New Steve Jobs infographic pops up

A new Steve Jobs infographic was sent to me by a friend a couple days ago.

Although it’s mostly accurate (gee, all about Steve Jobs.com is quoted twice in the source list), it has its shares of mistakes. Where would the fun be if it hadn’t?

  • Steve Jobs is NOT dyslexic. This is a recurrent fantasy that was never verified.
  • the brand of his turtleneck is not St Croix but Issey Mikake (whole story here or here on Quora). Who knows how many pairs of jeans he has? I doubt it’s a hundred.
  • he is not a fruitarian. He certainly *has been* a fruitarian, during his hippie days, when he was 19. But those days are long gone

Here’s the infographic anyway (source):

5 new pictures added

I just added five interesting pictures of Steve to all about Steve Jobs.com:

  • the first one kind of made a sensation some time ago on motorcycle fans forums… so that’s why it escaped my careful watch. It’s a 1981 picture of Steve (when he was 26) riding an old BMW motorcycle. As most of you know, he later gave such a motorcycle to the Mac team, who put it in their lobby — it might be the same one. Find the pic in the ‘1981’ album
  • the two following pics are from an interesting photo shoot that was made to illustrate the launching of NeXT Cube in mid-1988. As you can see, Steve strikes his favorite namaste pose, and made it to the cover of BusinessWeek (Oct 24 1988 issue). He was also on the cover of their arch-rival Newsweek the same week. The story is, he promised both magazines exclusivity in exchange of the cover 😉 Find those in the ‘1988’ album
  • the two latter pics are from the opening of the first Apple mini retail store, on October 16 2004. You can see Steve pose with his neighbor and former employee Dan’L Lewin on the second picture. Dan’l was the brilliant salesman behind the Macintosh University Consortium in 1984, then co-founded NeXT with Steve in 1986 as head of marketing. He left NeXT for Microsoft in 1991. The album is here.

‘A real life Willy Wonka’


One day I was watching Tim Burton’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, and a phrase caught my attention. It’s a line when Augustus Gloop starts eating out the river, and Johnny Depp/Willy Wonka asks him to stop, insisting his chocolate must stay ‘untouched by human hands’. The phrase reminded me of Steve during his NeXT years. He used the exact same phrase to describe the robots that built the NeXT Cube in his automated factory (see an example here).

This got me thinking of the many similarities that could be found between Steve Jobs and the Willy Wonka character. The most obvious are:

  • they’re both widely-acknowledged geniuses at their art (respectively, creating chocolate and great technological products)
  • their products are magical and admired all around the world
  • they both work in super-secret environments (the chocolate factory, and Apple), and everyone wonders what must be going on behind the doors
  • they both have kind of a quirky personality (of course this is more obvious in Willy Wonka, but still, Steve Jobs is not your typical Fortune 500 CEO)

I didn’t think about that metaphor much back then… But it came back to me four times, the latest of which was yesterday.

First, of course, Fake Steve wrote about it in one of his earliest posts. The Bono character said to FSJ:

Jaysus, Mary and Joseph, you’re like Willy fookin Wonka in his fookin chocolate factory, out there baking up your fookin iPods, and meanwhile the fookin planet is fookin meltin, ya fooktard. I tell him, Bono, look, we all gotta do what we do, right?

The second instance was from more ‘respectable’ sources. It was the flurry of articles that got published when Steve was seen in Manhattan in early 2010 to pitch publishers about iPad. They all mentioned he was wearing “a very funny hat — a big top hat kind of thing” that evoked Willy Wonka (see here). Unfortunately there were no pictures — that’s why the caricature above was drawn, to compensate for this lack.

Then there was Mike Daisey, the now-famous writer/comedian who is currently playing a show in Berkeley entitled The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs. The show has been greatly covered in the tech press/blogosphere, and I wish I could give my own opinion on it. Unfortunately as you know I am a student in France, so I can’t afford to buy airplane tickets just to see one show in California… so I didn’t see the show. I hope it’s been recorded and we’ll see the video pop out at some point.

What’s interesting is the way Mike pitched his own show:

In The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs, Daisey dives into the epic story of a real life Willy Wonka. He examines how the CEO of Apple and his obsessions profoundly shape our everyday lives—and travels to China to investigate the factories where millions toil to make iPhones and iPods.

The metaphor finally reached its climax in the video I discovered this week, from CollegeHumor.com. They have gone all the way with a 4-minute video portraying Steve as Willy Wonka. He let 5 Golden iTickets in iPhone boxes to let children discover his magical Apple factory… It’s very fun and enjoyable: so, enjoy. It’s even got Oompa-Loompas/Apple Geniuses 🙂

What do you think?

Website updated with new pictures

I am very pleased to announce that all about Steve Jobs.com was updated with pictures from the exciting keynote of Thursday. Needless to say that I was very excited as all of you to watch Steve take the stage again, in great shape — quite a change from the horrors one could read or watch these past three weeks.

In addition to iPad 2 in the Products Page and 34 pictures of the event, I also added the following new 6 pictures of Steve:

Respectively:

  • a (better) picture of Steve with Lisa in the 1989 album
  • a new picture of the NeXT Cube introduction (12 Oct 1988)
  • a new picture of Steve in the 1989 album
  • a new picture in the Special Event of 10 Nov 1997
  • a new picture of Macworld SF 1999
  • and a new picture of Steve at Apple Expo 2005

 

Steve Jobs a British knight?… and the hidden tribute in OS X Lion

Two interesting pieces of news today, while all of us are anxiously awaiting tomorrow’s announcement and the rumored/possible/yet unlikely onstage presence of Steve.

  • Steve Jobs was proposed then refused British knighthood in 2009: good summary from TUAW How Steve Jobs missed knighthood in 2009. Steve has never been very fond of prize and awards, so I’m not surprised he declined, I don’t think that being used politically is the main reason. Although he has always been careful never to make any public statements on his political orientations. Actually he never personally donated to the Democratic Party, it was always his wife Laurene who used her name for the donations.
    Reminds me of this funny incarnation Fake Steve/Dan Lyons did when Steve ‘received’ a Crunchie in 2008: Fake Steve Jobs Crunchies Acceptance Speech
  • Nice hidden tribute to Steve in OS X Lion, spotted by Cult of Mac:

 

Interview of Steve’s biological father

Check out this interview of Steve Jobs’ biological father, 79-year-old Abdul Fattah “John” Jandali. This is the first time I’ve read any public comment from him.

Steve Jobs is a biological Arab-American with roots in Syria

Interesting excerpts:

“My father was a self-made millionaire who owned extensive areas of land which included entire villages,” Jandali said.

“My daughter Mona is a famous writer, and my biological son is Steve Jobs, the chief executive of Apple. The reason he was put up for adoption was because my girlfriend’s father was extremely conservative and wouldn’t let her marry me, and she decided to give him up for adoption. Steve is my biological son, but I didn’t bring him up, and he has a family that adopted him. So if it’s said that I’m the ‘father of invention’, then that’s because my biological son is a genius and my daughter a brilliant writer

“I think that if my son Steve had been brought up with a Syrian name he would have achieved the same success. He has a brilliant mind. And he didn’t finish his university studies. That’s why I think he would have succeeded whatever his background. I don’t have a close relationship with him. I send him a message on his birthday, but neither of us has made overtures to come closer to the other. I tend to think that if he wants to spend time with me he knows where I am and how to get hold of me.

I’m proud of my son and his accomplishments, and of my work. Of course I made mistakes, and if I could go back in time I would have put some things right. I would have been closer to my son, but all’s well that ends well. Steve Jobs is one of the most successful people in America, and Mona is a successful academic and novelist.”