Every once in a while I get to go on stage with Steve Jobs at an Apple keynote, to demonstrate Mathematica. On those occasions I end up hearing various bits of gossip, and my favorite was during the introduction of the Macintosh G5 line of computers, when, or so I heard, great mountains were moved to get Jobs an actual 12" wafer full of G5 chips for him to hold up at a strategic moment during the presentation. It seems IBM, who makes the wafers, was very nervous about the idea of such a wafer actually leaving the factory, as it contains all kinds of trade secrets not visible after the chips have been packaged. (I can only hope they gave him a defective one, since a full wafer of functional G5 chips would be worth a fortune, and would be ruined by removal from the clean room environment.)
This, alas, is not a full wafer of G5 chips, it's just some kind of test pattern. Still, it's a 12" wafer, which is a fairly exotic object at this time.
Source: eBay seller gogobobs
Contributor: Theodore Gray
Acquired: 22 June, 2004
Text Updated: 11 August, 2007