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Steve Wozniak Is Bringing Comic Con to Silicon Valley

February 11, 2016, 5:04 PM UTC
9th annual Southeast Venture Conference and Digital Summit Charlotte
Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, left, smiles as he answers a question from moderator Mike McGuire during the keynote luncheon of the 9th annual Southeast Venture Conference and Digital Summit Charlotte at the Le Meridien Charlotte on Wednesday, April 1, 2015, in Charlotte, N.C.
Photograph by Charlotte Observer/TNS via Getty Images

Apple (AAPL) co-founder Steve Wozniak has a vision to create a new kind of Comic Con.

On March 18, the Silicon Valley Comic Con will kick off in San Jose, Calif. But unlike the other Comic Cons that have cropped up around the U.S., this one has been founded by Wozniak and a handful of partners who aim at turning their show into a mix of comics, science fiction, cosplay, and one new addition: Consumer electronics.

“I don’t like doing the same thing as everyone else,” Wozniak told the Associated Press on Wednesday.

The most well-known Comic Con is the annual San Diego Comic-Con International. That show, which was founded in 1970 to bring people who loved comics together under one roof, has exploded into a pop culture phenomenon. Over the last several years, the show has attracted more than 130,000 people per year to dress up as their favorite comic book characters, meet celebrities that star in popular movies and television shows, and get sneak peeks at upcoming movies. San Diego Comic-Con International has become the go-to place for all comic book, science fiction, and cosplay fans to unite.

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The success of San Diego’s show has spawned countless others around the world. Both India and United Arab Emirates hold their own Comic Cons, along with Romania, Russia, and several across the UK and Canada. In the U.S., annual Comic Con conventions are held in well over a dozen locations. And like the San Diego show, nearly all of those Comic Con events are well-attended by fans of everything from Game of Thrones to Superman.

The idea behind Silicon Valley Comic Con is not to lose sight of what made “Cons” so successful in the first place: Comics. However, both the convention’s website and Wozniak argue that adding consumer electronics to the mix could make it a unique show that can stand on its own amid the many other Comic Cons held each year.

“Silicon Valley Comic Con will be a show unlike any other, as we bring together the best in technology and entertainment all under one gigantic roof,” Wozniak wrote on the convention’s official page. “There are lots of fans like me in San Francisco and the Valley, and I’m excited to finally have a Comic Con with our very own flavor. When I was growing up it was hard to be a geek. It definitely wasn’t cool back then, but I am happy that things have changed because now being a geek, or being different is cool. And Silicon Valley Comic Con celebrates being a geek!”

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The first-ever Silicon Valley Comic Con will feature a wide range of panels, including one featuring famed actor William Shatner, one on space exploration, and one on mobile gaming. Like many other Comic Cons, the Silicon Valley show will play host to several celebrities, including Stan Lee, arguably the most famous comic book writer of all time, along with actors Jeremy Renner, Lea Thompson, and Michael J. Fox. The “science & tech” component of the event will include NASA scientists and Astro Teller, head of Alphabet’s (GOOG) X “moonshot factory.”

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Wozniak’s Silicon Valley Comic Con will be held from March 18 through March 20 at the San Jose Convention Center. Tickets are still on sale, and range from $10 for a Friday child pass to $99 for a three-day adult pass.