Tag Archives: Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs Movie Begins Filming in the Original Apple Garage

Ashton Kutcher Stars in Title Role

LOS ANGELES, May 18, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — The film chronicling the life of Steve Jobs, the Apple Inc. co-founder and charismatic master of innovation, begins principal photography in June and in keeping with the project’s commitment to accuracy and authenticity, will film early scenes in the actual Los Altos home where Jobs grew up and in the historic garage where he and Steve Wozniak founded Apple.

Titled jOBS, the biopic stars Ashton Kutcher as the iconic Silicon Valley visionary, and will shed new light on Steve Jobs’ most defining and personal moments, motivations, and the people that drove him. The film covers Jobs from his early years as an impressionable youth and wayward hippie, through his initial successes and infamous ousting, to his storybook return and ultimate triumphs as a man who set out to change the world and did just that.

Executive producer Mark Hulme and Five Star Feature Films launched the production immediately following Jobs’ retirement in August 2011. Screenwriter Matt Whiteley, while penning the script, utilized a team of expert researchers based on months of exhaustive research and interviews with Steve Jobs’ friends, colleagues, and mentors to develop the most truthful and gripping picture of Jobs’ life.

From director Joshua Michael Stern (Swing Vote, Neverwas), and Oscar winning cinematographer Russell Carpenter (Titanic), jOBS details the major moments and defining characters that influenced Steve Jobs on a daily basis from 1971 through 2000.

jOBS chronicles the 30 most defining years of Steve Jobs’ life, as seen through his, colleagues’, and friends’ eyes. Dark, honest, and uncompromising, jOBS plunges into the depths of his character, creating an intense dialogue-driven story that is as much a sweeping epic as it is an immensely personal portrait of Steve Jobs’ life.

A rousing narrative of this business and tech icon, jOBS pulls no punches and does not speculate, telling only the candid and captivating account of the life of Steven Paul Jobs.

The film is represented by Creative Artists Agency.

jOBS will be released in late fall 2012. For more information go to www.thejobsmovie.com.

Steve Jobs Spent Final Birthday With Rupert Murdoch

 

Many people thought of Steve Jobs as a Liberal, and I can’t say that I’d blame them.  Al Gore is on his board of directors, he had offered to help Barack Obama create a campaign ad, and he was into all sorts of “hippie” stuff in his free time.  He even professed a love for the New York Times.  So imagine my surprise when I found out he was good friends with Rupert Murdoch.  How good of friends?  He joked that he would hide the knives in his house to protect Murdoch from his (admittedly) Liberal wife.  Upon learning this, I was fascinated.

Walter Isaacson’s biography of Jobs details the relationships that the gifted C.E.O. had with many titans of American business; from Silicon Valley to even the publishing world, Jobs was connected.  Steve was convinced that his iPad could do for news papers what the iPod had done for music, and as such, he had set about trying to convince publishers to create content for the iPad.  In particular, he was very worried about the New York Times.  He felt that they were declining, and that it was “important to the country” for them to figure out how to be successful in the 21st century.  He went so far as to make helping the New York Times “his personal project, whether they wanted it or not”.  Amazingly, the Times didn’t appreciate Jobs’s help, but do you know who did?  Rupert Murdoch.

Murdoch was open to the idea of making a newspaper that caters to the “USA Today crowd” that is only available on Apple’s iPad.  Many critics have panned the newspaper (called “The Daily”), but in working on that venture, Steve and Rupert formed a friendship that many would not have expected.

Admittedly, Jobs was not a fan of Glenn Beck or Sean Hannity, but he felt like their shows didn’t represent the Rupert Murdoch that he knew, and as such he ended up developing an admiration for the owner of Fox News.  Steve found a kindred spirit in Rupert.  They both believed each other to be men who had created and grown large companies that had managed to retain their “culture”.  They lamented how companies like Sony had stumbled and failed in that regard.  They also shared a desire to change the school text book industry.  They saw that the future was in digitizing text books, and with Apple’s iPad, Jobs had a keen interest in seeing that happen.

