Monday, November 07, 2011

Steve Jobs: The Exclusive Biography book review

As I mentioned previously I was sad to hear of Steve Jobs passing. I've read loads on him (1, 2, 3 and 4), so knew a fair deal about him. I had worked on a documentary and knew about some of the Apple stories especially Steve Jobs. Therefore, I was quite interested to read Steve Jobs: The Exclusive Biography.
In reading the story Isaacson gets to talk to Jobs at a pretty sad moment in his life. When he's coping with cancer.
The book does look at Jobs the man and his binary outlook (things are either great or crap). His reality distortion field stories are also covered extensively. One point of interest is the author feels Jobs could often fall pray to the reality distortion field in believing he did not have cancer as he willed it so.
For those who have read about Jobs previously, he really is not an endearing person. In fact he's pretty nasty. But, his ability to resurrect apple, his views on tablet computing and his success at Pixar making him interesting material to read about.
The main part I liked are near the end. When I went to the states I meet Jobs friend Dan Kottke, Apple employee number 12. Kottke had gone to India (one of Jobs biggest influence on him was his interest in Asian culture and religion) with jobs and worked with Jobs but when it came to giving shares to staff Kottke got none. Kottke wasn't bitter (totally), but he was disappointed in his friend not recognising he was there at the beginning of the company. When we meet him, him and Jobs hadn't spoke for years. In the book, when Jobs was dying (2009 or 2010) Kottke spoke to him when buying an Ipad. Jobs stopped and spoke to him. I've heard also Kottke did meet him on other occasions. That alone makes Jobs a more approachable character.
In conclusion. If your an Apple fan, design fan or IT fan get this book. Obviously, Jobs is slightly sugar-coated in the book, but not greatly. So, if you want an insanely great book, get this.


Anonymous said...

I've written alot about Steve Jobs in the last couple months
And I've shed a few tears.

This book, however, was written for you or I. Almost everything Steve did in his life was done for us (I have an iPod, and a white MacBook here, and have been a Mac user since about age 8), so it's alright if in his last great act, he does something a little "selfish." Rather than give the world the secret to his mad crazy genius, he commisions a writer (a complete non-techie) to write a story about the most 'boring' part of Steve's life: His actual personal life.

I know. I know. "Huh? Steve had a personal life?"

Well, not really. And that's why he had this book made. It wasn't made for you or I. It was made for his lovely family, his loyal wife, and children. Decades from now, people will still be writing about the iPod. But right now. Right now. They are the ones who need his genius.

The rest of us can wait.

RIP, Old Friend. Thank you for everything. I know it wasn't easy. Boy you sure put a big ol' dent in the universe.


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