* he listens carefully to the customer - not just pretend, but truly understand the issue from the customer's point of view
* he then allows his engineering manager to present the counterargument - to understand what the current situation is
* he's able to then follow the back and forth of what is presumably a highly-technical conversation. Most CEOs would at this point defer to their technical person's opinion, as they would be unable to follow such a nuanced conversation.
* he then makes the call - you'd be surprised by how rare the simple ability to make a quick decision is
* he then has the power to make the internal team do what is required - again, you'd be surprised how in some companies internal teams ignore or subvert the leadership's directions
What this incident shows is his singular ability to listen to customers, conceive of the ideal product in his head and make the team deliver it. That explains a lot of his success.
PS None of this should be construed as absolving any of Jobs' negative personality traits.
To paraphrase The Dude, Steve Jobs wasn't wrong, he was just an asshole.
It's not exactly uncommon to have the choice between one option that's clearly better technically, and another that's easier to implement with the limited time and resources you have, or more compatible with customers' peculiar needs, or a better fit for now-clearly-unwise decisions made in the past.
And usually you pick the technically inferior decision with a little sigh and a feeling of regret that the right business decision isn't the right technical decision.
But if the CEO has just shouted at you that you have to do the technically right thing ... well, getting shouted at is seldom fun, but it's got to make a pleasant change to be not just allowed but instructed to do whatever it takes to go with the design you think is "ideal".
And I have to say, I think I'd rather work for someone who shouted at me when I'd genuinely got something wrong, but listened to me when I was right than someone who was always polite, but made bad decisions.
Of course this wouldn't work for everyone, and of course it would be better if he was nicer to people, but still...
He was deeply technical. He began his career as a programmer at Atari.
Jobs had many traits that would lead a psychiatrist to classify him as sociopathic - not mass murderer type, but the psychological type. For example, his complete lack of empathy towards his daughter, who he refused to acknowledge for a long while. One of the weird traits of sociopaths is that to navigate world that requires understanding of empathy and emotions, an understanding they don't have, they build models of human behavior and can choose to deploy those models when required toward their aims. What's interesting also here is his ability to be singularly brutal to his subordinate, while at the same time be completely empathetic to the customer's view point. Just my amateur psychologist 2c, but that combination of brutality on one side with solicitousness on the other adds weight to my view that he was a high-functioning sociopath.
I think one of his key strengths was the ability to know if someone knew what they were talking about and to recognize outstanding people - in any field. So many Apple stories, from early times to more recent, are about how he always hired the very best people, and then somehow made them do the best work they ever had. I think he could just tell if someone had the fire inside them, and knew how to fan those flames.
If I remember correctly, Steve Jobs got hired at Atari because he showed them a board for some arcade game that Steve Wozniak had designed and conveniently forgot to tell them that he didn't actually design the thing.
I also think I read that Steve Jobs lied to Woz about how much Atari paid him for it so he could cheat Woz out of the money.
I'm pretty sure I read about this in a book called "The Ultimate History of Video Games". 
I think a good firsthand example is a one hour q&a with developers he did in 1997 soon after returning to Apple:
He doesn't necessarily show off deep technical knowledge, but he is able to discuss strategy about technology directly with developers. Managing technology is his competitive advantage.
It's absurd that anyone would.
There might be reasons why he acted like an asshole, but he still acted like an asshole, in my opinion.
IIRC, Walter Isaacson talked about Steve Jobs' childhood -- he struggled with the emotion that he was an adopted child for years. He felt like a total liability for him to have been put up for adoption, that he wasn't wanted. He felt that was an incredibly cruel thing to do to a child.
As a form of "revenge" for being put up for adoption, he denied paternity of his daughter around the same age his parents put him up for adoption, so that he could "experience" what it felt like when the direction of cruelty was reversed (from victim to oppressor).
There's the famous Tim Cook story where he gets his point across, but instead of shouting, he's just ice cold:
> ...One day back then, he convened a meeting with his team, and the discussion turned to a particular problem in Asia.
> “This is really bad,” Cook told the group. “Someone should be in China driving this.” Thirty minutes into that meeting Cook looked at Sabih Khan, a key operations executive, and abruptly asked, without a trace of emotion, “Why are you still here?”
> Khan, who remains one of Cook’s top lieutenants to this day, immediately stood up, drove to San Francisco International Airport, and, without a change of clothes, booked a flight to China with no return date, according to people familiar with the episode. The story is vintage Cook: demanding and unemotional.
I prefer Steve Jobs' shouting, but direct management anytime.
I’m willing to bet everyone else in that room, from that day forward, whenever they heard Tim Cook say “someone should” take charge of a situation that they were responsible for, just said, “I’m on it”, immediately stood up, left the meeting, and made it happen. And that’s a scalable, sustainable, well-oiled machine. The fact that Tim could set that up with a single cold, pointed comment to demonstrate how he expected his staff to respond to him is what makes the story.
The meetings where Tim said someone should do something and someone just did it without any further bureaucracy or follow-up emails about action items or specific allocation of tasks to individual people: those meetings don’t make a good story.
There are ways to be make a point powerfully without screaming or being rude.
At my last job a director (that eventually became my boss) got angry with me because I called the product I worked on a “piece of shit”. He said while the product was “suboptimal”, my language was offensive. I told him that what I found truly offensive was the millions of dollars a month our company was losing because of this “suboptimal” product, and that no one would let me fix it.
The reaction of the same person should be different if the work environment never had the f- word pronounced though. That would mean trouble.
Uh, yes? I mean, that's only one of the many reasons I wouldn't work in a trading pit on Wall Street, but unless they've just killed someone there's never a good reason to cuss out your subordinates. If it's "just part of the culture," then that culture sucks.
The impressive character was Carmack.
God, I miss the mythos of Steve.
I mean, he has had almost complete knowledge of the stack along the years. Whereas a lot of CEOs just get in large companies at some point of their life because a new CEO is needed.
The story recounted here is a concise demonstration of some aspects of leadership — decisiveness, fairness of discussion, and as mentioned the confidence to steer a large company.
But in these stories the means by which those aspects are demonstrated are colored by toxic masculinity. The rage with which Steve is attributed, the combative or abusive belittling he was known for & demonstrated here is the the very same toxic interpersonal dominance normalized by mass culture as essential male behavior.
There are emotionally supportive ways of doing exactly what Steve did. Perhaps his success could have been even greater had he executed what seems to have been an innate wellspring of leadership ability with a supportive disposition.
