Steve Stories February 16, 2015

jony-ive-profile

The New Yorker has published an extensive profile on Jony Ive, Apple’s Senior Vice President of Design. Many newspapers have written up articles on Ive in recent years, but this latest account by Ian Parker is by far the most detailed and (arguably) the most interesting, revealing new anecdotes and tidbits on Apple’s latest products in the process.

The story tracks how Jony arrived at Apple back in the late 90’s, how his relationship with Jobs developed over that period, and how he is adapting to ‘leading’ design in post-Jobs Apple. The piece includes some new details about how the Watch project and the newest iPhones formed, as well as incorporating quotes from Tim Cook, Bob Mansfield, and others.

Read on for some select excerpts from The New Yorker’s story.

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Steve Stories August 5, 2014

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Fortune’s Philip Elmer-DeWitt says that even at an international conference of 6,000 architects, he couldn’t find a single one who liked the spaceship design of Apple’s new campus building. Though if the single quote given is representative of the quality of the critiques, this may not be saying much.

“Does it have to be a spaceship?” asked an official at the American Institute of Architects.

Pixar president Ed Catmull wrote in his book Creativity Inc that they are failing to understand a key feature of the building, derived from a lesson Steve Jobs learned when leading the design of Pixar’s headquarters …

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Steve Stories May 23, 2014

Think Different ad man recalls the truth behind Steve Jobs narrating The Crazy Ones ad: “a horrible idea”

If you watched the movie Jobs, you may recall Steve recording the words to the “Here’s to the crazy ones” ad, looking at the camera and asking “Is that ok?”. The reality, says Ken Segall, the creative director behind Apple’s famous Think Different campaign, was rather different. Speaking in an interview with MacWorld, he said:

Imagine you’re in this lonely, empty auditorium, he’s just finished that reading, and the words are just ringing in the air, and then their was a great pause, and he said: ‘That’s it, I’m out of here. This is a horrible idea,’ and he stormed off.

While Jobs loved the words, he thought it was a terrible idea to narrate them personally – he thought everyone would think him an egomaniac and they wouldn’t hear the message. Segall says that things didn’t begin well.

He was late and he said ‘I’m really busy today I don’t have time for this, I don’t like the idea, but I’ll give you one read and then I’m out of here’. So he did it.

In the end, Jobs got his way: the ad that was actually aired was narrated by Richard Dreyfuss – but it was the Jobs version that went viral after the death of Apple’s co-founder.

Via Fortune

Steve Stories April 15, 2013

Laurene Powell Jobs talks about husband’s legacy, immigration reform

A nice way to look at the legacy all around.

Steve Stories December 10, 2012

160 Mac minis crammed into custom 2′ x 2′ datacenter rack

Hackaday.com pointed us to this custom rack sporting 160 Mac Minis that was originally posted by Steve’s blog. There isn’t a whole lot of information about where exactly the rack is being used, but Steve said the goal was to replace Xserve by coming up “with a way to get the same or better CPU core density into a standard 2′ by 2′ datacenter rack.”  The custom 160 Mac mini rack provided him with 640 cores—compared to his 40 Xserve setup at 320 cores per rack. However, there were many considerations to make, i.e., custom shelving, managing the exhaust of the minis, cooling, “Y” power cable splitters, etc., and Steve walked through the solution for each on his blog.

I have introduced these machines to the production environment, they run great…  I had to add a 10Gb SFP+ Ethernet card to the XServe, and now I can NetBoot all 160 machines at the same time.. It works so well that all of the machines are back up and running within 45 seconds….  That’s fast for a NetBoot..  Here are some final pics of the cabinet.

Steve Stories October 25, 2012

Ron Johnson’s leadership lessons from Apple: No shortcuts and shield team from tough times

Fortune is asking 21 luminaries the best advice they ever got. One of them is Apple’s former Senior Vice President of Retail Ron Johnson:

-Ron Johnson (CEO of J.C. Penney) on leadership lessons from Apple and how he’s applying them to his new position: “I remember when Apple went through a tough period. I didn’t feel the pain as much as Steve [Jobs] did. When you are in the leadership position, the tough times can be much more difficult, because your job is really to shield your team through that, to keep them from taking shortcuts. We are building J.C. Penney for the next century. It’s not about the quarter or the year.”

Steve Stories October 5, 2012

Tim Cook just posted the above letter on Apple’s website to reminisce and pay homage to the company’s late cofounder, Steve Jobs.

