Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson

steve jobs biography by walter-isaacson

steve jobs biography by walter-isaacsonThis book does not really need much introduction. It is the official biography that Steve Jobs commissioned himself. He figured quite rightly a tonne of people would write about him without ever having a clue so it was in his interest to get the story out accurately. It is a hefty book – one of my Xmas presents. Having only read books on my Kindle for the last year, going back to turning pages was kind of nice but ultimately awkward and reminded me how much better the reading experience is on a device like the Kindle (or ipad for the apple fanboys).

Most people know a bit about Steve, or certainly about the mega brand Apple has become. This year it managed to reach the highest market cap in the world, and in an era of economic uncertainty, hit record profits and sales. This continued despite the company’s founder and figurehead suffering with pancreatic cancer and eventually succumbing. The book is big as already mentioned, because it has so much detail in there. It is all fascinating stuff and really drills down into the personality of such an iconic figure – half genius, half arrogant dickhead. His determination and keen focus on minimalism have to be admired. There is no denying he has had a massive influence on our World today. This guy made Pixar a success too. There is pretty much no film studio in the World that has had the same run of success with big blockbuster movies. When you consider the level of influence on the movie industry through Pixar, personal computing with the iMac, then portable music devices with the iPod, the smart phones with the iPhone, and tablet computers with the iPad. Not to mention the retail stores which are some of the most profitable shop floors in the world.

For techies there is some interesting thoughts regarding the different schools of thought where hardware and software should all be open, hackable and shared, vs closed and tightly integrated. It comes down to personal preference.

Even after reading the book, and genuinely liking many of the apple products (the macbook air and macbook pro especially) I’m not sure I agree enough to go all Apple.

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