I’ve read other semi-biographies of Jobs and, working with a lot of people in the tech industry, I’d heard many of the stories of how much of a bastard he was. However, this biography left me quite bemused and surprised: I never expected Jobs to be such a disgustingly-shameless-sociopath-brat-cry-baby! even to the last minute, with Jobs having to have control over the cover image of the book.
I don’t think he would have liked much of what is inside this book; which is what makes it great.
It’s amazing that Jobs sought out Isaacson to write this biography. And Isaacson, pre-warning Jobs that he was going to uncover all the dirt, delivers a very inhuman story. In Isaacson other book on Einstein, he also revealed Albert’s many flaws and brought Albert down to our level. With this book, he absolutely devastates the image of Jobs as a great business leader and as human being: from his stinky hippy days, to his denial of his daughter Lisa and smear campaign of the mother, to his tyrannical and plainly mean way he constantly ripped-off and mistreated other people.
I guess Job’s own reflection of his life must have been also distorted by his “reality distortion field”. It’s great that this book came out when it did. If anything, it shows that Steve Jobs was not in the same league as other great inventors and geniuses of the past century. Jobs just rode on the great ideas of those around him. If it was him that made those ideas successful is unclear, so Jobs is just shown as part of the greater collective that was, and remains, Apple computers.
I anything, it’s good that Isaacson shows why no one should take inspiration from the cold, hard, tyrannical a**hole that was Steve Jobs. A great read! And proof you can’t judge a book by its cover.