Today is the one-year anniversary of Jobs’ passing, so Apple updated its homepage early this morning with a video montage to remember his life and death. The nearly two-minute video presents a slideshow of Jobs throughout his career and it softly ends with “Remembering Steve”.

Apple unveiled the iPhone 4S on Oct. 4, 2011, but one seat left open for Jobs at the packed event notably sat empty. The next day, Jobs died. After he passed, at just 56 years old, news of his death flooded the Internet, TV, newspapers, and homes. Millions of people immediately emailed Apple, and the company subsequently created a “Remembering Steve” page to display a massive compilation of condolences that poured in from around the world.

The tribute letter from Apple’s current CEO appears upon completion of the “Remembering Steve” video. In the message, Cook describes Jobs’ death as a “sad and difficult time”. The executive hopes, however, that everyone will “reflect on [Jobs’] extraordinary life and the many ways he made the world a better place.” A screenshot of Cook’s entire letter is above, while a text version is available after the break.

Apple has become the most valuable company in the world during the last year, and it is hard not to give respect to the man whose imagination and innovation helped push the company to record-breaking heights.

A slight variation of the above went to employees in a company email:

Team,  

Steve's passing one year ago today was a sad and difficult time for all of us. I hope that today everyone will reflect on his extraordinary life and the many ways he made the world a better place.    As you and I know firsthand, one of the greatest gifts Steve gave to the world is Apple. No company has ever inspired such creativity or set such high standards for itself. Our values originated from Steve and his spirit will forever be the foundation of Apple. We share the great privilege and responsibility of carrying his legacy into the future.  I'm incredibly proud of the work we are doing, delivering products that our customers love and dreaming up new ones that will delight them down the road. Thank you for dedicating your talents and so much of your lives to Apple. It's a wonderful tribute to Steve's memory and everything he stood for.  

Tim

The video and screenshot gallery of the homepage is below: expand full story

Steve Stories August 7, 2012

We have brought you updates on the Apple vs. Samsung trial all week with yesterday’s highlight being a testimony from Apple’s expert design witness, former President of the Industrial Designers Society of America Peter Bressler. Last week, we told you Apple Senior Vice President of iOS Software Scott Forstall testified in the case, but Network World discovered some interesting bits today from Forstall’s deposition from a few months ago. While noting the three key multi-touch patents involved in the case (381′ related to “rubber banding,” ‘915 related to determining one-finger scroll vs. multi-touch gestures, and ‘163 related to double tap to zoom), Network World posted excerpts from Forstall’s highly redacted deposition. The SVP appears to have claimed the now-late CEO Steve Jobs once told Samsung not to copy or steal the inertial scrolling, rubber band invention:

Returning to the Forstall’s deposition, Apple’s iOS guru is asked about discussions Steve Jobs seemingly had with Samsung over the rubber banding patent…Forstall responded:

I don’t remember specifics. I think it was just one of the things that Steve said, here’s something we invented. Don’t – don’t copy it. Don’t steal it….Rubber banding is one of the sort of key things for the fluidity of the iPhone and – and all of iOS, and so I know it was one of the ones that Steve really cared about… I actually think that Android had not done rubber banding at some point and it was actually added later. So they actually went form sort of, you know, not yet copying and infringing to – to choosing to copy, which is sad and distasteful…

Regarding whether the feature was discussed in subsequent meetings with Samsung:

But I can’t give you a specific recollection of – of Steve, you know, going over rubber banding with – with them in those meetings or not… I expect it came up, because it’s one of the key things we talked – you know, he and I talked about, but I don’t know if it came up there.

It is unclear which meetings Forstall is referring to due to the large amount of redactions in the documents, but Network World noted that court documents revealed previously that Apple offered to license Samsung patent ‘381 in November 2010. Forstall also described meetings Jobs had with Samsung when questioned about iOS icon designs:

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Steve Stories August 3, 2012

image Samsung cia CNET

Going against his claim that a 7-inch tablet would not work (seen in a video below), and that Apple would not go into the 7-inch market, Steve Jobs seemed receptive to the thought of a 7-inch iPad according to an email with Eddy Cue. The Verge, which is currently in the courtroom where Scott Forstall testified, reported

Wow. Forstall is shown a 2011 email from Eddy Cue, in which Cue forwarded an article that a journalist wrote about dumping the iPad after using a Galaxy Tab. Cue writes “Having used a Samsung Galaxy [Tab], i tend to agree with many of the comments below… I believe there will be a 7-inch market and we should do one. I expressed this to Steve several times since Thanksgiving and he seemed very receptive the last time.”

https://twitter.com/iansherr/status/231497155028856832

After months of rumors, the 7-inch iPad is believed to be announced at a media event on Sept. 12 along with the new iPhone. Several other publications confirmed the initial report shortly after.

