Posts filed under 'Updates'

Celebrating Steve

5 Oct 2021 | in Updates

Very touching homage from Apple honoring Steve Jobs’ memory on the 10-year anniversary of his passing today.

I have very little to add – I’m still sad he is no longer with us.

Here’s the video reposted on YouTube for posterity, as well as the letter from Laurene & the kids:

Statement from the Jobs family

For a decade now, mourning and healing have gone together.

Our gratitude has become as great as our loss.

Each of us has found his or her own path to consolation,but we have come together in a beautiful place of love
for Steve, and for what he taught us.

For all of Steve’s gifts, it was his power as a teacher that has endured.

He taught us to be open to the beauty of the world, to be curious around new ideas, to see around the next corner, and most of all to stay humble in our own beginner’s mind.

There are many things we still see through his eyes, but he also taught to look for ourselves. He gave us equipment for living,and it has served us well.

One of our greatest sources of consolation has been our association of Steve with beauty. The sight of something beautiful — a wooded hillside, a well‑made object — recalls his spirit to us. Even in his years of suffering, he never lost his faith in the beauty of existence.

Memory is inadequate for what is in our hearts: we miss him profoundly.
We were blessed to have him as husband and father.

23 Mar 2021 | in Updates

Quick update — I finally got around to publishing two long way-overdue pages of the website: the Bibliography, with an up-to-date & almost-exhaustive list of books and movies about Steve Jobs; and the About Us page, which tells the story of the website (which turned 15 last month!). Do let me know your feedback on both.

Introducing video transcripts

20 Mar 2021 | in Updates, Updates/Announcements

I’m proud to share an exciting update that I’ve been working on for a while. Have you ever found yourself wondering: I swear I heard Steve Jobs say this in a keynote, or an interview, or was it a speech? One of those in the early 2000s, but… which one was it?

Well, you need not worry about this anymore — as some of the videos in our collection now feature transcripts! You’ll identify them thanks to the small CC ( ) icon next to their name in the video galleries, as per below. You’ll notice we also include timestamps at each speaker change or narrative breaks, so you can easily jump to the right point in the video.

The vision is to eventually have ALL of Steve Jobs’s recorded words transcribed, so they can all be searched and found in a few seconds. I am planning to adding search to the “Watch” section of the website to that effect (and of course, Google is still your friend in the meantime).

It will take a while to get to that end state though, and I’m starting with a small collection of some of my favourites videos, as well as the most recent additions:

  1. 1983 Macintosh introduction at the Boston Computer Society
  2. 1988 NeXT Cube introduction
  3. 1990 NeXTstation introduction
  4. 1990 Library of Congress video
  5. 1991 internal NeXT strategy
  6. 1991 “Ten Years of the PC” interview
  7. 1992 NeXTSTEP 3.0 demo
  8. 1995 Triumph of the Nerds interview (aka “The Lost Interview”)
  9. 1997 WWDC closing chat
  10. 1998 iMac introduction
  11. Of course, the 2007 Macworld (iPhone introduction)
  12. 2007 D5 Interview by Walt Mossberg
  13. And last but not least, the Joint interview with Bill Gates from that same conference.

I’ve added these new transcripts I made to the couple ones that have already been done — right now this only includes the Stanford commencement speech, the Smithsonian 1995 interview and another 1990 interview.

I hope you’re as excited as I am! Please share your feedback in the comments or on Twitter.

PS: while working on this, I discovered a great website called NotesKey, which references all speakers, demos, videos, memorable moments or jokes, for almost all Apple events (I noticed a couple Apple Expo keynotes are missing) from 1997 to 2018. It also lets you search for a particular speaker or demo across all of them. This is something I had thought of building originally, but there is no need as the site does it perfectly (here’s Macworld 2007 as an example) — make sure to check it out!

Steve Jobs gems keep surfacing on YouTube

19 Mar 2021 | in Updates

Finding myself with a bit more free time on my hands than usual, and this being the year where we’ll be mourning the 10-year anniversary of Steve’s passing, I decided to update the website with content that I had been coming across recently.

After Steve passed in 2011, I fully expected things about him to come out (say, books that would not have been dared to be written while he was alive), but I also expected this to taper down after a few years. I certainly didn’t expect super well preserved, full-length interviews from 30 years ago to emerge. Well, boy was I wrong. I’ve been amazed at the content that YouTube (All Bow to the Almighty Algorithm!) surfaced to me this past week. Take a look!

1981 Interview

Last month, this amazing interview from 1981 emerged. It’s actually raw footage that was probably done for a TV segment — it’s complete, and includes small talk with the interviewer (including Steve saying “TV always shoots for the lower common denominator”, a view he held throughout his life and repeated on a few occasions), as well as SJ making faces (shot from his back unfortunately) to distract the interviewer as he repeats some of the questions to facilitate the editing. Overall the theme of the interview is where Personal Computing came from, where it is going, and how it’s like to run a fast-growing Apple.

SJ talking about higher education, 1987

Excerpts from an interview by the BBC about the higher education’s need — and Steve Jobs’ vision — for personal computers and workstations. This was done at a critical time in the early days of NeXT, one year before the NeXT Cube came out. Steve talks about the promise of rapid development of custom apps, thanks to object-oriented programming, that would be one of the founding blocks of NeXTSTEP.

1988 TV feature about NeXT

A short and fun to watch TV segment where Steve Jobs (self-introducing with the classic line “I’m Steve Jobs, and I make computers”) talks about his lifelong goal of having technology be at the crossroads with the humanities, and exemplifies how the recently introduced NeXT computer can help do that, with its Digital Librarian and advanced music software. The demo ends with a violinist playing Bach in duet with the NeXT Cube, the same demo that ended the computer’s introduction at the SF Davies Symphony Hall.

