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Synopsis of Thomas Friedman’s THANK YOU FOR BEING LATE

Chapter 1

We start off with some comments by the author – Thomas L. Friedman, on why he decided to become an explanatory journalist.

Many, in today’s world, believe that the more complicated they sound and behave, the more impressive they are. Breaking things down into a simple language, which can be understood and, perhaps applied, by the readers, if useful, is a more important task since most people aren’t deeply involved in academia: enter the Orwells, Gladwells and Friedmans of the world.

While driving a car at high speed might be thrilling, it is not what we would like to get habituated to. This is because we also have the tendency to keep ourselves safe and speed guarantees anything but that. Similarly, knowledge and technology may be jumping in leaps and bounds, but ethical challenges that come from new technology has a lagging day in the court.

This book explains how we are living in a time of great sensitivity and responsibility. It is perhaps one of the most memorable eras (seems biase) in the history of mankind, where we have knowledge and technology on one side, but are so busy in that, that we have no time to understand its impact on the world and the society. And that is a major cause for concern.

In a world where everyone wants to appear “busy” having the time to just “pause” and “reflect” is a luxury that many refuse to avail, even though it is so readily available. The problem lies in the fact that, if it is hard to get your time and to have your attention for a while, then you become all the more desirable. This idea is what keeps so many of us from making ourselves readily available for out friends and family members. We are always “busy”.

Friedman narrates the importance of pausing in our daily lives and reflect on our ideas and principles and knowledge. It is only when we stop and think, that we discover our true calling and finally start growing. Famous personalities over the years have emphasized the importance of this, but sadly, it is forgotten by every day people.

It is when you sit down quietly, maybe exercise or are in the thinking mode, that you find the solutions to your problems, come up with ideas and even understand certain situations that, otherwise, you might have failed to.

The chapter explains the reason behind the title of this book. Friedman, a journalist, was a famous interviewer, interviewing people from different spheres of life, and spent several minutes waiting for them while they arrived late for an interview. It is then that he realized he could use these few minutes waiting for them, either cribbing and getting engrossed in social media, or to use it for pausing and reflecting on the different aspects of his personal and professional life. This helped him gain clarity and focus and even peace. That is why, when his guests arrive late, his response is , “Thank you for being late.”

The whole idea for this book happened when he had a chance encounter with a parking attendant who happened to recognize him and get his attention. Upon further meetings, they became closer, and the author was surprised to know that the guy actually had his own blog in which he discussed the economic and political issues raging in his country of origin – Ethiopia.

He worked as a parking attendant during the daytime and a blogger at night. He was an intelligent man who didn’t keep only keep track of his blog statistics but also wanted to improve his style of writing. Mr. Friedman helped him as much as he could, giving him useful tips and insights. They were complete strangers who were now colleagues. The attendant, Bojia, forced him to figure out the difference between reporting and opinion writing. It is because he had decided to “pause” for Bojia, that the author looked at his work in a whole new light. While Bojia got his principles for the blog, he got the idea for this book.

This book is all about how technology, globalization and climate change are having a huge impact on the world and its people. It impacts everything – the way we live, the cars we drive, our responses to different situations – everything! However, this all started in the auspicious year of 2007.

Chapter 2

The year 2007 will hold significant importance for many years to come. This is the year in which Steve Jobs introduced the iPhone to the world – a smartphone that could be the best music player, the best phone and the best way to connect to the Internet.

Coming up with this device almost drained the company of all its resources, but, its introduction was worth all the trouble that Apple had gone through. The results were phenomenal!

Apart from Apple, several innumerable discoveries were taking place simultaneously, and new companies came into existence. Global giants of the world today, like Facebook, Twitter, the introduction of the Android and several other historical inventions were coming into existence.

Famous CEOs who had quit their jobs, like Michael Dell, returned to their jobs as they realized that the year 2007 was not an ordinary one, but one in which technology was developing like they had never seen before and missing out on such an opportunity would be nothing but foolishness.

Developments were taking place in manufacturing processors, operating softwares and improving storage capacity for the huge volumes of data that were now easily available and when these inter-related things develop, they create a platform for the improvement of mankind as a whole.

Thanks to these and several other developments, costs were greatly reduced. For example, DNA sequencing that could cost a $100 million in 2001, could now happen at $1,000! It was that low. While costs came down magnanimously, developments and growth happened at the same pace, but in the upward direction. The rate of change was increasing, and the pace of that acceleration was increasing as well, leading to growth in exponential forms showing the world how huge exponential growth could be and the miraculous numbers that they could lead to!

With an unbelievable increase in easy access to finance, credit and global flow of commerce, there is an improved connection between schools, colleges, offices, markets and the media. With the development of technology, globalization and climate change, these spheres are increasingly becoming more interdependent on each other, and while they are helping improve the human and biophysical landscape, they are creating several problems as well. Surprisingly, one must note, that again, these fields are the ones who can find new solutions to new problems that they are creating in the first place.

The world is moving at a higher pace of change, and the rate of change is also accelerating. The are more creatives chasing their dreams, although creating viable quality is also challenging.When the pace of change is difficult to keep up with, the world suffers, what is known as a dislocation. Dislocation happens when the change is happening at such a pace that the rest of the world cannot keep up with it. Things are changing rapidly, and our safety nets cannot keep up with them. This is the challenge that the governments all over the world are facing at the moment.

If you were to make a graph with time being the X axis and the rate of change being the Y axis, then the curve representing this combination over the centuries would gradually go upwards and then soar upwards, until finally, it shot off in the air. This graph basically explains how initially, the technology could previously take a century to have an impact on the lives of the people.

However, the developments that happened subsequently could stand on the shoulders of its predecessors and take a faster leap. Today, it can take only 5 to 7 years for a new invention to affect mankind on this planet and that too in every corner of the world.

On the same graph, one can make another curve called the ‘competing curve’  to have a better understanding of the pace at which technology is developing and the pace at which humans are adjusting to it. This curve is extremely incremental, with a positive slope. This curve shows us that humans have a good capacity and that is the fact that they can easily adapt themselves to the changing scenarios. However, we have reached that level today, where our capability to match on a moral basis is falling behind. And this is causing problems in the world that we live in.

That leaves us with two options. Either we can stop the growth of technology or improve our adaptability. The former is not a good idea as developing technology is only helping us combat several environmental and societal issue that are plaguing mankind. So the only option is to work on improving the rate at which we are adapting to the technological developments.

This chapter goes into the details of the developments that happened around 2007 and shows us the relationship between the rate at which technology develops and the pace at which that rate is accelerating and how humans are adapting to these changes.

Chapter 3

The power of exponential growth is what this chapter takes a closer look at. If a number doubles, triples or even increases four times for many years, it will reach huge numbers that mankind had never even imagined. For example, if the power of microchips are doubled every two years, and this process goes on for fifty years, the results will be microchips that are far more efficient, powerful and even available at fairly lower costs compared to the microchips that were made initially.

A computer has five important parts – 1. The circuits, 2. The memory centers, 3. The communication networks, 4. The software installed and 5. The sensors like cameras and speakers that further enhance the performance of computers. This chapter explains how the development in each of these five components have lead to this situation where human beings cannot adapt themselves to the pace at which changes are being implemented in the world of technology.

Starting with microchips, they are small engines on a chip that make computers, the miraculous machines that they are. Over the years, these microchips have become smaller and smaller and at the same time, more efficient. Every time, engineers would wonder how they could make the next level microchips that would go beyond the realm of imagination, they would hear a lot of opinions.

However, they succeeded in achieving their dreams, in spite of how demotivating the opinions around them could be. Surprisingly, these microchips were getting smaller and smaller, all the more powerful and available at more affordable prices. The world was witnessing exponential growth and whatever was predicted, was happening, indeed.

Next in line are the sensors – the same sensors that police use to detect the speed of moving vehicles and your fitness bands use them to detect your pulse rate and breathing and sleeping patterns which give you a better idea of the number of calories burned.

In fact, it is these sensors that today, help the garbage man know when a garbage can is filled and needs to be cleaned! Whether complicated, or simple, it is the sensors that have made life as easy as it is today. Sensors may be defined as a device that can take in inputs from the physical world and use it to give results to the human beings that can be read and interpreted for further working on it. Down the years, just like the microchips, even sensors have become increasingly powerful and sensitive and have simultaneously gone down in prices. That is why they can be installed in things as small as fitness bands that help you lead a healthy and fit life.

The impact that these sensors have in today’s world can not even be imagines. Their results can be used to shape the future of this planet. Instead of waiting for things to get ruined and then working on changing or improving it, sensors help us detect patterns before that damage occurs so that necessary steps can be taken to prevent and improve things instead.

Now, moving over to storage or memory. It is true that the sensors have generated huge amounts of valuable data. However, storing that data would have been a major problem had there not been revolutionary innovations when it came down to storage. The data that is generated in huge companies like UPS alone, only in the United States is insane. If one gets down to the basic calculations, it would be crazy! Developments in storage have enabled us to store data temporarily and permanently.

And again, with further improvements, efficiency increased, and prices dipped. The trend was maintained. However, along with the hardware changes, software developments also happened that helped connect several computers as one and handled all their data as if it was just happening through one desktop. The chapter explains how the company called Hadoop helped bring about these changes and received tremendous help from Google in the process.

Talking about software would be incomplete without mentioning the important contribution made by Bill Gates, through Microsoft that opened the eyes of the world to the huge advantages that one common software could offer. Instead of having manufacturers of desktops creating their own software, having a common software on all of these different makes was more beneficial. By creating more valuable programs that could run on this common software, the world was going to become a better place.

Software developments have helped us to solve major problems without even knowing the underlying theories of the basic problem. Be it searching for your photographs or hailing a cab – the technique you use today is strikingly different from what you employed a decade ago. The chapter portrays how big companies like GitHub have played an important role in developing software and making it reach levels that were previously impossible.   

The last part of this chapter reminds the readers that while the other four components have witnessed the tremendous speed of development, the large scale that they have reached today wouldn’t have been possible without faster connectivity. The growth of connectivity has also closely followed the Moore’s Law. Development and innovation have been taking place tirelessly in this field, and today the citizens enjoy faster connectivity that takes less than a fraction of a second to establish itself.

The chapter also talks about the introduction of cloud computing, or storing data and other software applications over the Internet, so that we can access this information from any corner of the world as long as we have access stop a device that uses the Internet. Since this invention is so important, the author decides not to name it a Cloud, but a supernova, something he discusses in more detail in the next chapter.

Chapter 4

This chapter begins by talking about artificial human intelligence. There was a time when all the instructions had to be fed into the machine and then it would go about completing the task assigned to it.

However, with technology developing at the pace that it currently is, machines possess the five sense organs that humans do – sight, smell, hear, taste and feel. They can recognize voices and compare images to give better results and so on.

At the same time, all this wouldn’t have been possible without the cloud. It is using the cloud computing where almost everyone can access data that combines the knowledge and power of human thinking, knowledge of different fields and powerful principles that anyone can now use to power up a new business or work or work on a new idea.

While technology can be used for the good and help millions of people simultaneously, when it falls in the wrong hands, it can also be used to damage hundreds and thousands of lives as well.

Like everything else on this planet, there are two sides to this – it is creating several problems for mankind and the planet by changing several aspects of the biophysical world, however, it is this technology that is also helping us find solutions to these problems that are facing mankind like a never ending mountain, challenging humans to overcome it. Technology can be used to create problems as well as solve them.

It is through the cloud or the supernova that big multi nationals have now reached a point where they can conceive an idea, test it, make the necessary changes and come up with the new final product in just a week. However, earlier, as the author discovered while interviewing a director of the General Electric, Luana Iorio, that earlier, this process could take almost two weeks!

The cloud has made it possible to magnify and combine the strength and power of the human intelligence, creativity and the available resources of knowledge to make development and progress reach a stage that was thought to be impossible. Through cloud, the data available per second has increased rapidly while the cost of consuming data has decreased, enabling organizations to use unlimited amounts of data, at minimum cost. This has helped them to help come up with new products, ideas, and services that can help mankind and the planet.

During the year 2000 to 2007, the touch system gained momentum, enabling humans to do everything – from talking to searching the web – with just the touch of their fingers! And all this wouldn’t have been possible had the cloud not come into existence. The cloud is what combined all the resources and knowledge and created powerful software at great speed to help create the touch application systems.

Airbnb is one such multi-billion dollar company that wouldn’t have existed without the cloud. After all when you’re traveling, how do you know whether someone, residing in your destination city, would have a spare room to rent out to you? A few years ago, one would have thought that the idea was not only crazy, but also impossible.

However, yes, with the cloud now aiding development, ideas may be crazy, but impossible? No way! The best part is that, the creation od cloud computing didn’t just help bring new companies into existence, but also helped the existing ones compete with the new ones in a more efficient manner.

With the innovation of cloud, to come up with something new (and great) you don’t need excess money or even access to a metropolitan city. You only need useful information and all that is easily available to you as long as you have access to the internet, irrespective of your bank account statement and your enviable address in New York.

The chapter explains how a small family based out of a small village named Batman, used the supernova to create a new company called New Media Inc., that tracks down all the information, in real time and provides useful information to their respective customers.

Giving excuses like you don’t have the necessary resources to make your dream a reality is not an acceptable excuse anymore. If you’re not succeeding at making your dreams come true, it just means you are not working for it.

Chapter 5

Chapter number 5 is all about globalization, which the author refers to as the market. The main point of this chapter is to explain to the readers that just like technology, even globalization is accelerating at a rapid pace. Everything is almost now available in the digital form and, thanks to the cloud, these digital data can now be sent to anyone anywhere in the world, as long as there is an internet connection.

Initially, globalization referred to the exchange of goods, services, and finance at a global level. However, the term has become an extremely broad one and included the collaboration of humans and companies all over the world as well.

We just have to look around to give ourselves an idea as to how rapidly globalization has taken place. Whether you want more friends on Facebook, or wish yo fund an important campaign on Indigogo or even if you simply wish to transfer funds online, everything that humans could once possibly imagine, is possible. Not only live streaming of information, but videos can now be streamed live as well. This gives the people, far away from you, a chance to experience your circumstances themselves and they are assured of the authenticity of it, as you cannot air anything fake out there.

This chapter explains how the flow of data and information in today’s world is going beyond imagination. There is a flow of information everywhere, and will dislocate anything that comes in its way. If the people are not equipped to take advantage of the situation and use the data to grow from their current situations, they will fall behind while the rest of the world moves on. Being static is a boring and redundant option. The world belongs to those who are rapidly becoming more and more dynamic. Dynamic stability is what the society needs today and a country that cannot make itself so, will find itself facing a major crisis.

One example of a country willing to make the necessary changes to ensure its poorest citizens had access to the Internet to change their lives, is India. Over 75% of the population lives on a daily income of less than $2 and one major challenge was how to come up with a device that they could afford and simultaneously give themselves an undeniable connection to the Internet. It was then, that the team assigned to find a solution to this problem, came up with the Aakash Tablet. This tablet was available at a very low price and could connect to the Internet and download educational files as well as allow users tow watch YouTube videos. If one moves farther into the remote areas of the world, one will notice, the huge change that these developments are bringing about in the lives of those who once felt they had no hope.

How can the world of finance and human connectivity remain unaffected by these gigantic leaps?! With seamless connectivity, the financial markets all over the world are now deeply interconnected with each other. However, this has also made them more inter-dependent as well. The actions of one country is bound to affect the financial markets of the rest of the world as well. Your actions not only make you answerable to your fellow countrymen, but to the rest of the world.

The world is also witnessing human connectivity like never before. Politics may be creating barriers between people, but it is this technology, powered by the internet and the cloud, that has helped overcome these boundaries and extend the hand of friendship to any corner of the world. Someone might not have placed a foot outside his city, but it is possible for him to have friends residing in remote corners of the world too!

To keep up with the pace of globalization, each and every society needs to be able to handle the new, gigantic flow of information through it, meeting of strangers and exchange of ideas. Instead of rejecting anything new and strange, the success of a society would depend on how quickly its members are able to look for the hidden potentials and adapt to the changing times. The constant flow of information, exchange of ideas and meeting of new people has made it very easy to create new ideas and accept them. While a new idea or information could take years getting used to in the earlier days, now it can easily be accepted and adopted by the people.

The chapter ends by reminding the readers that globalization can be used for useful as well as harmful purposes. It can get accumulated in the hands of the powerful companies where it might get negatively used, however, in the right hands, it can be used for the overall progress of the society as a whole and at the individual level as well.

While physical technologies are developing, social technologies, which help us cope with these physical changes, are not developing at the same pace, leaving us to feel frazzled. Humans need to open up and integrate their minds and ideas and accept new ones if they wish to continue keeping up with the pace of globalization, to ensure their creativity doesn’t get extinguished.