You're absolutely right there's toxicity everywhere. To infer from the presence of toxicity in a given domain — say, "masculinity" — that the phrase "toxic masculinity" somehow means "all masculinity is toxic" is, I submit, more reflective of your worldview than it is of the term's legitimate users' views.
Additionally, the central claim of toxic masculinity is basically that certain aspects of masculinity are universally toxic, which is really the only reason for such a term to exist. Aspects of most things are sometimes toxic, and thus don't deserve their own term.
IMO, the level of general acceptance that the concept of toxic masculinity has is mostly a product of the moral high ground that it's proponents currently hold in the culture and not because of serious intellectual underpinnings. The whole thing requires very specific framing that seems to have been constructed by starting with the conclusion and working backwards from there.
And then to be told those are "bad" too?
That's absolutely universally toxic to men's mental health, unless you can suggest to me a circumstance in which that's healthy, correct, and appropriate?
Regardless, that's a straw-man notion of the term. Healthy aspects of a thing, over-valued or under-corrected, can become unhealthy, too.
For example, "Boys will be boys." There's a legitimate idea behind that phrase: we want to encourage boys to be risk-taking and adventurous. It's also used to excuse a lot of shitty behavior, which teaches boys that (their) shitty behavior is tolerated.
Please tell me how that's not inherently toxic.
EDIT: And maybe you're just talking to the wrong people; the folks I talk about these things with absolutely talk about toxic femininity.
But in regards to your edit, yes it's very possible that we're just talking to very different groups of people. I have to admit that I typically interact with people who either have no interest in this at all or who are taking it too far and are overly zealous. And of course, I'm not going to get a great picture of things as a casual observer on the internet either since that tends to bring out the worst in people.
If anything, it implicitly suggests the opposite. Otherwise the "male" adjective wouldn't be necessary.
Some terms are needlessly specific.
That same lenient view extends to other behaviors. Think how many times you’ve seen men described as “assertive” and “commanding” when women with similar personalities are described as “bossy” and “demanding”. That is what the term “toxic masculinity” tries to convey: behaviors that would otherwise be seen as obnoxious or outright abusive are applauded or tolerated because Steve Jobs was a male CEO. He was enabled, by the simple fact of owning the right set of genitals, to get away with it and be widely remembered as a “genius” rather than a pushy boss.
Now, does that mean only males can assholes? Absolutely not. But we do get a lot of slack before judgement kicks in.
And how many time have you seen men describe as sick or under the weather as being "weak" or "faking" with women under similar situation getting support and sympathy? What term should we use when the simple fact of owning the right set of genitals dictate if someone is a risk or an asset?
The only terms we really need to describe this is gender roles and gender expectations. "toxic masculinity" and "toxic feminist" belong in the same bucket of political slurs that server no benefit over the more political neutral terms other than expressing abuse towards 50% of the population.
I don't even know how to reply to this straw man. Have you ever had that happen to you or any of your friends? I know a lot of my female friends, sisters and girlfriends have been assaulted or harassed. My female friends? Can't think of a single one.
> And how many time have you seen men describe as sick or under the weather as being "weak" or "faking" with women under similar situation getting support and sympathy?
That's kind of the point, isn't it? This expectation that everyone needs to act like the idealized "man" makes people judge harshly people who aren't. That's pretty much the definition of toxic masculinity.
> What term should we use when the simple fact of owning the right set of genitals dictate if someone is a risk or an asset?
> toxic masculinity" and "toxic feminist" belong in the same bucket of political slurs
If you take it as a slur, that might tell you more about you than about the term. Personally, I'm a heterosexual male and I don't take either term as a slur. Maybe it's because I've been affected by it (e.g: not playing soccer while growing up in Argentina made me a "pansy" or "effeminate") so I'm aware of the nuance.
Do I know a specific case where that happened. Yes. Is it documented, yes. Was there a police report, no.
> "That's pretty much the definition of toxic masculinity."
So sexism towards women is "toxic masculinity" and sexism towards men is also "toxic masculinity". That is a nice loop.
One could easily make the same argument that the expectation that women needs to act like the idealized "woman" is toxic femininity, or can we only blame the victim if its men and not women?
Of course I have heard the phrase, I don't live under a rock. It's mostly in the context of relationship strife either at work or at home: "you should man up and tell them X, Y or Z".
Again, it's the perfect example of toxic masculinity: the person saying that is assuming that a "man" would do this or that, just because of their gender.
> So sexism towards women is "toxic masculinity" and sexism towards men is also "toxic masculinity". That is a nice loop.
Notice that I haven't brought up sexism, which is a more general topic. The reason the term applies to both men and women is because "toxic masculinity" is not about "men vs. women" but about "society vs. anyone who doesn't conform to norms". The same applies, if you will, to "toxic feminism". The main difference is that - going full circle - our society was built on the needs and wants of men so suggesting that things like "women need to look like barbies" or "women shouldn't be bossy" were concocted by feminists is a bit of a stretch (that's why the term "toxic feminism" doesn't make much sense).
I'm really not following your accusation that I'm "blaming the victim". How is saying "hey guys, this society has some really bad ingrained behavior" blaming anyone, and in particular, how is it blaming the victim?
I don't just find such theories utterly tiresome just because they don't have any anchoring in history, but untestable theories are worth exactly as much as any other untestable theory.
BTW, I don't try to attribute cancer, earthquakes or global warming to toxic masculinity. That was a pretty lame attempt at "reductio ad absurdum".
Maybe if you were able to divorce yourself from the massive chip you seem to be carrying on your shoulder, you would see that I'm not even "accusing" males of doing this or the other thing, just presenting an explanation to a term.
(BTW, I'm also fascinated by you worrying about birth rates in Western vs. other countries as a "problem". Very, very weird.)
When you use those concept like blank permissions to explain any problem than what you have done is presenting your bubble as truth. Its pretty lame of you so some sarcasm was prescribed as a needle.
If you are indeed fascinated that there exist writing that both complain about low birth rates and high birth rates the I guess read more? Not sure why you attribute that as something I worry about.
Can you point exactly where I did that?
> Gender roles and gender expectation has exist for as long as archeology can dig up information about the past, and its rather ridiculous to blame that on men.
Again, you keep using the word "blame" when nobody is blaming anyone. Why do you have to take it personally? I am a heterosexual male. I don't take it personally. Why would you?
