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乔布斯:苹果的灵魂

乔布斯:苹果的灵魂

http://www.ftchinese.com/story/001031158

乔布斯:苹果的灵魂
作者:英国《金融时报》 理查德•沃特斯 2010-02-04



7年前,某家大型科技公司的全球知名老总,常常谈到一款他推动开发的触屏“平板”电脑。他的这一得意项目将改变数百万人使用电脑的方式。

这人就是比尔•盖茨(Bill Gates),那款产品是平板电脑(Tablet PC)——该设备虽然仍在销售,但已被打入失败电子产品的冷宫。本周,当苹果(Apple)公司的史蒂夫•乔布斯(Steve Jobs)结束外界长达数月的疯狂猜测,推出他自己公司的iPad牌平板机时,其反响很难让人忽视。

盖茨已经离开商业舞台,转而投身慈善。但对乔布斯来说,一切又恢复如常:在死气沉沉的金属和玻璃块上撒上“仙尘”,为数字时代创造令人觊觎之物。去年,为与一种几近致命的癌症作斗争,他休了6个月的病假,还接受了肝脏移植手术。

对细节的关注和对极简主义的追求

平板电脑(个头比智能手机大,比手提电脑小,没有键盘)一直是个人电脑的死穴。如果现年54岁的乔布斯能够成功,他东山再起的职业生涯将进入一个新的阶段。曾在上世纪80年代担任苹果开发高管、后来创建个人电脑对手公司Be Inc的让-路易•卡西(Jean-Louis Gassee)指出,新产品带有经典的乔布斯风格。“整个产品反映出史蒂夫对细节的关注和对极简主义的追求——恰到好处,而不是堆砌一个又一个功能,”他表示。“它来自我们熟悉且敬佩的史蒂夫。”

iPad简约线条的背后,是令这位苹果首席执很早就与众不同的特质:对技术的驾驭、审美眼光和营销才能。迪斯尼(Walt Disney)动画业务的幕后创意人才、乔布斯的老朋友约翰•拉斯特(John Lasseter)讲述了一件轶事,可以概括乔布斯几近偏执的完美主义精神。

“他发现一件非常不错的黑色高领衫——我记得是三宅一生(Issey Miyake)的——他很喜欢,想再买一件,但他们没货了,”拉斯特最近向英国《金融时报》透露。“他打电话到那家公司,问他们会不会再做一件,他们拒绝了。于是他说:‘好吧,你们必须做多少件我才能买到?'后来他们把衣服做出来了,我记得他买了整整一橱。”

缺乏耐心

在任何为他工作过的人看来,这种完美主义精神有其弊端:让人伤心的缺乏耐心,几乎到了霸道的程度。在我们为撰写本文而联系的前雇员和同事中,不少人拒绝评论他的管理风格。其中一人表示,他们对乔布斯的畏惧依然强烈。

苹果的联合创始人史蒂夫•沃兹尼亚克(Steve Wozniak)不那么胆怯。“史蒂夫有时会令人不快,甚至惹人讨厌,”他在最近一次采访中向英国《金融时报》表示。“他会在开会时走进来,扔下一句: ‘算了吧。那都是一堆垃圾。你们没有做好,”然后就走出去,还说:‘你们都是白痴。'”

对乔布斯批评最严厉的人士认为他行事神秘。乔布斯在3年前受到指控,当时苹果公司将一起不当发行股票期权的丑闻归咎于两名前高层雇员,尽管该公司过了很久以后透露,乔布斯此前了解有关那次发行的情况,还获得了一些期权。后来,经过监管机构的一番审查,乔布斯被证明是清白的。

工程师的头脑和艺术家的心灵

当然,从来就没有人说过,天才必须要容易共事——而“天才”是像拉斯特这样与乔布斯长期合作的人常常使用的一个词。他的朋友——软件公司甲骨文 (Oracle)主管、亿万富翁拉里•埃里森(Larry Ellison)这样概括他的天赋:“他具有一个工程师的头脑和一颗艺术家的心灵。”

这种结合对他的成功至关重要。他学过美术字,并且表示,那段经历影响了第一台Macintosh电脑,他称其为“第一款使用漂亮字体的电脑”。无论是他在皮克斯(Pixar)公司 ——该公司曾获得他的资金支持,后于2006年被迪斯尼买下——用电脑制作的热门动画片,还是iPod(第一款不让人感觉是由笨手笨脚的工程师焊接起来的数字媒体设备)的大获成功,都清晰地体现了这种结合。

但他的事业还由一种罕见的明确目的性所界定。1997年,当他再次回到苹果(12年前,他输掉了一场权力斗争,继而遭到驱逐)时,他必须搁置多年的怨恨。拉斯特表示:“关于这件事,他给我的简单说法是:‘我当时之所以回到苹果,是因为我觉得,有苹果存在,世界会变得更加美好。而现在,人们已经很难想象一个没有苹果的世界会是什么样子。”

