Steve Jobs’s Final Product?

As a fan of both Walter Isaacson and of Apple products, I have happily begun reading (along with a few million others) the new Steve Jobs biography. So far I find it to be as compelling as expected. Just a few pages into it, I was struck by this thought: as much as Jobs is known for the iPod, iPhone, iPad, etc.,  I couldn’t help but think that the book itself is in some ways Jobs’s final product.

In the introduction, “How This Book Came To Be,” Isaacson — who, it should be made clear, is a true heavyweight of a non-fiction writer — relates how Jobs approached and repeatedly pursued him to write the book. The terms were clear: Jobs would participate fully, and give others (including those who might be hostile to him) the go-ahead to do the same, and Jobs would have no right to approve or edit material. “He didn’t seek any control over what I wrote, or even ask to read it in advance,” Isaacson writes. That said, it becomes clear that Jobs was infinitely interested in shaping the book. To wit:

His only involvement came when my publisher was choosing the cover art. When he saw an early version of a proposed over treatment, he disliked it so much that he asked to have input in designing a new version. I was both amused and willing, so I readily assented.

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  1. Kilpatrick says:

    I finished it as well, great read. you should definitely check out http://www.ShitSteveJobsSays.tumblr.com great quotes from the book. One of the best compilations I’ve seen online yet!

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    • Joe Dokes says:

      Thanks, the quotes were great, though I now think Steve’s favorite word was, “Shit.”

      The quotes did show some fantastic insight, now I’m sad again.

      Regards,

      Joe Dokes

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  2. Eric M. Jones says:

    “So we went to Atari and said, ‘Hey, we’ve got this amazing thing [the Apple Computer], even built with some of your parts, and what do you think about funding us? Or we’ll give it to you. We just want to do it. Pay our salary, we’ll come work for you.’ And they said, ‘No.’ So then we went to Hewlett-Packard, and they said, ‘Hey, we don’t need you. You haven’t got through college yet.’”

    - Steve Jobs

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  3. Mario Huezo says:

    This is one of the most inspiring books I’ve read in a long time, both for life and business.

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  4. Francis says:

    What keen insight.

    “The greatest tweaker of his generation did not care to be tweaked.” – Malcolm Gladwell noted as well in his Nov 14, 2011 The New Yorker article about the real genius of Steve Jobs.

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  5. A B says:

    Great book because it seems as honest as it could get.

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