Triumph of the Nerds: The Rise of Accidental Empires

Ratings: 8.25/10 from 12 users.


Triumph of the Nerds: The Rise of Accidental EmpiresThis film chronicles the rise of the personal computer/home computer beginning in the 1970s with the Altair 8800, Apple II and VisiCalc.

It continues through the IBM PC and Apple Macintosh revolution through the 1980s and the mid 1990s at the beginning of the Dot-com boom.

It includes interviews with Apple Computer's Steve Jobs and Microsoft's Bill Gates. This three-part film first premiered on PBS in June 1996. Episodes included: Impressing their Friends, Riding the Bear, and Great Artists Steal.

The series was released in VHS format soon after airing but is now out of print. A release on DVD by Ambrose Video in 2002 was noted by product reviewers on and elsewhere to have numerous small but not insignificant segments excised from the program as originally aired for reasons that remain unknown. The older, unedited VHS copies of the documentary are highly prized, but difficult to find.

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9 Comments / User Reviews

  1. Vince

    Nerds rule the world. Before you say no, look at the founders of the largest companies and current leaders of the most developed countries today and think again.

  2. Troy

    Uh, yeah I looked. "Nerds" may run some companies but they are definitely not the leaders of most developed countries. I'm not saying whether or not they should be.

  3. InedibleHulk

    Troy, stop and think. "Developed" countries are the ones with the biggest profits. Filthy rich nerds like Gates and Jobs (among many others) are at the top of the proverbial "ladder of success". The figureheads in capitol buildings are more like rent-a-chauffeurs than actual leaders.

  4. Nikk

    Yeah and the truth of the matter is that the fight, ultimately, for political power in the west lies with the ability of the socio-political leadership to coddle to the interests of people like Gates and Jobs. The information age and the technological industries it has spawned don't rely on easily controllable masses of illiterate workers all vying to break each other's strikes and what not for a paycheck. It relies on highly educated, highly independent people who, if they walk away, render the social and political leadership of said, respective, theoretical country utterly useless.

    If you own a steel mill and that is the driving industy of your respective country and your workers protest, strike and walk away. You can find more illiterate peasants to pour molten iron, melt that iron in the first place, MAYBE you'd need artisans to make molds but the truth is you can find another thousand some odd strike breakers to work in your factory.

    With modern industries you need HIGHLY skilled and educated technicians who can write code, design circuitry, design nanotechnology, etc. The average worker is becoming more indespesible to the modern company than ever least the ones that drive the 'developed world'.

  5. VotersRights

    Nikk, go back to school so you learn to write coherent sentences.

  6. Nakor420

    Gates and Jobs are paupers compared to people like Rothschild and Rockafeller. They are the REAL money power. The media tells you that people like Gates and Buffet are the richest in the world, but that's just a cover story for the REAL wealth. At one time the Rothschilds owned 50% of all the worlds wealth. The last educated estimate of their wealth was around 400 TRILLION dollars. This makes Bill Gates look like a gas station attendant.

  7. Brad

    So, the description doesn't this the older uncut VHS version or the cut DVD version?

  8. TheCookieMonstersMum

    Stop Being a Fool only focusing on some petty spelling errors, rather than actually making a productive comment. Nikk has a very good point and I completely agree with him.

  9. Eve Vee

    Funny to look back on this, particularly the "put bits on the net" part near the end.

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