Apple's Steve Wozniak Urges Entrepreneurs To Be Bold And Inventive

TREVOSE, Pa., Jan. 8, 2015 — (PRNewswire) —  Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak advised an overflowing crowd at ASI Show® Orlando to seek original ideas if they want to be successful beyond their wildest dreams.

Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, center, tours the show floor at ASI Show Orlando Tuesday with ASI vice-chairman Matthew Cohn, far left, after a keynote Q&A before a packed house of promotional products suppliers and distributors.

"Eventually, you could create software that could change the world," said Wozniak, an engineer who single-handedly kick-started the personal computer revolution, founding Apple in 1976 with Steve Jobs. Wozniak's keynote Tuesday was a highlight of ASI Show Orlando, hosted by the Advertising Specialty Institute® (ASI) at Orange County Convention Center. The trade show attracted 745 exhibitors and 6,084 attendees from 49 states and 22 countries.

Buyers and sellers in the $20.5 billion promotional products industry gathered to browse 2015's hottest giveaways. Low-cost, high-return promotional products are usually given away by companies and organizations to advertise a brand or event or to thank employees or clients.

Wozniak's Q&A with ASI CEO Timothy Andrews drew over 1,000. "The Woz" covered Apple's early years along with predictions for technology's future, like tech items operated solely at the direction of people's voices. "Now, you see people speaking into their phone like it's their friend," said Wozniak. "I like that we can speak to computers in a human way. Maybe we won't make machines conscious. If we do, I really hope they take good care of us."

The self-professed geek, who appeared on Dancing with the Stars and The Big Bang Theory despite never watching TV himself, said he appreciated innovation in whatever form. "I love promotional products," he said, calling out a branded thermos one of his companies gave to employees that miraculously kept beverages hot for two days. "It's a great way to get the word out."

After the Q&A, Wozniak toured the show floor, surprising attendees. Kristen Beck, of Florida's Alligator Events, thanked the former teacher for his inspiring words about the importance of education. "He was awesome," she said.

"From every account, ASI Show Orlando exceeded everyone's expectations," said Rita Ugianskis-Fishman, ASI Show VP and GM.

Monday night, ASI's Counselor® magazine also announced winners of its 2015 Distributor Choice Awards. Ariel Premium Supply, of St. Louis, MO, was named Supplier of the Year.

About ASI
The Advertising Specialty Institute (ASI) is the largest media, marketing and education organization serving the promotional products industry, with a network of over 25,000 distributors and suppliers throughout North America.

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