Artifact Details


Carter, Gene P. oral history

Catalog Number



Moving image




Carter, Gene, Interviewee
Dennis, Eric, Videographer
Fairbairn, Doug, Interviewer


Computer History Museum

Place of Publication

Mountain View, California





Copyright Holder

Computer History Museum


Gene Carter spent his early childhood years in South Dakota before moving to Missouri at age 10. His first “love” was music and he played piano in a dance band starting at age 15. After dropping out of junior college after one semester, he developed in interest in electronics and enrolled in a radio and TV repair correspondence course. In the mid-1950’s he was drafted and served in the Navy as a Second Class Electricians mate.

After leaving the service, he enrolled the Milwaukee School of Engineering in 1958. Graduating in just 15 months, Gene took a job evaluating semiconductor components for the Atomic Energy Commission in Albuquerque, NM. From there he moved on to Fairchild and National Semiconductor, where he eventually headed the microprocessor group.

When Carter realized the potential of microprocessors in fueling a personal computer revolution, he proposed that National get into that business in 1976. When they refused, he quit his job and joined Apple as its first sales person in April 1977, employee #14. He set up Apple’s sales channels, proposed the first Apple retail stores, and made numerous other contributions to Apple’s success. After leaving Apple in 1984, he helped start Productivity Software to develop a Macintosh version of AppleWorks. This was later sold to Microsoft. Since then Gene has served on the Board of Adobe and made other investments.


Oral history


semiconductor history; Fairchild; National Semiconductor Corporation; Productivity Software; Apple; Apple computer stores; VISICALC; Chips and Technologies; PageMaker; Byte Shops; ComputerLand; Jobs, Steve; 1984 Super Bowl ad

Collection Title

Oral history collection


Computer History Museum

Lot Number


Related Records

102739971 Carter, Gene P. oral history