> When you use those concept like blank permissions to explain any problem than what you have done is presenting your bubble as truth.
I never said this or that generated all problems, I just gave you an explanation of what the term "toxic masculinity" was, you felt attacked and then tried to put words in my mouth.
> Its pretty lame of you so some sarcasm was prescribed as a needle.
You are the who used sarcasm (what do you think reductio ad absurdum is?) to try to invalidate an argument. I wouldn't go around riding that high horse if I were you.
> Not sure why you attribute that as something I worry about.
Well, you clearly used that as an example of a "problem". I usually don't include things I don't worry about when I make a list of "problems". But hey, to each their own!
I never even questioned the facts about birth rates, just said it was weird for you to worry about it. The fact that you are patting yourself on the back about "reading more" without actually reading what I wrote speaks volumes.
Easily: "our society was built on the needs and wants of men" - dguaraglia
Blaming men for the creation of gender roles and gender expectations holds no anchoring in reality. When it is used as an excuse to explain all negative gender roles for both women and men as "toxic masculinity" then I will call that bubble out for what it is. A untestable theory with nothing to support it, but that is instead used as an term of abuse.
Gender roles and gender expectations is ancient, and if someone is honestly interested in whom caused those to exist then we have to follow research from archeology, anthropology (with its many subfields), sociology, and others. To explain why "women need to look like barbies" and "men need to look like providers" we got to do better than say that its because of men.
Again, using that word: blame. Where did I blame anyone? Stating something is very different from blaming.
How can you claim "it holds no anchoring in reality" when to this day there are huge swathes of the world where women are considered second class citizens or even property? Explain how female genital mutilation or how "honor killings" are done with the woman's welfare in mind. To this day, most religions don't accept women in positions of power. Even in our secular institutions (like Congress) men are overrepresented by a huge margin. The best example of how lopsided the whole thing is was that famous "Senate health panel" that was in charge of redrawing the whole healthcare policy for Trump... not a single woman in sight. Until very recently women couldn't vote, work or even make decisions over their own health.
Heck, if you want to get whacky, read on the "men rights" movement. You'll realize there's a substantial number of males in our own country that think women should be subservient to men and stop asking to be treated equally. Just look at the crap published by sites like Breitbart talking about "setting limits on how many women should be allowed to study STEM".
I could buy the argument that gender stereotypes evolved together with us, blah blah. But that doesn't explain why in a society like ours where food and shelter are no longer a concern, people are still so reactionary. Seems like a fear of losing power, if you ask me.
> To explain why "women need to look like barbies" and "men need to look like providers" we got to do better than say that its because of men.
What's your working theory? For someone so reluctant to accept that men might have something to do with it, you present very little in terms of alternatives.
If men created gender roles and gender expectations then a few predictions should be made, so I will state three. 1) During war women should be drafted into the military and put in the fire line before men. 2) gender roles should change during historical time when a queens hold power. 3) as creator of gender roles they should be able to change gender role as is seen fit.
Through history its common that those in power draft proportional from subjugated groups during war. Slaves, criminals and unwanted was put forward as cannon fodder in many wars, Africans was the majority of the fighting forces during the colonial times and African-Americans were often disproportionately drafted in the US between the period of first word war and Vietnam. Slave labor is also a common theme between the powerful and the subjugated and used in almost every place in the world
An other prediction is that we should expect to see changes when the gender of those in power are changed. The Victorian era is strongly associated with gender roles. The era is named after Queen Victoria's reign and there is nothing to imply that gender roles was somehow reversed during this era. There is no identifiable pattern in history that the gender of those in power has an impact on gender roles.
The third one is rather long story but I will describe a anthropology writing about a famous African tribe that managed to stay fairly isolated and static until the 90s. Children of both sex stayed with their mother until around 10 years, after which they were split into male and female areas. The boys had their genitalia ritualistic cut by the elder men during which if they made any sound they would cast great dishonor on their family. The researchers were not allowed in the female sections but reportedly similar rituals was held by the elder women. After which the boys was group into semi-similar age groups and teached the way of the warrior, ending with a test where they went in alone in the forest without anything except a spear and was only allowed to return if they killed a lion. If they survived the trial they where given the title warrior and a wife that the female elders selected. The warriors then regularly raided every few years with machetes and spears and died usually rather young.
Now setting aside which life was worse, who held power in this culture? Could a man dictate who married who? No. Could a man decide that he was not going to get ritualistic cut or that he choose not to enter the jungle? No. Could a man decide that he did not want to go and raid? No. Could he dictate who married who? No. Similar a woman could not decide to go hunting. A woman could not decide to eat meat. A woman could not decide to not get ritualistic cut. The roles was laid out with almost a literal line in the village between women and men. The elder men held power of the men and the elder women held power over the women.
Then during the 90s a change did happen. The elder men changed the details about what the men in the village would do. A civil war had killed a massive number of the men, and later tourism started to compete as primary source for food. This resulted in a stop in the warrior culture and boys were no longer required to go into the jungle and kill a lion or raid. The elder women also change their side a bit, primarily by putting children of both genders into school. genital mutilation is still common for both genders and it is still the elders that decide who should marry who, but slowly those things are eroding through cultural homogenization.
Which gender held a position of power in that village in the past, and which gender holds one today? A major part of gender roles is that they split power along gender lines where crossing them is forbidden. Taking a historical perspective, the feminist movement spearheaded the movement to abolish gender roles but it sadly gave up on those around the 70s and is today more focused on who holds positions of power. This has resulted in very little progress to eliminate gender roles in the last 50 years. "Men rights" movement is both young and split with parts that is competing with the feminist movement about positions of power and the other that tries to take up torch against gender roles which the feminist movement abandoned. Examples of the later is those that fight for more women in the military, equal rights for adoption (and the right to start a family), the elimination of alimony and child support, and gender neutral efforts to reduce gender segregation.
> What's your working theory?
The two cores in gender roles is that women raise families and men support the raising of families. We see this in dating and in studies of inter-sex competition. A prediction of this is that we see exaggerated gender role behavior when a individual is among their own gender. Since it is about social rank we should expect to see the behavior starting at very early age and much earlier than puberty. Dating statics also show a identical correlation along those gender roles, where male success is about showing how they can support the raising of families (job, wealth) and female success is about showing how they can raise a family (hip size and so on). If we want to stop those gender expectations then we have to eliminate those gender roles, and I would predict it would cause a huge change for gender segregation in the work market.