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Steve Stories May 31, 2012

Atari founder on Steve Jobs: Apple culture came from Atari

TUAW interviewed one of only a few people to ever hire Steve Jobs, the founder of Atari Nolan Bushnell. As you might expect, he is working on a few iOS projects, and he is particularly interested in augmented reality. These paragraphs stand out:

“He basically lived just below me in Woodside for many, many years, before he moved down to Palo Alto, and he’d just walk up the hill to my house and we’d go on and bullshit about stuff. We kept in contact — I’m writing a book right now called ‘Finding the Next Steve Jobs,’ because I was one of the few people that ever gave him a job.”

Bushnell says even at that early point in his career, Steve stood out. “The thing that people miss about Steve is that Steve was very, very driven and very passionate. He was an enthusiastic individual about everything. He had one speed and it was full blast,” says Bushnell. Some of the qualities Jobs is now known for were some of the reasons he first was able to join on at Atari back in the early ’70s. “We looked at what people did in their spare time, how diverse they were. We never looked at grades, college degrees. One of the best engineers at Atari never graduated from high school, and he was one of the prime architects for the 2600.”

Bushnell says that attitude at Atari definitely shaped Apple as a company later on. “We were focused on merit. And the fact that we can go to work in tennis shoes and a t-shirt started at Atari and it was taken to Apple. Because we said this is a meritocracy, we don’t care where you go to school, when you come to work, we don’t care if you come to work, we don’t care where you are we you are at work. You get the job done, we’re happy.”

Interesting to think that some of Apple’s culture is derived from Jobs’ days at Atari. The book should be interesting.

Steve Stories April 5, 2012

Yesterday, as part of a wider interview with Larry Page, Bloomberg quoted Google’s CEO as saying:

I think the Android differences were actually for show. I had a relationship with Steve. I wouldn’t say I spent a lot of time with him over the years, but I saw him periodically. Curiously enough, actually, he requested that meeting. He sent me an e-mail and said: “Hey, you want to get together and chat?” I said, “Sure, I’ll come over.” And we had a very nice talk. We always did when we had a discussion generally….I think that [Anger at Android] served their interests. For a lot of companies, it’s useful for them to feel like they have an obvious competitor and to rally around that. I personally believe that it’s better to shoot higher. You don’t want to be looking at your competitors. You want to be looking at what’s possible and how to make the world better.

However, Page likely was not present for the behind-the-scenes remarks from the former Apple CEO. Jobs probably put on a more distinguished game face, especially in the last meeting the two had when Jobs was very ill. In addition, Jobs’ anger was more than likely focused on former Apple board member and then previous Google CEO Eric Schmidt.

Biographer Walter Isaacson was present behind-the-scenes with Jobs, and last night he disputed Page’s assertion that Jobs’ anger was “for show”:

Isaacson continued: “It’s almost copied verbatim by Android. And then they licence it around promiscuously. And then Android starts surpassing Apple in market share, and this totally infuriated him. It wasn’t a matter of money. He said: ‘You can’t pay me off, I’m here to destroy you’.”

As for what will happen now that Jobs isn’t around to go ‘thermonuclear’ on Google, Isaacson thinks that Apple CEO Tim Cook will handle things differently. “Tim Cook will settle that lawsuit”, Isaacson added.

In the book, Isaacson quoted Jobs as saying: expand full story

Steve Stories February 22, 2012

Today The Beatles announced the band’s 27 United States and United Kingdom No. 1 hits are available as ringtones exclusively through iTunes (iTunes Link). The 30-second ringtones are downloadable now through iTunes on your iOS device and include hits such as “Can’t Buy Me Love,” “All You Need Is Love,” “Yesterday,” “Eleanor Rigby,” and 23 others. A full list of all 27 ringtones is after the break. If Steve were alive, these would undoubtedly be his ringtones of choice for his iPhone.

Jobs’ love for The Beatles is documented in Walter Isaacson’s Steve Jobs biography where we learned Jobs kept seven different albums from the band on his iPad. He even compared his creative process and business model to The Beatles describing the total being “greater than the sum of the parts.” That is probably a big part of the reason Apple fought so hard to ultimately secure exclusive rights to the band’s music that has lasted since Nov. 2010. expand full story

Steve Stories February 12, 2012

outside US, click here

The Recording Academy announced in December that Steve Jobs would be honored with the Trustees Award for “outstanding contributions to the industry in a nonperforming capacity.”

