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Steve Jobs

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4.08  ·  Rating Details  ·  446,519 Ratings  ·  14,155 Reviews
The phenomenal bestseller from the author of the acclaimed biographies of Benjamin Franklin and Albert Einstein.

Based on more than forty interviews with Jobs conducted over two years—as well as interviews with more than 100 family members, friends, adversaries, competitors, and colleagues—Walter Isaacson set down the riveting story of the roller-coaster life and searingly
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Paperback, 656 pages
Published September 10th 2013 by Simon & Schuster (first published October 24th 2011)
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Marc Apple computers have been expensive since the Apple I, released in April 1976 which was $666.66 while competing systems such as the KIM-1 were $245.…moreApple computers have been expensive since the Apple I, released in April 1976 which was $666.66 while competing systems such as the KIM-1 were $245. The upside is that Apple Corp. is still around and selling computers and other devices to the consumer market while 100% of their competitors have failed and/or left the market. The Apple ][ was $1,298 when it was released in June 1977. Competing systems such as the Commodore PET were $595, Radio Shack TRS 80 at $799, etc. Scully did not arrive until April 1983.(less)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Stephanie
May 10, 2014 Stephanie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: biography, 2011
Steve Jobs was a damn dirty hippie.

He didn't much like to shower or wear shoes. He believed his diet kept him from getting stinky, not true apparently. In fact he was quite odd and obsessive about his diets, he would go on kicks where he would eat nothing but carrots for long periods of time until he turned orange. This makes me wonder if these strange eating habits brought on his cancer. Who can say?

Steve Jobs was an asshat.

He was an ass to everyone, even Steve Wozniak, who by everyone's stand
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Lisa
There are three things necessary for a great biography:

1. A compelling subject
2. An engaging narrative
3. Accuracy

Walter Isaacson's Steve Jobs has all three.

Steve Jobs was a fascinating person whose powerful personality and extraordinary life make for a very compelling read. He revolutionized many different technological and entertainment industries by successfully blending technology and the liberal arts, giving consumers products they didn't even know they wanted. He was able to defy reality by
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Petra X
Update This is a very interesting view of Steve Jobs by the mother of his daughter, Lisa (although he denied he was her father, despite paternity tests) and his childhood sweetheart. She doesn't think the film goes far enough in depicting his character truthfully. I am sure that what she writes in her book The Bite in the Apple: A Memoir of My Life with Steve Jobs is absolutely true. Apple's lawyers would sue her out of all existence if there was even a word that they could latch onto. But still ...more
Lynne Spreen
Nov 26, 2015 Lynne Spreen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
When I was at the halfway point I became struck by what a jerk SJ was. Yes, he was brilliant and all that. But he seemed to view other humans as nothing more than ants in his ant farm, sub-biologicals that he could squish whenever he felt like it. And did.

Some might say that his gifts to tech development, or the fact that he changed and invented whole industries, would compensate. Maybe the two things went together, cruelty and brilliance.

But the lesson to be drawn here, future CEOs, isn't that
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karen
Nov 10, 2011 karen marked it as oh-dear  ·  review of another edition
so, we are having the event for this book at our store tonight. the number of people calling up to ask if steve jobs will also be present to sign is staggering. in other words, "i care enough about steve jobs to want to read a 600+ page book about him, but i am somehow unaware that he is deceased."

is what i hope. the alternative is ghoulish and i do not want to entertain it.
3Jane Tessier-Ashpool
My background is as a post-1979 punk rocker. So naturally I view all dope-gorging smelly long hair Dylan-worshiping hippies with a certain amount of suspicion and disdain.

The author shows, on a page-by-page basis, what an insufferable asshole Steve Jobs was. I'm not exaggerating. But the book left me wondering: why? how did he become this way?

The book is fairly well researched, but except for a precious few anecdotes about his youth, very little is said about his upbringing. I'd really like to k
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Riku Sayuj
Feb 02, 2014 Riku Sayuj rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Riku by: Amit Haralalka
Shelves: r-r-rs, biographies

Never expected to find this much enjoyment reading a biography. Isaacson has truly done a wonderful job with this book.

