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The Triumph of the Nerds: The Rise of Accidental Empires (1996)

Three part documentary that shows the insight look at the history of computers, from its rise in the 1970s to the beginning of the Dot-com boom of the late 1990s.

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(book), (screenplay)
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Cast

Credited cast:
Robert X. Cringely ... Himself (host / interviewer)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
... Himself (author)
Sam Albert ... Himself (former IBM executive)
... Himself (co-founder, Microsoft)
Bill Atkinson ... Himself (designer, Macintosh Development Team)
... Himself (vice-president, Microsoft)
Dan Bricklin ... Himself (VisiCalc inventor)
David Bunnell ... Himself (founder, PC World and Macworld magazines)
Rod Canion ... Himself (co-founder, Compaq)
Jim Cannavino ... Himself (former head, PC division, IBM)
Christine Comaford ... Herself (CEO, Corporate Computing International)
Eddy Curry ... Himself
Esther Dyson ... Herself (computer industry analyst)
... Himself (founder and president, Oracle)
Chris Espinosa ... Himself (manager, Media Tools, Apple)
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Storyline

Three part documentary that shows the insight look at the history of computers, from its rise in the 1970s to the beginning of the Dot-com boom of the late 1990s.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Documentary

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Details

Official Sites:

PBS: Triumph of the Nerds

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Release Date:

12 June 1996 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Triumph of the Nerds  »

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Did You Know?

Goofs

Part 1 refers to the First West Coast Computer Faire where the Apple II was introduced. The Faire was in April 1977, not 1978. See more »

Quotes

Himself (author): A nerd is a person who uses the telephone to talk to other people about telephones. And therefore a computer nerd is somebody who uses a computer in order to use a computer.
See more »

Connections

Followed by Nerds 2.0.1: A Brief History of the Internet (1998) See more »

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User Reviews

Sociopaths, egomaniacs and hippies.
23 January 1999 | by See all my reviews

And we have THEM to thank for all of this.

Your humble author can't help but wonder how Bob Cringely got the likes of Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Steve Wozniak, Paul Allen and others in front of the cameras for an honest look inside the slightly twisted minds that begat the personal computer.

At 3 hours in length, "Triumph of the Nerds" isn't just a PBS miniseries. On home video, it becomes an epic. And why shouldn't it be? The personal computer has an impact on our lives equal to that of the light bulb and the automobile. But in the case of the PC, most of the people responsible for its creation and worldwide influence are still alive. These are flesh and blood humans, not fading historical sketches like Henry Ford and Thomas Edison.

"Triumph of the Nerds" was originally produced as a 20-year retrospective on the personal computer. But the PC will be 25 years old in the year 2000. I can't wait to see Bob Cringely's follow up.


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