I'm actually kind of surprised by your ability to misreading the same thing over, and over, and over again. You are still pushing this idea that "men created gender roles" and throwing a wholehearted defense against it. Why don't you try "society normalized gender roles around the needs of the physically stronger sex" and see if that removes the edge?
> ...then a few predictions should be made, so I will state three.
I could come up with 20 predictions that do match the hypothesis. In fact, I did in my earlier post, just make my statements into predictions: "in a society that revolves around the needs of men, women wouldn't be allowed into positions of power", "in a society that revolves around the needs of men some form of genital mutilation that discourages women from exploring their own sexuality could be used as a method to subjugate them", etc. etc.
It's also hard to follow your example of "disproven predictions", as sometimes their link with the topic at hand is very tenuous. But let's take for example your first two:
1) You claim women were not used as warriors, so that's proof "men" don't control the narrative. There's plenty of arguments against your point:
a) maybe that's more to do with the fact that women as property are valuable, whereas sending a street urchin to war doesn't hurt the powerful people at all?
b) in modern societies being a "warrior" conveys power and a social position; just think about how many men in power come from a military background and connect that with the constant conservative movement to keep women out of the military
c) a battle might be won by brawn, but war at large is won by logistics; I'd recommend you read about the "home front" and how women have always played a major role in keeping the war machine humming along while the "warriors" kill each other. Maybe the "laborious home maker" gender stereotype serves its purpose better than sending women to the frontline?
2) You claim that gender roles didn't change during Queen Victoria's reign. And yet, that's exactly the timeline of her reign matches almost exactly the timeline for the Suffragette movement in the UK: https://www.bl.uk/votes-for-women/articles/womens-suffrage-t.... The Suffragette movement wasn't just about putting pieces of paper in a box, but largely about recognizing that women were equal citizens and as such should have the same rights as men.
3) I can't for the life of me identify where your long exposition about this African tribe intersected with your third point.
> "Men rights" movement is both young and split with parts that is competing with the feminist movement about positions of power
Again, our Congress is largely male. How are these "men rights warriors" trying to "regain" terrain, when they are still winning by a solid 30 to 40%?
> and the other that tries to take up torch against gender roles which the feminist movement abandoned. Examples of the later is those that fight for more women in the military, equal rights for adoption (and the right to start a family), the elimination of alimony and child support, and gender neutral efforts to reduce gender segregation.
I really can't follow what you are saying here. Are you saying that all those are feminist positions and now the "men rights" movements are trying to destroy them? I guess I have issues with some of those points being actually feminist positions (right to adoption? The elimination of alimony? When were those feminist issues?) If so, what do you think is the motivation for the "men rights" movement to attack those positions?
> If we want to stop those gender expectations then we have to eliminate those gender roles, and I would predict it would cause a huge change for gender segregation in the work market.
How so? You are saying that removing the stereotype somehow will broaden the breach that extends along the stereotypes? Sounds very, very far-fetched to me. It's like saying "letting black people work in desegregated workplaces will generate even more segregation".
And I am surprised by your ability to miss the point over, and over and over again.
If "society normalized gender roles around the needs of the physically stronger sex" then that mean society should maximize safety needs for the stronger sex. For every step we should see men having it superior and better than women. This is not true and has never been true.
We see more men being put in jail them women, but its the opposite for african american and white.
If "society normalized gender roles around the needs of the physically stronger sex" and we look at the results, then we could almost use the exact same data to prove that society normalized race around the needs of the african americans. They get put in jail more. They got drafted in the army more. According to you that is a sign of power and social position.
> just make my statements into predictions
That is not how predictions work. A flat earth person could say "if I predict that looking out at sea I will see an edge" or "if I look at the sun I see the face of god". Predictions need to be testable and falsifiable.
> b) in modern societies being a "warrior" conveys power and a social position;
So white men conveys African-Americans power and social position when they disproportionately drafted them? That is an interpretation that the african-american will disagree with you on. Power and social position is not granted when by force someone is put into the fire line.
> War at large is won by logistics
Its ridiculous argument that it servers men to be forced to stand in a fire line rather than be protected at home.
> You claim that gender roles didn't change during Queen Victoria's reign.
Your ability to misreading caused trouble for you. Queen Victoria's reign is infamous for rigid gender roles and trying to paint that period as a time of progressive change in gender roles flies against common knowledge.
> Again, our Congress is largely male. How are these "men rights warriors" trying to "regain" terrain, when they are still winning by a solid 30 to 40%?
They don't. "Mens rights warriors" fighting against "social justice warriors" is a boring side show and thankfully the wast majority of the population seem to not care. When they do care its because media loves to focus on it with the sad effect of increasing polarization.
The feminist position is currently define as post-modern feminism, which came from modern feminism that came from diversity feminism that in turn came from equality feminism that ended around the early 70s. Equality feminism held the idea that men and women are more similar than not and thus gender roles are an hindrance for equality. Diversity feminism holds the opposing view, and want to focus on the diversity but still keep equal outcomes. Diversity feminism won over the movement, and modern feminism is derived from that point of view. Post-modern is still being debated.
> what do you think is the motivation for the "men rights" movement to attack those positions?
The part of the movement that want equality is mostly copying the views that the equality feminism held 50 years ago. Gender roles are bad, there is more in common than differences, and anything that differentiate on the basis of gender is inherently immoral.
Example: Should all children have a human right against religious genital mutilation? Currently only one nation has such law and that is island. Here in Sweden when the political leaders was asked if they wanted a similar law, only one out of 8 established parties said yes and that was the representative for a center-right party. By happenstance she is also the only female political leader that explicitly do not define herself as feminist. I find it strange that in order to support such law the only choice for voters is the conservative right block.
A gender neutral human rights law for children against genital mutilation is directly opposed by political leaders in Sweden that identify as feminist, including the minor feminist party. Instead its a mens right argument and center-right on the political plane. The mens right argument is that the gender of the victim is irrelevant when someone is putting a knife to a child and starts cutting. It should illegal regardless if its a boy or girl. The feminist movement disagree.
> feminist positions (right to adoption? The elimination of alimony? When were those feminist issues?)
Guess which political movement and which decade that Sweden eliminated alimony among other law texts that had the word "woman" or "man" in it. If the guess is the "feminist movement" and "around the 60s" then you would be right. Currently only a handful of laws still exist which treat women and men differently, one which sadly have a profound effect on how victims of crimes get treated.
