Former Apple engineer rejected for job as Apple store Genius after he applied following retirement

“The Apple engineer who switched Macs to Intel processors was rejected from a job at the Genius Bar,” The Daily Mail reports. “JK Scheinberg, who was spent 21 years working for the tech giants, applied to work in an Apple Store after he retired. The 54-year-old understandably thought he would be a good fit for the position – but he was turned down.”

“It was highlighted in an article on age discrimination in The New York Times,” The Daily Mail reports. “A little restless after retiring in 2008, at 54, he figured he’d be a great fit for a position at an Apple store Genius Bar, despite being twice as old as anyone else at the group interview. Schienberg told him: ‘On the way out, all three of the interviewers singled me out and said: ‘We’ll be in touch.’ ‘I never heard back.'”

“After the piece was published, the software engineer tweeted: ‘Wonder if Apple will finally give me callback on that genius bar interview,'” The Daily Mail reports. “Scheinberg invented an Intel version of Mac OSX that ran on PCs.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Something’s obviously broken in Apple’s hiring process here. Diversity, so trumpeted by Apple CEO Tim Cook, also includes age.

The amazing true story of Project Marklar; how Mac OS X for Intel was born – June 10, 2012
Intel-based Macs running both Mac OS X and Windows will be good for Apple – June 10, 2005

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Lynn Weiler” for the heads up.]


  1. I had similar results though my resume was not in the same league as this guy’s. However, when I go into the stores in my area (3 w/in 20 minutes) there is pretty diverse group working there including an older crowd as in 50+ so maybe it’s just the luck of the draw.

    1. Ahhh…no. Terminology is important. Diversity has a definition.

      In my experience, it is people like you that twist names/terms to mean what you want them to mean – destroy the denotation by inventing a new connotation. Label and disparage…

    2. Some people seem to live their whole lives viewing the rest of the world through political bullshit glasses. I can’t imagine a more frustrating and sad existence. #nothanks #betterthingstodo

  2. Retirement should make ZERO difference. Expect “a reversal of a Custer order” and this guy hired, if for no other reason than their total embarrassment at having turned down someone so over-qualified. 54 these days is still relatively young if one has taken care of oneself. (And age 45 should be the cutoff for most alcohol too as the body becomes less adept at dealing with it. Jes sayin’.)

      1. All things in moderation and even more moderation past age 45. Assuming you’d like a quality long life span and don’t want to skid into your coffin from a fast alcohol dripping lifestyle with a good looking corpse. It may be a bit more “cowardly” but there is something to be said for pleasant longevity. I found out through diet I could reverse everything that was ailing me. Food is medicine too, done the right way.

  3. Same thing happened to me. Way back when the organization I was working for went belly up, I figured the Apple Store would,give me something to do while I figured out what I was going to do.

    They kept going over my resume and saying, you have all this experience, why would,you want to do this?

    They’re your last position was Dir. Of IT for xxxxx, and before that you were VP of Advanced Tech for xxxxx?

    You realize this is retail right? Dealing with the public? Cash registers? Stock?

    As they described it I started thinking, “hmmm…”

    They figured I was doing it for some reason other than wanting to work in retail, and they were right. It wouldn’t have been a good fit. I’d never worked retail my life. But I did have experience developing a POS system!

  4. Wether you get the job is also dependend on attitude, especially for those jobs dealing with customers. High-powered executives tend to have a rather authoritive air about them that is limiting approachability.

  5. There really is such a thing as over qualified, and such people, including myself, can be a nuance. You don’t need know it all,jackasses mucking up a finely tuned mach9ne.

    In addition Apple draws a very clear line between the stores and “real corporate Apple.”

    1. Certainly some retail managers are idiots… end up stealing the company blind. But that is NOT the norm at the Apple (Store). Meanwhile, the age discrimination IS a factor there. I’ve seen one and only one person near my age working at a Apple (Store). He and I chatted about the fact.

  6. Not at all surprised. Apple stores practice a particular peer interview process that guarantees age discrimination . Ask yourself how many Apple Store personnel have you seen that are over 30? Generally a store should reflect its desired markets yet the age cohorts that need the most assistance are boomers and e-seniors and wannabes. The AppleStore is obviously phenomenally successful and that they discriminate will not affect their profits. No one fights against age discrimination, no one. I am not surprised


    Scheinberg invented an Intel version of Mac OSX that ran on PCs.

    This is a misstatement. Technically, OS X ALWAYS ran on Intel processors thanks to the Mach kernel it inherited from the NeXTSTEP (OPENSTEP) OS, now evolved into the XNU kernel. It was because of the kernel that Apple was able to easily move from PowerPC RISC CPUs to Intel CISC CPUs.

    What’s different is the huge pile of APIs that come with Intel CISC CPUs of which Mac OS X needed to take advantage. THAT took a lot of coding.

    Reference Links:

    Mach (kernel)


  8. As a 75 year old Apple retail employee I can tell you it is worse if you do get the job. I have been turned down for every higher position I have applied for over the past 4 years. I was even told by a manager that I don’t have 40 years business experience That I have 1 year 40 times because guys my age keep making the same mistakes over again.

  9. It’s a cultural thing.

    The culture of youth.

    Try working in an industry where most of your clients are in their early to mid 20’s and you are in your 50’s.

    Remember the “Generation Gap” of the 60’s? Maybe not but trust me it’s alive and well in 2016.

    I’d be surprised if that wasn’t a big part of it but there’s other human foibles involved as well.

    The folks who looked at Scheinberg’s resume probably came to a number of conclusions right off the bat. First was the Why Does THIS Guy Want to Work Here question?

    Next, if we hire him he’s not going to stick around long enough to make it worth our while.

    Then there’s the possible insecure manager who’s thinking that he’s going to end up taking their job.

    Finally, I’ve never met Mr. Scheinberg let along having any interaction with him. That said I have met and interacted with dozens of other software/hightech individuals a couple even at the rarified level as he occupied.

    On more than a couple occasions it was, ah, challenging to work one-on-one with these folks. Not knowing Mr. Scheinberg people skills truth is he just might not be the best fit for a position at the Genius Bar.

    If I was the manager of that Apple Store I would have rolled the dice and hired him on the spot.

  10. Apple Retail loves and needs diversity. It’s clear that this guy is incredibly intelligent but not qualified enough to align with customers. This isn’t about age it’s about personality.

  11. I know a retired university IT tech in his 60’s who works in the Sacramento store, and I’ve talked to others who appear older.

    Being that the applicant was an engineer, my bet is that he had lousy people skills: at least that’s my experience.

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