I found this chapter in Steve’s biography to be very interesting, and if you read the book, I strongly suggest that you don’t skip past it.  One of my favorite lines is when Jobs discusses inviting Murdoch to spend his final birthday with him.  He tells of how he had to “make sure that Laurene (his wife) didn’t veto the plan”…

“It was my birthday, so she had to let me have Rupert over.”   -Steve Jobs

Apple Knows How To Generate Revenue; Why Doesn't Our Government?

In light of the recent revelation that Steve Jobs told Barack Obama that he’s on his way to being a “one term president”, I thought I would share something with you that I originally posted on AiPolitics.me.  In it, I discuss how our politicians lack creativity when it comes to generating revenue, and that over-taxing us is not the way to go about improving our fortunes.

There’s been a story circulating lately that’s caught more traction than I thought it would.  You’ve probably heard it.  It’s the story of how Apple has more money than the U.S. government.  I’ve considered it a non-story, because the government makes (and spends) more money in fifteen days than Apple has after a decade of hard work.  So… I haven’t paid it much mind, but the story still persists.

And while I still believe it is, in fact, a non-story, I have realized that it contains a valuable lesson about “revenue”.  You see, our nation is in a rut when it comes to this subject; it’s as if we’ve simply run out of imagination.  And that’s sad, because imagination has long been one of our strongest exports.  But I digress… (sorry for beginning so many sentences with connecting words by the way)

Revenue is the life blood of any society.  In simple terms, “revenue” is money.  In broader terms, revenue is roads, hospitals, and air conditioning.  (blessed are those who have air conditioning)  Even if you hate capitalism, you need revenue.  The Soviet Union didn’t have enough of it, and the Berlin Wall came down.  Incidentally, Germany is doing quite well these days.  Revenue is how I see my family that is thousands of miles away from me.  Revenue is how we got to the moon.  Revenue is how you are reading this right now.  There is no free lunch, free ride, or free internet.  It all costs money.  And money is revenue.

So how do we get it?  There are various ideas of how to do that, but the proof is in the pudding.  The countries with the most financial resources almost always use capitalism or have a free market mechanism of some sort.  The countries where people die of thirst and have no food generally have a poor mechanism for generating revenue, but still they employ deficient techniques so long as the dictators have mansions or palaces.  (with air conditioning, of course)  But… this piece is not about the promotion of free markets; it’s about revenue.

So again, I ask, how do we get it?  Well, if you ask our current politicians (most of them Democrats), they would tell you that we raise taxes.  They equate raising taxes to creating revenue.  And in a sense, they are correct.  If you charge more for a product, you will get more money per product, therefore you should have more money at the end of the day.  But… That’s not how life works.  Usually when you make things more expensive, fewer people buy them, so at the end of the day, you can actually have LESS money in your coffers.  Think about it:  Is Walmart the biggest retail chain in the world, or is Neiman Marcus?  Volume usually wins at the end of the day.

So what does this all have to do with Apple?  Apple updated their operating system for their Mac computers earlier this month.  And by “update”, I mean they created a whole new product.  The new operating system is leaps and bounds more sophisticated than the previous (and popular) one.  Typically, an operating system is worth every penny of $100-$200, and that’s the price that is generally charged.  Apple is in a unique situation.  They sell almost every piece of equipment they make, and their fans are generally quick to adopt their new software.  If Apple charged $100 for Lion (their new operating system), it would sell like gangbusters.  But… they didn’t.  They sold it for thirty bucks.  You read that right.  The software that makes their insanely popular computers so popular retails for $29.99.

Do you want to know why Apple has more money on hand than the U.S. government?  If Barack Obama headed Apple, and not Steve Jobs, Lion would sell for $200.  Don’t believe me?  Look how much Microsoft sells Windows 7 Professional for.  It retails for $199.99.

And that’s what I mean when I say our politicians lack imagination.  Our government wants to tax people and make things more expensive in an effort to raise their revenues, when there are other ways to make money.  Drilling in our coast would be a great start.  Which makes more sense?  Taxing gasoline more so that we drive less (therefore we shop less and do less commerce in general, thus costing revenue), or drilling in the coast?  If you drill, then the oil companies get taxed every step of the way from the equipment they use to how they distribute the oil to the profit they make on it.  That’s a lot of revenue we are missing out on.  Then the gas stations sell more gallons (each being taxed, thus generating revenue), and the more trips people make to the gas station, the more likely it is they are going to buy additional products from there (which all get taxed, generating revenue).