> You are saying that removing the stereotype somehow will broaden the breach
I am not sure if you intentional are misinterpreting here. Eliminating gender roles would turn the tide and finally reduce gender segregation and make society more equal. The trend for the last 50 years is an increase gender segregation in the work force, where currently only 10% of the population work in a profession which has better than 60:40 in gender segregation.
Imagine how the conversation could've gone if the engineer had agreed with Carmack and Jobs didn't. "Well, yeah, that approach could be better...". Jobs would've probably cut him off for not towing the company line and fired him.
I guess I kind of assume everyone knows Jobs was insufferable at this point.
Not really. That's not my interpretation of the story at all. People who judge others for being a jerk in isolation lose the fact that it often comes with the territory of being a visionary or extra-effective at their job.
Sure, it'd be great if Jobs was nice. It'd also be nice if your middle manager who knows your dog's name and loves his family was as smart as Jobs. But skills are finite and scarce, and almost no one develops them all, a lesson many D&D players learn immediately after rolling a character.
Jobs was a dick. But that was the price. If someone is a dick and half as smart and effective as Jobs, yeah, that's a negative. For someone like Jobs, Carmack (plenty of stories about him that are "negative" as you say, I might add), and other 4+ SD talents, it comes with the package. Expecting otherwise is folly.
That's certainly what all the assholes claim.
... if the people you're trying to make a point to are also all assholes, because the assholes are in charge, and have exclusively promoted assholes to leadership roles.
Look at Theranos, for example. The CEO was practically a Jobs impersonator. From the turtlenecks and the air of brilliance to the controlling, abusive, and secrecy-oriented behaviors. How many people fell for the fraud? And I can't count the wantrepreneurs I've come across that had similar theories.
Jobs made a huge success 3 times:
1. the Apple II
3. return to Apple and transforming it from 90 days to bankruptcy to the biggest corporation in the world
You can ascribe one of the above to luck, but faced with all three, Jobs was just that good, and made his own luck.
It's the difference between being effective and being Cargo Cult Steve Jobs. Far too many baby entrepreneurs try to mimic Jobs' behaviors, but fail to couple it with any sort of skill or good taste.
His success was being involved with people with genius and vision that were willing to put up with his shit.
Pixar wanted to be a studio, Jobs wanted it to be a hardware/software company. The people of Pixar forced Jobs into letting it be what it is today.
Jobs recognized Ive for what he is and then Apple became what it is today.
Like I said, Jobs was good at latching on to people with vision and genius to make what him what he is.
Jobs had a controlling interest in Pixar. Nobody forced him. Pixar would have gone bankrupt without Jobs. Apple would have gone bankrupt without Jobs. Apple would never have existed and we'd have never heard of Woz without Jobs.
Nobody is that lucky. It's like winning the lottery 3 times. Once is luck. 3 times means there's a guiding finger on the roulette wheel.
I think Woz is down on Jobs, but Lasseter, Catmull, Ive, Cook, Fred Anderson and others all spoke highly of him.
Really expressing creativity in computing requires a richer interface, at least a keyboard and a mouse.
BTW things that Ive wasn't involved in when SJ returned to Apple:
- Bring Next software to Apple and create OSX from it
- Software UI/UX design (Ive is mainly a product designer. And it's much more than "let's make colorful plastic" but how to do it so that it looks right, in which colors or how do you actually build this so that it is thin but resistant)
- Simplify product lines and improve focus
- Be involved in the "Think Different" campaign (the bozos at the top level wanted to go with a "We're back" campaign that was proposed to them)
Which was in no way an accident.
Jobs talent was identifying these people, and building environments around them that maximized their talents, while also identifying how to translate those ideas into products people wanted to pay money to buy.
He could sell, but as a side effect.
I see this too often from fellow developers - anyone pushing business objectives and strategy instead of engineering choices is a "salesman". It's not true at all.
Calling Jobs a salesman is like calling Einstein a Civil Rights campaigner. Certainly they both did that, and did it well, but it sort of misses the major thing they were good at.
Did Ive make the brilliant decision for the 4-square powerMac/iMac product strategy abandoning the dozens of previous models?
I'm guessing no.
What if we can't find them because we let coercive assholes run amok, seizing advantages and damaging people in ways that make it hard to create non-coercive structures that are also highly creative and productive?
One of the issues with modern world is that big talkers are rewarded over reserved more knowledgeable people. The more you appear online, the more you talk in meetings and the higher profile you appear the more likely you are to be promoted. It is the way of the world.
Also, every C level guy(also middle management wannabes) impersonates Jobs.
Well, it's not like she made any effort to conceal it. In fact, she was very public about her desire to appear like Jobs.
In short, why do you believe that Steve Jobs was remotely close to being a genius, and what made Elizabeth Holmes do to lead you to believe she also met you definition of a genius?
At 4:00 in this video they talk about Holmes fake "deep voice". I think its pretty clearly her fraud tendencies run really really deep. I don't think you could trust anything you think makes her a genius. The only things we actually know about her is that she could get into Standford, where she dropped out. She could also raise money really well.
I don't think she is by any means dumb. But there is absolutely no evidence of genius.
Didn't you just criticize it by the category? When I was raising capital I definitely heard VC's making fun of men who spoke in a false voice, practiced their handshake, or artificially held eye contact way too long.
I'm fine if you want to say my criticism of Holmes is influenced by sexism.
But to make the statement that men speaking in a stupid fake voice get zero criticism... is hyperbole to point ridiculousness.
This was literally made fun of in a meeting two days ago for a vendor I work with.
Is raw intelligence or wisdom more important for success in biotech? It seems to me that raw intelligence is useful when studying systems that are either designed rationally or can be understood easily from a mathematics perspective. On the flip side, I think experience is important when dealing with biology which is often messy and not easily understood because so much is still unknown and everything is the result of an accumulation of random variations.
The industrial drug development process is one of the most technically complex, risky and highly regulated processes in industry. You basically need PhD level experience in almost a dozen distinct technical domains to get a drug approved. Most biotech VCs prefer CEOs with decades of drug dev experience because they know where the pitfalls are and how to execute better
That said, Ive heard a very experienced biotech VC / former big pharma drug developer describe the process of developing a drug as "hanging on by your fingernails", and the traditional dyed in the wool drug industry strategy has pretty much put the industry on a long term declining trend, so maybe experience isnt as powerful as the industry tells itself
The self-serving genius is roughly equivalent to the pychopath. Once you begin to look for these antisocial behaviors among so-called geniuses you'll see a frightening pattern.
