“He’s not great at the basics of daily life: directions confound him, because roadways aren’t logical, and he’s so absent-minded about sunglasses that he keeps a “reload station” with nine pairs on his hall table,” wrote Tad Friend in a profile for the New Yorker magazine.
He grew up in New Lisbon, Wisconsin. The population? 1,500. At the age of 8 he taught himself the BASIC programming language. Yet his small town lacked the resources to quench his curiosity. “We had a very small public library, and the nearest bookstore was an hour away. So I came from an environment where I was starved for information, starved for connection,” he said in an interview with tech magazine Wired.