真正重要的东西

2005年,他在斯坦福大学(Stanford University)发表了一次不同寻常的演讲,道出了自己人生中一些最敏感的往事——未婚的母亲把他送给别人收养,他被苹果辞退,2004年医生认为他将死于癌症的那一刻——并对自己何以成功发表了精辟的看法。“记住自己将很快死去,是我得到的有助于我做出人生重大选择的最重要工具,”他表示。“因为几乎每一件事情——别人对你的所有期待,所有的骄傲,对难堪或失败的所有畏惧——这些事情在死亡面前都会淡去,留下真正重要的那些东西。”

此类公开声明令人们更加觉得,技术界的叛逆顽童已经成熟,或者正以新的视角观察事物。由于早年曾加入旧金山的反文化运动,他给人的另一种印象是超然世外,不理会那些以普通标准衡量成功的平庸之辈对他的评价。他的大部分人生轨迹都有东方宗教的标记:在里德学院(Reed College)当“旁听生”时,他说自己每天都去Hare Krishna神庙吃饭;而他1991年的婚礼是由一名和尚主持的。

本周,乔布斯显得少见的放松。他的气色比前一段时间好了一些,在旧金山举行的产品发布会结束后,他身着标志性的高领衫,与记者们轻松交谈——这十分难得。但他没有理由害羞。苹果的股票市值已经飙升至1800亿美元,超过了谷歌(Google),并达到微软(Microsoft)的三分之二。乔布斯推出的上一款产品iPhone,为集团贡献了三分之一的收入,并推动苹果的股价在一年里翻了一番。

iPad引起的最初反响并不算大。就像在他之前的盖茨一样,乔布斯可能会遭遇惨败。但如果他的过往记录有任何参考意义的话,消费者可能还是会发现,他们的生活很难离开iPad。

译者/章晴
乐乎设计,乐乎生活~

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人的作用被夸大了,偶觉得总负责人的重要作用是必须肯定的,但是偶更想了解乔背后那个牛x的团队,以及人家怎么运作的。总要找个机会深入其内部探个究竟,哈哈!——个人意见,版主拍砖

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回复 2# 的帖子

我觉得此人的作用实在很大,所谓千军易得,一将难求啊~
乐乎设计,乐乎生活~

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http://www.infzm.com/content/437 ... 6%96%B0%E9%97%BB%29



2010年3月24日,距离iPad正式上市还有整整十天。这天上午,史蒂夫·乔布斯(Steve Jobs)悄悄走进了纽约中央公园西南角一栋安静的办公楼。

接下来的几个小时里,这位苹果公司的CEO将要为媒体从业者们进行一场小型演讲,与几位总编进行面对面的交流,并参与拍摄若干杂志插图。楼上的会议室中,《时代》周刊的整个采编团队正严阵以待。

乔布斯仍然穿着他的标准行头──黑色套头衫和浅蓝色牛仔裤。与年初在发布会上展示iPad时相比,他的表情显得轻松了许多。这一天,满载着iPad 的集装箱正从中国深圳的仓库被运往美国阿拉斯加的物流港。苹果粉丝们在不停刷新网页,查询那些即将属于自己的iPad正身处何地。

对于苹果公司来说,一切准备工作都在按部就班地进行。发售日当天,他们将会宣布“我们在第一天卖掉了30万台iPad”。这个销售数字已经被提前估算完毕。

从“纸”到“指”

相比之下,负责《时代》周刊iPad版制作的编辑们仍然忐忑不安。因为直到乔布斯大驾光临之前,他们谁也没有摸过一台真正的iPad。从他们道听途说地了解到iPad这款产品至今,一年时间已经匆匆过去,《时代》周刊iPad版的开发却完全处在“纸上谈兵”的阶段。

即便只是面对十几号人,乔布斯的演讲仍然保持了他一如既往的水平。他谈论了iPad的创新体验和媒体业的未来,叱咤风云的编辑记者们像学生一样不住点头。掌声过后,乔布斯将手中的iPad交给了《时代》周刊机动总编乔希·奎特纳(Josh Quittner)。

在接受南方周末电子邮件采访时,奎特纳说他当时捧着这台无数人梦寐以求的电子玩具,脑中没有丝毫玩乐的心情。按照计划,第一期《时代》周刊iPad 版将要伴随iPad的上市出现在苹果公司的线上商店中。也就是说,他只剩下一周左右的时间来适应这个全新的数字出版平台。