What were either of them geniuses at exactly?
You can also learn how to do it if you don't have one by studying those who do.
Regardless of how someone ends up with the ability, I don't think it's unfair to refer to it as genius, even if it's specifically based on emotional intelligence. They're just on a completely different level in comparison to the general population when it comes to bending others to their will and getting their way.
These tend to coincidentally crop up every year just before a WWDC and the September iPhone drop.
A CEO of a company has role power, but that's really the least effective. If the employees don't respect thier managers, the managers can't be effective.
It's usually used by production workers, but developers will also Work-to-Rule (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Work-to-rule) and do the bare minimum.
I don't know of any non founder CEO that can inspire workers (or investors) to follow them in a completely different direction.
Jim Black's facebook page says he's VP at Magic Leap, so this must be him:
Looks like this was during his second stint at Apple, where he stayed for just 1 year, before going to NVIDIA for 16 years.
He did have a previous stint at Apple from 1992-1997, so 5 years.
Was it the watchmen comedian logo?
John Carmack in 1997 wearing what is presumably the exact shirt.
You can download recordings of his tournaments, where you can freely change your POV to thresh, or his opponent, or just fly around, and watch him play. Pretty amazing skill!
> Watchmen Smiley Face: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Watchmen#/media/File:Watchmen,...
I showed my dad and I still don’t know if he was impressed that I figured out how to do that or thought I should see a psychiatrist.
Oh, and the Comedian just wore a regular smiley button. The blood was his own, spattered from when he was thrown from a building. No bullet hole.
It's not like the stories about Carmack make him out to be a saintly, fuzzy human but I will definitely give him credit for standing firm on some big ideals/principals, even if I don't share them.
I guess I just hope that you can (a) be really good at your work - like -genius good - and also (b) a decent, empathetic human being.
Wishful thinking? maybe, but I don't really want to be top-level successful if you've gotta choose.
Being good at something and not being toxic to humans you interact with are absolutely orthogonal -- it's just that a lot of geniuses can get away with being douches, that we let it happen.
Absolutely. Those are the people we should want to work with and strive to become.
i mean, i've never worked with him, but he's apparently great.
Knuth doesn't consider NON mathemetical flaws to be bugs.
John replied, “I wanted to ask him what would happen
if you put more than one key on a keyboard.
But I didn’t.”
I would pay to see his happy deadpan delivery of that question to Steve Jobs and enjoy the pause after that.
The mouse, while designed to help quell those fears, was still a part of the computer and still scary to those people.
The number of buttons probably didn't matter in the whole scheme of things. They would've been afraid of it regardless. But his instinct was already to remove anything from a design that wasn't absolutely necessary. So it fit with his way of thinking to suggest that people wouldn't use a mouse with two buttons. If eliminating one button could make those people less afraid of the computer, then that was the way to go.
All that said; I too thought that mouse sucked. But I was a power user by then and it wasn't designed for me.
Not really. More like they were terrified that the keyboard would shoot out sparks and fire, and throw them across the bridge of the Enterprise.
If it doesn't do what one wants it to do, it's worth $0 to them.
Weird how “writing portable software” was (and in many places still is) considered deep wizardry. I remember the timeframe described here and indeed “porting our software to a non-Windows platform” was on every company’s list of things they’ll never have time to do, because everyone’s code base was so thoroughly (often unnecessarily) tied to Win32. The bad ol days...
Different platforms often have totally different graphics APIs. Even when platforms share APIs, driver quality, compliance, and fast paths vary greatly. The Mac still used a completely different processor architecture from the PC at the time of this story, requiring platform-specific optimizations and approaches.
Games, particularly cutting edge ones that demand performance, and especially from that era, are much more likely to need to be tailored to their platforms.
The other thread mentions the business cost of releasing and supporting these other platforms, which I totally understand.
But I agree. I remember being impressed at seeing boxed Linux copies day one.
Yet today we can still wait YEARS for Mac ports of games, if we get them at all, even though they’re using a cross platform engine.
For this reason, from a business perspective, it makes sense to write games only for Windows. Anything else is bad business.
Well, at this time most code had OS-specific hacks for performance reasons…
In terms of diplomacy and tone, Steve Jobs doesn't do well in this story. However, for intellectual and engineering integrity, he's in entirely different league from most US politicians. From what I've seen, the typical US politican would rather puff up and pretend their constituent's majority position is scientific fact than actually engage with science, fact, and expertise.
I think this is a good way to sum up his genius abilities: 1) An ability to see past consensual illusions to engineering and design truths and first principles. 2) A low ability to transmit such insights in a diplomatic way. (Though, given a position of power, his messages are unambiguous and highly persuasive. Effective != moral, however.)
>"When do you hold the bus?"
>The great football coach John Madden was once asked whether he would tolerate a player like Terrell Owens on his team. Owens was both one of the most talented players in the game and one of the biggest jerks. Madden answered, "If you hold the bus for everyone on the team, then you'll be so late you'll miss the game, so you can't do that. The bus must leave on time. However, sometimes you'll have a player that's so good that you hold the bus for him, but only him."
>Phil Jackson, the coach who has won the most NBA championships, was once asked about his famously flakey superstar Dennis Rodman, "Since Dennis Rodman is allowed to miss practice, does this mean other star players like Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippin can miss practice too?" Jackson replied, "Of course not. There is only room for one Dennis Rodman on this team. In fact, you really can only have a very few Dennis Rodmans in society as a whole; otherwise, we would degenerate into anarchy."
>You may find yourself with an employee who fits one of the above descriptions [heretic, flake, or jerk] but nonetheless makes a massive positive contribution to the company. You may decide that you will personally mitigate the employee's negative attributes and keep her from polluting the overall company culture. That's fine, but remember: You can only hold the bus for her.
Really exceptional people often get exceptions. One challenge may be that more people think they are really exceptional, than really are really exceptional.
Thank you. That is definitely a huge if. And shaq vs MJ's Bulls in 2000 could've been a must watch. Bulls would definitely make some adjustment to get some fresher blood. But just as they went through big man's era, their answer would probably not get one or two big men to go head to head against shaq. They played in their own way and took advantage of opponent's weakness.
14 May at 17:27 ·
My wife once asked me “Why do you drop what you are doing when Steve Jobs asks you to do something? You don’t do that for anyone else.”