For those who are too busy to read the entire book, please try to grab a quick read of the last two chapters of the book at a book store or airport or someplace - These chapters are a concise summary of the entire book as well as the thesis Isaacson builds up to throughout the book. Besides, it will probably make you buy and read the whole thing anyway.

To call this man a "Great
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Peter
Executive summary of Isaacson's "Steve Jobs":

- Remove everything that is unnecessary.
- Be ruthless about building an A team.
- Make stuff you believe in.
- Collaborate often through vigorous discussion.
- Push yourself and others to do the impossible now.
- Make great experiences by simplifying.
- Own your work and protect it.
- Live at intersection of intellect and intuition.

But these are not spoilers. The drama of this biography is in the decisions Jobs' made, the way he followed through on these
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Otis Chandler
This is an amazing inside view into the life of one of the great businessmen of our era. A must read.

The thing that struck me most about Steve Jobs was that he was an incredible perfectionist. He was a craftsman, and wanted the computers he built to be beautiful and amazing and useful. He believed that computers were "at the intersection of technology and liberal arts" - a phrase he used a lot - because he realized computers weren't just for geeks. They are for everyone, and needed to be able t
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Diane
I had to be convinced by a GR friend to read this book, similarly to how Isaacson had to be convinced to write it.

Back in 2004, Steve Jobs approached Isaacson and asked if he was interested in writing Jobs' biography. Isaacson declined several times, thinking that it was too soon to write one and that it would be better to wait a few decades. It wasn't until 2009 when Jobs' wife bluntly told him that Jobs was seriously ill from cancer and that there was little time to lose. Isaacson said he hadn
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Barbara
Apr 25, 2012 Barbara rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I downloaded the e-book on my iPad (quite fitting) Sun. night and stayed up until the very wee hours reading (on a work night, no less). Isaacson's writing style is very engaging and, at least so far, he seems to be embarking on a no holds barred, honest portrayal of this very admired, feared, respected, despised, controversial titan of industry.
As a college senior in '85, watching the iconic "1984" commercial, reading all about SJ & Woz and how they wanted to "change the world", I made it
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Katie
Oops! The publishers forgot to include a subtitle, so I've taken the liberty of helping them come up with one. May I suggest:

Steve Jobs: Unrelenting Narcissist, Suspected Sociopath and Giant Fucking Asshole

Isaacson writes a great biography: He tells a coherent, cohesive story, he interviews all the players and most important he doesn't feel the need to hoist his subject on a pedestal with his pen. When it comes to carrying a story, our author did all the right things.

His subject, however, left m
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Jane
Oct 30, 2011 Jane rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm still not entirely sure what to think. I keep flipflopping between annoyed/disgusted and inspired.

I applaud Isaacson for putting a masterful bio together without succumbing to the Reality Distortion Field and vomiting out a piece of Jobs-worship like some Apple/Steve-related books out there. I also really appreciate all these little anecdotes, some that I have seen before and others that are new and all the more enjoyable, that people that knew and interacted with Steve shared in one way or
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Jeffrey Keeten
Jan 08, 2012 Jeffrey Keeten rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was a little surprised when Steve Jobs died that I actually had an emotional reaction of loss. He was always such a warrior for technological evolution, conceiving products that we didn't know we needed until we held them in our hands. I didn't know I needed an iPod, now I can't travel anywhere without slipping 13,000 songs into my pocket. I now have a playlist for any situation, a wedding, a long drive, robbing a bank, meditation etc. What was so unique about Jobs was that he was a creative p ...more
Nawal Al-Qussyer
قرأته قبل شهرين، ولعلي أتذكر انطباعي التام عنه وأنا أكتب المراجعة متأخرة

هذا الكتاب هو كما يبدو، سيرة ذاتية للراحل ستيف جوبز الغني عن التعريف، طلب ستيف من والتر أن يكتب سيرته الذاتية، وكان صريحا فيها تماما وكان يقول له أكتب ماتريده وماقلته ولن أقوم بقراءة السيرة أصلا.
ذهلت كثيرا عند قراءتي لسيرته.لأسباب عديدة
كان كتاب طويلاومليء بالمواقف المهمة والأخرى الغير مهمة، والأخرى التي تفضح لك شخصية ستيف بدون أي محسنات