Chapter 6

While the rapid development of technology is making life easier, if left unsupervised, it can have distress climatic and environmental impact. Recently, the hottest place on Earth, somewhere in the Gulf region, recorded a temperature of 115 degrees Fahrenheit, the actual feel, because of high humidity was a whipping 163 degrees Fahrenheit. This is just the beginning of the severe climatic changes that the world will be witnessing if these rapid technological developments are not supervised to control their negative side-effects.

Only technology cannot to be (directly) blamed. Unsupervised human activity, which does not pause to reflect on the subsequences, have led to several global problems like deforestation, pollution of air and more. Global warming has reached dangerous levels, which threaten to disrupt the planet We want to ignore these problems, and it’s only a little time more before we will find ourselves answerable to Mother Nature.

Several incidents are happening, all over the world, that are just reminding us how alarming the situation is becoming. Be it the melting of the snow in Greenland that has no industrial activity of its own, to begin with, but is suffering the negative impact of urbanization talking place in other developing and developed countries, or untimely rainfalls happening in many countries.

Several damaging events have started happening, and their frequency is only on the rise now, and these calamities cause billions of dollars to the governments as well. With the pace of development going up, the number of such disasters are following the same trend.

Another problem Friedman discusses about is the growing population that only seems to be getting more difficult to control day by day. Growing population means creating more need for food, land, and jobs, all of which are under increasing pressure from the existing population anyway.

To top it all, child marriages are yet to be brought to an end ins several remote places across the world. One can only imagine the stress that the planet will be under, when more and more people are moving to the urban areas, installing air conditioners and refrigerators and buying more cars to satisfy their desires that will only cause more pollution and damage.

It is further argued that in some places, like Europe, the mortality rates and fertility have gone down. However, on the other side, there are places where the mortality rates may have gone down, but the fertility rates haven’t, and these are the areas that pose more threat regarding the growing problem of population explosion.

Towards, the end, The Rain Room has been mentioned that was set up in 2015 at Los Angeles County Museum of Art. The room was a unique mixture of art, technology, and nature. It could accommodate up to seven people in it. What mad this room unique is that while technology helped create rain, using sensors, the rain would stop around any person in the room creating a dry spot on top of him. However, if the number of people exceeded a specific limit, there would be no rain at all.

This is a unique depiction of what the world is currently facing. The population has grown exponentially, and so has mankind’s uncontrolled harmful activities like deforestation and pollution. Just like too many people in The Rain Room would lead to no rain at all, too many humans on Earth would cause severe damages and would be the cause for the occurrence of several unnatural events.

Chapter 7

In this chapter, the readers are given a small glimpse into how rapidly technological developments is now replacing human skills. It is true that the changes are happening way too damn fast. Many people all over the world are now getting tired of facing challenges from technology that was actually suppose to help them in the first place. And many are also wondering whether the society is well equipped with the systems and models to keep pace with the speed at which such developments are happening.

Machines are now not only making humans in the professional world redundant with their artificial intelligence but also making several sportsmen, who have spent many years honing their skills, face the heat.

In fact, in a recent interview, the Dutch chess champion, Jan Hein Donner mentioned that he’d bring a hammer with himself to the competition in which he was about expected to compete with an IBM machine named Deep Blue.

The author explains how he himself has witnessed several changes being introduced in the world of journalism and agrees that the rate at which these changes are being introduced and implemented is getting faster and faster. Initially, when he started out, writing articles was a tedious job in which journalists worked without spell check and other facilities that are taken for granted in today’s world.

 It was up to them to write, check and re-write and keep doing so until and unless they were satisfied with their work before submitting it.

However, now one has to do is carry his phone for an interview that records his information for him, and he can then go about easily finishing his work using all the latest software and technology that help ensure he is submitting articles that are nothing less than the best.

Technology is developing at such a rapid pace that the typewriter, that was so important to him at the start of his career is now a redundant stationery object that might be bought only for the fact that it now looks antique.

The discussion now moves over to the fact that humans need to adapt themselves to the pace at which the changes in technology and globalization are happening. There is no other choice that they have. Many are feeling helpless in such a scenario, where they feel that they are flowing away in the fast currents of the river that technology has now become. In such a situation humans have to ensure that they innovate their homes, communities, workplaces and politics so that they can adapt to this increasing acceleration.

Social technologies will have to be re-imagined and re-innovated as the physical technologies will not slowing down anytime soon. Humans must identify the areas in which they can perform better than machines and better with machines and work in those areas tirelessly to keep up.

The chapter ends by saying that the book will further describe several steps that must be taken in the five areas – offices, politics, geopolitics, ethics, and communities – so that the societies and their respective members are more well-equipped to keep up with the speed of technological development.

Chapter 8

It is true that machines have now replaced several humans in the job market. However, this does not mean that machines can perform all kinds of jobs. This will only happen if humans don’t make the necessary innovations and developments in educational institutions, workplaces, and the societies.

The chapter goes on to describe how there was a time when the average American could go for a 9-5 job, five days a week and manage to give his loved ones a decent lifestyle enough to keep them happy.

However, those times have now gone. being average in our skills or even at our jobs, will not get us anywhere, be it at an individual level or even as a whole. Times have changed drastically, and people, as well as organizations, have to fight harder, think harder and adapt quicker if they wish to survive this new tide that innovation is bringing along with itself.

Earlier, people could easily find jobs once they graduated. However, now they need to employ themselves and have to keep learning everyday in order to stay up-to-date with all the changes that are happening around the world. 

The society and its members need to develop a dynamic stability are survival is important. And survival is very important.

For every job that is available, there are a million people applying for it, as having access to more knowledge and honing skills is no longer a privilege that only a few can enjoy. The pressure is mounting on everyone – small scale and large scale.

In today’s world, one can only grow when one has the necessary knowledge, skills, know-how and experience. While knowledge and skills may be available at an equal level, opportunities and the wealth needed to develop them, for further growth of mankind and society, may not be so equally distributed.

One has to redefine the relationships between the governments and the citizens, employers, and workers and the students and educational institutions, if we want to give everyone, equal opportunities to develop and hone their skills and talents.

A closer look at the labor market is needed to understand the situation. It is true that machines have removed several human beings from their work, but this is not 100% true. This is because while machines have made some tasks mechanical, they have created more jobs in other fields, giving people a chance in these new areas. To understand it better, just have a closer look at the garment industry.

Initially, people only had a few pairs of clothes that were completely man-made and were quite pricey. However, thanks to technology and development, several machines were the introduced that did male it possible to manufacture clothes faster and at a lower price as well. This pushed up the demand for clothes and new jobs in the world of designing, printing and dyeing were created that created jobs for thousands and millions of people.

It is not necessary that machines have taken away everything from humans; the need for excellent skills in humans have now become more important. People now need to develop strong fundamentals in writing, reading, creative thinking, programing, and continuous learning habits to ensure that machines don’t make them obsolete.

One way to reach this stage is to convert artificial intelligence into intelligent assistants. In other words, humans must now be able to use the artificial intelligence to gain more knowledge, sharpen their skills and equip themselves for lifelong learning, so that they can make themselves irreplaceable and simultaneously act and think faster.

There are a few misconceptions that are prevalent in the world today. The first one is the fact that you need to be a graduate to get a  good job. Surprisingly many jobs can be yours if you just have a basic high school qualification.

The second one is that anyone can get into these entry-level jobs. It might should bonkers to you, but there are certain basic qualifications and skills that these jobs need that people are not even aware of. Not surprisingly, once they do get the job, holding onto it becomes difficult. Employers are flooded with job applications from people who have no clue what they are applying for and most of them lack the basic skills needed for these jobs.

LearUp.com is a website that was created to handle the problems. Members can understand their job scenarios out here and engage in different activities like developing the needed skills to getting ideas about solving different problems at the workplace and prepare for the interviews as well.

Not having a degree should not stop you from getting the job is you are capable of doing it well. This is where the idea of Intelligent Algorithms comes into the picture. They are online sites that help people portray their skills and get in touch with mentors and companies that are looking out for dedicated professionals like them.

Several people, just in America, have the skills, but fall behind in finding a good job just because they did not have the financial resources needed to get a degree. In today’s world, where skills are more important than anything, this should no longer be a problem. And thanks to intelligent algorithms, when you have the skills to have a specific job, you have equal chances of getting it as much as person who holds a degree does.

Chapter 9

This chapter is all about reforming the geo-politics all around the world. The world is now caught up between the fast spreading chaos in different parts of the world and the growing importance of bringing about a control in the existing scenario. Most of this responsibility falls on the shoulders of strong and powerful nations like the United States of America, who have in the past, reminded the world of her capability to manage the strengths and weaknesses of different countries, especially during the Cold War.

Several new countries came into existence after the First and Second World Wars, and most of these countries didn’t have the necessary resources to develop themselves, yet, they survived, because, in that era, one could get by, by just being average. The two main superpowers, namely America and the Soviet Union, were willing to supply necessary resources to most of these new countries to gain more allies. Thus, in spite of being almost empty on the inside, many of them made it through simply because they had a powerful country backing them and feeding their inefficient governments.

However, that time has ultimately arrived, where a nation, or even a human being, cannot piggyback on the success or support of another nation or human being, respectively. Several huge changes have taken place throughout the world, with some important ones being the severe slowdown in the growth that China was facing and the fall in the prices of oil. Now, there were several nations that were riding high just because of the huge oil reserves that they had. After oil prices went downwards, these countries were left scrambling for themselves and so were the smaller nations that were supported by them. Similarly, the slowdown in the growth of China has effected the growth of several other developing nations. Now that most of the nations have had a reality check, times are getting tougher with the advent of other global problems like global warming that is further adding to the growing pile pf problems that such countries are already facing. The chapter goes on to elucidate the situation by mentioning the political and economic problems prevalent in countries like Madagascar and Syria.

There is a further explanation of how globalization and climatic problems are creating more difficulties for these vulnerable countries that have those who are hungry for power and those who love creating chaos. The Internet is empowering both these groups. These weak nations, no longer have the support of the superpowers that they once had and they would be wise to know that are no such future possibilities of getting help from them either. Now they are on their own. They need to develop that habit of life-long learning among the citizens, get the necessary infrastructure and catch up with the speed of innovation if they don’t want to be wiped out by the huge wave of technological progress.

The worse part is that people who love chaos and turmoil, don’t need a team or an army to go about disrupting peace. The Internet has everything that they need to carry out their harmful and useless missions, and no nation can cut the Internet out if it wants to grow. So every nation, strong or weak, rich or poor, has to give access to the good as well as the bad side of the Internet. There is nothing much that can be done in this case. It only takes one person to kill many, the need of having a group is long gone now.

Even the categories looked at in assessing how powerful a specific country is, is no longer as simple as it once was. To determine the strength of a country in the 21st Century, one needs to take into account the physical aspects like the army men and nuclear power sources, but along with that, factors like innovation pace and the management of geopolitics and several other factors that now cannot be overlooked.

Education, eventually emerges as the need of the hour right now where people are taught to think for themselves and not get brainwashed by the hogwash that some extremists are trying to brainwash them with. A society that invests in the education of its members, is building up a strong front when it comes to successfully adapting to the new changes and questioning and leaving the redundant ones. And this is something that world desperately needs to keep up with the growing acceleration of technological development.

In the end, America must remember that several nations look up to her as a friend who will rescue them in times of trouble and help build them up. Many of them are now living with hopes of heading off to America to get a better life for themselves as well. American has, time and again, come to help the weak, and there can be no other time more important than this. At the same time, America must realize that it cannot go about treating these countries recklessly, but help them raise themselves from the ashes and start afresh.

Chapter 10

We are heading into the future at a pace that was never imagined and we are not well prepared for it. The idea to survive this change, the strength, and adaptability needed to outlive this change is missing.

Initially, we thought the most important for us was to pause and reflect once in a while to reflect on certain aspects of our lives. The political parties are in a desperate need to do so; yet they don’t realize it.

With the changing times, one must remember that it is not the strongest or the cleverest species that will survive, but the most adaptable one.  With the combined changes in globalization, technological development and climatic change, the need to understand this has never been greater.

The problem here is that while the political parties of weak countries are facing severe challenges, those of stronger countries like the United Kingdom and the United States is  vulnerable to cracks as well. Recent events such as Britain’s decision to leave the European Union have created vast holes that the political parties have to handle along with the need to cope with the pace of acceleration of technological development, global warming and globalization.

Political parties need to realize that the more important agendas are equipping the people to deal with such changes, the pace of these changes and simultaneously, keep innovation in order to keep up.

One of the best mentors that these political parties can look up to for inspiration is Mother Nature, herself, who has been handling these climatic changes for over a billion years. It is true that man has forgotten about her while getting busy with technological development and globalization, but it is high time he tries to re-connect with her.

To gain inspiration from her, just travel to the desert to notice how, in extremely harsh and unendurable conditions, plants and animals have evolved in order to survive. Mother Nature believes in evolving and mutating according to the new opportunities that come along. In fact, not only that, but these changes are even tested, and if not suitable, are modified to survive. Mother Nature is extremely flexible, and understanding and that is what we need to learn at this moment if we want to survive the huge changes created by us.

In order to survive today, society needs to quickly adapt to changing social, political, cultural, physical and spiritual environments. The chapter describes that there are five special ways that need to be focused on in order to achieve our goals for survival –

1. The need to openly accept new ideas and principles,

2. To be more than willing to adapt to changing biodiversity,

3. To understand that both personal and future problems must be dealt with a sense of ownership and at an individual level,

4. To understand and remember that a good society has healthy networks of ecosystems that might be living by themselves, but need each other to survive

5. To approach these political problems with an open, progressive and accepting mind.

We need our societies to swallow up some of that unnecessary pride, accept that we were wrong at some points and picked up and move on without wasting time, instead of being dogmatic and insisting that we were right. It will not only make us waste our time, but will also be more harmful to us. If the society is too egoistical, it needs to reframe its mindset and then follow the path to progression that is also filled with change.

Coming to the second point, whenever there is a change in the society, there will be someone who will adapt to it and manage to survive if not thrive. Every society has its one cultural, religious and ideological differences.

However, only that society that can take all these differences and instead of allowing it to create deep cracks, uses it to come up with new opinions and points of views and move forward, only such societies will thrive in the current and future times.

When it comes to ownership of problems, it is stated, that when someone takes ownership of their problems, they come up with ideas that actually help them solve the problem. A society in which the members refuse to take up ownership of the problems that the society, as a whole, is facing, such a society will find it very difficult to cope with changing times.

When something is yours, or creates the ownership feeling, you tend to be more protective and diligent about it and that is the idea that is being emphasized out here.

Just like seen in Nature, even Politics needs the balancing of the individuals and ecosystems if it wants to change in a progressive way. In the earlier times, it was important to opt for the centralization of power to ensure that the common public looked up to them. Even managing local and domestic problems were easier and not at the current complicated levels.

However, now, societies and the political parties must realize that the need of the hour is decentralization of power and not centralization. The governments have now become too complicated, and it takes too long for them to complete all the necessary formalities before they can get down to handling the problem.

Last but not the least, the political parties must be prepared to give up their old ways of bringing about development like tax deductions, less regulations and so on. These ideas are not going to help us survive the huge wave of change that is already upon us. A more open and a progressive ideology are what the political parties all over the world need if they are to achieve their ultimate objective of achieving a happier and healthy world.

Chapter 11

The chapter deals with the moral awakening in the human mind. God, for most of us, is the symbol of good deeds, acts, and rewards when we do good. However, these same God is known for punishing us when we do bad deeds, and they hit us eventually.

While we believe that God is everywhere, we can wonder whether he exists in cyberspace. The right way to answer this would be that humans create the presence of God by their own acts and deeds. By doing good, making the right decisions on the Internet and staying away from harmful or illegal activities, we are morally, validating the existence of God in cyberspace.

After all, He exists in everything that is true and good. However, by opting to indulge in harmful or immoral activities on the Internet, we are basically ruling out the option of His existence in cyberspace. Today, what we are all looking for is a moral innovation. And it is high time we did that for good our present and future generations.

Men and women, in the twenty-first century have immense power and influential capabilities. It is up to us how we choose to use that power.

If chosen to carry out good acts, it results in helping us achieve what we set out to achieve in the first place – a solution to our problems, both at an individual and the system as a whole.

Indeed, technology has become an extremely powerful source, but, there are a few things that shouldn’t have been handed over to them in the first place. The chapter sites examples of ads airing before an ISIS video on YouTube and cab fares, peaking during terrorist attacks, just because it was the rush hour. The algorithms don’t have a moral thinking; it’s a power that is solely given to the humans.

Humans must realize that they cannot let technology take over everything, although it looks like doing so will make life easier, because doing that will lead to severe moral questions that will raise doubts on mankind as a whole.

The chapter ends by reminding us that it is not too late. The power is still in our hands, even though it seems to be slipping with each and every day. Humans still have the power to create a different future for the next generation and the ones coming after them.

It is up to us to create healthy, wholesome and innovative societies that can give technology the freedom that it needs to develop, but at the same time, keep a strong leash on it, lest it becomes a tiger out of control. It gives us a peek in to what the next part of the book holds for the readers, and that is the dedication and patience needed in building strong and healthy communities.

