Google senior vice president of engineering Vic Gundotra posted a story about Steve Jobs from 2008 to his Google + profile. The Apple CEO had called Gundotra during a religious service and Gundotra apologized for not picking up the unidentified call. According to Gundotra: "He said, "'Vic, unless the Caller ID said 'GOD', you should never pick up during services.'" What was the call about? The Google logo. Jobs' concern? Gundotra writes that Job said,"I've been looking at the Google logo on the iPhone and I'm not happy with the icon. The second O in Google doesn't have the right yellow gradient. It's just wrong and I'm going to have Greg fix it tomorrow. Is that okay with you?"'
Tech pundit Robert Scoble essentially tells his life story through Macs, culminating with his interactions with Steve Jobs, in his self-reflective post published at TheNextWeb. Highlights: descriptions of Apple's manufacturing process filled with detail and beauty (a yellow floor, for instance), and insidery chit-chat with Jobs' first contractor--now a Silicon Valley restaurateur--who remembers arguing with Jobs about how to place wiring in a garage. But Scoble's real feeling comes in at the end of the piece: "For me, though, it all came full circle when I saw Steve Jobs launching the iPad 2. Here was a guy, doing what he is uniquely qualified for, and I just sat back in awe. After the performance I went up to Steve, snuck by Katie Cotton, his head of PR, and shook his hand and said “thank you for everything you’ve done for all of us.”
Allen Paltrow blogged about the time, when, as a kid, he got to attend the opening of the 5th Avenue New York City Apple store because he had (for NOT the first time) shaved the Apple logo into his head. He got a lot of attention. Make sure to check out the photos on the blog. According to Paltrow: "[Apparently the kid in the blue coat just said “I’m Apple’s biggest fan” to which Steve replied, “what about that guy”]." Paltrow was "that guy." The kid in the blue coat turned out to be a guy named Alex Godin, who saw Paltrow's blog post and shared the memory on Twitter this week. The Internet can be a small world.
When startup-scene veteran Mark Hedlund sat in on an Apple corporate meeting in 1999, he was most impressed with the way Apple employees responded to Steve Jobs (tons of applause) and the way Jobs responded to them. According to Hedlund's post, "Steve let the applause go on for a little bit, then, with much effort, settled down the crowd. When things got quiet, the first thing he said was: 'That's an awful lot of applause considering that you guys are the ones who do all the work.' Everyone leapt to their feet and applauded again for several minutes more, this time with Steve egging them on, applauding each other as a team."
Then-WSJ reporter Quentin Hardy thought it was "surreal" when Steve Jobs called him to offer up a quote for a seemingly minor news story. The phone rang, and "It was Jobs, offering to comment on Pixar’s earnings," writes Hardy. "It seems crazy in hindsight, but this was near the end of Jobs’ long season away from Apple. Pixar had the previous November released its first big hit, Toy Story, and in the same month had an IPO that beat Netscape as the year’s biggest. That heat had cooled, Woody and Buzz weren’t out on video yet, and with no second film in sight there wasn’t much news in the earnings. The paper had scheduled the story as a brief. Jobs picked up the phone himself, pointed things out, offering quotes, selling me, getting Pixar a bigger story in a so-so quarter."
Naturally, the media went to Steve Wozniak for a quote or two. Though the early Apple exec has probably already said all he has to say about his knowledge of Steve Jobs (the two aren't very close anymore), he did offer a few nuggets of wisdom:
- "Jobs always wanted to be an important person." "He wanted to do it by having a company."
- “Steve was very fast thinking and wanted to do things, I wanted to build things. I think Atlas Shrugged was one of his guides in life.”
A mom, who blogged about how her gadget-minded son's kindergarten teacher was able to get Steve Jobs to send the child an e-mail earlier this year, blogged again about how the news of Jobs' resignation affected the boy. The child, who has an imaginary computer company of which he is the CEO, was distraught that his erstwhile pen-pal and executive idol had stepped down from his post. Wrote the mom, "I took him into the rocking chair and explained how boards worked, and how Steve Jobs would still be involved with the board. We talked about reasons why people would want to retire and how a company is more than just one person. That Apple would still continue and if he feared that, I would happily take him to the store tomorrow where employees will inform him that they will still eagerly take our money for years to come. I will still go forward with the plan to upgrade my iPod and pass along my old one to him.
Lewis Dvorkin writes at Forbes.com that he remembers two incidents involving Steve Jobs. The first was when Jobs showed off an early Macintosh inside Dvorkin's office at Newsweek. The second was when Newsweek hired a court stenographer to catch every word of an interview granted to the magazine when Jobs left Apple the first time. Jobs was supposed to be on the cover that week, but an earthquake in Mexico took precedence, according to Dvorkin, and was supposed to end up on the cover. However, Dvorkin somehow dug up an image of Steve Jobs on the cover that week. He marvels, "I did a Google search tonight and found this cover image. I guess I was wrong, but I’m still not so sure."