ذهللت كثيرا من الصراحة التامة ، وظهور ستيف جوبز كما هو، بدون تلميع للصورة وبدون أي تبجيل
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Zac
Oct 23, 2015 Zac rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
In a way, I regard this book as a balanced biography. Even though Walter Isaacson is apparently unsatisfied with having gotten all of Steve Jobs's shaft into his mouth and spends a lot of time sucking on Jobs's balls, his recounting of Steve Jobs's behavior left me unavoidably with the impression that Steve Jobs was a world-class asshole. Jobs is presented as so much of a whining, pathetic bully that I find myself glad that he died of pancreatic cancer, and I also find myself regretting that he ...more
Tressa
I knew that I would enjoy this book after reading the first few pages, but it far exceeded my expectations. I love learning the history behind products that I use or am familiar with, and Walter Isaacson's book lays out the history of every product Steve Job's is responsible for.

Laurene Powell, Jobs' wife, told Isaacson that she didn't want her husband's life whitewashed, and he certainly didn't. Along with Steve the brilliant innovator who knew how to bring together an A-list team of loyal emp
...more
Michael
Aug 12, 2013 Michael rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I started this book with two questions: Was Steve Jobs an asshole? And if so... did he need to be to accomplish what he did?

Having just finished it, I don't have a good answer to either question. In fact both seem foolishly simplistic given this rich, sweeping, detailed, and intimate depiction a truly remarkable man's life experience.

What I learned about Steve Jobs is that he was very good at some things, and very bad at others. Among the things he was very good at, his true genius lay in his ab
...more
Andy Matuschak
Isaacson's book reads just like a Time Magazine. I hate Time Magazine.

He prefers telling to showing in his prose, reminds us of his theses whenever they apply, and conveys emotion via bludgeoning, shallow diction. It's that last point that most bothers me, since it leaked into his disappointing performance as an interviewer as well: for instance, he notes dozens of times that someone wept after some event but does not follow up with questions of "why? would you have reacted that way now? how do
...more
William
I am a little surprised this book ended up being such a disappointment. Walter Isaacson just doesn't know that much about the tech industry and, despite the opportunity and access, didn't learn enough to make it interesting. The one saving grace was the participation of Steve Jobs, his friends, and family, and this alone rescues the book from a lower rating.

Granted, this biography is meant for a mass audience, not someone who is a regular listener of Apple podcasts (yes, like me). The early cha
...more
أشرف فقيه
لم أشعر بالحزن حين مات ستيف جوبز، لكني استشعرت الفقد وفداحة الخسارة حين وصلت لنهاية هذه السيرة التي تستعرض حياة أحد أهم الشخصيات التي صنعت ملامح حياتنا المعاصرة.
لقد كان جوبز شخصية فذة واستثنائية‘ في فهمه للحياة وفي فرضه لنمط من الإدارة والتصميم، في مجالات الحوسبة والاتصال والأفلام والموسيقى، تركت بصمة لا تمحى علينا جميعاً.
تم تأليف هذه السيرة بتكليف من جوبز نفسه الذي عرف أن السرطان لن يمهله فأراد أن يترك لأبنائه.. وللعالم أيضاً وصفاً لحياته الحافلة القصيرة.
أسلوب الكاتب رائع جداً وغير ممل بالرغم م
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Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist"
Walter Isaacson often uses the word "prickly" in reference to Steve Jobs's personality and management style. Remove the "ly" and you'll be closer to the truth. 'Nuff said.
Connie
Are you a fan of APPLE? Do you hate APPLE? Did you admire Steve Jobs? Did you hate Steve Jobs? No matter your answers, you *really* should read this book. There have been things about APPLE I always disliked. This book made me turn many of these things into things I no longer dislike, but also into things I now understand and yes, even admire. There was many many things I learned in here that I had no clue about. There is no way I think you can read this book and not just totally be in awe of Jo ...more
Rob
Mar 27, 2016 Rob rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Executive Summary: Despite my generally negative opinion of Jobs and my disagreement with his views of technology, I found this book excellent.

