But I naively chose a college that was almost asexpensive as Stanford,
and all of my working-class parent‘s savings werebeing spent on my college tuition.
After six months, I couldn't see the value in it.
I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life and no idea how college was going to help mefigure it out.
And here I was spending all of the money my parents had saved their entire life.
So I decided to drop out and trust that it would all work out OK.
It was pretty scary at the time, but looking back it was one of the best decisions I ever made.
The minute I dropped out I could stop taking the required classes that didn't interest me,
and begin dropping in on the ones that looked interesting.
It wasn't all romantic.
I didn't have a dorm room, so I slept on the floor in friends' rooms,
I returned coke bottles for the 5-cent deposits to buy food with,
and I would walk the 7 miles across town every Sunday night to get one good meal a week atthe Hare Krishna temple.
I loved it.
And much of what I stumbled into by following my curiosity and intuition turned out to bepriceless later on.
Let me give you one example:
Reed College at that time offered perhaps the best calligraphy instruction in the country.
Throughout the campus every poster, every label on every drawer, was be autifully handcalligraphed.
Because I had dropped out and didn't have to take the normal classes,
I decided to take a calligraphy class to learn how to do this.
I learned about serif and san serif typefaces,
about varying the amount of space between different letter combinations,
about what makes great typography great.
It was beautiful, historical, artistically subtle in a way that science can't capture,
and I found it fascinating.
None of this had even a hope of any practical application in my life.
But ten years later,when we were designing the first Macintosh computer, it all came back tome.
And we designed it all into the Mac. It was the first computer with beautiful typography.
If I had never dropped in on that single course in college,
the Mac would have never had multiple typefaces or proportionally spaced fonts.
And since Windows just copied the Mac, its likely that no personal computer would have them.
If I had never dropped out, I would have never dropped in on this calligraphy class,
and personal computers might not have the wonderful typography that they do.
Of course it was impossible to connect he dots looking forward when I was in college.
But it was very, very clear looking backwards ten years later.