[Video Link] BusinessWeek asked me to write my "Story About Steve." I never met Steve, but I had a story to tell. Here it is.
In May 2002 I got a call from my friend Alberta who asked if I'd like to be in an Apple TV commercial. Alberta had a friend who was an art director at Apple, and he needed people in Los Angeles who'd switched from a Windows machine to a Mac. That was me.
The next day, I got calls from Apple and Chiat/Day, and they e-mailed me a thick stack of forms to sign. Most of them swearing me to secrecy.
The day after that, I drove 15 minutes to a soundstage in Hollywood. At least 100 people from Apple and Chiat/Day were on the set. Errol Morris, the director, was hiding inside a white tent on the far end of the warehouse-like soundstage. I could hear his voice booming through an amplifier. Someone on the set told me he was using his invention called the Interrotron to interview the switchers. "Just wait until you see how it works," she said.
My taping was scheduled for 12 p.m. I was a little early, so I grabbed a bagel from craft services and looked for a place to sit. All the chairs on the set were occupied, but not by people. The Chiat/ Day workers had set their laptops and backpacks on all the chairs with hand-drawn signs that said "DON'T TOUCH." I asked a young woman in a smart gray outfit where I could sit. "Someplace outside," she said.
A decade ago, Steve Jobs admitted in an interview that Apple had the means to remotely kill core functionalities and apps on iOS devices. Apple purportedly made this possible to ensure that their hardware could not be taken over with malicious apps. I remember being very not OK with this, at the time. But over […]
The public myth of Steve Jobs’ bullying arrogance concealed a private reality of cruelty, coldness and spite. His daughter, Lisa Brennan-Jobs, exposes the “damning details” in her forthcoming book, Small Fry [Amazon]. But in a New York Times profile written by Nellie Bowles, Brennan-Jobs hopes all the same that others choose not to damn him. […]
Programming legend John Carmack shares stories of working with Steve Jobs. Jobs, Carmack writes, disliked computer games and their early prominence on the Mac platform — “Steve doesn’t like blood” — and yet… When my wife and I later started building games for feature phones (DoomRPG! Orcs&Elves!), I advocated repeatedly to Steve that an Apple […]
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