Chapter 12

While many of us might want to leave the technology race, and find a nice old wood cabin to live in the middle of the forest, it isn’t a great idea.

One option is to try and run away from it, but the author reminds us that would be a foolish choice to make. We cannot run away from it. The best way is for us to try and make our way into the eye of that storm which is the most stable area within the hurricane. It moves with it, yet maintains the stability – something that the society, as a whole, is currently yearning for.

In today’s world where there is fear, hatred, and judgmental personalities, it creates a deep need for being “protected, respected and connected”, something that is creating a healthy community provides. Just like mentioned earlier, being adaptable to different situations is of utmost importance and a healthy community, in which the people trust each other, will bring about this much-needed ability – the ability to adapt.

Trust word as symbol in chrome chain

When trust is present, people are willing to listen more, understand new things and also, step out of their comfort zones. A healthy community provides a much-needed relief and also empowers its members. Outsiders feel connected and wanted, doubters become confident, and the world moves towards adapting itself to any change that nature and technological developments may throw up in its way.

Along with creating more employment opportunities and improving productivity, the members of the society have to lend forward a helping hand to everybody to survive the storm that they are caught up in.

The author explains about his time as a child. He recounts an experience where he was lucky to be brought up in a time when the people believed in fighting together and fought for what they believed in.

They knew that by standing together and helping each other out, they would make a good society, if not perfect, one their children could learn from and move on to better things in life. He explains by revealing an incident in which someone was so upset at being wrongfully cut off on the road that she honked!

That was the tiny extent of rage that they had, especially in the peaceful town of Minnesota. This reminds us that we need to be more patient and listen with the intention of understanding. Listening with the intention of replying back is just wasting our time because we are denying ourselves the chance to know something different, have a look at a different opinion.

Several examples from the author’s early days have been cited that prove to us time, and again that “pluralism” in a  society doesn’t come easily. It takes time, patience and perseverance.

Several incidents have been mentioned in which discrimination against a minority group, like the Jews, were not taken lightly, forcing those who tried to create a rift, to step back and finally, it was a society that did not care about the ethnicity or skin tone of its residents. You cannot build love and trust overnight, but it is not impossible either.

It is true that when was growing up in Minnesota, everything was not perfect. There were several problems that existed then, like gender discrimination, not accepting homosexuality and racism as well. It is a good thing that the world is currently, waking up to these problems and is addressing them and taking steps to control them.

But the positive attitude of the residents in the neighborhood created a deep sense of belief within the author that when the members of the society really try hard and put in their best efforts, there is nothing that cannot be fixed or repaired. People need to change their mentality and that, in itself, is a big step on the path to achieving good things for the world.

Earlier, it was easy for people to connect with each other and understand each other, to trust each other and spread the love. However, with the rapidly increasing pace of technological developments, these things cannot be done easily. People will have to take more effort to do these basic things, like reach out to each other. It is indeed ironic, that technology has made it possible for one to cover long distances and travel to different countries, yet has made it difficult for the people to reach out to their next door neighbors.

And this is the exact reason why it is all the more important to build healthy communities that take in diversity easily. This is not an impossible task. With the right leadership, a society can achieve this as well.

Chapter 13

This chapter is all about the happiness one feels when one returns home. America is a powerful nation and, in spite of having its own internal problems, has managed to carve a society that makes everyone, including the outsiders, feel at home. In yet another incident, the author met a Somalian one day who, without even asking, mentioned that America felt like home.

The world may have its problem creators, who feel that there is nothing better than creating chaos and upheaval. However, the world also has great countries like America, that has for time immemorial, welcomed the uninvited, gave them food and shelter and made them feel at home.

On thinking a lot about what is it that makes a society a home where the evil gets minimized, if not eliminated, and the good flourishes, the credit can be given to the politicians. They might fight and argue with each other on several trivial and important matters. However, at one point they are all willing to compromise to create a society that is a representation of happiness and healthy and intelligent living.

When there is a tie breaker between the corporations and the politicians, at the end of the day, both have made certain sacrifices and compromises, for the betterment of the society. However, if one is more observant, such trends are mainly visible in the rural areas and not in the metropolitan cities, where competition is tough, and people do anything but trust each other.

There may be many who have thrown in the towel, but there are still many, who are willing to try and work on things to fix what is broken and heal those who have been hurt. However, just like every relationship, improving the relationship between the government and the public will be a two-way street as well.

While the people have to trust the government with their future and money, the government has to do whatever it can to show them that it deserves their trust. It has to prove to the public, time and again, that it views their trust as sacred and will take extreme care that this relationship, that is built on trust, is protected.

For this, the government must reach out to the people in every nook and corner. It is not possible for one group to take care of everything and every problem. Even in small areas, with a negligible population, the government must set up municipalities and neighborhood associations that will take care of day-to-day problems.

This will also go a long way in changing the general perception of the public out there – that the government is out to just ruin an already ruined situation.

An example that we can learn from is a project that is known as the Itasca Project. It is made up of volunteers who meet once a week to discuss the problems.

When the discussion starts at the dining table, everyone knows that in spite of all the problems and differences of opinions the members of the group may have, nobody will be leaving the table until and unless solutions to the problems have been found and agreed upon.

The group consists of highly respectable men so that one can expect a strong clash of ego and political ideologies, but all that pride and arrogance has to be left at the door as one enters the room for the meeting to begin. This group is known as a project because it only meets when an important issue crops up that needs to be solved.

And the volunteers work very hard, in spite of the fact that the group does not follow the basic protocols, that organizations are expected to follow, like having a board of directors or having a fancy website. The task is simple – address the problems, discuss the possible solutions, face the different opinions that are bound to come up, but nobody leaves until a solution has been found.

In the end, one needs to understand that trust cannot magically be created. It takes a lot of time, not to mention effort. Since most of the governments of the world now have a tarnished image, it will take the effort to win back the trust of the public, but rest assured, it is possible, as long as everyone is working to improve the society.

Chapter 14

The closing chapter is the behind-the-scene aspect of this book. The readers are given a glimpse of how the ideas that form this book didn’t just pop into the author’s head one fine afternoon. Instead, it has taken several decades of the author’s life, right from his journey as a child in the friendly city of Minnesota to the famous journalist that he has now become.

Being a journalist gave him the opportunity to travel the world, be it the Gulf region or even the powerful Washington D.C. Traveling the world gave him a glimpse of the different principles and ideologies, practices and beliefs, the different problems plaguing the different nations and the measures being taken by the governments to curb them. It helped him get a broader perspective of the problems and a better understanding of ways that will help find a solution.

He left for the Middle East after becoming a journalist, as a positive American, looking forward to covering the major events of the world and bringing it to the public. What he noticed was that in the Middle East, the strong were getting stronger and the weak didn’t mind getting weaker. The idea of creating a more equal society was far away from their thoughts. Coming back to America after thirteen years after witnessing this huge amount of negativity should have helped him feel better, but, to his dismay, he realized that the Government of his country was also going the same way.

With growing diversity and cultural differences, it is education that will be binding everyone together. It is true that America has proved, in its own several ways, that it is still a country that can be looked up to. While it has done a great deal in helping the world, it cannot counter attack the fact that technological development is creating a rise to a major problem – unemployment!

But this is just one big problem that is mentioned. Several such problems will come up, one after another, and it is then that a comprehensive educational system, coupled with strong leadership skills will help save the sinking boat that our society has now become.

The time to start is not sometime in the future, but now. Given the levels of climatic change and other environmental damage that we are in, we have the exact time needed to save ourselves and not a second more. But that effort has to be made. Moreover, the readers are reminded that the human touch is going to be the most needed ingredient in helping achieve what we are looking for.

The chapter further discusses, how in this world of unimaginable connectivity, people are feeling more lonely than ever before. The importance of physical contact and communication can never be underestimated. It is more important than you think. You need it to connect, no, really connect, build trust and belief and establish progressive practices. With so many tools and equipment, developing technology and greater connectivity, humans will definitely find the solutions to the several problems that are now staring at us, right in the face.

The book finally ends, reminding the readers that the modern thinking might have changed, yet, we must remain deeply entrenched in our core values of love and trust as that is what healthy communities are based upon. We can remain extremely traditional in our values, yet progressive in our thinking, beliefs, and practices and still be innovative.

Key Takeaways from Steve Jobs’ life based on Walter Isaacson’s biography

This is an analysis based on Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson and other sources of research. Enjoy.

Location Really Does Matter For Entrepreneurs:

You need to be in the right place at the right time. Being exposed to many ideas, variables, and potential inputs for accidental discoveries is better than living in a risk averse environment. In High School, Jobs took an electronics class which would have been less likely in most other cities in the US or Canada. Steve Jobs was fortunate to be raised in Silicon Valley, and because of that location it is less of a mystery as to why Jobs is who he was. Defense contracts in Silicon Valley during the 1950s shaped the history of the valley, military investment was used to build cameras to fly over the USSR, for example. Military companies were on the cutting edge, and made living in Silicon Valley interesting. In the 1930s, Dave Packard moved into Silicon Valley, and his garage was the core of the creation of Hewlett Packard. In the 1960s, HP had 9,000 employees, and it was where all engineers wanted to work. Jobs was ambitious enough at a young age to phone Dave Packard and ask for some parts. That’s how he got a summer job there. Moore’s Law emerged in Silicon Valley, Intel was able to develop the first micro processor. Financial backing was made easier to acquire where rich New Yorker’s retired to…By having the chip technology that could be cost measured for projections, Jobs and Gates would use this metric to revolutionize the technological world.

Childhood Shapes Your Thinking:

Jobs was never interested in cars, but he wanted to hang out with his dad, who emphasized the importance of building quality products, and loved souping up cars. The interior of a product is equally important as the exterior for Paul Jobs (Steve’s Father). Eichler Homes were great designs, with a simple capability that was common in Silicon Valley. Paul also taught that you should know more than the person you bargain with. Paul Jobs could not successfully get into real-estate because he was unwilling to sell, and be like-able. By his teens, Jobs realized he was smarter than his parents.  Steve Jobs was willful, and his parents would go to great lengths to feed Jobs every whim by deferring to his needs. Steve Jobs got into a fight with his dad for smoking marijuana, but by his senior year, Jobs was looking into sleep deprivation, LSD, and other drugs.

Jobs was fascinated by the need for perfection in technology. Later on in the 1980s, he argued that even if you can’t see something, it should be done well. Jobs wanted to ensure that the Macintosh mother board was beautiful, so he had members of his team sign the circuit board. Steve Jobs became more interested in electronics than in car engineering, in particular the laser technology his father was working at Spectra Physics.

Go Get What You Want, If You Have The Courage:

The 9100A was the first desktop computer, it was a huge computer that Jobs saw in the Explorers Club he participated in. Jobs created a frequency counter as part of the club, but he needed a special part so he phoned the home of the CEO of HP, and spoke with Hewlett directly over the phone for over 20 minutes. This conversation got Jobs a summer position at HP. Jobs had pushed his way into the factory. Steve Jobs hung out with the engineers mostly, but he worked in the electronic components section of HP.

Steve Jobs walked into the lobby of Atari in sandals, and demanded that he work as one of the first 50 people for Atari at $5 an hour. Jobs was very intelligent, and excited about technology. Nolan Bushnell used the power of his personality to build Atari, and Steve Jobs learned about this skill in part from Bushnell. Steve was a prickly person, and he had horrible body odor. Steve Jobs was brash, and, at Atari, told many of his co-workers that they were “dumb shits.” Atari didn’t mind his horrible BO because Jobs was agressive, smart, and worked hard. However, Jobs was put on the night-shift at Atari so that no-one had to deal with him during regular work hours.

Education Is For Conformists:

Steve Jobs was not interested in memorizing information but being stimulated. He was sent home repeatedly. Jobs began to excel when he was incentivised by his game-changing teacher Imogen Hill “Teddy” who bribed Jobs into doing Math problems in exchange for lollipops. She further invested in Jobs with cameras and other toys. Steve Jobs was able to convince another kid to give him her Hawaii shirt for a school photo, he knew how to convince others to do things for him early on. Steve Jobs was put forward by one grade for his brilliance. He was not a straight-edged student however.

Assume That You Will Die Young:

Jobs believed that he was going to die young. He worked extremely hard because he was certain that he would be dead at an early age.


The Cream Soda Computer:

Wozniak was able to build a calculator that displayed binary code while drinking cream soda extensively in 1973. Wozniak’s great strength was that he was emotionally and socially inexperienced, was a high school geek who cared more about computers. Wozniak knew more electronics than Steve Jobs, and Jobs was more mature, so they met in the middle. Wozniak and Jobs both listened to Bob Dylan. Dylan’s words struck chords of creative thinking for Woz and Jobs. They bootlegged many Bob Dylan concerts. They even worked as entertainers in Silicon Valley dressing up as clowns to perform for kids.

Go To India:

Steve Jobs went to India to expand his meditation skills. Jobs sought spiritual calm but he could not get into his own inner calm in Silicon Valley. He spent 7 months in India being mentored in meditation. Jobs found a spiritual leader in Silicon Valley in Los Altos. Steve Jobs would do meditations, they learned how to tune out distractions. His friends noticed that Jobs became self-important. Steve Jobs also engaged in primal screaming which helped to resolve his childhood pain. Jobs appreciated intuitive spirituality, he wanted to grow in that way. You need to avoid getting stuck in thought patterns that are really just chemical patterns in your brain. By age 30, many people cannot escape their own grooves. You need to be able to throw yourselves out, according to Jobs. Artists go and hibernate somewhere. To be truly innovative over time, you need to think outside of the box, and escape yourself.

Pranking People Requires Creative Thinking:

Steve Jobs and Wozniak produced a banner with a hug hand flipping the middle finger to all the seniors as the graduating classes marched past during a High School pep rally. This got Steve Jobs suspended. Steve Jobs was interested in pranking his classmates, and even put a small explosive under one of his teacher’s desk. Their most effective prank had been to scramble TV frequencies with a remote control. Wozniak and Jobs would hide in the bushes while university students were watching television.

On cue, the TV would be scrambled with a small device Woz had built, and one of the students would get up to fix it. Wozniak played around so that the student would be compelled to hold an awkward position in order to keep clear the TV signal. Wozniak’s device was highly effective in manipulating people.

Starting A Company Is Very Difficult:

If you’re not passionate about what you are doing, then you will give up. So in order to succeed you need to be passionate, and hardworking. It turns out that Woz and Jobs were not trying to build a company at first but were in fact trying to build a computer that they wanted. They had not gone to business school, and they didn’t even know what the Wall Street Journal was. They wanted to just go build a computer so that they and their friends could use it.

Meet A Brilliant & Noble Engineer:

Jobs was fortunate to meet Steve Wozniak who believed in engineering as the highest, and most noble activity. ‘Woz’ did not believe in marketing, and did not aspire to be in the lime light. Their meeting was truly fortunate. Wozniak’s father taught his son how to build circuits at an early age. His father also taught ‘Woz’ to never lie, accept in the service of a good practical joke. Wozniak had an easier time making eye contact with a circuit than a girl, built a transistor to allow 6 kids to communicate with eachother, read about new computers in his spare time, and focused on designing circuits. Wozniak was socially shut out in high school. Wozniak worked on designing computers with half the number of chips the company had designed in his blue prints. Jobs had inferior tech-skills but had other advantages like charisma and persuasiveness.

Meetups Bring Insanely Great Ideas Together:

The Homebrew Computer Club did not conform to the Hewlett Packard mold, or the hierarchical business structures of the UK, Japan or Germany. In Silicon Valley, USA, there were study groups who were building up computers for creative meetups. These were basically self-fulfillment movements in the California area of Silicon Valley where everyone was sharing ideas, and everybody was gaining from that exchange. For most people, computers were ominous, government machines that would destroy life values. By the mid-1970s, computing was no longer a bureaucratic control mechanism but rather a liberating one.

The Altair computer was available in 1975 from MITS, and Bill Gates started building BASIC which would become the first software product from his company Microsoft. Jobs and Wozniak bought the Altair as well in order to learn how it worked.

Borrowing ideas was the way that Wozniak developed the Apple I. He started to sketch out the idea of the Apple I from 1975 to 1976. Since the Intel 80 was so expensive, Wozniak bought a bunch of microchips that were not Intel compatible. This incompatibility would subsequently not allow Apple computers to work with other software products without some modifications. Wozniak built on the shoulders of previous processor chips, and he wrote the code by hand. When he had built the prototype, and the letters were displayed on the screen correctly, there was great excitement. It could not have happened in New York, London, or a small city in France. Innovation is geographically situated because you need to meet the right people, and be at the right place for this kind of success.

