What I have learned about Steve Jobs from the Walter Isaacson book and 2015 movie

If you have ever owned or seen an Apple product, you probably know who Steve Jobs is.

Steven Paul Jobs 24.02.1955–05.10.2011

He was Apple’s CEO and product presenter, he never actually built or wrote any code for any of the products that the company — he co-founded in his parent’s garage — had released but he knew how they should work and how they should look which made him a well-respected visionary.

I am over halfway through reading his biography written by Walter Isaacson and have seen the 2015 movie based on the same book. After, I realised there is a lot to the Apple man than we knew.

I realised:

  • He was a very confusing person: In the book, many people that knew Steve mentioned his constant mood swings which today, he would most likely be diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder. One minute, he would raise someones spirits and then the next minute, he would belittle them in front of everyone.
  • He was very good at changing peoples minds/persuading people: Whenever a close friend or employee described Steve, most of them mentioned Reality Distortion Field. Steve was very good at convincing people to do what they thought seemed impossible, he mostly did this when he was working on the Macintosh.
  • He was an absent Father at the beginning: When his daughter, Lisa, was born in 1978, Steve refused to take responsibility and accept/admit he was her Father. He was criticised by many at the time because shortly after she was born, Apple released a computer called the “Lisa” in 1983 and when questioned if it was after his alleged daughter, he denied it and claimed it stood for “Local Integrated Software Architecture” but later in the book,he admitted it was obviously named after his daughter. In the movie, when Lisa told Joanna (portrayed by Kate Winslet) her Father named a computer after him, Steve (portrayed by Michael Fassbender) coldheardedly told her it was just a coincident and wasn’t named after her. Brokenhearted, he asks if she was named after a computer and Steve tells her no one was named after anyone.
A scene from the 2015 movie — Steve watching Lisa use the Macintosh
  • He was a great leader: As I mentioned before, he was great at convincing people to complete tasks they all thought were impossible in such a short period of time. He took “No” for an answer. In the book, it was said that when a programmer would show Steve code they had worked on for a long time — days even weeks — Steve would, without looking at it, refuse to accept it and tell them to do it again. When someone outside of Apple asked why, Steve answered because he knew they could do better which was true.

I know some of these points are negative but from reading the book as far as I have and watching the 2015 movie, this is what I have learned about Steve Jobs.

My favourite Steve Jobs quote

Without Steve, the computer, music and mobile phone industries wouldn’t be where they are now. Steve pushed and achieved a lot of things that many said were impossible because he believed in his vision. Sure, there were a lot of failures (Apple III, Apple Lisa, etc.) but he didn’t let that stop him from “putting a dent in the universe” and changing the world of technology forever.

Thank you for reading my article about Steve Jobs, just to be clear, I do not dislike Steve, I respect him as a visionary and he has achieved what no one else could have with the limited technology he had.

See you next time,