"Steve Jobs: The Exclusive Biography" - Extract 1
His personality was reflected in the products he created. Just as the core of Apple’s philosophy, from the original Macintosh in 1984 to the iPad a generation later, was the end-to-end integration of hardware and software, so too was it the case with Steve Jobs: his personality, passions, perfectionism, demons, desires, artistry, devilry, and obsession for control were interwoven with his approach to business and the innovative products that resulted. The unified field theory that ties together Jobs’s personality and products begins with his most salient trait, his intensity. His silences could be as searing as his rants. He had taught himself to stare without blinking. Sometimes, this intensity was charming, in a geeky way, such as when he was explaining the profundity of Bob Dylan’s music or why whatever product he was unveiling at that moment was the most amazing thing that Apple had ever made. At other times, it could be terrifying, such as when he was fulminating about Google or Microsoft ripping Apple off. This intensity encouraged a binary view of the world. Colleagues referred to the hero/shithead dichotomy; you were either one or the other, sometimes on the same day. The same was true of products, ideas, even food: something was either ‘the best thing ever,’ or it was shitty, brain-dead, inedible. As a result, any perceived flaw could set off a rant. The finish on a piece of metal, the curve of the head of a screw, the shade of blue on a box, the intuitiveness of a navigation screen – he would declare them to ‘completely suck’ until that moment when he suddenly pronounced them ‘absolutely perfect.’ He thought of himself as an artist, which he was, and he indulged in the temperament of one. His quest for perfection led to his compulsion for Apple to have end-to-end control of every product that it made. He got hives, or worse, when contemplating great Apple software running on another company’s crappy hardware, and he likewise was allergic to the thought of unapproved apps or content polluting the perfection of an Apple device. This ability to integrate hardware and software and content into one unified system enabled him to impose simplicity. The astronomer Johannes Kepler declared that ‘nature loves simplicity and unity’. So did Steve Jobs.
Extracts from the hotly-anticipated Steve Jobs biography have been revealed, giving a unique insight into the late Apple chief’s brilliant mind.
Published by Little, Brown and written by Waltar Isaacson, it is the only book to which the turtlenecked-one gave his blessing.
Ursula Mackenzie, CEO of Little, Brown said: ‘This extraordinary book gives us a unique insight into the life and thinking of the man who single-handedly transformed the world in ways the rest of us could not have imagined. It is an honour to publish Walter Isaacson’s biography which is based on personal conversations with Steve Jobs and written with his full co-operation.
Scroll down to read the extracts. Steve Jobs: The Exclusive biography will be published on 24th October. Click here for more info.