截稿日被定在4月2日,iPad上市前夕。封面人物是史蒂夫·乔布斯。

乔希·奎特纳领导着《时代》周刊iPad版的开发及制作。此前,他参与了《时代》周刊网站、iPhone版的开发,被视为美国新媒体行业的主导力量。他对于在没有iPad实物时进行开发的情形记忆犹新:“在iPad正式上市之前,我们拒绝和苹果公司签署保密协议,所以我们只能像瞎子摸象一样进行开发。那种感觉就像是被关进一个小黑屋,而且双手反绑。所以你必须绞尽脑汁另辟蹊径。”

早在2009年2月,奎特纳就注意到了业界的一些传言:尽管乔布斯当着《纽约时报》的面声称“人们已经不再读书”,但是苹果公司正在秘密研发一台平板设备,使用7英寸或者9英寸触摸屏,用户界面和iPodTouch及iPhone非常相似──这台设备非常适合阅读电子读物。

他迫不及待地在《时代》周刊上记下了自己的观点:“在电子阅读器领域的iPod最终到来时,我们必须做好准备,提供一种全新的阅读体验。对于杂志业来说,创新的融合必不可少。我觉得‘程序型杂志’(appgazines)将是大势所趋,用户体验既非网页也不同于印刷媒体,它更类似于一个计算机程序。”

当时,虽然主流英文媒体相继推出了iPhone版应用程序,但是小屏幕的局限显而易见──传统媒体的版式无法在iPhone的尺寸上得以重现,移动版本看起来更像是迷你尺寸的网页。《时代》周刊、《纽约时报》、BBC、CNN有着截然不同的媒体属性,但各自的iPhone版本却相差无几。

不只是屏幕变大了

传说中iPad看起来仅仅是屏幕尺寸变大,却极大地释放了媒体从业者的创造力——要更多图片展现,还有纸质杂志不可能有的视频呈现,而这一切在视觉体验上要更像一本杂志,这比杂志网站的要求高了许多。随着传言被逐步确认,美国杂志业展开了迅速的准备工作。

2009年夏天,时代华纳集团找到了纽约一间名叫“奇迹工厂”(Wonderfactory)的设计公司。这家公司擅长将传统媒体的阅读体验移植到数字平台上。到了2009年12月初,时代华纳旗下的《体育画报》(Sports Ilustrated)在奇迹工厂的帮助下,率先制作出了一个平板电子杂志的演示视频。

虽然iPad的真实模样在当时无人知晓,但这个演示视频准确预测了实物的外观和交互模式。多指触控和大屏幕平板带来的变革跃然纸上。对于“前 iPad时代”的网民来说,这种体验令人耳目一新。这段名为“《体育画报》平板演示”的视频在YouTube上被观看了88万次,《时代》周刊iPad版的雏形也来源于此。

一个月之后,苹果公司发布了iPad。这里“发布”的概念是:乔布斯走上发布会的舞台,演示了iPad的用户体验,让全球媒体开始讨论这款产品,第三方程序员们着手进行各种应用程序的研发,但是真机仍然在中国的代工厂里制作,三个月之后才会正式上市。

当天,《时代》周刊的采编团队、设计部门、网站运营部门被总编辑理查德·施腾格尔(Richard Stengel)召集起来开了个会,iPad版本的制作被正式提上日程。乔希·奎特纳开始过起“没有iPad,创造iPad也要上”的日子。

在项目正式启动的头几天,为了模拟iPad的用户体验,《时代》周刊设计总监派因(D. W. Pine)用硬纸板和胶水制作了一个iPad的模型,将打印出来的模拟图片夹在硬纸板中间,借以感受触控滚屏的效果。这些模拟图片至今仍然粘贴在奎特纳办公室的墙上。

模拟图片通过之后,他们将开发iPad版《时代》周刊的工作重心转移到了苹果公司提供的iPad模拟器软件中。虽然和实物的体验仍然不同,但已经可以在电脑屏幕上看到成品的大致效果。

和纸质杂志一样的节奏感

刚转到模拟器上,奎特纳就发现了iPad电子杂志的最大难题──如何保持纸质杂志的节奏感。

打开近年来任何一期《时代》周刊,你会发现内容编排保持着同样的模式:先是五页琐碎的内容,比如目录、每周数字、语录精选;接下来是五篇单页文章,比如时政专栏;接下来是多页的长篇报道和封面故事;最后又回到短篇文章,并以一篇随笔收尾。

但是在iPad上,屏幕解析度仍然不如纸张,而且屏幕尺寸也未达到《时代》周刊的开本,所以每页纸质杂志的内容需要拆分成2.5个屏幕来呈现。如果把《时代》周刊的纸面内容照搬进iPad版本,那么可能一开始读者要进行25个划动屏幕的动作,才能看见杂志文章的正文。

因此,《时代》周刊iPad版的阅读节奏被进行了重新调整:先是短篇、中篇、长篇、短篇、中篇、长篇、然后再呈现那些需要大段时间阅读的深度报道。奎特纳将此比作“正弦波”,认为它更适合在数码设备上进行阅读。