Knowing What You Wanted To Do Earlier On Is Not Great For Entrepreneurs:

Steve Jobs wanted to go to Reed College because Stanford students already knew what they wanted to do. Reed College had a high dropout rate, and they tuned in, turned on, and dropped out. At Reed, Jobs did a lot of drugs, and he still swears by the importance of taking LSD. Steve Jobs refused to go to Reed classes that he was assigned, and focused on taking classes he was interested in, as well as breaking the rules. Steve Jobs decided that using his parents college funding which his parents had saved was unfair so, and he dropped out, but he didn’t want to leave Reed. Remarkably Reed allowed Steve to stay, and he audited classes. Steve Jobs learned about typography, and he found it fascinating. Jobs rejected the lack of idealistic vision in the 1980s, and he believed in the importance of the counter-culture movements of the 1970s.


Steve Jobs Excluded Relevant Information Where Necessary: 

Wozniak was at HP but would come by to play the new Atari games because Jobs was working at Atari. In the 1975, Bushnell asked Jobs to design a single player game which required that bricks fall towards the paddle when struck by the ball, instead of having a computer or a simple wall to compete with. The head of Atari knew that Jobs could not build such a computer programme but he knew that Jobs would likely enlist the help of Steve Wozniak. There was a bonus offered for every chip used below 50. Jobs told Wozniak that this project needed to be completed within 4 days, he then said that they would split the payment. Wozniak was so enthusiastic that he worked hard to get it done on time. The deadline was a false one as Jobs wanted to go apple picking that weekend.

In addition, Jobs did split the payment for the project but he failed to mention the bonus for the number of chips below 50. There were 45 chips so Jobs received 100% of the bonus that Wozniak did not know about. 10 years later on the history of Atari, it was revealed the Jobs was given a bonus and Wozniak was shocked. This program was the basis of the final product which was wildly successful as an arcade game. Wozniak states, “I’m not going to judge Steve’s morality. Apple wouldn’t be where it was without Jobs manipulative nature.”

Have Discipline Over Body & Mind:

Steve Jobs got into a disciplined fasting by eating just apples. He believed that minimalism led to great rewards when encountering complexity, and that experience is relative. Vegetarianism, acid, rock music, and the enlightenment campus seeking culture at Reed College was a laboratory for Steve Jobs’ development. Steve Jobs had extremely terrible BO in college because he did not believe in using any chemicals or deodorants. At Reed, Robert Freidland was able to mesmerize him. Jobs learnt from Freidland about charisma, and the art of persuasion. Friedland was a LSD drug dealer, and was sentenced to two years in prison in 1972. When he was released, Friedland ran for student president at Reed College. Freidland had met the Maharaji in India, and Jobs learned about how a state of enlightenment could be attained through practiced mediation. Steve Jobs had an ability to stare people deep into the eyes. Freidland taught Steve Jobs how to initiate the reality distortion field by bending the situation to his will. Freidland was dictatorial, and wanted to be the centre of attention, and a real salesman. Jobs said LSD helped him to understand the connection with human history, and the absence of the need for profit. Steve Jobs was hardly interested in presenting himself in a proper way throughout the early years of Apple Computer Inc.

Picking A Name Is As Simple As Picking Apples:

Steve Jobs was on a fruitarian diet and he picked apples at the One Brand Farm which was a hippy commune. Apple Computer was a smart choice as a name because it was friendly, and simple. It was counter-culture, and nothing could be more American. Apples and Computers don’t go together so it got people thinking.

Crime Does Pay!!!???: 

If you own an Apple product then you are complicit in supporting crime, kinda but not really… However, we forget that sometimes rules have to be broken in order to innovate. Read the following and see if you agree that we might never have heard of Apple Computers without an illegal gadget called The Blue Box…..

Steve Jobs and Wozniak Created Through Illegal Activity

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Crime Does Pay? Paul Jobs (Steve’s adopted father) made extra money by souping up cars without telling the IRS, and this was duly noted by Steve. When it came to borrowing, Steve Jobs didn’t mind using his high school’s money to buy parts from a major company. After-all, to Steve, hus school had a lot of money. By 1971, Steve Wozniak had read in Esquire about hackers, and ‘phone-freakers’ who had invented a way to cheat phone companies. Woz read the article to Jobs over the phone from college. The so-called Blue Box was invented by a guy named Captain Crunch. It was interesting because the device mimicked the dial tones necessary to connect long-distance calls thereby allowing calls to be made for free. Jobs and Wozniak went to work reading the Bell System Technological Journal produced by AT&T in order to mimic Captain Crunch’s long-distance tones mimicking device. Of course, this was all illegal.

After much research and work, the two Steves created their Blue-Box device which allowed them to call the Pope, Australia, and elsewhere free of charge. Jobs always felt that stealing long-distance calls was fair when a company like Bell was involved. Although it was illegal, Jobs believed they could sell these devices, and they did manage to sell over 100 of them. Jobs did all the pitching of the Blue Box to random people in the Palo Alto area. It was their first real entrepreneurial endeavour. In an illegal market like telephone hacking, however, there were risks. In one encounter, Jobs and Wozniak were robbed of one of these devices by a crazed man who held Jobs and Woz up at gun-point. By doing something illegal, Steve Jobs and Wozniak gained confidence that they could put a product into production. The Blue Box gave them a taste of the combination of engineering and vision. The lesson is that it turns out that crime does pay when the work is the forerunner of something like Apple.

Sharing Ideas Is Fine Up To A Point:

The Homebrew Computer Club (a collection of computer enthusiasts) believed that their ideas should be shared, exchanged, and disseminated. It was coordinated by people who believed that like-minded nerds should all share information for free. They believed that there should be no commerce at the Homebrew Computer Club. Wozniak supported that view, he wanted the Apple I to be shared for free with other people at the Homebrew meetings. Others disagreed. Bill Gates wrote a letter to the Homebrew Computer Club saying the opposite; that they should stop stealing the programming that he and his partners had created.

The letter argued “Who can afford to do their professional work if everyone is stealing it?” Steve Jobs agreed with Bill Gates about sharing ideas. Jobs convinced Wozniak to follow a closed approach, and to sell computers rather than sharing them. Jobs asked that Woz stop sharing the schematics information regarding the Apple I with others, for that reason. Jobs decided to sell these computers by buying 50 panels for circuitry. The closed system had major benefits in his later career. Starting in 1999, Apple created iMovie, FinalCut Pro, iDvd, iPhoto, GarageBand, (most importantly) iTunes, and the iTunes Store. The personal computer was morphing into a lifestyle hub, and only Apple was positioned to create a full (CLOSED) experience where the product was simple, and enjoyable. Therefore, sharing is great up to a certain point.

Most Good Ideas Have To Be Forced Down People’s Throats:

Wozniak did not want to go into business, but Jobs convinced Woz to join Apple. But first, Wozniak decided that he would do the ethical thing by telling Hewlett Packard about his Apple I product which he had constructed based on his experience and training at HP. Wozniak presented the Apple I to executives at HP, but they did not think a personal computer made any sense. During one Homebrew Computer Club gathering, Jobs showed the Apple I and after his presentation he asked how much people would pay for the Apple I. The room was silent, no one was interested in buying the Apple I. That is, no one but Paul Terrell who owned an electronics store called The Byte Shop. Even Atari was pitched by Jobs, but they thought Jobs was a clown.

Apple’s first order was for a total of 50 computers from Terrell for $500 each. It took until 1981 for IBM which had dominated the mainframe computers industry to enter the personal computer market while Apple dominated as the fastest growing company in the history of the world at that time, and had already been in the process of developing both Lisa, and the Macintosh.

Another example is that Xerox PARC researchers had invented the Graphical User Interface (GUI) which was visual point and click system that would replace the black screen coding required to operate a computer previously. The only problem is that the Xerox management did not want to explore this personal computer technology. The management at Xerox did not understand the vision of these researchers at Xerox PARC and could not see a P&L statement that justified the time and energy to make the leap from photo-copying to personal computers. Steve Jobs would later explain that the Xerox management were “copy-heads.”

Adele Goldberg showed Jobs the Xerox GUI, but she was angry that Xerox was allowing Jobs to see ‘everything.’ She understood that Xerox had “grabbed defeat from the jaws of success” according to Jobs, by giving him access to their R&D work in exchange for shares in Apple. Without Jobs’ visit to Xerox PARC, the Macintosh, and Lisa would not have had the GUI, and Bill Gates might not have subsequently revolutionized computers with Windows.

Run Your Company Out Of Your Parents House In Order To Appear Like a Real Company:

In order to fulfill their first order from Mr. Terrell’s electronics store, Jobs ran Apple out of his parents house. This was complicated by the fact that Jobs’ father would frequently insist that he rightfully watch the end of Sunday football instead of letting Steve program computer chips on the family tv screen. Things were awkward; they even had a company phone number which was diverting calls to Steve’s mother who acted as secretary…

A curious brand marker has been the much vaunted Apple logo. Interestingly, the original logo of Apple was a ridiculous picture of Newton and a quote from Wordsworth (as seen on the left side of your screen). For the Terrell batch, Jobs and Wozniak marked up the price of the computer from production to $666.66 for every Apple I sold. Steve Jobs claimed that he was a private consultant at Atari in order to improve his start-up’s credibility. The original Apple I was displayed at a computer fair. Wozniak was the best circuit engineer, but the Sal 20 was better looking. Apple I looked like it was not created by serious people. That is when Jobs realized he needed to build a fully packaged computer, and he was no longer aiming for hobbyists but for the people who wanted to use a computer which would be ready to run out of the box.

Jobs and Wozniak agreed to start their own computer company with $3,000. Wozniak was excited to start a company with Steve Jobs. Apple started with $1,300 of working capital. Wozniak wanted to use his Apple work at HP, but Jobs insisted that the work should be  controlled within Apple, and not given to HP. Steve Jobs’ idea was to have control over the computer, and Jobs created tools so that no one but Apple employees could open their computers. Wozniak refused to leave HP, and Jobs forced Wozniak to give up HP by calling Woz’s family and friends. Jobs actively cried a lot over the phone to Woz’s family in order to convince Wozniak to quit his day job. The only way to get Wozniak onboard was if he could stay at the bottom of the organizational chart at Apple from 1977 onwards. That was not a problem for Jobs.

Mike Markkula’s Marketing Theory Is Built Around Three Ideas:

First, you need to connect with your customers, and understand their needs and aspirations. You need to understand their needs better than any other company. Second, you need to focus, and eliminate any activities that do not help to achieve your goal. Third, is to impute. You need to make sure that your brand is respected, because people form their opinion of you based on the signals that you convey. You might have the best product but if you present them in a slip-shot manner you will not get what you want. Steve Jobs would always impute the desires of his customers. He cares about the packaging, and cared about setting the tone for how customers perceived the product.

MacKenna’s Advertising Style Worked: The Apple logo was developed as a multi-colour symbol. The brochure read “Simplicity Is the Ultimate Sophistication.” Apple’s display area in computer fairs was always very impressive. There were only 3 Apple IIs that were finished for the computer fair in 1977, but they stacked up Apple II boxes to suggest they had more. Steve Jobs and Wozniak were forced to dress up, and they were trained on how to act by Markkula.

Don’t Worry About A Business Plan Until You Need Investment In A Serious Venture: 

Mike Markkula entered Apple because Jobs needed money to get the Apple II built. They needed to build inventory, and they needed to develop a marketing strategy, and distribution in order to build a business plan. Markkula worked in computer chips, and was excellent at finance, and price measures, Markkula was very successful already. When Markkula showed up he had a convertible. He wrote a business plan that centred on guesstimates of how many people would own a computer in their home. Markkula wanted Apple to balance check books, and keep receipts. The spirit of Markkula’s prediction was true.

Markkula co-signed a bank loan of $250,000. They owned 25% of the stock, and Apple was incorporated on April 1, 1976. He believed that Apple was at a start of an industry. Apple Computer was growing at an incredibly fast rate. The numbers were mind-blowing: from 2,500 Apple IIs sold in 1977, 8,000 were sold in 1978, and up to 35,000 in 1979. Remember there was no market for personal computers before! The company earned $47 million in revenues in fiscal year 1979, making Steve Jobs a millionaire on paper (he owned $7 million worth of private stock). Markkula believed that Apple would go public within 2 years, it went public on December 12, 1980 at $10 per share making over 300 people millionaires. Several VCs cashed out reaping billions in long-term capital gains. Through Markkula, Jobs learnt about marketing and sales. Importantly, Markkula did not want to start a company just to get rich.

Create A Simple Product For Households, Steve Jobs:

Macintosh was built around the idea that people should own their computers and computers should be for the masses. Rather than having to travel to a library or computer centre to use them, computers should be available within the home. It should be pitched as a kitchen appliance and an accounting tool. Few companies thought the computer would have mass appeal but Apple had developed the market and then began losing ground to IBM. Enter Jef Raskin, a professor, academic, and computer specialists who set up what he called the “Macintosh” office off of the main HQ of Apple Computer, Inc. Engineering brilliance was needed but Raskin was too willing to make compromises on the price point at $1,000. Raskin believed in starting with the ambitions of the immediate technology and not with Jobs’ goal of creating an insanely great machine. Raskin did not believe that they could distort reality. In fact, Jobs was moved out of the Lisa project in 1980 for his absurdities with regard to what could and couldn’t be done through the badgering of his subordinates.

Your Product Needs To Be A Full Simple Package:

Jobs went in to pitch Atari for support for Apple II which had colour, a power source, and keyboards. It was rejected partly because Jobs went to the meeting without shoes. Another company, building the Commodore decided that it would be cheaper to build their own machine. The Commodore Pet came out 9 months later which sucked according to Jobs. Jobs was willing to sell to Commodore but Wozniak felt that this was a bad move. They designed a simple case for the Apple II which would set Apple apart from other machines. The VisiCalc also allowed Apple II to breakinto in the Financial market. Jobs wanted light molded plastic, and offered a consultant $1,500 to produce the design. The Apple II had the advantage of not requiring a fan, or multiple jacks. Jobs wanted a closed system, a computer that was difficult to pry open. Conversely, Wozniak wanted to give hackers the chance to plug in, but Jobs did not want that option.


Steve Jobs endorsed the view that less is more, and that God is in the details. Jobs embraced the Bauhaus style which rejected Sony’s approach of gun metal or black. The alternative was to create hi-tech products by packaging the products in beautiful, white, and simple casing. Apple customers understand the value of presenting their products out of the packaging. You design a ritual of unpacking a product. Jobs also felt that intuitive ideas need to be connected in computers

Jobs’ Management Style Was “Shit” from 1977 to 1985 Firing:

Steve Jobs loved to tell people that their work was shit, and would force his co-workers to pull all-nighters to finish applications. When Apple started to get going in 1978 – 1979, he would come into the office, and tell Wozniak’s engineering team that they were all shit. This further distanced the two as Wozniak felt that Jobs was abusive, and had changed. Jobs would cry easily, and he would put his feet in the toilet bowl in the middle of the day to wash them. For more stability, Michael Scott was brought into Apple Computer Inc as the president, Scott was fat, had ticks, and was highly wound.

Scott was argumentative, and Jobs clashed with him. Jobs produced conflict, and he was only 22 years old, but Apple was Jobs’ company, he did not want to relinquish control. Steve Jobs and Michael Scott fought about employee numbers. Steve Jobs wanted to be employee number 1, and Wozniak would be number 2. So Scott made Jobs’ badge number O but in reality Jobs’ pay role remained number 2. Scott was a pragmatist while Jobs was not. Steve Jobs started crying over a one year warrantee for the Apple II. At age 26, he had a successful company and the Apple II. In 1981, Jobs was kicked off the Lisa project and took over Macintosh so that he could make a contribution comparable to Wozniak.

Once at Macintosh, Jobs was considered to be a dreadful manager. Jef Raskin (who had headed the Macintosh team and disagrees with Jobs on most issues) said the following about Jobs:

  • a) Jobs missed most appointments;
  • b) Jobs acted without thinking and with bad judgment;
  • c) Jobs attacked any suggestion without thinking, claimed it is stupid and a waste of time only to turn around, if the idea was good, and propose the same idea as his own a week later;
  • d) Jobs would never give credit where it was due;
  • and e) Jobs would cry when conflicts erupted in board room meeting.

Michael Scott was fired as he became more and more erratic giving Jobs more power. In retrospect, the New York Times wrote: “by the early 80’s, Mr. Jobs was widely hated at Apple. Senior management had to endure his temper tantrums. He created resentment among employees by turning some into stars and insulting others, often reducing them to tears. Mr. Jobs himself would frequently cry after fights with fellow executives.”

A Startup Will Become Impersonal With Success:

Wozniak wanted Apple to be a family while Jobs wanted the company to grow quickly. Jobs felt that Wozniak had failed him because Woz appeared to be unfocused, and failed to get a ‘floating point’ BASIC finished for Apple II. The Apple II launched the personal computer industry. Wozniak had created the machine, and Jobs designed the exterior which was marketed more effectively. Steve Jobs wanted to spur a great advance in computers. This meant that the company had to hire more and more people, and Jobs became increasingly disrespectful towards slackers, and B Players within Apple. The point is you can’t really have a family environment in a startup that scales. And you need to scale in most competitive industries because the big players will try to destroy you at every turn. If you want to have a family like atmosphere then good luck you but expect to fail.