Eddy Cue accepted the honorary Grammy (via Macrumors) for Jobs last night:

On behalf of Steve’s wife, Laurene, his children, and everyone at Apple, I’d like to thank you for honoring Steve with the Trustees Grammy Award. Steve was a visionary, a mentor, and a very close friend. I had the incredible honor of working with him for the last fifteen years.

Accepting this award means so much to me because music meant so much to him. He told us that music shaped his life…it made him who he was. Everyone that knows Steve knows the profound impact that artists like Bob Dylan and The Beatles had on him.

Steve was focused on bringing music to everyone in innovative ways. We talked about it every single day. When he introduced the iPod in 2001, people asked “Why is Apple making a music player?” His answer was simple: “We love music, and it’s always good to do something you love.”

His family and I know that this Grammy would have been very special to him, so I thank you for honoring him today.

YoYo Ma, the world renowned Cellist and friend of Jobs, paid tribute:

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Steve Stories November 22, 2011

The title says it all: “Letters to Steve: Inside the E-mail Inbox of Apple’s Steve Jobs“. A new book penned by CNN technology writer Mark Milian takes a look at the hundreds of emails between Jobs and the people that discovered his publicly available email address. It also includes never-before-published e-mails exclusive to the book, which is available starting today for $2.99 on Amazon.

This book is based on interviews with many of the customers and fans Jobs communicated with. These tales reveal the intricacies of how Jobs portrayed himself as likable and accessible through direct interaction with fans. He handled customer-service inquiries himself and carefully revealed hints about upcoming Apple products, guaranteeing headlines on blogs. However, some of these letters, when analyzed, provide a glimpse into his “reality distortion field,” in which he lobs insults, bends the truth and uses misdirection in order to manipulate anyone on the receiving end.

To accompany the release of the book, CNN is running a three-part series on their website. The first part in that series was published today and details Jobs’ emails related to customer service. Here’s an excerpt where customer  Scott Steckley recalls receiving a phone call from Jobs after emailing him regarding a long wait for his Mac repair:

“Hi Scott, this is Steve,” Steckley recalled hearing from the other end of the phone.

“Steve Jobs?” he asked.

“Yeah,” Jobs said. “I just wanted to apologize for your incredibly long wait. It’s really nobody’s fault. It’s just one of those things.”

“Yeah, I understand.”

Then Jobs explained that he expedited the repair. “I also wanted to thank you for your support of Apple,” Jobs said. “I see how much equipment you own. It really makes my day to see someone who enjoys our products so much and who supports us in the good times and bad.”

This next one has been posted before but is still entertaining: expand full story

Steve Stories November 11, 2011

Jean-Louis Gassée, Apple’s former head of Macintosh product development between 1981-1990, has commented on Apple’s crucial choice of Steve Jobs’s NeXTSTEP as their operating system back in 1996 instead of BeOS, his own creation. Much of NeXTSTEP code would make possible Mac OS X, later adapted for Apple’s mobile devices.

Speaking at a Churchill Club “Steve Jobs’ Legacy” talk event (which is fantastic the whole way through – above) in San Jose yesterday, Gassée remarked (at about an hour in):

Thank god that didn’t happen, because I hated Apple’s management.

BeOS was pretty good, mind you. Positioned as a multimedia platform, BeOS benefited from symmetric multiprocessing, pervasive multithreading, preemptive multitasking and BFS, a custom 64-bit journaling file system known as BFS. It too was developed on the principles of clarity and an uncluttered design.

So why did Apple side with NeXT and acquired the company on February 4, 1997 for  $429 million? In hindsight, even though beOS was pretty good, it was the aquisition of Jobs that was worth to Apple more than the NeXTSTEP software. Or, as Gassée put it, “Jobs’s acquisition of Apple”.

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Steve Stories November 10, 2011

Steve Jobs’s authorized biographer Walter Isaacson and Fortune’s managing editor Andy Serwer on stage at NASDAQ | Photo: Tanner Curtis

In a series of tweetsFortune released some interesting new quotes by Steve Jobs’ authorized biographer Walter Isaacson, who sat down for a “breakfast conversation” with the magazine’s managing editor Andy Serwer.