Audiobook: Dylan Baker's voice was instantly recognizable to me, even if I didn't know his name. Better known as an actor than an audiobook narrator, he nevertheless does a good job here. I'm not sure what to hope for with a non-fiction narrated apart from clear speech, good volume and inflection. You get all of that here. I tend to prefer to consume non-
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Caroline
May 20, 2015 Caroline rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Caroline by: Simon Howard
To date all my computer fanship has been geared towards Linus Torvalds and Linux, even though (for now) I limp along grumpily with Windows. Steve Jobs and Apple? Pah! I couldn't bear the snobbish one-upmanship rantings of Apple and it's aficionados. It was therefore with some hesitancy I approached Steve Jobs's biography. Someone I follow here at GR had recommended it, plus it had been sitting on a shelf in the library forever and I kept bumping into it.

So, in spite of my reservations I took it
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Linda
Dec 04, 2011 Linda rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Since his death in October, those of us who use Apple products and/or have a strong interest in technology have read various obituaries, tributes in blogs, and reviews of the Isaacson book. Like other books by Isaacson I have read over the years, this book is beautifully written, very well documented, honest in its criticism and praise of Jobs, and really compelling. The end is of course very sad, no matter how you may have felt about Jobs as a human being. He was both a creative genius and a ve ...more
Jeff Yoak
I'm going to post my blog entry on this in its entirety, even though it covers thoughts not strictly related just to the biography, but the biography inspired it all.

I recently finished reading Steve Jobs, the well-written and extensive biography by Walter Issacson. Apple's products, and accordingly Steve Jobs, have made a big impact in my life. First and foremost, computers add a lot more to my life than they would have without the products Apple makes, but also they've influenced my thinking a
...more
V.
Feb 26, 2012 V. rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Walter Isaacson is without a doubt everyone's favorite cherubic imp if only for his mastery of plural form of cherub, cherubim. Felt, at times, that I was reading words from a kindly yet still sharp aging European fairy tale writer. Isaacson, with an impish glance askew, picks out characteristics in people the way your grandfather might: either enveloping them in a warm but fair embrace, bringing them within inches of cherubic face while still rapping them gently for relinquished responsibilitie ...more
J
Jan 10, 2012 J rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I saw Walter Isaacson on the Charlie Rose Show, and bought the book with reservations since I had previously read his biography of Einstein where I found the author's concern with minutiae annoying and his writing style lack-luster at times. This didn't happen so much with Steve Jobs' Biography.

I recall Isaacson stating rather early in the book that he might be accused of writing something apologetic and perhaps maybe even stand accused of being under the spell of one of the most influential pe
...more
Kara
Fascinating bio of an American tech icon. I had known he was the notoriously difficult CEO of Apple and Pixar, but I knew little of his actual personal history. I enjoyed uncovering the Fifty Shades of Jobs - who knew he was a barefoot, bearded, unblinking vegan hippie at 17? Anecdotes about his refusal to shower and his inevitable BO being a professional problem were priceless (so contrary to my initial expectations). Yet as an obsessive perfectionist, motivator, visionary, product man...it's m ...more
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Walter Isaacson, the CEO of the Aspen Institute, has been chairman of CNN and the managing editor of "Time" magazine. He is the author of "Steve Jobs"; "Einstein: His Life and Universe"; "Benjamin Franklin: An American Life"; and "Kissinger: A Biography," and the coauthor of "The Wise Men: Six Friends and the World They Made." He lives in Washington, DC.
More about Walter Isaacson...

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“One way to remember who you are is to remember who your heroes are.” 379 likes
“If you want to live your life in a creative way, as an artist, you have to not look back too much. You have to be willing to take whatever you’ve done and whoever you were and throw them away. The more the outside world tries to reinforce an image of you, the harder it is to continue to be an artist, which is why a lot of times, artists have to say, “Bye. I have to go. I’m going crazy and I’m getting out of here.” And they go and hibernate somewhere. Maybe later they re-emerge a little differently. (Steve Jobs)” 249 likes
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