Apple III Was A Bastard Child Idea: 

Apple created a failed project, and it was not marketed well. The design that Jobs insisted on was not manageable for the circuits, and the Apple team all collectively made their contributions to the device so it was a gigantic mess. Steve Jobs insisted that there be no fan in the computer, as a result, the design did not allow the computer to cool properly, and it frequently overheated, the only way to prevent the chips from disconnecting with the mother board was to drop the computer onto the desk which customers were instructed to do whenever they phoned Apple; “Okay, just pick the computer up and drop it on the desk, that should knock the chips back into place.” The IBM PC crushed Apple III in sales. It was a disaster.

Being Abandoned = Ignoring Reality & Discrediting That Reality:

Steve Jobs had an illegitimate daughter that he didn’t bother to recognize as his at first. How’d that happen? In the mid-1970s, Jobs lived in a four bedroom house, and rented the place out to strippers. Chris-Ann Brennan lived with Jobs in separate rooms, apparently they lived as weirdos, and did acid. When Chris-Ann became pregnant with Steve’s child, he became disconnected from the situation, and did not deal with the pregnancy. He could be engaged and disengaged in minutes. Chris-Ann Brennan and Jobs had sex, but instead of taking responsibility, he engaged in character assassination against Brennan, and tried to prevent a paternity test in order to avoid dealing with the possibility of bringing a child into the world. He did not want to take responsibility, and he decided to believe in his own lies, according to Isaacson. Steve and Chris-Ann were 23 when they had their child, which was the same age as Jindal (Steve’s biological father) when he had Jobs. Jobs did not try to help Chris-Ann, and instead would ridicule her.

Walter Isaacson speculates that being abandoned by his biological parents led to this heartless/irrational behaviour, but it’s not entirely convincing and clear. Another classic example of ignoring reality would be when Jobs was diagnosed with cancer, but waited 9 months before pursuing surgery. Ignoring reality is how Jobs got through tough times.

Robert Friedland helped Chris-Ann Brennan have her baby girl but Steve Jobs helped name the child, and Jobs insisted in the name Lisa Nicole Brennan.  Finally, a year later, Jobs agreed to get a paternity tests where he was found 94.1% likely to be the father, and a Californian court forced Jobs to pay a monthly child support bill of $385. Despite the test, he claimed at Apple that there was a large probability that he wasn’t the father. He did this by using statistics improperly. Jobs claimed that 28% of the male population of the US could have been the father. When Chris-Ann heard what he said, she interpreted it as if Jobs was claiming that she had slept with 28% of the US male population.

Good Artists Borrow, Great Artists Steal:

The best way to predict the future is to invent it’ was one of Steve Jobs’ favourite sayings. Jobs was granted access to Xerox PARC which was established in the 1970s as an R&D digital spawning ground in Silicon Valley for Xerox. One of its products was the Xerox Alto which was a new computer interface that went beyond the BASIC systems like MS-DOS (ie. black screen + code commands), and in the process created a desktop that was called the Graphical User Interface (GUI) ie. everything on the screen was visually represented by icons. Meanwhile at Apple, Jef Raskin brought Bill Atkinson on board in the Macintosh division to develop a cheaper version of LISA but of course, Jobs wanted to get on the front of the wave, and “make a dent in the universe”. Jobs began to exert more influence on the Macintosh project which was Jef Raskin’s brainchild. Jobs hated Raskin because he was a professor/abstract thinker, and Raskin was obviously in control of the Macintosh project which Jobs saw as his own way forward.

In 1981, Jobs gave 100,000 Apples shares at $10 per share to Xerox in exchange for access to their Xerox PARC. When Steve Jobs saw the demo of GUI he was amazed that Xerox had not commercialized these innovations: 1) the networking, 2) object oriented programming, 3) the mouse and GUI. With this one visit, Steve Jobs had found the way to connect users to the future with GUI, and a way to leapfrog over Raskin’s plans for Macintosh. Steve Jobs was proud of his stealing the great ideas from Xerox. What transpired was less a heist by Apple but a fumble by Xerox. Xerox was too focused on photocopies, and selling more machines. Ideas are important but execution and positioning is also crucial. Microsoft would subsequently ‘steal’ the GUI concept from Apple, but in reality, Bill Gates had also visited Xerox PARC.

The Bicycle Alternative to Macintosh nameSurround Yourself With “A Players”:

In the early 1980s, Jobs recruited people by dramatically unvailing the MacIntosh, and seeing how interviewees responded to the designs. He even unplugged an engineers computer named Andy Hurtsfeld (while he was coding), and forced him over to Macintosh from the Apple II team because Jobs recognized Hurtsfeld’s A Player status. You need to build your company with a collaborative hiring process where a candidate tours around the company meeting everyone that is relevant for hiring that candidate. Why? Because Jobs may not have always had A player ideas. For example, he wanted to call the MacIntosh the ‘bicyle’ because like an actual bike, the MacIntosh would help the human achieve objectives that were not possible on their own. The idea of the Apple Bicycle was shot down by wiser marketing minds. A Players hold you in check.

When Wozniak crashed his airplane in February 1981, he left Apple Computer. After the launch of MacIntosh in 1984, Scully merged the MacIntosh and Lisa teams with Jobs as their head. Jobs told the Lisa team that he was firing 25% of their team because they were B and C players. The management of the MacIntosh team would all gain top positions in the amalgamation. It was unfair, but Jobs latched on to a key management experience, that you had to be ruthless to produce an A Player lineup.

For Jobs, if you hire a B player you will cause of Bozo explosion. B players always want to hire people who are inferior to them. C players hire D players. So keep the best people in your team, and make sure that you keep the right people in your organisation. He believed that if you let any B players into your organization, they would attract other B players as well. A players love to work with other A players, by definition, they want to grow and be the best. That is what makes A Players valuable.

Reality Distortion Field:

This reality distortion field was empowering. Bud Tribble in the early 1980s said that “Steve has a reality distortion field. In his presence, reality is malleable. He can convince anyone of practically anything. […] The reality distortion field was a confounding melange of a charismatic rhetorical style, an indomitable will, and an eagerness to bend any fact to fit the purpose at hand.” It was self-fulfilling, you do the impossible because you would believe it. Jobs could deceive even himself which allowed him to con other people. Jobs used this tactic which helps to make irrational goals real. The rules didn’t apply to him. He was a liar, and the Reality Distortion Field is a creative way of saying that he was a liar. As a child, Jobs had been rebellious, and this plays into his special, abandoned, unique self. If you trust Jobs, he will make it happen.

That is the great part about the reality distortion field. If you pretend to be completely in control, people will believe you are, and will be empowered. Jobs was so passionate about Apple and NExT devices, and his force of personality allowed him to change peoples minds as a salesman. Steve Jobs was able to change reality by using charismatic rhetoric, and bend facts. The reality distortion field was never acutely apparent. Jobs was lying quite a lot during team meetings.

As a result, it was difficult to have a realistic deadline since bending facts has its downsides (Think wasteful factory decorations, missing product dates at NExT etc). Jobs did not like manuals, and told Gates in 1984 that they should not have any manuals, but Gates did not bother mentioning that they had an entire team working on manuals for Mac. Bill Gates was completely immune to Steve Jobs’ reality distortion field. When reality hit, Jobs had a difficult time dealing with it.

Be At The Nexus of Humanities and Technology:

Connecting arts with technology is powerful. Jobs practiced Buddhism & mediation. Simplicity is important for a company. And it is evident that Buddhism was instrumental in Jobs’ development of Apple. Keeping it simple is essential to producing a user-friendly product that even the parents of baby-boomers can use. In his senior year, Jobs loved King Lear, Plato, and Dylan Thomas. Steve Jobs took AP English in high school. Jobs worked in electronics, and learnt about literature. Jobs took an electronics class at high school with McCaulum.

At Reed, Jobs audited a typography class which Jobs later argued was responsible for the Mac having typeface or proportionately spaced fonts. Steve Jobs understood that creative people are disciplined but technology people think they are lazy, while technology people do not know how to communicate intuitively to people, and have created a secret language to exclude ordinary people. Steve Jobs bridges that gap beauty through his life’s work. Producing something artistic takes real discipline.

The Believe In A Closed System & Product Control:

The architectural structure and software had to be tightly linked according to Jobs. Functionality would be sacrificed if one were to allow for multiple software producers. While Microsoft could be used on any hardware, Jobs refused to have Apple computers fragmented by the work of partners who did not follow Apple’s rules. On the customer level, Jobs refused to allow users to alter the product, pitching the idea that Apple products were more user friendly (which they were). He did not want to give users control. The closed system is useful for the iPhone era but not from 1981 until the mid to late 1990s with IBM (Big Blue) and Microsoft working across platforms; Apple’s competitive advantage in the PC market eroded dramatically in the early to mid 1980s. By scaling with multiple hardware platforms such as IBM PCs, Dell, and Compaq, software developers had an open-source alternative to the closed Apple system. Bill Gates realised this closed system problem in the early 80s and exploited it. Jobs wanted end-to-end control so that software developers had to buy into the Apple system, however, critical mass was essential for that to work. In 1982, Jobs wanted the industry standard to be Apple software + hardware, he did not want sales cannibalization that comes with allowing other computers to use the Apple Operating System on their computers. But for developers, the labour required to work within Apple’s ecosystem was prohibitive compared to the gains made by working on an open-source PC world. As a result, in 1997, Jobs admitted that they had been overly proprietary, and thus failed to see how that was hurting their marketability from 1984-1997. In the 2000s, the closed system had the advantage as Apple become a premium/closed brand through carefully working with 3rd parties.

Market Research Is For Idiots:

For Steve Jobs, Apple was about producing what people did not know they wanted yet. To be innovative, meant producing what he believed was needed. He was not interested in group testing his products. He once asked, “Did Alexander Graham Bell create a focus group before inventing the telephone?” Customers are going to try to get a better, cheaper computer. Focus groups do not tell you what the customers actually need. Customers do not know what they want.

Macintosh As The 3rd Industry Standard:

Bill Gates’ Microsoft appeared in Hawaii for the software dating game. The Macintosh was the product that Bill Gates felt was revolutionary. The ideal relationship would be for Bill Gates to work exclusively with Apple but that was not Gates’ strategy. Gates wanted to be a competitor, and wrote software for the IBM. In 1982, 279,000 Apple II were sold compared to 240,00 IBM but in 1983 there were 420,000 Apple II versus 1.3 million IBMs and clones. IBM had taken 26% of the market, and IBM/Clones would take over half of the market which included other compatible PCs.

Motivate With The Big Picture:

Steve Jobs was not interested in profiting more than competitors, but in producing a better, more beautiful computer. Macintosh’s team was burned out in conflict, and demoralized but Jobs had moments of brilliance. To counteract the negatives of Jobs’ management style, he would illicit the big picture. In one meeting, the issue was with regard to the booting time/start time for a new computer which was over a minute long. Jobs explained that if you combined 1 million people’s boot times, it would add up to many many cumulative hours of waste. In dramatic terms, Jobs argued that reducing the booting time by a few seconds could save about 50 lifetimes in total.

‘Making a dent in the universe’ was the overarching idea behind Apple. In 1981, IBM released their own personal computer, and Apple was confident about their market position. The problem was that IBM was a more powerful company, and had real strengths in the corporate establishment, and brand recognition. The Big Blue vision was to crush Apple, and IBM was the perfect foil for the spiritual struggle of Apple. Jobs felt that once IBM gains in a market sector, they almost always stop innovating. For Jobs, IBM was a force of evil, later the enemy was Microsoft and then Google subsequently.

Macintosh 1984 AtkinsonJef Raskin decided that Macintosh should use the Motorola processor which was more expensive, pushing the cost of the Macintosh upwards. Interestingly, Raskin did not like the point & click mouse. He did not like icons concept either, both of which Jobs was advocating for at Macintosh. Steve Jobs took over Macintosh in February 1981 by introducing politics, practical perspective, intensity, and bringing in Bill Atkinson into the team. Michael Scott (the CEO of Apple) gave Jobs control because it was not a serious part of Apple (Apple II was still the bread and butter product), and cleared Raskin out of the team abruptly. Jobs was energized by competition against the Lisa team within his own company. Macintosh was a computer platform that would ‘make a dent in the universe’, and help him leave the mark that Wozniak had already achieved with the Apple II.

Unhealthy Competition Within A Company Can Be Corrosive:

Entrepreneurs do not always transition into effective managers. Steve Jobs had a pirate flag waving over his Macintosh office at Apple. The Lisa team was jealous of this renegade team, and stole their Macintosh pirate flag as a prank. The Macintosh members then found the secretary who was hiding the flag under her desk, and wrestled it from her. This bizarre corporate behaviour had a negative effect, it said that Jobs team was better than other ones, and it was divisive within the company.

Steve would not allow Apple II employees to visit the MacIntosh office. Jobs wanted people to know about Macintosh but he wanted everyone else at Apple to know that they sucked even though Apple II was generating the revenue for the company. Steve Jobs’ Macintosh team seemed to be trying to destroy Lisa because Jobs was kicked off the project.

The Lisa team did feel that the Macintosh was undercutting Lisa since people were going to wait until Macintosh was released before buying their next Apple product, as it was announced in 1983 that Macintosh was on the way. In the PR campaigns, Steve Jobs admitted that the Macintosh was better than Lisa, and within two years Lisa was too expensive, and would be obsolete. Within months of Lisa’s launch, Apple had to pin the companies hopes on Macintosh.

The Best & Most Innovative Products Don’t Always Win:

The Microsoft team members wanted to know everything about the OS operating system during their close partnership with Apple in 1983. Gates believed that GUI was the future, and he claimed that the Xerox Alto was the foundation of all personal computers so Jobs was stealing the idea anyway. By November 1983, Gates admitted that there were plans to create an Microsoft operating system to be launched on all IBMs and clones.

The product was called Windows. Steve Jobs was furious. Part of their partnership in 1982 onwards was that Microsoft would not develop any programs for IBM until a year after the MacIntosh launch in January 1983. Unfortunately, Apple did not launch the Macintosh until January, 1984 so Gates was within his rights to proceed with licensing to IBM. Gates came down to Apple, and Jobs assailed Gates “You’re ripping us off! We trusted you.” Bill Gates put it well, “We both had this neighbour named Xerox, and I broke into to house to steal the TV but found that you had already been there.” When Gates showed Jobs what he had developed for Windows, Jobs did not complain that it was stealing because he told Gates right to his face that Windows was a “piece of shit.” Jobs was almost crying about it, and went on a long walk in November 1983. Apple and Microsoft were now in serious conflict at this point. Windows was not launched until 1985 because it was not very good, but Microsoft made Windows better over time, and by 1995, it was dominant. Until the return of Jobs in 1997, there was a dark period of Microsoft dominance in the computer industry according to Jobs. The open system approach that Microsoft adopted by working with multiple hardware partners proved better because it allowed Microsoft to get on to multiple platforms for scalability. Meanwhile, other Apple developers began working with clones as well.

Eras Are Defined By Partnerships & Rivalry – Gates Versus Jobs Round 1:

Two high energy college drops ended up shaping the commercial PC market. Bill Gates created a program for scheduling classes, and a car counting program while in high school. Gates was skilled at being logical, practical, and analytical while Jobs was design friendly, and less disciplined. Gates was methodical in his business style. Bill Gates was humane but could not make eye contact. Gates was fascinated by Jobs’ mesmerizing persona but saw Jobs as rude and cruel. Jobs has always maintained that Gates should have dropped acid to open up his mind to creativity. The only thing Gates was open to was licensing Microsoft to Apple but not on an exclusive basis. Jobs long believed that Gates was not a creative person, and that Gates ripped off other people’s ideas or at least did not have original ideas. Meanwhile, Gates derisively called Macintosh “S.A.N.D.” ie. Steve’s Amazing New Device. Gates mentions that he did no like Jobs’ management style, as Steve had a tendency to call his own co-workers idiots on a regular basis.

The rivalry was also beyond the personal. In 1982, Apple’s sales were $1 billion, while Microsoft made $23 million. Jobs had an attitude with Gates that suggested Gates should be honoured to work Jobs, it was insulting. From Jobs’ perspective, Gates did not understand the elegance of the Macintosh. There were 14 people working on the Macintosh while Microsoft programmers created applications that had 20 people working on programs to Mac.  Their rivalry was deep and probably spurred innovation forward for that reason.