I’m telling you folks that volume wins.  Ask Apple.  Ask Walmart.  Ask the “old” United States.  Volume wins everyday, every time.  So why do we limit our volume?  To paraphrase @IowaHawkBlog, “Sell more tacos; don’t charge more for them”.

So even if if I originally thought of this as a non-story, there’s still a lesson to be learned.  Apple knows how to generate revenue, and it’s sad that our government does not.

What (currently) unexplored ways of making revenue do you think our government is missing out on.  Let me know in the comments below.  Maybe we can send some suggestions to Washington.

Occupy Wall Street: American Capitalism and Free Markets (Part 2 of 3)

The American economic system is the best ever devised; businesses provide commodities to satisfy a consumer’s need or want. If that business cannot satisfy the consumer or does not change, they simply go away. While our OWS protestors carry an anti-capitalist, anti-corporate theme, the greatest contributions to mankind have occurred under the very banners and some of the worst atrocities have occurred outside of these themes.

The main theme of OWS is the greedy one percent capitalist like Apple’s founder, Steve Jobs. Steve is the 43rd richest American. Apple develops products that have enhanced lives for nearly five decades. People voluntarily exchange their money to experience what Apple products provide. Throughout the nation, protestors took time from protesting to purchase the new Apple iPhone and pay tribute to Steve Jobs. So, how do people like Steve Jobs (RIP), Richard Simmons (worth $325M), Rosanne Barr ($80) and Susan Sarandon gain the support of the protestors and others are demonized?

One of the greatest environmentalist’s was John D. Rockefeller, the oil tycoon. You won’t find his picture hanging on the walls of Green Peace or PETA. But in the late 1800s, oil from whales was used for kerosene and they were on the verge of extinction. Rockefeller introduced a cheaper, inexpensive fuel that revolutionized our lives. During that time, the price of oil dropped from 30 cents to 6 cents a gallon. Essentially, the innovations of Standard Oil saved the whales but we would never know that.

The greatest form of economic democracy is the Free Market, and this only occurs with capitalism. As a consumer, you take your votes (dollars) to whatever business provides the best for their consumer. If that business does not satisfy the voter, you may take your votes elsewhere. Throughout our country’s history, businesses have never been too big to fail. Before there were behemoth discount stores like WalMart and Target, we had K-Mart and prior to that JC Penny, Sears and Woolworth. All these stores at some point appeared to corner the market and were too big to fail. The innovations these stores brought to retail sales provided us all a better life and ensured that our lives were made better.

So, when Occupy Wall Street protestors demand government intervention for protection, remember that this will be placing another layer of glass upon our society. It is these protections that actually protect these big organizations because it stifles small businesses to become bigger. It limits the common everyday man from their ability to provide for one another and us from reaching our full potential. Hopefully, politicians, bureaucrats and OWS protestors do not throw out the baby with the bath water, or bite the hand that feeds them…whether it’s invisible or not.

Steve Jobs And The Speech I’ve Never Forgotten

Note:  This post was originally featured on AiPolitics.me on August 25th, 2011 in observation of Steve Jobs stepping down as CEO of Apple.  It is with great pain that we tell you Steve Jobs has died today (October 5, 2011).  He had been battling pancreatic cancer.  He was a pioneer, an innovator, and one this country’s greatest talents.  He will be missed.

In light of Steve Jobs’ recent resignation, I’d like to share a video that some of you may have already seen.  For those of you who haven’t, it’s really a treat.  It’s his 2005 Stanford Commencement Address.

For those of you who have seen it, whether just now or in the past, I’d like to share my thoughts on it.

To most observers in my life, I’ve been more optimistic than what they felt should be warranted.  Few people in my family had graduated high school, and not many expected that I would.  But I did.  When I joined the military, some people thought I was throwing away my life.  But I wasn’t.  When I started this website, people said that no one would listen to me.  But you have.

I have had naysayers in every venture I’ve taken on.  I have naysayers with this website that you’re reading right now.  I have had people cling to my feet like shackles and impede most every step I’ve tried to take, and yet I still march on.  When I saw this video for the first time, I was amazed to see someone articulate the way I had always felt.

