Apple II / Lisa / Apple III
While at Apple, Steve fixed thousands of Apple II motherboards that failed after “burn in.” Subsequently, he became an Engineering Technician in the R&D group for the Lisa project. Steve then went on to work as Engineering Technician on the the Apple III with Dr. Wendell Sanders, replacing Daniel Kottke so that Dan could work with the Mac group.
Apple IIe: “Adam and Eve” Chips
After the Apple III, Steve was assigned to work with logic designer Walt Broedner as his Engineering Technician on the Apple II 80 Column board and on both of the “Adam and Eve” (IOU and MMU) custom chips. Using Walt’s designs, Steve would wire wrap and debug them until everything worked. Getting working silicon on the first try was unheard of at that time, but both Adam and Eve worked on the first try.
At Apple, Bill Budge asked Steve if it were possible to hook two Atari-style controllers to the Apple II for a game called Crazy Climber. Steve created a prototype, then contacted an engineer in the Apple R&D lab, Keithen Hayenga, who was working on a four-paddle device. The pair combined Steve’s prototype with Keithen’s design, creating a device that Steve Jobs approved for development by a third party. Sirius Software acquired the rights to produce this product –The JOYPORT — which was introduced in 1981. The JOYPORT allowed four Apple-compatible paddles or two Atari-style joysticks to be connected to the Apple II. [Sirius JoyPort on Wikipedia]
Shortly after the video game market crash of 1983, Steve decided to work with the Macintosh and the Commodore 64. During this time, he co-designed a hardware peripheral that allowed an Atari-style joystick to hook up to the original Macintosh. The joystick needed to emulate mouse quadratures so that the device would be compatible with all of the current games. This device — the MouseStick — allowed a mouse and joystick to live together, enabling the user to to select whichever controller s/he liked. The MouseStick hit the shelves very quickly and was a successful product.