Genius Versus Shit-Head:

For Steve Jobs, you were either a genius or a shit-head/bozo. He sought absolute perfection, and he loved to define people according to this rubric. Steve Jobs tended to be high voltage and might actually say that an idea you proposed is ‘piece of shit idea’. But then he would turn around to propose your idea as his own a week later. Sometimes, he would then take your position in an argument, and agree with you just to mess you up. Jobs could not avoid impulsive opinions, his team at Macintosh were used to moderating his opinions, and not reacting to the extremes of either being a ‘piece of shit’ or ‘genius.’ At Macintosh in the 1981 – 1985 period, Atkinson taught his team to interpret “this is shit” to mean “how is this the best way?” when speaking with Jobs. Steve had a charismatic personality, and knew how to crush people psychologically. In addition, he had huge expectations with his Macintosh team, and it created a fear factor. If you demonstrated that you knew what you were talking about, Jobs would respect you. From 1981 onwards, employees were annually awarded for standing up to Steve Jobs. One marketing specialist stood up to Jobs twice because the marketing projections were unrealistic in 1981. She won the award having at one point threatened to stab Jobs in the heart.

 The Boardroom Showdown & Emotionality:

In May 1985, the boardroom meeting to demote Jobs from Macintosh was nasty. Jobs presented his case first saying that Scully did not care about computers but in response a manager retorted that Jobs had been behaving foolishly for over a year. Scully then presented his case to the board for demoting Jobs and stated that he (Scully) would either get his way or they would need a new CEO. Scully said that Jobs should be transitioned slowly out of the management role at Macintosh. Jobs felt betrayed by Scully. Steve Jobs was emotionally unstable, and even felt as though he should be able to repair his friendship with Scully. Meanwhile, Jobs would spend a lot of time plotting against Scully in light of his career crisis.


Advertising Does Matter:

The 1984 Ridley Scott advertisement entitled “1984” was a way of affirming a desired renegade style, and attached Apple Computers with the rebels, and hackers. Ironically, Apple was a controlled system. Jobs believed in total control. Initially, the 1984 Ad was not popular on the board at Apple. Markkula and Scully thought it was the worst commercial ever, and that they should not put it on during the Superbowl. They were proven wrong by the timelessness of that 1984 Ad. The next advertisement in 1985 was an ad focused on insulting business people by showing them that they were walking off a cliff as if to suggest that they were blindly following the IBM brand. When the commercial was featured at the 1985 Superbowl in January, there was little reaction, and in truth it was a blunder since it insulted the market it was trying to reach. Apple performed poorly in 1985, the ad is not the cause of the outcome but was a symptom of Apple’s situation in 1985; IBM was expanding immensely.

Frame Your Business Around War – Big Blue Versus Apple:

During the 1984 Apple shareholder meeting, Jobs set the stage for the epic conflict between IBM and Apple. The question Jobs asked at the 1984 conference was “Will Big Blue dominate the entire computer market? Will they control the entire information age? Was Geroge Orwell right?” These rhetorical questions helped inspire his company. Afterall, IBM did not have the vision to buy Xerox in the 1950s. Computer dealers fear IBM dominance on pricing. For Jobs, it was about Apple versus evil. Apple is the only hope against Big Blue. With that frame of mind, Apple could do anything. The MacIntosh was finally launched on “time” in January, 1984.

John Scully Hello WorldA Messy Company Can Still Work:

When Scully joined Apple, he was surprised at the disorder, and bickering between Jobs and the Lisa team over a) why Lisa was a failure, and b) why Macintosh had not been launched in 1983. Scully felt that Apple was ‘like a household where everyone were running to the beach when there was an earthquake only to discover a tsunami was approaching that forced them back into the house.’ (Isaacson Biography). Things weren’t great on the numbers side for Scully’s first year as CEO either. He had to announce at the 1984 shareholders meeting that 1983 was a bad year for Apple. It was. The competitors were entering the market with cheaper products that were not as user-friendly as Apple but still semi-useful machines. The Apple balance sheet still showed major growth but IBM had launched the PC, and there were many lower-priced clones on the market in 1981 onward which were harming Apple’s competitive advantage.

But Macintosh was marketed as “the computer for the rest of us” and would refocus Apples efforts away from their core Apple II & LISA product offerings. Apples future was bright because there were 25 million information based users in offices across America, and their work had not changed much since the industrial revolution. The only desktop product people used was the phone until the personal computer. Apple hoped that their market share would expand with the unveiling of Macintosh….1984 would prove pivotal for Apples future (to be continued). Below is the balance sheet for the January 24th, 1984 Apple Shareholders meeting.  Apple was a chaotic start-up turned revolutionary full fledged company. It was a messy operation from the standpoint of senior management but generally Apple worked.

Apple RainbowThe Apple Computer, Inc Balance Sheet In 1983            

Current Assets 

Fiscal Year 1983

Cash and Investments

$143,000,000

Receivables – Net

$136,000,000

Inventory

$143,000,000

Other

$47,000,000

Total Current Assets

$469,000,000

Net Fixed Assets

$67,000,000

Other Assets

$21,000,000

Total Assets

$557,000,000

Current Liabilities

$129,000,000

Long-Term Liabilities

$50,000,000

Shareholders’ Equity

$378,000,000

Total Liabilities & Equity

$557,000,000

A Clean Factory Is Insanely Great But The Product Has To Sell:

Freemont, California was the location of Apples new automated factory overlooking the Ford manufacturing facility. Apple was more profitable in its early years of existence relative to Ford. Apple was indeed a miraculous company. Jobs spent time going over the machines in the new factory in 1984, at one point, he demanded that the Apple team repaint the machines for aesthetics. This repainting actually screwed up their machines, however, and corrections proved costly. The Apple factory had white walls, and beautiful machines. Jobs believed the factory was a way to establish a passion for Apple amongst employees. Jobs was influenced by the Japanese manufacturing which had a sense of team and discipline. Debby Coleman, a Stanford MBA, was the operations manager. By the end of 1984, the Macintosh’s performance in sales was very low. They had an expensive factory but a failed product.

Being Right Isn’t As Important As Winning

Renegades weren’t such a problem to Steve Jobs. In fact, he respected those who stood up to him if they knew what they were talking about on the Macintosh team. Often if they disagreed with Jobs, they realized that they could ignore Jobs’ commandments, and in so doing effectively spare Jobs the embarrassment of making a mistake or a bad judgement. One such incident involved the disk drive called Twiggy which was defective in the Lisa. The alternative would be a 3½ disk drive which was designed by Sony. The dirty Tokyo disk drive factory in Sony did not impress Jobs and he wanted to go with Alps disk drive which had made a clone of the Sony product. So Jobs decided to do a deal with Alps (a competing manufacturer), but Bob Belleville (behind Jobs’ back) decided to hire Sony in secret without Jobs’s approval.

Belleville hired Komoto who was tasked with building a disk drive for the MacIntosh from 1982-83, but Belleville did not want Jobs to know about this backup plan for the disk drive collaboration taking place at Alps, the Japanese company. Whenever Jobs came through the Macintosh office, Komoto was quickly escorted into a closet, or under a desk where he would have to hide for a few minutes at a time. In May 1983, the Alps team in Japan failed to deliver their disk drive, and asked for an additional 18 more months to work out the problems. It was a disaster as Mark Markkula grilled Jobs about what he was going to do about the lack of a disk drive with the MacIntosh launch potentially being pushed back to 1985? Bob Belleville saved Jobs by interjecting that Bob had a disk drive ready thanks to his secret work without Jobs’ approval. Jobs appreciated this renegade behaviour, and swallowed his pride. So we can infer that winning is more important than being right in management.

Imperfection Is A Moral Wrong:

Jobs required perfection. When Adam Osborne produced a messy portable computer that was sufficient , Jobs would cry that “Osborne just doesn’t get it!” as he would frequently storm around the Macintosh office. Steve Jobs refused to compromise on perfection in the name of price, and deadlines. If someone didn’t care to be perfect they were a bozo in Steve Jobs view. There were many bozos at Apple. Jobs did not hand trade offs well. Steve Jobs wanted a smooth looking Macintosh computer, and underwent many adjustments in the design of the Macintosh system.

He pushed to have rectangles with rounded corners included in a basic Mac program. Jobs learned to love type-faced fonts for the Macintosh. Since the computer could allow such fonts, they developed different one named after streets in New York. The Macintosh fonts would help launch deskstop publishing, and allow people outside of publishing houses to learn about the value of font styles. Steve Jobs went through 20 different title bars on the Macintosh OS screen before he was satisfied. When his colleagues claimed that the title bars were not that important, Jobs went crazy, title bars were going to be viewed every day by millions of people!

Bringing In An Outside Expert Can Be Costly:

Steve Jobs was too rough-edged to be Apple CEO so Markkula and Jobs went shopping for an alternative. They focused away from the tech sector to find a marketing genius. John Scully was an outsider who was an expert in management, and a consumer marketer who had a corporate polish. He invented the Pepsi Challenge campaign at Pepsi, and he was good at marketing, and advertising. Scully was struck by how poorly marketed computers were in the mid-1980s. Scully did not actually like computers because they seemed to be too much trouble, however Scully was enthusiastic about selling something more interesting than Pepsi Co.

Scully decided that Apple should work on the idea of ‘enriching their users lives’. Scully was good at generating PR, and excitement around Pepsi. The ability to generate a buzz about Pepsi would be replicated by Steve Jobs in the unveiling of new Apple products subsequently. Initially the two hit it off very well in their meetings about Scully joining Apple. They both admitted to be smitten with each-other over the big ideas surrounding computer technology. Jobs knew how to manipulate Scully’s insecurities to his advantage. Jobs and Scully seemed to understand each-other, and they had become friends, and emotional confidants. The problem was that most marketing people are paid posers, according to a former Apple manager. Scully actually did not care about computers but cared largely about marketing, and selling an idea to the public.

When Jobs showed Scully the Macintosh, he was more interested in Steve Jobs presentation skills than the computer itself. Scully claimed to share with Jobs goals but he was not 100% enamored with the product. Steve Jobs knew that Scully would be able to teach him the most, and Scully successfully sold Jobs the idea of his being appropriate for Apple. Jobs asked him famously: “do you want to go on the rest of your life selling sugar water, or do you want a chance to change the world.” Scully received $1,000,000 in salary, and a $1,000,000 signing bonus as the new CEO of Apple in April 1983.

The Original Macintosh Had Bad Sales:

During the planning for the release of Macintosh, the marketing costs needed to be factored into the price according to then CEO John Scully. Scully said $1,999 price was too low because the marketing budget required to spend more in order to sell Apple to the masses. As a result, they set the price to $2,499 for the Macintosh. Steve Jobs argues that this price was the reason that the Macintosh did not sell well in 1984. After the 2nd quarter of 1984, Macintosh started to slump in sales. It was slow, dazzling but not powerful enough. In addition, Macintosh had only 2 applications so there was a major software development gap. It was beautiful but Macintosh used a lot of memory. Lisa functioned on 1000K of Ram. Macintosh had 128K of Ram. There was lack of an internal hard-disk drive.

Jobs wanted to have a floppy disk drive. Macintosh did not have a fan so it over heated easily. When people became aware of flaws, reality hit. By the end of 1984, Jobs made a strange decision, he took unsold Lisa’s grafted on a Macintosh emulation program, and sold them as a new product. Jobs was producing something that wasn’t real, it sold well, and then it had to be discontinued within the company once the extra LISA’s were sold.

People attend the annual Apple Expo at the CNIT center at La Defense in Paris September 15. Apple p..The distribution system did not respond to demand effectively, and there was an inventory backlog which was unintended by Apple Inc. Macintosh very simply did not sell well enough for the production level of building a copy of the computer every 23 seconds. This would later help Jobs realise that a Just-In-Time inventory strategy would be better suited. This was Dell computer’s competitive advantage.

On balance, Jobs’ marketing from 77 to 85 was brilliant but there were some patchy points. Not everything that Apple did on a marketing level had been genius under Jobs’ influence in the 1977-1985 era. We always talk about the 1984 commercial but check out the worst Apple ad ever from 1985 which reads: “you corporate hacks are buying IBM computers without really thinking.”

Fall From Grace Through Management Incompetence:

Scully thought that Jobs was a perfectionist, while Scully didn’t care about products at all. Scully did not learn quickly in his new role but was instead focused on marketing and management rather than the products according to Steve Jobs’ recollection. In addition, Scully seemed to be clueless that Jobs was manipulating him with flattery, while Scully believed in keeping people happy and worrying about relationships.  Outside of Apple, the market responded negatively to Macintosh and by mid-84 into 85 a crisis was growing. By early 1985, the managers had told John Scully that he was supposed to run the company and be less eager to please Jobs. Also, Steve Jobs was told to stop criticizing other departments in Apple which was becoming difficult to stomach. Sales in the first quarter of 1985 were only 10% of their projections. Management changes were on the horizon.

Steve Jobs’ abuse of others increased through character assassinations and intense and direct criticism but this was also coupled with a quickly declining market share. Many middle managers rose up against Jobs. Noting the increased tension, Steve Jobs asked Scully if Jobs could create a Macintosh in a book-like format while also heading an “Apple Labs” project as a new R&D off-shoot of Apple Computers. From Scully’s perspective, if Jobs agreed to leave Macintosh, this solution would solve the management issues and get rid of Jobs’ presence at Apple’s head office. Jean-Louis Gassee would move in to take over the Macintosh only if he could avoid working under Jobs. The problem was that Jobs did not want to quit MacIntosh but wanted more responsibility by running both Macintosh and the new R&D project. Finally, Scully had a meeting with Mike Murray. By mid-1985, Apple executives started to blame Jobs for the miscalculated forecasting of Mac sales and resentment built up due to Job’s management style. Mike Murray, Jobs’ lieutenant in marketing, wrote a memo summarizing the problems that Apple had. Murray laid a lot of  blame on Steve Jobs which was a coup considering his closeness to Jobs. Murray pointed out that Jobs had a controlled power-base within the company which created a strategic alliance amongst high value employees. When Scully confronted Jobs, he said that it wasn’t going to work with Jobs’ approach at the Macintosh division. Jobs said that Scully did not spend enough time teaching Jobs as an excuse for the demotion that Scully was proposing ie start an R&D division outside of Apple. Jobs was erratic, he would reach out to Scully, and then lash-out at him behind his back. Jobs would phone one manager at 9pm to discuss Scully’s poor performance, and then he would phone Scully at 11pm to say that he loved working with Scully. The end of the line for Jobs was approaching quickly.

Being Vindictive Is Part Of Leadership:

In 1985, Jobs refused a $50,000 bonus for Macintosh engineers who went on vacation during the bonus awarding period. Andy Hurtzfeld quit because he didn’t like Macintosh’s team, or Jobs. Woz and Jobs were no longer friends. As an expression of that, Jobs also shot down Wozniak’s universal remote control company ‘Cloud 9’ by arguing that the design agency should not be allowed to work with 3rd party companies such a Woz’s. Steve Wozniak left Apple saying that the company was not being run properly for the past 5 years. Jobs was vindictive, and convinced himself that Woz’s remote control designs was a problem because it resembled other of Frog’s designs which were used to design Apple products. In 1999, Adobe refused to write programs for the iMac, so when the iPhone was released, Steve Jobs refused to allow flash on its products arguing that these products ate too much battery power, when in reality the core problem was that Adobe had screwed Apple in the past. In other words, being vindictive is part of business leadership as far as Steve Jobs is concerned.

Steve Jobs Rolling StonesRolling Stone PR Stunt:

Apple wanted to build a relationship with Rolling Stone magazine, and Steve Jobs pitched them to get on the cover but they rejected Jobs’ idea. In response, Jobs said that Rolling Stone was a piece of shit in the early 1980s to a Rolling Stone journalist, and that they needed to get a new audience of people who care about technology.

Finding Similarities Between Yourself & Your Business Partners May Not Be Good:

John Scully, and Steve Jobs were perfectionists, and they were self-deluded about each other. They had different values, and Scully did not learn quickly. Jobs managed to manipulate Scully into believing Scully was exceptional. Jobs was secretly astounded at Scully’s deference. Scully would never yell at employees, or treat them horribly as Jobs had. Jobs tried to find similarities between himself and Scully in order to justify choosing Scully as Apple’s CEO. Thinking in this way is a mistake.

Eras Are Defined By Partnerships & Rivalry – Gates Versus Jobs Round 2:

As Jobs stepped in the limelight again at MacWorld 1997, he announced a partnership with Bill Gates’ Microsoft stating that a zero-sum game (between Apple and Microsoft) was not the way forward. Gates had stolen the Graphical User Interface from MacIntosh which was borrowed from Xerox PARC, but had struck a deal with Scully to not release a GUI until after 1988. When Windows 2.0 was released, Apple sued them unsuccessfully for IP theft. By 1997, Gates refused to help Amelio create a Word processor. When Clinton began building an anti-trust case against Microsoft for their near monopoly (particularly their destruction of Netscape), and other unethical business practices, Jobs told a Justice department official to continue if only to allow Apple to develop an alternative.