Many people in life do not want to climb the metaphorical mountains that lie before us.  They claim that they are too tall.  They instead choose to follow a tunnel that someone else has dug, regardless of where it might lead.  Even worse, some others decide to live at the foot of that mountain and spend the rest of their lives in its shadow.  For those of us who climb the mountains, it can be a lonely and seemingly worthless enterprise.

When I first saw this commencement address, I saw someone who had climbed the same kinds of  mountains that I felt I was trying to climb.  And hearing Steve’s stories “proved” to me that it was not going to be a worthless enterprise.  That knowledge was invaluable to me, because it validated how I had always felt inside.  I’m not going to lie.  Knowing that the trek wasn’t “worthless” did nothing to make it seem less lonely, but seeing someone who had plied a similar path come out on the other side was a feeling of inspiration that I cannot describe.

I don’t often look at Steve Jobs as the myth that many people have come to see him as.  I tend to have a rather objective view of life.  But even with that objectivity in mind, I can tell you that Steve Jobs has left an indelible mark on our culture in more ways than many of us even realize.

A piece is floating around Twitter right now that discusses the over 300 patents with his name on them, but for me, Steve’s philosophy is what has always stuck with me the most.

Feel free to share your stories where you have over come an obstacle that no one thought you could.  You never know, it may inspire someone else.

– Ai

 

Note: Again, when referring to “this website”, the piece is referring to AiPolitics.me where it was originally posted.

If We Can't Have Chris Christie, Let's Try Frankenstein

Let’s be honest, most people who plan to vote Republican in 2012  are not satisfied with the current field.  Two of the most recent examples are the rise and plummet of Rick Perry and the near comical begging of Chris Christie to get into the race.  Although… he did seem to take a curious tack for a man who wasn’t running…  But I digress.

Republicans are looking for a hero.  Heck, they might even be looking for a sandwich.  A lot of polls make it seem like President Obama would lose if he went up against a ham sandwich, but when you put him up against any one of these contenders who are actually running, he usually comes out ahead.

So what are conservatives to do?  Since it looks like Rick Perry’s plan to make offspring from Newt Gingrich and Herman Cain has little chance of happening, maybe they’ll have to see if they can clone some sort of monster together from various parts of the current contenders (and possibly some people who aren’t running too).

Let’s see what we can come up with….

1.  Chris Christie’s ability to control the media.  Remember when it looked like Sarah Palin couldn’t adequately tell Katie Couric what kind of magazines she read?  Yeah… Chris Christie won’t have that problem.

2.  Herman Cain’s relatability.  Whether he’s cracking jokes in a debate or telling you about his battle with cancer, Herman Cain is a man that many Americans can relate with.  (minus the incredibly non-PC stuff… and then again, there are people who relate to that too)

3.  Steve Jobs’ “Reality Distortion Field”.  Steve Jobs has a reputation for being able to distort reality to such an extent, he can tell you that your laptop doesn’t need a DVD drive, and you’ll believe him.  In a way, our current president has this ability too.  Remember when Barack Obama said you can keep your doctor if you want to?  Or how about “unemployment won’t go over 8%”.  When you’re a politician, few things are more valuable than being able to make things up and get away with it.

4.  Sarah Palin’s seemingly airtight background.  A guy moved into the house next door to Sarah Palin, and the best he could come up with is that she might have slept with Glen Rice in college.  He’s not the first “journalist” that’s wasted their money on a goose hunt to make Palin look bad.  Remember the emails?  Media outlets killed about 20 trees printing those emails up, and it looks like they found nothing.  I wonder what Obama’s emails look like?  Think Solyndra.  But, again, I digress…

5.  John Huntsman’s resilience.  He has all but had his podium toilet papered by audience members at debates, and he keeps showing up.  No matter how many times he’s been defiled on Twitter (does that word fit in this context, because it seems like it could) or how much Fox News tries to neglect him, John Huntsman walks around with all of the swagger of a top tier candidate.  (something Rick Santorum could learn from)

6.  John Stewart’s ability to get more credit than he deserves.  Again, this is something that Barack Obama already exhibits, but you cannot deny how invaluable it is to receive awards and accolades that you may or may not deserve.  (think emmys, nobel prizes)  And having the entire weight of American media telling everybody that you’re great doesn’t hurt either.

