Walter Isaacson’s ‘Steve Jobs’ – A Sneak Peek

By | October 27, 2011

Walter Isaacson is a former managing editor at Time and a former CEO at CNN who has written biographies of noted American scientists and politicians Henry Kissinger and Benjamin Franklin. Quite peculiar is the decision of Jobs to have a journalist to write his biography as he himself puts it: ‘You’re a journalist and that’s why I chose you’!

The book ‘Steve Jobs’ is based on 40 interviews with Jobs himself and 100 other people who influenced his life in someway or other. The book is creating waves in the tech industry as it projects a different image of Jobs – as one who was adamant, maverick and hard-mouthed. During it’s commencement, in late 2009, Isaacson had indicated Jobs that, it’s gonna be a tough task for him to write the book as he had to interview the people whom Jobs disliked.

The book’s release is a perfect timing but it wouldn’t be received well by a few prominent people in the tech industry and also by the first man of the United States. It would be embarrassing for them once they get to know what Steve Jobs thought of them.

Steve Jobs had told that Barack Obama, the US President always speaks offensively and predicted that this would be his first and last tenure as president. He also felt the need for a teacher’s union in America and that school hours must be extended. He, however, criticized the existence of summer schools.

Referring to Microsoft’s Chairman Bill Gates, he had said that ‘he never invented anything’ and that’s why he feels comfortable with his philanthropic life. He criticized Microsoft for it’s plagiarism and that it always gained success from other people’s work.  On Eric Schmidt, who was a former Apple board member, he had the same view as that of Gates but had lauded Larry Page, Google’s co-founder, for his innovativeness. Steve Jobs had credited Apple’s Chief Designer Jonathan Ive as his ‘spiritual partner’ and that he always relied on him. He had added that, once he had laid down an idea, Ive would just bring the perfect design for him.

Jobs had referred to Steve Ballmer, the current CEO of Microsoft as a ‘sales executive’ and that ‘CEO is a post too much to handle for a guy like Ballmer’. Jobs felt Tim Cook as ‘the right successor’ for his job as ‘he had been a great asset to Apple so far’. But, the book is popular not just because of these things as Jobs had an aversion towards Google’s Android OS. He had alleged it to be a copied product and that Google profited from Apple’s idea and ‘vowed’ to fight against Android till his last breath.

When asked by Isaacson whether he will read the book soon after it’s release, Jobs joked that ‘it would make him go mad and he will read the after a 2-3 month gap, if he’s still up and running’. There’s no doubt this book will be a interesting and fact-filled yet controversial.

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