Steve Jobs closed a simple deal with Gates with the agreement that Apple would stop suing Microsoft for stolen IP, while Microsoft would have a $150 million stake in Apple with non-voting shares, and produce Microsoft Office, and Microsoft Explorer for the Mac. At MacWorld 1997, this decision to work with Microsoft was very controversial, and there was a public relations gaffe that Jobs would later regret. When introducing Bill Gates at MacWorld, Jobs decided to have Bill Gates beamed into the auditorium via satellite. The only problem was that Bill Gates was put on a giant projector screen over looking the audience like a powerful overlord or Big Brother.

Force An Ultimatum To Get Control Of A Company:

The Friday executive meeting (in May 1985) was where Scully would confront Jobs about the attempted coup. Jobs said that “Scully was bad for Apple, and the wrong guy, you don’t know how to develop products. I wanted you to help me grow, and you have been ineffective in helping me.” Jobs said that he would run Apple better, so Scully polled the room with each person explaining who would be better for Apple. “It’s me or Steve. Vote.” Everyone supported Scully, and Jobs started to cry again. Jobs left Apple with his core MacIntosh staff. Scully was very upset about what happened. Scully’s wife confront Jobs in a parking lot and said that he had nothing behind his eyes other than a bottomless pit.

Never Tell The Allies Of Your Opposition That You’re Planning A Coup:

As the summer of 1985 approached and Jobs was transitioning out of his leadership role as the head of the Macintosh division, he begged Scully to reverse the boardroom decision. Scully refused and argued that Jobs had failed to get another Macintosh out to market. May 14th, Tuesday 1985, with a boardroom present Jobs was defiant and argued that it was alright to have Apple II and Macintosh developing two different disk drives. Jobs begged Scully again not to move him out of the role, and in-front of the board, Scully said no. The die was cast. Scully was planning on going to China to launch the opening of Apple to the Chinese computer market, so Jobs started to plan his coup around the Memorial weekend visit that Scully would be going on.  Jobs went around canvassing for the support needed to swing the board against Scully.

The board was largely with Scully. Jobs revealed his plans to Jean-Louis Gassee who was the guy that Scully was going to replace Jobs with. Naturally, Gassee told Scully who immediately cancelled his trip to China. Jobs refused to accept the reorganization of Apple with Jobs as a product visionary. Jobs did not want to play ball. Jobs was excluded from management reports. It was a personal and career disaster for Jobs.

Targeting The Education Market Is Not Lucrative:

In September 1985, Steve Jobs announced to the Apple board that he would be focusing on a computer for the higher education market in a new company of his own. This was an outstandingly strange decision since it is not as lucrative as other areas, but he saw a market share for himself. Apple dominated the education market so Jobs took with him key people who would be useful for his goal. Their team would then have proprietary information about Apple’s future goals in the education sector. Jobs raided key employees in a somewhat vindictive manner. Even Markkula was offended at how ungentlemanly he was behaving. So Apple sued Steve Jobs for (a) secretly taking advantage Apple’s plans for the product, (b) secretly undermined Apple by getting new people, and (c) secretly being disloyal to Apple by using their information.

How To Save A Dying Tech Company – Return To Your Successful Roots:

Jobs believed that killing the Macintosh clones was the way forward in 1997. He felt that licensing the Mac OS software to third party hardware producers was a mistake and that the largest battle was the software licensing problem for Apple. The problem was that by having a closed system, Apple had to manage its own software development. Microsoft dominated because they produced software that was cross-platform. The clones of Apple cannibalized Apples’ own computer sales even if these clones had to pay Apple software at $80 per sale. Jobs believed that hardware, and software should be integrated, and Jobs wanted to control the user experience from end to end. With this return to Apple’s roots, Jobs was setting a course for creating a closed, highly controlled user experience that had pros and cons.  

Brilliant Failures Help You Grow:

NeXT was created to build beautiful computers but they completely flopped in the market place because of important issues like price and release date timing. Jobs was able to explore his whims as an artist at NeXT which would be useful later on. The logo of NeXT was designed by Paul Rand who did the IBM logo and it arguably one of the best in tech in the 1980s. The logo boasted big potential that did not fully materialize as it had at Apple. Meanwhile, Jobs had asked Frog (the design firm involved in various Apple products) to not work with Wozniak and threatened legal action in order to harm Wozniak’s ability to create his own company (Woz had departed Apple in 1985 citing disappointment with how Apple had changed under Scully and Jobs). In addition, Jobs resolved the lawsuit placed against him by Scully and Apple after his departure. NeXT agreed to a) not compete with Apple by launching only after March 1987, b) produce an education computer only, c) NeXT could not use an operating system compatible with Apple. The final one was a bit silly since that was not in its interests.

NeXT Logo

Design Should Not Trump Processing:

The NeXT cube was difficult to manufacture because the cube was built at 90 degree angles and got stuck in the moulds. The modules/moulds were extremely expensive to fix. Jobs insisted on a mat black casing but this was indulgent at best. The screws inside the machine had to have expensive plating to hide their presence. As usual, Steve Jobs was eager to put people down at NeXT. Jobs treated his employees harshly because he believed in excellence. At Apple in 2000, the Apple Cube was a huge failure. Jobs admitted that he over priced the 2000 – 2001 Apple Cube like he had done with the NeXT computer, and the Apple stock cratered after the release of the Apple Cube in the same way that the NeXT computer under-performed after its release. History frequently repeats itself with Jobs; both success and failure.

Do Not Disrespect Your Potential Business Partners:

Gates did not like NeXT, in particular he did not like the lack of compatibility of the NeXTWorld application specifications with the rest of the software industry. When Jobs invited Gates to visit his NeXT offices, Jobs made Gates wait for 30 minutes in a glass waiting room while Jobs chatted with multiple people in clear view just to spite Gates. The two hated eachother. Gates was not cooperative largely due to external factors, just as he was with the iPhone but treating Gates poorly did not help Steve Jobs’ business development strategy. Gates thought the black casing of NeXT did not make sense, and refused to allocate staff to develop for it. Gates did not think there was a market for the NeXT computer because it was yet another closed system like Apple itself. NeXT was based on an optical disc which was impressive but Microsoft did not like the end to end control that Jobs inevitably pushed for. Steve Jobs tried to get NeXT software on the IBM in order to get further sources of revenue but by the late 198s, IBM was tanking out of the computer operating system market. The core problem was that NeXT Step was not compatible with anything! Microsoft wanted the monopoly, and Gates did everything he could to prevent Jobs from going forward with his project. Jobs cut off the possibility of NeXT clones that could expand the base of available computers in the market thereby increasing the potential sale of NeXT software but he stubbornly remained an advocate of the closed system.

Get Real On Your Lean Startup:

Jobs gutted, and rebuilt the building that he purchased for the NeXT headquarters….twice. He wasted a lot of money on designing colourful machines at the NeXT factory much like the Macintosh factory. He also invested in an amazing factory that would be highly valued when it had to be shutdown. NeXT’s stair cases were built out of sturdy glass, an idea later applied to Apple stores. The process of ‘conbon’ was applied at NeXT. The tech office was lavish.

Get A VC Who Missed Out On A Previous Winning Opportunity:

the initial 18 months of development needed to get NeXT going required $7 million dollars of Jobs’ own money. NeXT was valued at 30 million dollars, and there was little to show for it, and no revenue. Ross Perot was dazzled by Steve Jobs’ vision based on a now famous documentary about NeXT. Ross Perot had made his fortune competing against IBM and had become a VC for other aspiring entrepreneurs in tech. The fact was that Ross Perot missed out a deal with Bill Gates at Microsoft during the early days at Microsoft and Perot deeply regretted it. Ross Perot would get 16% of equity in the company for $20 million after Jobs put in another $5 million meaning the company was worth $126 million dollars. Ross Perot built a narrative around Steve Jobs about “a rags to richest genius who had to either start a company or get a job, a week later the Apple I was finished.” It was a fantasy that Ross Perot created.

Avoid The Problem Of Focusing On The Small Battles & Not Seeing The Big Picture:

October 1988, the NeXT launch was an amazing event. After 3 years of consulting with universities across the country, Jobs was betting the company on new technology. Every minor detail was analysed and reworked as the release windows passed for the NeXT computer. In an effort to seek out the best quality technology, Jobs built a highly advanced product but NeXT did not have a floppy disk which was rare for the era. NeXT was risked on the lavish use of Steve Job’s finances to set up his company, and he targeted the higher education industry. The problem was that the features were great but the price of the product was $6,500. At the launch, the applause was scattered when Jobs announced the price tag, the academics were extremely disappointed at the launch event for NeXT because the machine was too expensive. Apparently, the education sector representatives of his NeXT launch were shocked at the cost given the feedback that NeXT had no doubt received. The price has to be low enough to scale the product into universities, other wise the sales pitch has to be extremely aggressive. This price shock was reflected in the sales.

Instead of focusing on price, Jobs’ team focused on features and other details…universities didn’t buy the product. Pricing a product is essential. Most of the features were trivial for the NeXT. In addition, there were too few people interested in building software for the NeXT, and the price was a massive deterrent. In addition, the NeXT was incompatible because few developers were designing the software needed to use the product. Jobs’ strategy was to target the workstations industry where Sun was dominant. It failed, and in 1991, NeXT stopped making hardware much like Jobs had given hardware up at Pixar. By the mid-1990s, NeXT was working in the Operating System market exclusively.

Gain Financial Control Against Your Business Partners:

Pixar needed to challenge Disney’s dominance in animation. Toy Story’s success was heavily associated with Disney which was frustrating to Jobs because Pixar created Toy Story. Jobs felt that Pixar was helping Disney roll out their movies and taking all of the credit for Toy Story. Pixar ran and created the movie, and Disney was the distributing channel. There was a need to go public with the Pixar considering that Toy Story was the top grossing film in 1995.

When Pixar was in trouble in 1988, Jobs needed to fire people which he did with a complete lack of empathy. The company was failing partly because their mass market animation hardware did not sell well. He gave these redundant employees a notice of two weeks, but this was retroactive from two weeks before the date of termination! Fast forward to 1995, Pixar was worth $39 per share on the first day of the IPO, Steve Jobs made $1.2 billion dollars in the initial IPO stage (a huge portion of its value). With the success of the IPO, Pixar wanted to assert a co-branding relationship with Disney, rather then being just a studio. Steve Jobs fought to make sure Pixar was every bit as valuable as Disney which later resulted in a Disney take over at a huge valuation.

Art Reflects Reality

Jobs bought Pixar from Lucas films and became a majority stakeholder in 1986. Pixar was technology meeting art which was perfect for Jobs who wanted to live on the intersection of the humanities and technology. He looked into the finance, and strategy in the late 80s to familiarize himself more with the bean counting elements of business. Jobs spewed out all kinds of crazy and good ideas at Pixar meetings. He even tried to sell hardware, and software design via a digital animation product called Renderman but this did not sell well. In the early 1990s, John Lasseter came up with Toy Story. Originally, Woody was a nasty character (who acted like Steve Jobs) but finally they decided to change the story so that Woody was no longer a mean character, and the film was very successful after much difficulty with Disney. A Bug’s Life tells the story of an Ant with all kinds of crazy and good ideas, but he gets in trouble with the colony and he is then expelled from the colony. He goes out to find a solution to the colony’s grasshopper problem, and ends up saving the colony. It basically follows the same life pattern as Steve Jobs who was fired from Apple, only to triumphantly return.

Rivalry Of The Ants & Breaking With Disney:

Woody Allen’s Antz film was not a huge success but it was used to challenge the Disney production A Bug’s Life. Katzenberg (Dreamworks) wanted to copy Pixar’s Ant movie, and so Hollywood had two Ant movies being made in the same year. Katzenberg have a falling out with Disney in the mid-90s after being responsible for productions like Little Mermaid and Aladdin. Later Finding Nemo was the most popular DVD and sold $0.867 billion, and Pixar made $521 million with the showdown from Disney. Pixar was producing the films, and Disney was the distribution channel.

Build A Board That Cannot Operate Independently of the CEO:

During his transition into the leadership of Apple, Steve Jobs hired Larry Ellison, and other board members who were all loyal to Jobs. This would allow Jobs to take complete control over the company, and give him the breath of control needed to execute the long list of chances that were needed to fix Apple. Once the board was set, Steve Jobs become the CEO of Apple, and he took a salary of $1. The next step would be to rebuild the company. Instead of building Apple off of the divisions in a product line model used originally, with Jobs, there were to be no divisions with independent bottom-lines. Jobs wanted to have a cohesive structure so that he could directly control the company from the top down. He would be able to interact with smaller teams, who were in constant dialogue with each other rather than in painful competition against each other. Instead of a competitive bureaucratic structure where teams competed against eachother, Apple was now a heavily top-down organisation.

  Do Not Chase Profits, Chase Value:

By 1996, Apple had a 4% share of the market from a high of 16% in the late 1980s. Apple had expanded into every technology sector with a wide variety of products over the decade + that Jobs had been outcasted. John Scully did not think that high-tech could be sold to mass markets. According to Jobs, in the 1990s, Scully brought in corrupt people that wanted to make money only for themselves rather than create new ideas through Apple. Scully’s drive for profits at the cost of market share reduced Apple’s value. Apple’s decline was due to its inability to innovate in any area. The Macintosh hardly improved after Jobs had left. In one instance, Jobs was asked to autograph a late-1980s model of the Macintosh keyboard but first he insisted that the arrow keys be removed. Jobs hated the arrows on the keyboard and viewed it as an example of bad decision-making within Apple. Apple was almost sold to Sun and HP in 1996, Apple’s stock fell to $14 in 1996. In 1994, Gil Amelio became the CEO of Apple and wanted to integrate the Apple with Windows NT which would have corrupted Apple further. Amelio did not like Jobs much, and thought Jobs was trying the reality distortion field at every point of interaction.
tion. Amelio was probably right.

Do Not Force Other Businesses Into Your Closed System:

In 1983, Jobs loved Microsoft Excel so he made an offer to Gates. If Gates agreed to produce Excel exclusively for Apple for the first 2 years, then Jobs would shutdown his team working on BASIC, and license Gates’ BASIC. Gates accepted. This deal became a lever in future negotiations. When Jobs decided he wanted other companies to produce software for Apple, he exercised a clause in the contract with Gates so that Microsoft would not get an automatic bundling in every Macintosh sold. Instead of getting $10 per Application, per Macintosh sold, Microsoft would have to sell their products separately.

Gates knew that Jobs was good at playing fast and loose with the truth so he was not actually that upset because he then turned around, and started work on versions for IBM. Microsoft gave IBM priority, and Jobs’ decision to back out of the bundling deal was another major mistake by Jobs. When Gates and Jobs unveiled Excel, a reporter asked if Microsoft would be creating a version for IBM. Gates’ answer was “in time.” Jobs’ response was “Yes, in time, we’ll all be dead.”

apple boardHow To Save A Dying Tech Company – Fire The Board Or Resign:

In 1997, Apple was losing good people so Jobs pushed to give the best people a re-pricing of their stock options to ($13.29 per share) as Apple’s stocks were so low that they were nearly worthless. This was not considered good corporate practice. Having quality people was essential to ensure the success of the company. When the board said it would take 2 months to do a financial study, Jobs said he needed their absolute support now. His response was that he would not return on Monday if the board did not agree, Jobs needed to make thousands of decisions, and this was just one hurdle. Most of the board was happy to leave subsequently. Jobs said that the problem with Apples products was that they sucked.

Steve Jobs 1997 Insult ResponseMerge Your Venture With A Giant That You Can Take Over:

NeXT was failing and idea of being bought by Apple in 1996 was a tantalizing prospect for Steve Jobs. He wanted to get back into Apple while Larry Ellison of Oracle wanted to get more money by buying Apple outright. However, Jobs wanted the moral high ground by not making money in the process of transitioning back into Apple. In 1996, Steve Jobs negotiated with Gil Amelio the purchase starting with Apple Computer buying $12 per share for $500 million valuation of NeXT. Amelio countered with $10 per share for $400 million valuation of NeXT, and Jobs agreed as long as he received a payout in cash.

Jobs would hold 100 million in cash, and 35 million in Apple stock. Gil Amelio was not sure about giving Jobs entry into the board of Apple because of the history of 1977-85. You could say that Gil Amelio was caught in Jobs’ reality distortion field because later Amelio would realise that Jobs was positioning himself to destroy Amelio as CEO of Apple. Jobs’ return to Apple was fortuitous; if you can merge with a major company then you are effectively be hired by that company. Bill Gates said that Amelio was an idiot for bringing NeXT into Apple, and that Jobs was a salesman without an engineering understanding. An early example of the feathers that Jobs ruffled circa 1997…

How To Save A Dying Tech Company – Make Products Not Profit, Fundamentally:

Do not race to the bottom on prices. Get your user to have an emotional connection with the product. Amelio’s approach was to build a cheap product based on sketches of bolder ideas. Jobs believed in digging into the depth of what a product should do. You need to understand the essence of a product in order to get rid of the parts that are not fundamental. Can you get 1 part to do 4 times as much work? Design was not about surface but design is the fundamental soul of a human-made creation. A good design can be ruined by a bad factory production. Products should be pure and seamless. Do not let the engineers drive design. Apple worked the other way. Jobs found Jonathan Ive to produce the core designs at Apple going forward.