“It’s good that we’ve made a big deal out of a creative business leader, rather than a celebrity,” Isaacson told Serwer, describing his rock star status as a cultural icon of our time. “There’s an emotional connection Steve Jobs made across the world – like a rock star or a prince”.

“Steve thought the digital hub had moved from the computer to the cloud,” Isaacson said. Over the years, Jobs changed as a manager in a way that “he didn’t become sweeter or kinder, he learned to channel his energy and passion.”

Walter Isaacson signing books in Times Square | Photo: Tanner Curtis

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Steve Stories October 31, 2011

Bill Gates on Jobs bio quotes “he said a lot of very nice things about me and he said a lot of tough things” [Video]

Gates defends himself slightly but seems smart enough (and secure enough) not to handle the tough words head on. “Well, Steve and I worked together, creating the Mac. We had more people on it, did the key software for it.” “So, over the course of the 30 years we worked together, you know, he said […]

Steve Stories October 23, 2011

Former Compaq Chairman, and current Mac user, reveals that Jobs asked Compaq to license the Mac OS in 1999

Among other interesting tidbits on Steve Jobs, technology investment pioneer Ben Rosen reveals that the new Apple CEO invited the then Compaq Chairman and CEO to Silicon Valley in 1999 to inquire about licensing Mac OS X: After we finished with the amenities and reminiscences, we got to the purpose of the meeting. Steve wanted […]

Steve Stories October 20, 2011

Steve Jobs’ harsh words for Bill Gates and his biological father

Before Steve Jobs’ biography drops Monday, many news outlets have already gotten their hands on excerpts from the book. Huffington Post has posted tonight some excerpts from the biography regarding Steve Jobs’ harsh comments on Bill Gates. Steve said: “He’d be a broader guy if he had dropped acid once or gone off to an […]

Steve Stories October 19, 2011

Signage indicates that Apple Stores will close for three hours today (Update: White curtains go up)

As we reported over the weekend and others reported yesterday, Apple Store will be closed for three hours today to view the celebration of Steve Jobs’ life stream coming from AppleHQ. Thanks Danny, Steven Thanks Update: White curtains going up everywhere for privacy. Gallery:

Steve Stories October 11, 2011

Newsweek reporter Dan Lyons recently interviewed Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, and Apple employee #6, Randy Wigginton, following the passing of Steve Jobs. In much of the interviews Wozniak and Wigginton recall early stories of Apple’s garage days that you’ve probably heard versions of, but the men also offer a few interesting insights into their relationships with Steve when Apple was still in its infancy.

During the interview, Wozniak mentions he was asked by Walter Isaacson to talk about Steve for his upcoming biography, but Woz turned down the offer saying, “I didn’t want to talk about Steve. I was afraid he wouldn’t want it.”

When asked if he had ever had a falling out with Jobs, Wozniak remembered a story regarding  him leaving the company in 1985 leading Jobs to confront Wozniak’s new partners:

“The closest thing we ever had to an argument was when I left in 1985 to start a company to build a universal remote control. I went to Frog Design to do the design. Steve dropped in there one day and he saw what they were designing for me and he threw it against the wall and said they could not do any work for me. “Anything you do for Woz, belongs to me.” I was on my own, but I was still friendly with Apple. But Steve had a burst-out there. The people at Frog told me about it. That was the only time there was ever a fight between us, but it wasn’t actually between us. Nobody has ever seen us having an argument.”

Wigginton, who started writing software at Apple when he was 14, thinks back to when Jobs called all of Woz’s friends to ask them to convince Woz to leave HP and start Apple:

“They got along but it was funny. It was more like Woz would put up with Jobs. Jobs would bug him to get stuff done. I’ll never forget the night Jobs called all of Woz’s friends and wanted us to call Woz and tell him to quit HP and start Apple. Woz wanted to stay at HP. So we did it. Until that point, Woz was undecided.”

Wozniak also confirms the legendary story of Jobs cheating him out of money on Atari bonuses: expand full story

Steve Stories October 6, 2011

People reach for Steve Jobs bio in large numbers, author knew illness was terminal (UPDATE: Release moved up to October 24th)

Update: Simon and Schuster have announced that the book will now be released on October 24th. The WSJ reports that Steve Jobs and biographer Walter Isaacson knew that he was dying weeks before the end. According to a person familiar with the matter, Isaacson last interviewed Jobs four weeks ago, right before, and right after […]

Steve Stories October 5, 2011

I had never heard this version until just now. It never aired.

Here’s to you, Steve. You were the Crazy One.

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