Bryan and Jeff try and wrap their heads around a world where malware is being installed on Android devices in the supply chain, before customers even get the devices. They also take a trip into the anachronistic world of sealing wax and sealing wax stamps, as well as the fascinating world where 40 year-old Apple I computers are auctioned for hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Recently, Fast Company published an article on “Why Employees At Apple And Google Are More Productive.” It’s probably true. John Martellaro dug into the article and found things to like as well as things to expand on based on his own experiences.
BusinessInsider put together 33 pics that explore Steve Jobs’s history with Apple. Most of them are interesting pics from the 1970s and 1980s, with a few more from the 1990s through 2007. My favorites include a smug-looking Steve Jobs next to John Sculley with Macintosh and Lisa, as well as a great pic of Steve Jobs and Bill Gates before their relationship took a negative turn over Windows. It’s a fun look through history, but I do have to do a mostly pedantic quibble about one thing. In its mention of Apple’s 1984 commercial, BusinessInsider said, “It aired during the third quarter of Super Bowl XVIII, and never again.” Apple played it one other time—in fact, the first time—in a local TV market: Twin Falls, Idaho, in December of 1983. That was done so the commercial would quality for 1983 awards. That’s something many folks get wrong. Still, the pictorial is a fun read.
Then there was that time the late Steve Jobs taught Guy Kawasaki a life lesson. It comes in the form of a Quora answer posted by Guy Kawasaki and republished by The Huffington Post. In it, he talks about the time Steve Jobs walked up to him with a nameless companion and asked a question about a company. Mr. Kawasaki rattled off his negative opinion of that company, and Steve Jobs then introduced him to his companion, the CEO of that company. “Thank you, Steve.” 😂 There was a lesson in that incident, though, and I think it makes a very good read. So go read it.
Laurene Powell Jobs—billionaire, philanthropist, widow of Steve Jobs, and mega-donor to Hillary Clinton’s Super PAC—met with President Donald Trump this week. White House spokesperson Sean Spicer confirmed the meeting Wednesday, and a spokesperson for Ms. Powell Jobs said the two discussed education and immigration.
Former Apple executive Ron Johnson recently shared some insight into Apple co-founder Steve Jobs. Bryan Chaffin and Dave Hamilton join Jeff Gamet to share their thoughts on how Steve Jobs worked through new ideas before accepting them, plus they look at Apple’s iPhone numbers and the new Sonos PLAYBASE.
The late Steve Jobs was a man known for strong opinions, but what’s often missed is the fluidity with which he shifted those opinions. Often on a dime. Former Apple executive Ron Johnson—who designed and implemented Apple’s feet of retail stores—told a story to Kara Swisher that exemplifies that quality in Mr. Jobs.
Here’s your chance to get something autographed by Steve Jobs, but you’ll need to bring your wallet. An auction for a NeXTWORLD poster autographed by Steve Jobs currently has 31 bids and stands at US$11,000. The poster, which was autographed by Steve Jobs in 1992, is part of an online auction by RR Auction. Bidding ends on March 8th.
Apple announced the name of what we used to call Apple Campus 2.0—now it’s Apple Park. Bryan and Jeff chew on the name for a while, and discuss what we might expect when it opens in April. They also pore over Apple Watch 3 rumors and the news that a key supplier will stop making Apple Watch displays. And somehow they segue that into some new iPad and iPhone rumors.
Check out this recording of Steve Jobs’ NeXT keynote from 1992 (via Cult of Mac), where he introduced NeXTSTEP 3.0 (which eventually became OS X). Interesting tidbits from the spot include the 51 minute and 32 second mark, where he shows a feature that ended up being cut when Apple bought NeXT, distributed object inter-application and inter network communication. At 59 minutes and 53 seconds, Mr. Jobs shows off fast elliptical encryption built right into NeXT’s email system. That was also cut for the Mac. Then there was the bit about operating system-level the Renderman rending engine (nixed), and NeXTSTEP for Intel processors, which did eventually make it to the Mac. All these observations come courtesy of John Kheit, who used to work at NeXT. He called this one of Steve Jobs’s best keynotes and a must-watch for fans. I agree, though your mileage may vary. One way or another, it’s definitely good.
