The Mac factory
The Mac factory
Year: 1984

Originally intended to be the first automated factory, the Mac plant became a final assembly and test manufacturing space with pick-to-pack robotic automation. At the time, Jobs was a huge fan of Sony (SNE), which organized its factory employees by colored uniforms -- different colors meant different divisions.

"They [Apple employees] didn't have colored uniforms, but it was every bit as elegant as the early Sony factories that we saw," former Apple CEO John Sculley said in a recent interview. "All we were doing was final assembly and test, but it was done so beautifully. It was as well thought through in design as a factory, a lights-out factory."

Last updated August 25 2011: 12:01 AM ET

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