Rare, working Apple-1 should process investor interest

BOSTON — A rare Apple-1 computer, the first personal computer produced by Steve Jobs and Steve “Woz” Wozniak at the fledgling Apple Computer Co. in Palo Alto, California in 1976, is being offered for sale by RR Auction on Invaluable.com. The “Remarkable Rarities” sale takes place Sept. 25 beginning at 1 p.m. at WeWorks, 200 Portland St., Boston.

To highlight the auction, the Apple-1 will be scanned at Invaluable with technology created by Artmyn, a Swiss company revolutionizing how art is experienced, promoted and secured online. The scan reveals the Apple-1’s unique digital “DNA” as it heads to auction. 

The Apple-1 being auctioned is one of only 60-70 remaining of the original 200 that were designed and built by Jobs and Wozniak and sold for $666.66 at The Byte Shop in Mt. View, California – one of the first personal computer shops in the world, said Bobby Livingston, executive vice president at RR Auction.

A working Apple-1 computer offered in a Sept. 25 auction. A preliminary, close-up video of the Apple-1 can be viewed at https://bit.ly/2obVJfr. Photos courtesy RR Auction

A working Apple-1 computer offered in a Sept. 25 auction. A preliminary, close-up video of the Apple-1 can be viewed at https://bit.ly/2obVJfr. Photos courtesy RR Auction

The consigner paid $300 to the original owner, a co-worker who bought it at The Byte Shop, said Livingston. He began learning BASIC and writing small programs and even after outgrowing the system, kept it, realizing it could one day be a piece of computing history. In 1982, he attempted to sell his Apple-1 to Wozniak for $10,000 – an offer that, fortunately for him, went unanswered, said Livingston.

The record auction price for an Apple-1 is $815,000, established in 2016.

“The Apple-1 was the first in the evolution of products from Apple that would forever change the world we live in,” said Livingston. “It’s fitting that the cutting-edge technology that is being used to scan, capture and identify this historic computer is poised to revolutionize the auction business.”

A working Apple-1 computer offered in a Sept. 25 auction. A preliminary, close-up video of the Apple-1 can be viewed at https://bit.ly/2obVJfr. Photos courtesy RR Auction

A working Apple-1 computer offered in a Sept. 25 auction. A preliminary, close-up video of the Apple-1 can be viewed at https://bit.ly/2obVJfr. Photos courtesy RR Auction

Corey Cohen, a computer historian and Apple-1 expert who documented the authenticity of this unit and will demonstrate it at the Sept. 5 press availability, said, “This Apple-1 board is one of the few known operational units that has never been modified or had circuit traces cut then repaired. This Apple-1 even includes the original keyboard used by the current owner back in the 1970s.”

The scanning at Invaluable highlights an exclusive global partnership between Invaluable and Artmyn aimed at improving the online buying experience and increasing transparency and buyer confidence in the online art market. Under the partnership, Invaluable will offer auction houses exclusively on its marketplace free access to Artmyn’s scanning technology.

“We couldn’t be more excited about the sale of this historic piece of technology,” said Invaluable CEO Rob Weisberg. “The innovative scanning technology we’re showcasing is a giant step towards greater transparency in the art and collectibles market that we believe will increase buyer confidence in the online art market. To showcase it with an Apple-1 is just incredible and fitting.”

Apple-1 Operating Manual

Apple-1 Operating Manual

Artmyn’s technology scans artworks and objects like the Apple-1 and captures tens of thousands of photographs with different light sources and spectrums, including UV lights. The scanning process generates a 5D interactive file and a short immersive video containing more than 1.5 billion pixels – offering owners, auction houses, consignors and buyers unparalleled views and feelings of texture for each scanned object.

“This allows you to ‘touch with your eyes’ and experience and interact with a digital twin of the Apple-1 as if the original was in your own hands,” said Artmyn co-founder and CEO Alexandre Catsicas.

The scanning process reveals the signature elements of an artwork or object, such as topography, properties of color and levels of reflection, said Catsicas.

In the case of the Apple-1, the scan will allow a 5D look at the iconic desktop, offering zeroed-in views of distinguishing details on the top and bottom of the piece.

The Artmyn advantage

Weisberg called the Artmyn partnership “an incredible opportunity for our auction house partners to promote their sales in a unique way while also digitally preserving the ‘DNA’ of artwork, which ensures the authenticity and traceability of the pieces.

“It revolutionizes the way art can be experienced online,” he added. “These images will be posted on Invaluable to provide buyers with a new, incredibly detailed immersive experience. All the scanned pieces will be offered for sale exclusively on our global marketplace.”

Under the partnership agreement, Invaluable will offer auction houses that are exclusively on its marketplace access to Artmyn’s scanning technology free of charge.

For more information about RR Auction’s Sept. 25 Remarkable Rarities sale, visit www.rrauction.com.

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