Apple at 40: What Steve Jobs Said About Computers in 1981

Apple co-founder discussed computers with ABC News' "Nightline."

ByABC News
April 1, 2016, 5:27 AM

— -- Here's a #FallbackFriday that brings a rush of nostalgia on Apple's 40th anniversary.

Steve Jobs and writer David Burnham debated computers on "Nightline" in 1981 where both men discussed potential privacy concerns raised by the personal computing revolution.

"I think one of the things you really have to look at is you have to go watch some kids using these things," Jobs said. "What you find is far from something quite harmful. In effect, what you see is an instantaneous reflection of a part of themselves, the creative part of themselves being expressed. And it's just very, very difficult to see these kids using this tool -- and realizing they're going to have these tools for the rest of their lives -- to portray that as something very harmful. It's actually something quite democratic."

When asked by Ted Koppel if the devices raised concerns for the potential of government snooping, Jobs said he believed the best protection was an informed public.

"I think the best protection against something like that is a very literate public, and in this case, computer literate," he said. "We've already reached approximately every one in 1,000 households in the United States," he said, telling Koppel that number would one day be one to one.