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Customer Review

on October 26, 2011
I finished reading it two short days after it was first available.
My wide eyed teen self loved the original Apple II.
31 years later and a day before his death, in a heaving Apple Store of his design, I walked out with a Macbook. How can this man be gone? How did he do it? Read the book.

Unfortunately I believe the editing may have been rushed. To take one trivial but annoying example the word lapidary is used twice in short succession (describing the skills of both Jobs and Gates). More than one event is re-told to the reader. Overall, I found the writing style dull, it lacked the fireworks of the subject. Luckily Jobs is on every page, making things interesting.

The book at first seems long but not when you subtract the large index, and other supporting pages. This isn't any problem except there are giant holes left for future biographers. An example: AT&T is not even mentioned in the text! There are is nothing written on how Jobs convinced The Phone Company to cede so much control to the iphone. I feel like Jobs revealed a lot of his early life but the last 10 years, the most productive and interesting ones, were mainly and sketchily told through the eyes of others. At one point it is revealed that Apple has 70,000 workers in China and 15,000 engineer managers (a figure not even available to hire in the USA). I'm sure Jobs was all over this, yet there is no further exploration.

In retrospect I found the constant repetition of the Jobs reality distortion zone, and his habit of being cruel, well ... repetitive! By his third cruel action honestly all that can be said about unkind Steve had been said. Subsequent speculations on his personal motivations and so on never added anything new.

One thought on the legacy of Jobs: Isaacson concludes that despite his flaws, he deserves to be alongside greats in the industrialist hall of fame and you'd have to be a mean spirited or jealous person to disagree with that assessment. Yet I wonder if the greats of yesterday would survive their life, and particular personal flaws, examined and documented in such detail. I'm still in awe of what Jobs did with his life, he more than lived up to his own marketing.

PS: It is a shame that the book does not come with links to youtube videos and other supporting information. For many of the key events and people in the book if you search you can find the original material (videos etc) that are so much more than the paragraph that describes them.
I stopped frequently and switched to a browser.
What a shame the e-book about such an amazing (and tech oriented) life, describing the pursuit of perfection, could not include even one link.
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