January 12, 2012

Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson

Picture credit: thisisawesome.com
I chewed this book in delightful bites page by page. I am a big fan of Steve Jobs and Apple. After reading this book, I am conflicted as to how I shall view Steve Jobs but my admiration for his contribution to the world at large remains.

Walter Isaacson is a brilliant biographer. No wonder Steve Jobs relentlessly pursued him to write this book. The whole bio is a gold mine of lessons on corporate valuation, defying engineering principles, prioritizing great products before profits, innovation and revolution, forcing genius out of everyone, and dreaming impossible dreams.

Picture credit: igadgetreport
Steve Jobs never read the book for he knew that there would be parts of it he would never like. And indeed, from the interviews done with the people who worked with him sprouted tales of Steve Jobs’ dark side. It was this dark side that brought about the very products that help us lead better lives today. He believed that the end justifies the means, a principle that does not sit well with many people.

Steve Jobs supposedly encouraged this because he didn’t want to sound like an “in-house job”. But at the tail end of the last chapter, you will still feel a deep admiration for this man foolish enough to believe that the world can indeed be changed.

I love, love, love this book and despite the unflattering, such-an-ass depiction of Steve Jobs, he remains to be an inspiration. I love the way Walter Isaacson ended this beautiful biography and I would like to think of it as an insinuation of Steve Jobs’ conversion and faith as he dealt with the last days of his life.

After I finished reading his bio, I read again this eulogy given by his sister, Mona Simpson. From the eyes of somebody who loved him dearly, he was a good man. And this is also how I would like to see him.

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