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Gina Smith, iWoz

Gina Smith, author of iWozTech journalist Gina Smith had never been on TV when she was asked to appear on PBS to debate Steve Ballmer of Microsoft about Windows ’95. It was a gutsy move, but Gina said yes because she was determined to let consumers know her criticisms of Windows ‘95. After the interview, she was worrying “Whoa, should I have actually done that?” when ABC called and asked her to be the tech correspondent on Good Morning America and World News Tonight. And that’s how Gina went from Gina Smith, tech journalist to Gina Smith, TV correspondent, launching her TV career: by saying yes to opportunities, taking risks and sharing her passion.

Gina is also the New York Times bestselling author (with Steve Wozniak) of iWOZ: From Geek to Cult Icon: How I Invented the Personal Computer, Co-founded Apple and Had Fun Along the Way. She’s a radio host, wrote an award-winning column for the San Francisco Sunday Chronicle, wrote a book about DNA, and now Gina’s a partner in First 30 based in San Francisco, which is an incubator firm for tech start-ups.

During our interview, we talk about Gina’s serendipitous career journey and her current role at First 30, and:

  • How getting a text from a friend who met Steve Wozniak at a Grateful Dead concert turned into a book deal
  • Bringing great ideas to life: getting the guy who’s been working in his basement for 7 years a patent, an expert team, and a million dollars in funding
  • The Purple Cow: what Gina looks for when deciding which projects to back
  • Ripping the band-aid off: how to reject people without making them resent you

Learn more about Gina’s company at www.first30services.com.

Listen to my interview with Gina Smith.

0:07    Michael introduces Gina Smith
2:28    Gina’s talks about her debate on TV with Steve Ballmer of Microsoft
4:55    How getting a text from a friend who met Steve Wozniak at a Grateful Dead concert turned into a book deal
6:43    Striking the right balance between encouragement and reality
8:37    Bringing great ideas to life: getting the guy who’s been working in his basement for 7 years a patent, an expert team, and a million dollars in funding
14:33   Helping people overcome resistance – Founderitis!
17:43   The Purple Cow: what Gina looks for when deciding which projects to back
20:27   Ripping the band-aid off: how to reject people without making them resent you
22:28   How to find out more about Gina and First 30
23:06   Michael closes the interview

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