When he was a kid he used to get his Dad to bring home parts and supplies catalogues from his work as an electrical engineer, so he could read the specifications and build devices in his imagination.
As a straight A’s high-school student, he built a calculator from scratch, using off-the-shelf components. Later he would design a programmable computer, on paper, for fun.
As a twenty something, he would discover the world of hacking and befriended Captain Crunch, a.k.a., John T. Draper, making ‘blue box’ devices to foil pay-phones into routing long distance calls free of charge; famously once connecting the Vatican to the White House.
In a more constructive mode, he designed and assembled build-it-yourself kit computers and sold them to other technology nerds at trade fairs and via mail order. Steve Jobs did the marketing, Woz did the designing. By 1984 the company co-founded as a spring-break hobby in Steve Jobs’ parents garage, was making more money from home computers and software than IBM and all the rest of its competitors combined.
Apple Computer made Woz and Jobs multi-billionaires almost overnight, sparking a cultural revolution in business, communications, entertainment and design that literally changed the world.