Not everything was technology for the innovator Steve Jobs, the humanities were also part of his passion and influenced his business decisions
Much of the vision of Steve Jobs in order to Apple It stems from his lifelong interest in humanities books, which gave the company that human touch. As Jobs said when introducing the iPadApple was never just a technology company.
“The reason Apple can create products like the iPad is because we have always tried to be at the intersection of technology and the liberal arts,” he said.
Steve Jobs arrived at that perspective through books, as can be read in the biography of Walter Isaacson and in other sources.
Business Insider put together a list of the 10 books that most inspired Steve Jobs.
10. Steve Jobs was passionate about William Shakespeare’s ‘King Lear’ in his final years of high school
Steve Jobs discovered his passion for books in the last 2 years of high school.
«I started listening to a lot of music and I started reading more outside of science and technology: Shakespeare, Plato. I loved it ‘The Lear King’He told Isaacson.
The tragedy could be a warning for a young Jobs, since it is the story of an elderly monarch who goes crazy trying to divide his kingdom.
“‘King Lear’ offers a vivid description of what can go wrong if you lose control of your empire, a fascinating story for any aspiring CEO,” he says. Daniel Smith, author of How to Think Like Jobs.
9. The CEO also enjoyed Herman Melville’s ‘Moby Dick’ as a teenager.
Another epic story that colored Jobs’s outlook as a teenager was “Moby Dick“, A deeply American novel by Herman Melville.
Isaacson makes a connection between the Capitán Ahab, who is one of the most motivated and stubborn characters in literature, and Jobs.
Ahab, like Jobs, learned a lot from direct experience, rather than relying on institutions.
“I attribute all honor and glory to whaling because a whaling ship was my Yale College and my Harvard,” writes the captain at the beginning of the story.
8. ‘The Dylan Thomas Poetry Collection’ appealed to Jobs for its popularity and creativity
Steve Jobs’ intellectual growth at the end of high school was not limited to tough megalomaniacs; he also discovered his love for books in verse, particularly the Welsh poet Dylan Thomas.
The author of “How to Think Like Steve Jobs,” Daniel Smith, says that Thomas’s poems “attracted him with their surprising new ways and unfailingly popular touch.”
Do not go gentle into that good night became one of the favorites.
7. Ram Dass’s ‘Be Here Now’ Supposedly Transformed Jobs When He Was In College
In late 1972, Jobs had just started at the Reed College, an elite liberal arts school in Portland, Oregon. He started taking LSD and reading many books on spirituality.
Be Here Now, a meditation guide from Ram Dass, it greatly affected Jobs.
Born as Richard Alpert, Dass offers an account of his encounters with South Asian metaphysics:
Now, although I am a beginner on the road, I have returned to the West for a while to resolve karma or broken commitment. Part of this commitment is to share what I have learned with those of you who are on a similar journey… Each of us finds our unique vehicle to share our wisdom with others.
For me, this story is nothing more than a vehicle to share with you the true message, the living faith in what is possible »
“It was very profound. It transformed me and many of my friends,” Jobs said.
6. Jobs stopped eating meat after reading ‘Diet for a small planet’ by Frances Moore Lappe
In that first year in Reed, Jobs also read “Diet for a small planet,” a high-protein vegetarian book that sold 3 million copies.
It was a breakthrough.
“That’s when I practically gave up eating meat forever,” Jobs told Isaacson.
The book had another effect on Jobs: It encouraged him to experiment with extreme diets like purging or fasting.
5. Jobs also started a juice detox diet after reading Arnold Ehret’s ‘Muscusless Diet Healing System’
Jobs continued experimenting with diets after reading “Muscusless Diet Healing System” by the German dietitian Arnold Ehret of the early twentieth century, which recommended practices such as “intermittent juice fasting.”
“I got into it my way,” Jobs told Isaacson.
After knowing the work of EhretJobs became something of a nutritional extremist, subsisting on carrots for weeks, to the point that, according to various sources, his skin began to turn orange.
Above all, don’t try this at home: Ashton Kutcher tried a fruit-based diet while preparing for his role as Steve Jobs, and ended up in the hospital.
4. Jobs read ‘Autobiography of a Yogi’ by Paramahansa Yogananda on the slopes of the Himalayas
Jobs read “Autobiography of a Yogi” by the Indian guru Paramahansa Yogananda when I was in high school.
He then reread it while staying at a guesthouse on the Himalayan slope in India.
The Apple founder explained: ‘There was a copy of Autobiography of a Yogi in English left by another traveler, and I read it several times, because there wasn’t much to do, and I walked from town to town and recovered from my dysentery ( gastroenteritis-like disease) ‘.
Unlike the disease, the book remained an important part of Jobs’ life. I reread it every year.
3. Jobs and Daniel Kottke became interested in the literature of the Beat Generation before their trip to India
Jobs and his best friend at the time, Daniel Kottke, read “On the Road” in the 2 years leading up to his trip to India.
Published in 1957, “On the Road” is a classic reading of the Beat Generation, a literary movement that explores American politics and culture after World War II.
The novel focuses on the travels of Kerouac through North America and Mexico with his friend, Neal Cassidy.
It’s a well-known reading about freedom, humanity, and self-discovery, and it was named one of the 100 best English novels of the 20th century by the Modern Library.
2. Jobs read ‘Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind’ by Shunryu Suzuki and attended classes taught by the author
After Steve Jobs returned from India, his interest in meditation continued to grow with books.
This was due in part to geography (California in the 1970s was the place where Zen Buddhism first took hold in the United States) and he was able to attend classes taught by Shunryu Suzuki, the Japanese monk author of “Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind.”
Like everything else, Jobs was very dedicated to Zen.
“He became really serious and conceited and, in general, unbearable,” he sentenced Kottke.
Zen has been a great influence in my life ever since. I thought about going to Japan and trying to enter the Eihei-ji monastery, but my spiritual advisor urged me to stay here (in California), ”Jobs told Isaacson.
1. The Innovators’ Dilemma by Clayton M. Christensen taught Jobs how not to lag behind with technology
Apple got into the habit of boycotting itself. The iPhoneFor example, it had many of the characteristics of the iconic iPod, rendering the music device obsolete.
Jobs could see that cannibalism was a necessary part of growth, thanks to the legendary professor’s “Innovators’ Dilemma” Clay Christensen from Harvard Business School.
The book posits that companies go bankrupt on their own success, staying committed to a product even after technology (and customers) advance, as it did. Blockbuster with the rental of physical films.
Jobs made it clear that the same would not happen to Apple, as he indicated in his explanation of why he needed to embrace cloud computing:
It’s important that we make this transformation, because of what Clayton Christensen calls “the innovator’s dilemma,” where the people who invent something are often the last to see further, and we certainly don’t want to be left behind.