There is an Apple office that Ive’s runs which is built around models for future design to see where the products are heading, and to get a sense of the whole company on one desk. Apple has patented hundreds of devices. They built the modern Apple company around the assumption that design and product trump profits. Together Steve Jobs and Jonathan Ive produced the iMac, iPod, iPhone, iPad, PowerMac 5, iBook.

Skate Where The Puck’s Going, Not Where It’s Been:

“Skate where the pucks going, not where it’s been.” – Wayne Gretzky. Jobs believed that it was his goal to understand what the customer wants before they do. The iMac is about inspiring with a beautiful plastic blue, and it was translucent so that you could see into the machine. The casing would help to give all the components. The simplicity of the plastic shell had to be perfected, and they even studied jelly beans to see how it would be attractive. Some people at Apple wanted to conduct a study to see if the cost of the translucent casing would be justified by focus groups, Steve Jobs said no. iMac should sell for $1200, and produce an all in one consumer appliance. iMac did not include the floppy disk drive but it was ahead of its time. iMac was friendly so much so that there was a handle on the top of the iMac to actually pick it up. Jobs almost started crying because the iMac had a tray instead of a slot drive. May 1998 was the iMac launching. In 2001, iMac was changed to have a sunflower type design.

The Loser Now Will Be Soon To Win:

Jobs believed Amelio was a bozo. Gil Amelio did not actually present or sell himself particularly well, and he famously bombed on stage at MacWorld in 1996. That particular presentation was very poor and unplanned. Once back inside Apple, Jobs was too honest and spoke with one of the board members Willard who asked Jobs what he thought about Amelio. Jobs said that Amelio was not in the right job, and then added that Gil Amelio was the worst CEO ever. Famously, Gil Amelio had explained to a journalist that “Apple is like a ship, that ship is loaded with treasure, but there’s a hole in the ship. And my job is to get everyone to row in the same direction.” That lack of logic in this statement spoke to Amelio’s lack of efficiency as a leader.

Ellison tried to call for the drafting of Steve Jobs as CEO of Apple. When Amelio confronted Jobs about the possible takeover, Jobs denied any of it but refused to declare that he was not positioning himself for a takeover. Jobs loved to dish out flattery with Amelio, meanwhile Jobs was busy turning the board against Amelio, and Apple’s dire situation financially. People were leaving Apple, and thinking of leaving Apple which is never good when your people are an important asset. Amelio was fired because he was incompetent, but once Jobs was offered the CEO job, Steve Jobs moved into the interim CEO because he was still running Pixar. After years in the wilderness, Jobs was back at the top of Apple. The first thing he did there was to commit a subtle by significant vindictive act: Jobs hated the Newton personal assistant because you needed a stylus and also because the Newton was one major innovation of John Scully’s. Scully was the man who kicked Jobs out of Apple in 1985. Jobs cancelled the Newton.

The Internet Is Made For Music:

Napster, Limewire, and other music file sharing websites allowed the illegal downloading of music on a massive scale, and a precipitous decline in sales of traditional distribution platforms for music which began dropping by 9% in 1998. The executives at the music companies were desperate to agree on a common standard for copy-right protection. If the music industry could agree to the coding of music across the industry, they might be able to get a head of the Peer-to-Peers. Sony and Universal came up with Press-Play. EMI had their own system alternative, each had a subscription based system where you would rent the music, and the two competing solutions would not license each other’s songs. The interfaces were clunky, and the services were terrible, the record companies did not get how to solve the problem. Warner/Sony wanted to close a deal with Jobs, largely because Warner/Sony did not know what to do. Steve Jobs was opposed to the theft of creative products even though he bootlegged Bob Dylan in the 1970s. If people copied Apple software, there would be no incentive for new music other than from the passion of musicians.

Creative companies never get started, and it’s wrong to steal, and it hurts your own character according to Jobs. iTunes was the alternative to the brain-dead services, iTunes was the legal alternative to P2P where everyone wins: a) users would no longer steal, b) record companies generate revenue, c) artists get paid, and d) Apple disrupts the music industry. Steve Jobs had a tough pitch with record companies because of the pricing model, but he used the fact that Apple was still only 5% of the computer market to convince them that such a deal was not have a major impact oo their bottomline. So if iTunes was destructive, it would not be quite so too damaging. Apple was a closed system, and so these Record companies could use Apple as means of controlling the MP3s.

Record companies got $0.77 of the $0.99. People wanted to own music, not rent, or subscribe to it. The subscription model did not make as much sense. Record companies had made a lot of money by having artists produce two or three good songs with 10 fillers, the iTunes store would allow users to select only the songs they liked, further upsetting Record companies. Steve Jobs’ response was that piracy had already deconstructed the album. He closed deals across the music industry which was astounding. Jobs bridged the gap between technology and art.

Brand Yourself Differently:

Think Different – the new slogan was not perfectly grammatical if you think about what you are trying to say: it is most appropriately think differently. Steve Jobs explained that Apple’s future in 1997 was to think differently. The craziness of Apple’s customer base was that they had a sense of creativity and uniqueness that others did not. Steve Jobs argued that Apple was distinctive as a brand, and they formulated a brand image campaign to celebrate what creative people could do with their Apple computers. The Think Different campaign was about reminding themselves about who they were. Here’s to the crazy ones, who think differently. Their television commercial was historic, as well as the posters for Think Different. Jobs believed in the renegade brand that people would choose because it made them feel proud and exclusive.

Create Complimentary Product Offerings Without a Lead Loss Generator:

Sales of the iPod would drive sales of the iMac, and vice versa. They got a triple bang for the buck in advertising by invigorating the Apple, Mac, and iPod. Steve Jobs completely dominated the market for music players by putting all of his advertising spending on the Mac into the iPod. So the iPod advertised more aggressively at about 100 times more spend, than the closest competitor. The beautiful iPod cost $399, some people said that iPod stood for “idiots price our devices.” The iPod was about intersection between technology & arts, software & music. 

Don’t Be Afraid To Cannibalize Yourself Because If You Don’t Others Will:

When iTunes was released, Microsoft managers realized that they needed to create direct user value with an end to end service. Gates felt like an idiot once again, and Microsoft wanted to move forward although it was caught flat footed by Apple. So Microsoft tried to copy iTunes. When Apple created the compatible iPod, and iTunes systems for other PCs it meant that PC users would not have to buy Macs to use the iPod. Steve Jobs did not want to put iTunes on the PC. The cannibalization of not selling Macs was out weighed by the potential iPod sales. Once iPods went PC, Apple was on its way to be extremely extremely lucrative. Jobs said that iTunes for Windows was the best application for PCs ever. When Microsoft came up with Zune, it was obvious that they did not care about the music or the product. Steve Jobs believed that an iPhone might cannibalize sales for Mac, but it would not deter Jobs. When the inventor of the Walkman tried to compete against Apple, they were held back by cannibalization because Sony had a music department etc etc. In 2004, the iPod Mini was the next innovation which helped eliminated the portable music player competitions. Apple’s market share in the portable music player industry went from 35% to 75% in 18 months. The iPod Shuffle also helped grow it further because people like to be surprised. Jobs decided that they should get rid of the screen, you don’t need to navigate all you needed was to skip over the songs you heard.

Focus On What People Really Want…1,000 Songs:

 Jobs could not include the first CD burners in the iMac because he hated trays. The mark of an innovative company is that it knows how to leapfrog when it finds itself behind in the development of new innovation. Napster exploded in growth, the number of blank CDs sales also increased massively in 1999, and Jobs worked hard to catch-up. Steve Jobs wanted to make music management easy. You can latterly drag, and burn a CD. Jobs bought a company called SoundJam, and instead of an interface to see your songs, Jobs wanted a simple search box. In 2001, iTunes was free to all Mac users. The next step was to create a portable player which was the simple interface. Getting all the record companies alongside iTunes would be the complicated part. By the fall of 2000, Apple was working towards this goal.

Fidel and Rubenstein clashed over the iPod because Fidel was charismatic, and wanted to claim control, and he had already been shopping around other companies to pitch his idea of a portable software based device which later became the iPod. They found small company to help them with the Mp3 technology. Steve Jobs wanted white on everything for the iPod, the purity of the white headphones became iconic. Steve Jobs pushed the idea of their iconic advertising. Apple’s whole history was making the software, and hardware together so the iPod made strategic sense. Gates said it was great, too bad it was only for Macs… By 2007 iPod was half of Apple’s revenues.

Steve Jobs Said that Google’s ‘Don’t Be Evil Mantra’ Is *Bullshit*:

Android’s touch screen features was clearly stolen from the iPhone. They had a grid app list much like the iPhone. The swipe to open, pinch to expand, these were all Apple ideas that Google was implementing. Google was engaged in grand theft as far as Steve Jobs was concerned. Jobs went to Google, and shouted at everyone there. Jobs wanted Android to stop stealing their ideas. The open source code approach was valuable because Google was able to sell their platform to multiple mobile phone providers where Apple had more control. Nonetheless the Apple App market is much larger than the Google one to this day.

Get Yourself Into The Cloud & A Castle:

Apple’s MobileMe was a failure because it did not sync data. It was expensive but iCloud was the future. This was not a new idea. In 1997, Steve Jobs explained that at NeXT he had all of his data on the server. The idea is that you won’t have to back up your computer by downloading into the iCloud. All you stuff is on the server, Jobs was talking about this idea as early as 1997. The concept that everything would work simply has been applied to cloud computing. Microsoft said that CloudPower would allow individuals to access their content wherever they are but this opens up the door to licensing agreements etc. In a final twists, the Apple Campus is under construction and will be completed in 2015. It is similar to Google HQ. Copied?

Don’t Fear Changes In Industry & Anticipate Competitive Market Disruption:

The digital camera industry was destroyed by cellphones, and Steve Jobs knew that in order to stay ahead of the wave, they would have to cover the cellphone market as well. The iPhone was born out of a concern that Nokia et al would eat Apple’s lunch by creating mobile photos that could easily play music, just as Nokia et al had crushed Kodak. Motorola was a stupid company to Jobs because the Rokr was a joke. Jobs realized that the iPod wheel was not going to dial phone numbers. Jobs was working on the iPad with the touch screen system before the birth of the iPhone. The ability to process multiple touch items was Steve Jobs’ ideas. They wanted to transfer the track pad to the computer screen. Ive never made a demonstration with other people because he know Jobs would shoot it down. The tablet development was put on hold, and shifted to the iPhone screen. Jobs split the multi touch track pads and wheel based iPhone plans. The case could not be opened, and Apple made sure that people could not access the iPhone. The iPhone was three products bundled into one: 1) internet interface, 2) mobile phone, and 3) touch controls. The iPhone was a massively successful product even though it was the most expensive phone in the world $500. Ballmer said the iPhone sucked because business people want a keyboard. Apple sold 90 million phones within months.

Create An Inventory Management System & Build Stores That Work:

Everything you do incorrectly is in order to get it right. If something isn’t right you can’t fix it later. Steve Jobs wanted to control the customer experience, which included the experience of creating wood, stone, steel, and glass an Apple store. Mega chains were where the salesman did not care about Apple because other products were available. Jobs was impressed by the Gap store business, and Jobs hired Drexler from Gap to build a prototype of the store. Tim Cook, reduced key suppliers from 120 to 24, forced many to move closed to Apple’s plants. He helped save Apple a great deal of money. Apple stores were strategically placed in Covent Garden London, or in New York. Sales are quickly tabulated using Oracle technology every 4 minutes so that they have a lean manufacturing production line, and the building of products can respond to market demand quickly.

Converge Old Devices Into 1 New Device:

Is there room for something in the middle of the iPhone and PC, Jobs asked in 2010? The iPad allows people to bring technologies together. The iPad was not sold as well as the iPhone. The name iPad was ridiculed as a women’s hygiene product. Gates still believed that it’s a nice reader but didn’t like the iPad. Further divergence in views suggests that Gates believed in a stylus while Jobs said we already have 10 stylus’. There were 800 emails in Steve Jobs’ inbox. The iPad had the limitation that it was for consumers but does not facilitate creation. The iPad arguably mutes the user turning you back into a passive observer. The question about iPad was whether it should be closed. Google’s Android was an open platform that could be used openly. The iPad was the clearest test of the closed-system model versus the open-system model. In the end, iPad was the most successful consumer product launch in history with 1 million sold in the first month. Jobs was in the process of changing the print industry, he closed deals like he did with the music industry. Apple would take a 30% take of the subscriptions sold, and Apple would have all of their purchase information which they would use later on. The problem was the publishing industry did not want the subscription base to be controlled by Apple since Apple would then change the prices. Steve Jobs believed that the paper textbook was going to be a industry ripe for digital destruction, and created digital versions of the products. The Chinese employees are paid $2.00 per day. It takes 5 days, and 3500 hands to produce 1 iPad in Foxconn China.

Do Not Ignore Medical Diagnoses:

When Jobs was diagnosed with cancer, he did not rush to have surgery to remove the tumour found in his pancreas. Instead, he tried to see if other treatments would work. Why was he hesitant? Partly because he had difficulty with the idea of opening up his body. He went under herbal remedies and psychic treatments as a result of his quibbling. As a response to his psychological concerns, Steve Jobs tried to cure himself in strange ways: reality is unforgiving. Once again, he was able to filter out the world, and ignore stuff that he does not want to confront. Jobs had been rewarded for willing things away, but in July 2004, the cancer had spread. Finally, he underwent surgery in 2004 but a less radical surgery.

The cancer had spread into the liver. Had doctors operated 9 months earlier they would have possibly arrested it. When he had a liver transplant in 2009 by going to another state and by having a multiple listing, the liver Jobs received was the product of a car accident that killed a 25 year old. Steve Jobs lied about his condition throughout the last years of his life by calling it a hormone imbalance. The privacy rights of the CEO had to be weighed, but Jobs also embodied his company more than most CEOs so the impact of negative news regarding his health could have an impact on the stock.

Make Peace With Your Old Enemies:

Microsoft had stolen the interface developed by Apple with multiple clip windows etc. IN 1997 Jobs announced that the only way forward was to make a deal with Bill Gates and Microsoft. In 2007, Bill Gates and Steve Jobs got together to talk about technology. It is an EPIC discussion.

Follow Your Heart:

there is no reason to not follow your heart, and gain meaning because you will be dead one day. Don’t live someone else’s dream. Stay hungry, stay foolish. The Stanford University commencement address is considered one of the greatest commencement ever made.Jobs did not believe that people should be materialistic but should seek to be valuable.

Steve Jobs Was A Brilliant Jerk

From the creator of Going Clear, Steve Jobs: The Man In The Machine is about the now infamous career flaws of one of the most successfull entrepreneurs in American history. It looks like a good rehashing of memories from 2012 when everyone you knew + your grandma read the Isaacson’s biography.  I’m certain Kutcher and the script writers of the disappointing Jobs film are going to have a front row seat as they didn’t actually read the Isaacson biography….’cause that film sucked badly.

Steve Jobs:
  • a) abandoned his own daughter and girlfriend,
  • b) cheated Wozniak out of a bonus at Atari,
  • c) verbally assaulted the LISA team and created intense competition between teams,
  • d) screamed at Macintosh developers regularly,
  • e) cried like a baby when the iMac CD tray was a tray not a slot,
  • f) fired employees with retroactive consequences to their salary,
  • g) parked his car in the handicap spot,
  • h) sped down the highway regularly,
  • i) discovered his Syrian father (who also abandoned him) was the owner of the restaurant chain he frequented regularly but never came by to say “hi”,
  • j) tried to instigate a coup against foolish management and lost…
  • k) cried whenever someone disagreed with him,
  • l) attacked creative ideas for being idiotic then within a week apprioriated them as his own,
  • m) called his co-workers idiots and bozos whenever they fell short of his goals,
  • n) his colleagues had to hide a disc drive developer in the Macintosh supply closet (whenever Jobs visited) in order to prevent Jobs from discovering a parallel disc drive solution was being built which ultimately saved Jobs from disaster as his solution failed,
  • o) he refused to donate to any charity ever,
  • p) built and painted an expensive factory at NExT meanwhile the product completely bombed,
  • q) refused to give shares to one of his earliest Apple colleagues even though the guy put in many hours into the project and begged Jobs for a small part of the equity,
  • r) made his step-mom answer early customer service calls to Apple without pay (laugh out loud)….
  • s) took the tv away from his step-dad who wanted to watch football in order to program Apple’s……
  • t) declared war on IBM as a means of galvanising his company,
  • u) claimed Microsoft was stealing Apple’s ideas when both actually stole from Xerox PARC,
  • v) tried to destroy Adobe and any organisation that expected fair treatment…

This list is not exhaustive & what can we learn from this list, right?

This is an analysis based on Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson and other sources of research. Enjoy.