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4 stories about Steve Jobs that will surprise you

Walter Isaacson
4 stories about Steve Jobs that will surprise you Walter Isaacson
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Walter Isaacson spent two years conducting more than 40 interviews with Steve Jobs for his biography. In the following excerpt and videos, Isaacson goes beyond the pages of his book to describe the deal he cut with Jobs to keep him involved in the project after the Apple leader vehemently rejected the original title. Also, hear about pranks he pulled with Steve Wozniak, what Jobs considered his greatest creation, what took place in his final conversation with Bill Gates, and much more.

Jobs' reaction to his biography's original title

"Simon and Schuster had originally titled the biography 'iSteve: The Book of Jobs,' and the cover showed a photo of him inside the Apple logo. I signed off on it, thinking we'd figure it out. It seemed cute.

"I'm flying to California to meet with Steve for one of my 40 to 50 interviews. I have my iPhone set so that if he calls or sends a message, it has a special ring. And when I get off the plane in San Francisco, the phone is going nuts. He's called about five times. So I call him from the concourse, and he says, 'I just saw this thing online. It's the stupidest. Totally sucks. I'm not going to cooperate anymore. You have no taste.'

"I had never really seen the brunt of his anger before. I had been told about it, but he's nice to me, I'm writing the book! He was not nice. So I'm listening for a while. And he's yelling. I think I was headed to the iPad launch, and he says 'I don't even want you to be in the audience.' I don't say much because there's not much point in trying to get a word in in these situations. And he said, 'In fact, I'm not going to do any more with you, unless you promise to let me have input into what the cover design will be.'

"I'm not an idiot. It only took me about a second, or a second and a half to say, 'Wow. Yes!'"

Steve's greatest creation

A final conversation with Bill Gates

Steve's response to the title "iSteve: The Book of Jobs"

Who designed the cover of the biography?

The Adobe feud

Bonus video with more stories (including the Homebrew Computer Club and the birth of the iPod)

Bonus video story order:

0:00 - The intersection of emotion and technology
1:30 - The passionate, petulant Mr. Jobs
4:30 - The fence story
7:30 - The Homebrew Computer Club
8:45 - Pulling pranks with Steve Wozniak
11:00 - Steve jobs argues with Steve Wozniak
14:15 - Shaving 28 seconds off the boot-up time
17:30 - Artistic control vs. market domination
24:00 - The Adobe feud
25:00 - The beginning of Mac design
27:00 - The iPod is born
29:00 - A final conversation with Bill Gates
35:00 - Steve's greatest creation
37:00 - Steve's response to the original title "iSteve: The Book of Jobs"
43:00 - The other industries Steve wanted to transform

Run time is 43:14

Walter Isaacson, CEO of the Aspen Institute, has been chairman of CNN and the managing editor of Time magazine. He is the author of "Einstein: His Life and Universe," "Benjamin Franklin: An American Life," and "Kissinger: A Biography." He is co-author of "The Wise Men: Six Friends and the World They Made." He lives in Washington, D.C., with his wife and daughter.

Jobs' reaction to his biography's original title

"Simon and Schuster had originally titled the biography 'iSteve: The Book of Jobs,' and the cover showed a photo of him inside the Apple logo. I signed off on it, thinking we'd figure it out. It seemed cute.

"I'm flying to California to meet with Steve for one of my 40 to 50 interviews. I have my iPhone set so that if he calls or sends a message, it has a special ring. And when I get off the plane in San Francisco, the phone is going nuts. He's called about five times. So I call him from the concourse, and he says, 'I just saw this thing online. It's the stupidest. Totally sucks. I'm not going to cooperate anymore. You have no taste.'

"I had never really seen the brunt of his anger before. I had been told about it, but he's nice to me, I'm writing the book! He was not nice. So I'm listening for a while. And he's yelling. I think I was headed to the iPad launch, and he says 'I don't even want you to be in the audience.' I don't say much because there's not much point in trying to get a word in in these situations. And he said, 'In fact, I'm not going to do any more with you, unless you promise to let me have input into what the cover design will be.'

"I'm not an idiot. It only took me about a second, or a second and a half to say, 'Wow. Yes!'"

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