It is worth thinking about.
As a teenage Apple computer fan, Jobs and Wozniak were revered figures for me, and wanting an Apple 2 was a defining characteristic of several years of my childhood. Later on, seeing NeXT at a computer show just as I was selling my first commercial software felt like a vision into the future. (But $10k+, yikes!)
As Id Software grew successful through Commander Keen and Wolfenstein 3D, the first major personal purchase I made wasn’t a car, but rather a NeXT computer. It turned out to be genuinely valuable for our software development, and we moved the entire company onto NeXT hardware.
We loved our NeXTs, and we wanted to launch Doom with an explicit “Developed on NeXT computers” logo during the startup process, but when we asked, the request was denied.
Some time after launch, when Doom had begun to make its cultural mark, we heard that Steve had changed his mind and would be happy to have NeXT branding on it, but that ship had sailed. I did think it was cool to trade a few emails with Steve Jobs.
Several things over the years made me conclude that, at his core, Steve didn’t think very highly of games, and always wished they weren’t as important to his platforms as they turned out to be. I never took it personally.
When NeXT managed to sort of reverse-acquire Apple and Steve was back in charge, I was excited by the possibilities of a resurgent Apple with the virtues of NeXT in a mainstream platform.
I was brought in to talk about the needs of games in general, but I made it my mission to get Apple to adopt OpenGL as their 3D graphics API. I had a lot of arguments with Steve.
Part of his method, at least with me, was to deride contemporary options and dare me to tell him differently. They might be pragmatic, but couldn’t actually be good. “I have Pixar. We will make something [an API] that is actually good.”
It was often frustrating, because he could talk, with complete confidence, about things he was just plain wrong about, like the price of memory for video cards and the amount of system bandwidth exploitable by the AltiVec extensions.
But when I knew what I was talking about, I would stand my ground against anyone.
When Steve did make up his mind, he was decisive about it. Dictates were made, companies were acquired, keynotes were scheduled, and the reality distortion field kicked in, making everything else that was previously considered into obviously terrible ideas.
I consider this one of the biggest indirect impacts on the industry that I have had. OpenGL never seriously threatened D3D on PC, but it was critical at Apple, and that meant that it remained enough of a going concern to be the clear choice when mobile devices started getting GPUs. While long in the tooth now, it was so much better than what we would have gotten if half a dozen SoC vendors rolled their own API back at the dawn of the mobile age.
I wound up doing several keynotes with Steve, and it was always a crazy fire drill with not enough time to do things right, and generally requiring heroic effort from many people to make it happen at all. I tend to think this was also a calculated part of his method.
My first impression of “Keynote Steve” was him berating the poor stage hands over “This Home Depot shit” that was rolling out the display stand with the new Mac, very much not to his satisfaction. His complaints had a valid point, and he improved the quality of the presentation by caring about details, but I wouldn’t have wanted to work for him in that capacity.
One time, my wife, then fiancée, and I were meeting with Steve at Apple, and he wanted me to do a keynote that happened to be scheduled on the same day as our wedding. With a big smile and full of charm, he suggested that we postpone it. We declined, but he kept pressing. Eventually my wife countered with a suggestion that if he really wanted “her” John so much, he should loan John Lassiter to her media company for a day of consulting. Steve went from full charm to ice cold really damn quick. I didn’t do that keynote.
When I was preparing an early technology demo of Doom 3 for a keynote in Japan, I was having a hard time dealing with some of the managers involved that were insisting that I change the demo because “Steve doesn’t like blood.” I knew that Doom 3 wasn’t to his taste, but that wasn’t the point of doing the demo.
I brought it to Steve, with all the relevant people on the thread. He replied to everyone with:
“I trust you John, do whatever you think is great.”
That goes a long way, and nobody said a thing after that.
When my wife and I later started building games for feature phones (DoomRPG! Orcs&Elves!), I advocated repeatedly to Steve that an Apple phone could be really great. Every time there was a rumor that Apple might be working on a phone, I would refine the pitch to him. Once he called me at home on a Sunday (How did he even get my number?) to ask a question, and I enthused at length about the possibilities.
I never got brought into the fold, but I was excited when the iPhone actually did see the light of day. A giant (for the time) true color display with a GPU! We could do some amazing things with this!
Steve first talked about application development for iPhone at the same keynote I was demonstrating the new ID Tech 5 rendering engine on Mac, so I was in the front row. When he started going on about “Web Apps”, I was (reasonably quietly) going “Booo!!!”.
After the public cleared out and the rest of us were gathered in front of the stage, I started urgently going on about how web apps are terrible, and wouldn’t show the true potential of the device. We could do so much more with real native access!
Steve responded with a line he had used before: “Bad apps could bring down cell phone towers.” I hated that line. He could have just said “We aren’t ready”, and that would have been fine.
I was making some guesses, but I argued that the iPhone hardware and OS provided sufficient protection for native apps. I pointed at a nearby engineer and said “Don’t you have an MMU and process isolation on the iPhone now?” He had a wide eyed look of don’t-bring-me-into-this, but I eventually got a “yes” out of him.
I said that OS-X was surely being used for things that were more security critical than a phone, and if Apple couldn’t provide enough security there, they had bigger problems. He came back with a snide “You’re a smart guy John, why don’t you write a new OS?” At the time, my thought was, “Fuck you, Steve.”.
People were backing away from us. If Steve was mad, Apple employees didn’t want him to associate the sight of them with the experience. Afterwards, one of the execs assured me that “Steve appreciates vigorous conversation”.
Still deeply disappointed about it, I made some comments that got picked up by the press. Steve didn’t appreciate that.
The Steve Jobs “hero / shithead” rollercoaster was real, and after riding high for a long time, I was now on the down side. Someone told me that Steve explicitly instructed them to not give me access to the early iPhone SDK when it finally was ready.
I wound up writing several successful iPhone apps on the side (all of which are now gone due to dropping 32 bit support, which saddens me), and I had many strong allies inside Apple, but I was on the outs with Steve.
The last iOS product I worked on was Rage for iOS, which I thought set a new bar for visual richness on mobile, and also supported some brand new features like TV out. I heard that it was well received inside Apple.
I was debriefing the team after the launch when I got a call. I was busy, so I declined it. A few minutes later someone came in and said that Steve was going to call me. Oops.
Everyone had a chuckle about me “hanging up on Steve Jobs”, but that turned out to be my last interaction with him.
