Friday, 4 August 2017

Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson. Book review.

Hello. I haven't read such a compelling book as this in a long time. It's taken a while, it's 530 pages long. When I start a book of this size I often can't do the distance, but there is something about Steve Jobs, and the way it was written, which has taken me right to the end. The book was first published in 2011, this is a later one published in 2013.
I see there are several books about the life of Steve Jobs, and normally I am a bit sceptical of biographies because I wonder how the author could have known so much about the subject. What prompted me to choose this one was that Walter Isaacson is a renowned and well regarded biographer, and his research over two years included over a hundred interviews with everyone that came into contact with Steve.

I made some notes along the way because I found myself being drawn into the complexity of Steve's personality, and how his mind worked. Any psychiatrist trying to unravel what was going on in his head would have their work cut out. He had a belief that reality could be distorted, he had the ability to manipulate people to do what he wanted. For anyone interested in more reading on Reality Distortion Field.

Steve was very creative, he had vision, he was high energy, but could play the victim when it suited. As a boss he was very scary to work for, firing people at a minutes notice, he could twist things around to suit himself. He could put people down and humiliate them, then later they would be friends. He rubbished ideas, then later claimed them as his own.

Steve built Apple Computers from nothing, he did it by sheer bloody mindedness, and a passion to build the best products. By his mid twenties he was a multimillionaire. He was ousted from Apple, but ten years later found a way to get back in, once again his manipulation techniques got him what he wanted.

The man was a genius, he strove for perfection in all that he did, in his work, what he ate, where he lived, everything had to be just right. There were no compromises. I wonder how much further on computers would be now if he had lived longer. He died on October the 5th 2011. I'm glad I read about his fascinating life.

Amazon reviews are here. 

Thanks for popping in, it's almost the weekend, enjoy. We'll catch up soon.
Toodle pip

11 comments:

  1. Thank you for your recommendation Ilona. Have ordered it from my library. Sharon

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  2. Yup, Steve Jobs thought he knew it all. Even how he could self cure his cancer. Jobs thought he knew more than his doctors who told him his cancer was curable BUT Steve being Steve, did the cure his own way and then later died from it. What a sad, sad pity and commentary on a man so gifted, he changed the whole entire world. We will never know what more Jobs had in store for the world because of his useless and could-have-been avoided death.

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  3. Haven't read the book. I tend to believe his negative traits outweighed his positive ones: hard to work for, manipulative, humiliated people, claimed others' ideas to be his own.

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  4. I don't know much about him. However I switched to Apple computers a few years ago, they are amazing and so much easier than windows. The iPad is a truly incredible invention imo.

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  5. Sorry,i dont know anything about him....the first time i saw his name was when i was reading the papers today and saw about his wife on a boat somewhere,but didnt read it all,Debi,Leic,x

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    1. Yes, his wife is on holiday at the moment on the yacht that he never got to go on. He was quite frugal with his money at times, working for a long time with no pay, the board gave him shares in the company. His focus was never about the money, he just wanted to build products that would make people's lives better. His one extravagance was his private plane, he needed it to get around the world to meetings quickly.

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  6. Thank you for the review Ilona. What a clever man and a nasty one too. Guess that to amass such fortune one would have to have a dark side that doesn't care a shxt about people in one's path.

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    1. I think one of the reasons why he lacked empathy for other humans was because he felt rejected by his birth mother who gave him up for adoption. That stayed with him, even to the extent that he rejected his own first daughter for the first ten years of her life. It emotionally scarred him.

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  7. I loved his fashion and dressing philosophy. He always looked great.

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  8. How wonderful it must be to focus on something and go for it-I never can somehow.Sounds a great read x

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  9. I would recommend that you also read "iWoz" about the "other" Apple Steve (Wosniack). Neither of them was in it for the money and money was certainly NOT their measure of success.

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