1991 Interview at NeXT

This interview was uploaded just one month ago. It’s a rare interview of Steve Jobs at NeXT’s office where he talks about both the history of the PC, the market landscape in the early 1990s and where he sees it going in the future. Based on what I could gather in the interview, I suspect it was done by Brent Schlender for his coverage of the Ten Years of the [IBM] PC for Fortune Magazine (though he hasn’t confirmed nor denied it). He ended up doing a joint interview with Bill Gates for this piece, which you can read here.

To wrap up, here are three gems from Steve Jobs’ Web Objects period i.e. the late stage of NeXT in 1995-96, when it was purely a B2B software company and finally found product-market fit with the use of its software to build dynamic web pages, at a time when the web was mostly static HTML.

The first two videos are from The Sharper Image’s historical channel. The Sharper Image was a sort of pre-Internet Amazon, a go-go consumerism catalog with a crazy range of things you could buy that you never knew you wanted. They embraced the Web early when it came out and arguably built one of the first e-commerce sites, using NeXT’s Web Objects, which Steve Jobs was very grateful for.

The Sharper Image SF store demo

In this video, Steve Jobs attends the inauguration of The Sharper Image’s Sutter Street store in 1996, and demoes the power of Web Objects on the online catalog (demo starts at the 17:40 mark).

1996 Internet World keynote

Steve Jobs gives a keynote at the Internet World expo, where he explains the value of Web Objects for building webpages on the fly (and uses Dodge, Reebok, and The Sharper Image websites for the demo). Unfortunately, the screen of SJ’s PC wasn’t captured in the video.

1996 WEBMANIA keynote

A classic SJ keynote given at the WEBMANIA expo, where he talked about NeXT’s Web Objects and gives a few demos. It’s notable for at least two reasons: seeing SJ demoing on a PC, and wearing a denim jacket on stage.

To wrap up, I also uploaded short excerpts from a few recordings I had laying around my hard drive:

  1. 1983 – A montage of the few excerpts I have of the Fall 1983 sales conference in Hawaii where Steve Jobs first showed off the “1984” Macintosh ad, and held a fake “Software dating game” featuring Mitch Kapor of Lotus and a young fellow named Bill Gates.
  2. 1985 – Again, a montage from a TV feature on Apple’s struggles in the 1985 downturn, including rare footage from Apple’s shareholders meeting that year (if you have more footage of that keynote, where Apple Talk and the Macintosh Office were introduced, do reach out!)
  3. Feb 1987 – Excerpt from a BBC documentary showing Steve Jobs being interviewed at Pixar’s first anniversary party
  4. Sep 1998 – Amateur footage of the Apple Expo 1998 keynote in Paris (the official recording seems lost!). The keynoted ended with a failed attempt at an impressive demo of iMacs’ networking capabilities — 49 iMacs were mounted on a huge rack to show it off, but it resulted in a blunder on which SJ ended the keynote abruptly (not sure if it was the plan or he was too pissed off to continue!)


More about Lisa

12 Sep 2018 | in Updates

Two interviews of Lisa came out that are worthy of your time:

Early views of Lisa’s book

29 Aug 2018 | in Updates

Will write in more detail about Lisa’s book when I get a chance – or maybe once I’ve read it – but in the meantime, for those that haven’t been following, check out these three stories…

20 Aug 2018 | in Updates

Nice little anecdote on how Steve jobs convinced Lucent’s CEO of producing the first Airport cards for the original iBook.

How a meeting with Steve Jobs in 1998 gave birth to Wi-Fi

24 Jul 2018 | in Updates

Interesting beer spotted by a friend in South Korea!

13 Jul 2018 | in Updates

Nice museum “all about Apple” in Italy… check it out!

Chris MacAskill shares memories from his NeXT days

11 Jul 2018 | in Steve Jobs personality, Updates

Check out these great first-hand memories from Chris MacAskill, a former NeXT employee, who convinced Steve Jobs to speak at the 1991 Unix Expo.

Loved this bit in particular:

It seemed like a dream when, two years later, I walked into Steve’s office to ask him to give the keynote at Unix Expo in New York. It didn’t go well at first. I was nervous because I was new to the computer industry. Steve had a larger-than-life reputation.  His rapid-fire answer went something like this: “That’s INSANE! That’s a show for Unix weenies. They don’t get it. It would cost $25,000 to get me with desk and computer there. No!” And with that he pointed me to the door.

And of course these two, which ring particularly Jobsian:

My coworkers explained that Steve had to have a certain desk for his presentations because it was NeXT black. Steve was incredibly fussy about colors so NeXT machines and peripherals had to be that exact black.

One Saturday I was at work when we got a delivery at the front door. I went down to sign for it and it was case after case of white shirts that Steve had ordered from his favorite tailor in Florence, Italy, where he had spent the week. He loved hanging out in art museums. My memory could well be off, but I remembered it as 300 new white shirts. He wanted a new one each time he dressed up.

That last anecdote about the shirt echoes the one from John Lasseter about Steve’s collection of hundreds of black turtlenecks from Issey Miyake.

“He found this one really great black turtleneck which he loved – I think it was Issey Miyaki – so tried to buy another one and they didn’t have any more,” Mr Lasseter confided to the FT recently. “He called the company and asked if they would make another one, and they refused. So he said: ‘Fine, how many do you have to make before I can buy them?’ So they made them – I think he has a closet full of them.”