer CK has rendered in blocks. Check out his model Nintendo Entertainment System (NES), aka the Famicom, which coincidentally also uses a 6502 chip.

(Hat tip to Kelly Hodgkins)

Apple office blueprints

November 17th, 2011 1:31 PM
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Filed under History;
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Apple II Bits reader Kurt Geisel recently pointed me to a nifty historical artifact. Chris Espinosa, Apple's most veteran employee (#8!), has unearthed and published a document he drew by hand on January 30, 1978.

Blueprint of Apple's offices at 10260 Bandley Drive

Who sat where in 1978?


This blueprint shows the floorplan for Apple's offices at 10260 Bandley Drive, Cupertino, California 95014. In his blog post, which offers a PDF scan of the drawing, Chris identifies the employees whose offices are marked on the graph, as well as the meaning behind areas marked "Advent" and "Tennis courts?"

Apple quickly outgrew Bandley 1, just as the company is now outgrowing its current digs at 1 Infinite Loop. A new hundred-acre campus is currently being designed to expand Apple's Cupertino presence. It's comforting to know that Chris will continue to be a source of continuity throughout Apple's many homes and epochs.