updated 12:05 am EST, Thu February 5, 2009
Wozniak joins Fusion io
Apple Computer co-founder Steve Wozniak has taken a lead position at storage company Fusion-io, according to the New York Times. "The Woz" has worked on the company's advisory board, but will now serve as the chief scientist. Salt Lake City-based Fusion-io specializes in high performance storage devices, including solid state technology that is designed to offer cutting-edge capacity density and data transfer speeds.
“I have a pretty quiet life, and I like to watch technology evolve,” Wozniak said. “In this case, I like the people and the product, and said I would like some greater involvement.”
The computer engineer was made famous for his work producing the first Apple computers that were initially hand-built in Steve Jobs' garage. After the company went public in 1980, the two Steve's quickly earned millions.
Fusion-io is a three-year-old startup with more than 300 customers including military contracts. Rather than focusing on disk storage, the company builds modules composed of flash chips that can be added to servers. The system allegedly provides significantly improved access time and lower costs. Storage modules are connected directly to the main chips in servers to push performance.
Douglas Babb, chief IT systems architect at Hill Air Force Base, claims that a $10,000 Fusion-io module compares with the capabilities of $100,000 systems sold by competitors. “In my opinion, it’s absolutely a game-changing product,” he said.
Wozniak told the Times that he would consider joining Apple's board, if asked, but he downplayed the notion. “I have thought about that in recent years, but it’s not on my mind at all right now,” he said. “I think I have a better place at smaller companies looking at new ideas.”