Since the death of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, various little anecdotes abouts the deeply private man have come to the surface. Many were revealed in Walter Isaacson's bestselling biography, but stories about Jobs have come from all directions.
Today's revelation is no doubt one of the best ones yet.
Jobs, who by all accounts ran a tight ship, was at least, in theory, not above a little silliness. According to Ken Segall's book Insanely Simple: The Obsession That Drives Apple's Success, Jobs once had the idea to put an Apple golden ticket inside the packaging of the 1 millionth iMac. That ticket would give the lucky user a trip to Cupertino, where Jobs would greet them in full Gene Wilder swag.
MacRumors quotes the passage:
Steve's idea was to do a Willy Wonka with it. Just as Wonka did in the movie, Steve wanted to put a golden certificate representing the millionth iMac inside the box of one iMac, and publicize that fact. Whoever opened the lucky iMac box would be refunded the purchase price and be flown to Cupertino, where he or she (and, presumably, the accompanying family) would be taken on a tour of the Apple campus.
Steve had already instructed his internal creative group to design a prototype golden certificate, which he shared with us. But the killer was that Steve wanted to go all out on this. He wanted to meet the lucky winner in full Willy Wonka garb. Yes, complete with top hat and tails.
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Ken Segall is a former Apple ad guy who's responsible for the whole "Think differently" campaign, and he also runs an Onion-type Apple news blog Scoopertino. We hope this Wonka thing isn't a big joke.
Can you see Steve Jobs giving the factory tour? He definitely had the enthusiasm about his products to pull it off. Although I can't see him giving Apple to whatever little "Charlie" found the golden ticket.
This is all funny, because just yesterday I suggested that Apple start putting tickets to their annual WWDC in Wonka Bars, considering how hard they are to get.