When Bill Joy first appears in Outliers, he is a gawky, 16-year-old boy. Tall and thin with wild hair, the studious teenager is described by his peers as a nerd who can’t get a date. Through the story of this man who goes on to become a cofounder of Sun Microsystems, Gladwell highlights the impact of lucky breaks when combined with intelligence and hard work. Due to his wide-spread influence, Joy has become known as the Edison of the Internet. While Joy’s acclaim in the world of software and computing was no mere happy accident, good fortune played a significant part. Gladwell reveals that Joy chose the University of Michigan and started college the same year the Computer Center opened on campus. Gladwell writes that Joy “stumbled” into the Computer Center; the choice of the word “stumbled,” along with the detail that Joy originally thought he’d major in biology or math, suggests that the start of his programming journey was not part of some grand plan, but mere happenstance. Gladwell reveals a few other lucky breaks Joy experienced, including 24/7 Computer Center access and a glitch in the system that allowed unlimited computer time free of charge. Gladwell does not argue that luck is all one needs for achievement, however. Joy took these lucky breaks and turned them into success by building his talents with hard work and practice time. Because he had Computer Center access, Joy devoted up to 10 hours a day to programming and would sometimes spend the night in the building. Because of his dedication, he landed a summer job with a computer science professor so he could continue to grow his skills. Joy’s transformation from an awkward teenager to one of the founding fathers of Silicon Valley was the result of, Gladwell claims, putting in the time to hone his talents, though it’s certainly true he was lucky enough to have the opportunity to do so.