Featuring a new epilogue read by the author.
From the author of the best-selling biographies of Benjamin Franklin and Albert Einstein, this is the exclusive biography of Steve Jobs.
Based on more than 40 interviews with Jobs conducted over two years - as well as interviews with more than a hundred family members, friends, adversaries, competitors, and colleagues - Walter Isaacson has written a riveting story of the roller-coaster life and searingly intense personality of a creative entrepreneur whose passion for perfection and ferocious drive revolutionized six industries: personal computers, animated movies, music, phones, tablet computing, and digital publishing.
At a time when America is seeking ways to sustain its innovative edge, and when societies around the world are trying to build digital-age economies, Jobs stands as the ultimate icon of inventiveness and applied imagination. He knew that the best way to create value in the 21st century was to connect creativity with technology. He built a company where leaps of the imagination were combined with remarkable feats of engineering.
Although Jobs cooperated with this book, he asked for no control over what was written. He put nothing off-limits. He encouraged the people he knew to speak honestly. And Jobs speaks candidly, sometimes brutally so, about the people he worked with and competed against. His friends, foes, and colleagues provide an unvarnished view of the passions, perfectionism, obsessions, artistry, devilry, and compulsion for control that shaped his approach to business and the innovative products that resulted.
Driven by demons, Jobs could drive those around him to fury and despair. But his personality and products were interrelated, just as Apple's hardware and software tended to be, as if part of an integrated system. His tale is instructive and cautionary, filled with lessons about innovation, character, leadership, and values.
©2011 Walter Isaacson (P)2011 Simon & Schuster
I have never been a Steve Jobs fanatic, however, I did want to find out more about him and his career. I was shocked by how not smoothly his life and career were. A great read!
Learning about Jobs's focus on getting the product right.
Good to great, because it's about greatness in business.
He was excellent. I kept having to remind myself that his was not the voice of Steve Jobs.
The points where my life in business intersected with Jobs's innovations.
Walter Isaacson has given the world a history not just of a man but of a revolution. I was floored by how well he intersected the story of technology with that of a rather narcissistic but visionary man, who never lost his will to design products that work for people. Isaacson gives us an important, balanced look at an era when technology changed the world of regular people. Incredibly well researched, the story is also well told. And Dylan Baker was the perfect narrator.
Passionate, a-hole, genious
Steve Jobs. Being that this was a biography he was the most colorful character in the book.
The ability to enjoy this book while I drive
When the book revealed the creative process that Jobs went through. How his ideas fell into place
How is it possible that a man with such apparent indifference and emotional brutality could inspire others and lead the massive changes to society that have come about through technology? He must have had an eerie level of charisma. His disdain for any considerations about how he was viewed by others, the level of emotional trauma he exhibited when his will was thwarted, his vulgarity--and yet, everyone finds some way that they are like him, and his vision moves them beyond all sense of their own limitations. Isaacson captures the conundrum of Jobs' identity, and the reader finds himself falling under the spell of Jobs' charisma. The story caused me to wonder about whether those that have true genius have an obligation to operate autocratically, how anyone knows whether that genius is the type that Jobs expresses or the corrupt form that Hitler and Stalin brought. I was astonished at volume of ideas that flowed forth from the cornucopia of Jobs' creativity and the range of disciplines to which it was applied. He was not really a businessman, in the sense that the business was not the goal--just the tool for reaching his goals.
If you are in a situation where you believe genuine and substantial change is required, this biography may help you assess whether you are willing to pay the personal price to make that happen.
Intense personality who "got" the importance of intentional congruence in the branding of "Apple", but didn't "get" or take responsibility for the way he treated people. Read this to understand his intense devotion to the fine details and the whole presentation of the Apple image and products. If you remember the movie "The Illusionist" and all the devotion to details and presentation in setting up the presentation, there's a parallel to Steve Jobs' skill and genius as a showman.
Some reviewers comment negatively on the narrator. IMHO he is not a bad reader, just slow. Increasing the speed to 1.5 on the Audible app made the narration more comfortable to my ears.
This biography was written by this author at Steve Jobs' request at a time when he knew he was dying. Although he provided the author with complete access to himself and those in his circle, he still he had no say in the content. The result is remarkable. The author presents the subject warts and all, yet I found myself admiring Steve Jobs much more than I thought I would have given them. In fact, I realize that perhaps those are not warts at all, but beauty marks. I feel lucky to have had this insight into the life that Steve Jobs lived. It added significantly to my toolbox for reflecting on my own.
A great look at the life and habits of Steve Jobs. This book doesn't serve as a fluff piece, but rather a much more measured take. You get a sense for the impressive accomplishments, but the vicious and sometimes unexpected methods he would use to achieve things "his way."
There is a small section of the book that mentions the advice that Steve Jobs imparted to Larry Page (presently Google's CEO). In a way it foreshadows the current push of a unify look and aesthetic while cutting cruft and focusing on your core products and making them great... sound like a company Steve Jobs ran at all?
Michael S Ruoss
YES IT IS A LOT BETTER
No 3 weeks
I did not think he was so mean of a person but he
I really enjoy Walter Isaacson and loved Einstein. I like other reviewers, I did not really like the narrator. He was alright - but not great. Both my husband and I listened to this. He listened first and was telling me about Steve. Since that, I found it difficult to finish mostly because of the narrator and Steve is difficult to like through much of the book. I probably would have finished it quickly if my husband hadn't already told me about key points in the book.
I loved the fact that Jobs is presented realistically - arrogant, obsessive and a creative genius. I am now considering listening to Woz's book to see how he sees the other side of the story.
The overall book. A story that was interesting and odd at the same time. A Genius of the 20th Century.
It was a very long book, I did listen to the entire book on a road trip, six hours each way. Couldn't wait to hear more.
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