As the public story of his failing health progressed, I started several emails to try to say something meaningful and positive to part on, but I never got through them, and I regret it.
I corroborate many of the negative character traits that he was infamous for, but elements of the path that led to where I am today were contingent on the dents he left in the universe.
I showed up for him.
This was Ibsen's method as well. Notoriously, if he needed a private tutorial, say on an aspect of physics for a play he was writing, Ibsen would make outrageously false statements about the relevant physics in front of a Nobel laureate in physics in order to provoke exactly the energetic private tutorial he needed, from an expert. Didn't give a shit about embarrassing himself.
I'm a tech consultant and am typically brought in by C-suite operators to assist them with deeply technical decisions. I tell clients out of the gate that what we're going to recommend will probably be 10% my firm's ideas and 90% ideas gleaned from interviews with their own personnel, slightly repackaged, better sold, but always attributed to the originator.
Most great leaders have character flaws. Some of them are very obnoxious petty people. See Nick Saban or Michael Jordan.
Steve Jobs pushed people to achieve extraordinary things. My guess is they would not have achieved many of those things without his influence and authority. That's what great leaders do.
But it's true. If you are a selfish narcissistic jerk people remember that too. Maybe more than what you accomplished.
Jobs was constantly called by HR for meetings during late 80's due to his behavior. Source - Steve Jobs book
and neither does software ...
For some reason that doesn’t sound dramatic without the possibility of someone being yelled at or fired.
Ironically, your approach is no different than the persons you're criticizing. You're also basing your opinion on 1% of the dataset, just a different 1%.
I wish this were true. Yet I've been so many projects around me go months and even years down some very-clearly wrong direction, because the engineering lead refuses to course correct. Typical patterns are:
- The system design attempts to address "future" issues, making it two orders of magnitude more complex than necessary.
- The eng lead wants to "get it right from the beginning." So months later, you have a beautiful CI pipeline, coding standards, base classes, etc, and still no usable prototype.
- Trying to solve all possible use cases, with one system.
- The above, but then focusing on just one use case so narrowly, the rest have to be crammed in.
I could keep going. These are cases when you need a decisive (and technically sharp) manager above to call bullshit and rip the bandaid if necessary.
(but that's not to criticize your details, I love those details.)
So it's perfectly possible that had the head of graphics gone for what he knew was the ideal solution in the first place, he would have been yelled at by Jobs for that. It wouldn't be the first time that a HiPPO caused a boss to do a 180 and implicitly blame the underlings rather than own up.
Managers such as steve jobs don't make technical decisions. They specify requirements which then need to be met by the tech guys. This anecdote sounds an awful lot like a manager changing his mind regarding a requirement after he was pointed out a technical consequence.
It’s entitely possible he previous shot down the correct way because it would take too long for too small a benefit.
Steve Jobs, Elon Musk, Bill Gates, Jack Welch, Mahatma Gandhi, John D. Rockefeller, ...
Gates has himself admitted himself that he was a bully, so I think we can all agree that he was not a nice CEO.
Sounds like John Carmack and Doug Englebart are on the same page:
How Douglas Engelbart Invented the Future.
Two decades before the personal computer, a shy engineer unveiled the tools that would drive the tech revolution. By Valerie Landau, Smithsonian Magazine, January 2018.
>In 1979, Xerox allowed Steve Jobs and other Apple executives to tour its labs twice, in exchange for the right to buy 100,000 shares of Apple stock. Once Jobs began working on these ideas, they became even more streamlined. Engelbart’s mouse had three buttons, which he used in different combinations to perform a range of tasks. After licensing this invention from the Stanford Research Institute, Apple decided it would be simpler to give it just one button. Engelbart lamented that the mouse’s capability had been dumbed down to make it “easy to use.”
The “Only I know best” types tend to flame out before they get the Jobsian Success. (Even Jobs needed to crash and burn one and a half times)
Perhaps if you want to build the kind of good will that allows Neo Apple to sell the torture devices they today call products at the rates they do, you should be more concerned with the direction of your engineering department, and less with who is or is not an "asshole". I don't even like Steve Jobs, in fact, I think Steve Jobs' life may be a net negative for my life, if not the world at large, and I think that the way he treated his kids is unconscienable, but it is not acceptable to let compromise be the norm in your engineering department. Just look at the situation now, as it relates to graphics drivers on OS X, and you'll see why the whip must be cracked.
Regarding the fact that your petty compromises add up to a broken product, ignorance is not an excuse. It is not "empathic" or "compassionate" to allow the ego of one person (the compromising engineer) destroy the efforts of thousands (everyone else who depends on the success of the product).
Empathy without foresight is somehow even worse than greed without conscience.
These two people know what they're talking about.
One if them is arguing against his own interests because he's convinced it's the right thing to do.
The other one agrees, but thinks that it's impractical.
So the decision comes down to: Would I rather do it right, or be practical? And that's entirely at the discretion of the guy in charge of the project.
It's worth noting that no one was trying to sell anything here, unlike the situation's you're describing.
It seems like based on that vague description, John wasn't necessarily arguing against his own interest and Apple engineers might have had to consider constraints that neither Steve or John was familiar with. Take for instance Steve's response to John's disliking for the iMac mouse -- in this case, Steve quoted "every study" that there were usability issues with first-time users.
But on the topics of OpenGL security, his trigger word, it seems, was "ideal."
I'm going to assume you meant "didn't". My point is that he didn't have to. Decision makers rarely have an expert understanding of what they're deciding on, but that's ok, because their value in the process is making a decision. For the most part I'd go so far as to argue that it doesn't even matter that they make the right decision, just that they make a decision.
Look at the Linux Desktop, my favorite whipping boy. How many different implementations are there of pretty much every layer of that monstrously fragmented beast? Is this because everyone who made these things is stupid? Probably not, they just all have (sometimes vastly) different opinions on how things should be. If, in the early days of the Linux Desktop, someone had been able to say "this is the way it will be done, end of discussion"* and have people listen we might have a stable and consistent free desktop os today. What if all the effort that was spent endlessly reinventing the wheel had instead been spent on a singular vision? It would still have its warts and quirks sure, because sometimes bad decisions would get made, but I'm pretty confident it'd be a damn sight better than what we have now.
*Some will argue that the value in the Linux Desktop is precisely because no one can do this. They're not wrong, they just shouldn't be surprised that most other people want something different from their desktop os.
You would guess that people of this stature would know better...
Not sure about Jim Black.