7.  Bill Clinton’s teflon coating.  If all else fails, and a candidate is really backed into a corner, it helps to be able to get off the hook by debating what the definition of “is” is.  Also go back to number two; the electorate will often overlook your flaws, if they think you can “feel their pain”.

8.  Dwight Eisenhower’s vision.  One of my favorite stories of all time is how we ended up with the great system of highways we have in this country today.  Eisenhower often spoke of his admiration for Germany’s system of roads compared to ours. (he even gave credit to them for making it easier to take Germany in WWII)  Once he became president, he made sure that the United States got their own system of roads that made it easier to travel throughout the country.  An interesting side note is that mass transportation hippies were against him, but Ike prevailed, and for that I thank him.

9.  Elton John’s mojo.  Elton John is like the honey badger of pop culture; he just doesn’t give a… well, he just doesn’t care what others think.  He knows how to party, he can laugh at himself, and somehow, he can be “proper” enough to do everything from singing at Princess Di’s funeral to singing at Rush Limbaugh’s wedding.  Add that to the fact that he’s been relevant for nearly 40 years, and you’ll be hard pressed to find a man who has more mojo.  Also… he sang the hit song from The Lion King.  The man has range.

10. Ronald Reagan’s worldview.  There is audio as far back as the 1940′s demonstrating that Ronald Reagan saw the world for what it is.  He was often able to identify what the problems of the day really were (versus what spin doctors said they were), and he was keenly aware of how to solve them too.  If we had leadership like that today, we could see “morning in America” once again.

If we can’t get Newt and Cain to make babies and we’re open minded to the idea of cloning, this list just might be all the ingredients necessary for a perfect candidate.  What do you think the Republicans need to win?  Who should (or should not) have been on this list?  Let us know on Facebook, Twitter, or in the comments below.  We’d love to hear from you.

 

Apple CEO Steve Jobs Resigns

The man that saved Apple is leaving his position as CEO probably for reasons of health. “I have always said if there ever came a day when I could no longer meet my duties and expectations as Apple’s CEO, I would be the first to let you know. Unfortunately, that day has come.”, said Jobs in a statement. Jobs will instead serve as chairman of the board of directors.

Jobs rescued Apple in 1997 when the company had racked up almost $1.9 Billion in debt and was reportedly only 3 months from bankruptcy.

Now Apple is the second most valuable company in the world and while most of that success has come with Jobs at the helm, but “he hasn’t been a driving force for the past two years” said Daniel Genter of RNC Genter Capital Management.

After news of his resignation came out, technology futures took a step back. The NASDAQ-100 derives 2/3rds of its value from technology companies and it slid almost a full percent on the news. Investors will likely be cautious with the stock until confidence builds in Jobs’ successor. A successful launch of the iPhone 5 later this year could be just the confidence builder the company needs.

Chief Operating Officer Tim Cook succeeds Jobs as the CEO. When Jobs handed his resignation to the board today, he reportedly also strongly recommended Cook for the position. His 13 years of experience running sales, manufacturing and distribution at apple should make for a smooth transition for the technology giant.

Apple users may be hopeful that the succession means that Adobe’s Flash technology might be allowed on Apple products. Steve Jobs’ adamant opposition to the technology has been the major reason for its absence on the ubiquitous platform. With Jobs’ serving as chairman of the board though, a change in the near future is unlikely.

Jobs ended his run as Apple’s CEO with this letter:

To the Apple Board of Directors and the Apple Community:

I have always said if there ever came a day when I could no longer meet my duties and expectations as Apple”s CEO, I would be the first to let you know. Unfortunately, that day has come.

I hereby resign as CEO of Apple. I would like to serve, if the Board sees fit, as Chairman of the Board, director and Apple employee.

As far as my successor goes, I strongly recommend that we execute our succession plan and name Tim Cook as CEO of Apple.

I believe Apple”s brightest and most innovative days are ahead of it. And I look forward to watching and contributing to its success in a new role.

I have made some of the best friends of my life at Apple, and I thank you all for the many years of being able to work alongside you.

Steve