Tim Cook spoke to the students of the University of Glasgow this week. The hour long event included questions from faculty and students alike. Topics included President Trump’s travel bans on seven muslim-majority countries, the reach of the App Store, the environment, wealth inequality, education, balancing work and life, technology interacting with our bodies, Apple Watch, idealism, Steve Jobs’s influence over Apple today, styluses, and more. The video was posted by a student. The audio quality is poor, but the rules for the event precluded “dedicated recording equipment.” To that end, this video was recorded entirely on an iPhone 7 in the hands of a student 50-70 feet from Mr. Cook, and is stunningly good considering. In addition, note how quiet and respectful this audience of 800-plus students is.
Steve Jobs’s obsession over every aspect of a device being important is legendary. He famously (and infamously to some) demanded that the insides of a sealed machine—even the circuit boards—be just as aesthetically pleasing as the outside. Reuters has an interesting piece about Apple Campus 2.0, and how Apple’s current leadership is applying that same penchant for detail to this building. Pipe that you can’t see. Wires that you can’t see. That sort of thing. Some of you are instantly getting tense because you would rather Apple be spending that time and attention to, say, new Macs. Or iPads. Or AirPort devices. Or a 5K display worthy of a Mac. Or something other than new iPhones. I’m still just as tense as I have been about those things, but the reality is I’m glad Apple is being all obsessive about Apple Campus 2.0. This building is just as much Steve Jobs’s legacy as Apple itself. I imagine it’s important to his survivors at Apple that they treat this building as he would have treated it. I can’t help but think working in a living reminder of this aspect of Steve Jobs will help make future products that much better. One way or another, go read the Reuters piece. It’s really good.
1999 was a good time to be a Mac user. Apple was coming back, baby! And unlike today, the company was releasing new Macs, too. 1999 saw the PowerMac G3 and PowerMac G4, multicolored iMacs to replace the Bondi Blue iMac, and the PowerBook G3 (Lombard). Those were good times. It was also the year Apple ran a spot called HAL in the Super Bowl. Ken Segall, who was then the Apple account manager at TBWA/Chiat/Day, gave us the inside story on how HAL was born and the convoluted steps HAL took to land in the Super Bowl. Spoiler: it almost didn’t happen. Quick nuggets include the voice actor who recreated the HAL voice because the original voice actor was reportedly too precious to do commercials; the painstaking process of recreating HAL’s look and feel; and securing permission from Stanley Kubrick and MGM to use the characters and imagery (respectively). I love reading Ken Segall’s stories about working with Steve Jobs, and this is another good one. Definitely check it out. Below is the beginning of the Macworld Expo keynote where HAL actually debuted.
Former Apple engineer Bob Burrough has been arguing that CEO Tim Cook has made Apple boring. In a combination of tweet storm and an interview with CNBC stemming from said tweetstorm, the engineer said Mr. Cook has eliminated conflict within Apple, sapping its vitality in the process. Mr. Burrough argued that Steve Jobs ruled with ever-shifting chaos, where product triumphed over hierarchy. Under Tim Cook, he said, Apple is siloed, smooth, and essentially complacent. Former Apple wunderkind Tony Fadell coincidentally tweeted just last week that Steve Jobs did not manage through conflict, and others have taken issue with Mr. Burrough, too. The reality is that any one person’s perspective never tells the whole tale, but his opinions make for an interesting read. You can see the whole tweetstorm in this tweet and in the CNBC story.
— ᴮᵒᵇ ᴮᵘʳʳᵒᵘᵍʰ (@bob_burrough) January 16, 2017
You may have heard of the Mother of All Demos, especially if you’ve studied, or even read up on, computing history. But have you seen it? There is a video of this legendary event (via Reviewed.com), and I personally find it fascinating. Here’s why this is a thing. The demo was given by Doug Engelbart in 1968, when punch cards were how you interfaced with a computer. But in this demo, the world was shown (list via Wikipedia) windows, hypertext, graphics, efficient navigation and command input, video conferencing word processing, dynamic file linking, revision control, a collaborative real-time editor, and the computer mouse. The freaking computer mouse! None of these things existed outside the circle of people involved in the demo. It was huge. No, it was enormous. And many of the people in the demo went on to be involved in the Xerox PARC, which played a major role inspiring Jef Raskin and Steve Jobs for the Mac. The Mother of All Demos resonated through tech culture for decades, and it took decades to make most of that list above mainstream. If you like tech history, you should book some time to watch this. And if you do, think about the context of the times and be amazed. One last note, the typed story at the beginning explains how the movie itself was made.
On the 10th anniversary of the iPhone, Steven Levy posted an exclusive interview with Phil Schiller. Here are some of the key takeaways from the anniversary, including anecdotes from the original launch, thoughts on apps, and whether Phil could have known how popular Apple’s device would become.