Ron Avitzur got laid off from his job as a software consultant at Apple in 1993. But he refused to give up on his project, so he just kept coming in and working on it. Eventually he got the software–Apple’s Graphing Calculator–QA’d, translated into 20 languages, and bundled into shipping Macs, all without actually being on the Apple payroll. Amazing!
“The secret to programming is not intelligence, though of course that helps. It is not hard work or experience, though they help, too. The secret to programming is having smart friends.”