第二个改变同样源于iPad的产品特性。“我不是说亚马逊的坏话,但是拿iPad和Kindle相比,就像苹果和橘子那样不同。你知道Kindle 已经上市两年多了,它的屏幕是黑白的,而且也不支持多点触控。因此,相比之下,图片在iPad上带来的冲击力令人过目不忘。”乔希·奎特纳说。

在《时代》周刊上,每期开始有个叫做“瞬间”(The Moment)的栏目,选取一张当周最具代表性的新闻图片,辅以图说。在iPad上,“瞬间”栏目被拓展成了六张全屏图片,成为《时代》周刊网站“每周图片”板块的延伸。

在正文中,iPad版的图片比重也被大大提高。在同一期杂志中,纸质版本的史蒂夫·乔布斯报道只有三张配图,而iPad版本却嵌入了乔布斯整个职业生涯最具代表性的11张新闻图片,可以点击打开图片专辑进行全屏浏览。

“用指尖进行页与页之间的切换──这种以‘触摸’为基础的交互方式精确还原了纸媒的阅读体验。之前在电脑上进行的杂志数字化工作,都没有做出这种体验。用户因此告别了鼠标,能够以后仰的姿势欣赏杂志内容。这在其他电子阅读器上都未曾有过。”奎特纳说。

因为iPad版杂志还处在实验阶段,所以他们并不希望太多广告商参与其中,也对于开放给广告商的版面数量进行了限制。但由于iPad杂志的“翻页阅读”体验意味着整版广告的复兴,视觉冲击力远胜于网页上的横幅广告,广告商仍然纷至沓来。在《时代》周刊iPad版中,读者已经可以看到嵌入了线上视频的平面广告。

但对于iPad版广告收入,《时代》周刊并没有明确的时间预期。他们的首要目标是让更多用户迁移到平板设备上进行杂志阅读,然后让用户习惯于新平台上的订阅和购买模式──考虑到iPad软件比iPhone软件高得多的价格,在平板设备上付费已成必然趋势,最终才是让更多的广告出现在《时代》周刊 iPad版中。

“所有努力需要至少18个月才会开花结果。”奎特纳说,“目前来看,iPad杂志对于传统媒体的影响仍然有限。纸媒更便宜、更容易携带,而且不要忘记,我们都喜欢拿着那些能代表自己身份的东西。对于那些希望让所有人都知道自己在看《时代》的人来说,他们仍然会将纸质杂志像标签一样带在身边。”
乐乎设计,乐乎生活~

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dengcomm评论于4小时前

这是一篇典型的pseudo-western 新闻报道。行文晦涩、造作,充满了英式句子;篇幅冗长,难以卒读。这样的新闻稿件存在于纸质上都令人读来味同嚼蜡,更别说在infzm.com上了。和杂志想通过iPad来再现纸质杂志的阅读感受,因而忽视了纸质与网络阅读环境差别一样,本文的行文方式和长篇大论完全漠视了报纸纸质阅读与网络阅读的差异。《南方周末》网络版的稿件如果文字更流畅些、篇幅更短小些、更加考虑到互联网的阅读环境(注意力短暂、信息干扰多),其传播效果也许会更好。另外,请注意,并不是只有Western Journalism news story的写作方式才能体现客观。
DJG
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乔布斯不简单,个人崇拜一下,而且光看苹果的产品路线,就不能不佩服他们的长期规划能力,和品牌塑造能力。

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http://www.ftchinese.com/story/001033343
苹果公司该不该赚高利?
英国《金融时报》中文网特约撰稿人 王泽基 解青


苹果iPad上市不到三个月,就卖出了三百万个。前不久上市的iPhone 4 又是像抛进平静海水的巨石,激起层层巨浪,只要是有卖的地方,就有成千上万的人日夜排队,但是即使排队也不一定能马上拿到,“一机难求”的局面恐怕要持续一段时间。

苹果产品可以说是物美,但是一点都不价廉,而且苹果的净利润率非常高。根据市场调研公司iSuppli估算,一个售价499美元的iPad,所有成本加一起是260美元,苹果公司可以赚239美元。根据苹果公司2010年第一季度财务报表,整个公司产品的净利润率达到了 41.1%.

相比起来,为苹果公司代工的富士康2009年净利润率只有4.5%, 2010年第一季度净利润率为8.7%。市场调研公司iSuppli计算得出,每生产一台iPad,苹果公司付给富士康的代工费为11.2美元。

苹果公司该不该赚高利润?

讨论这个问题之前,我们先看一个简单的例子。一个靠自己本事考进清华大学的省状元,经过四年的寒窗苦读,又考取全奖到美国斯坦福大学读PHD。毕业后,这位省状元被聘为世界顶级公司软件工程师,年薪一百万人民币。同时,在中国工厂打工的同龄人一年也就赚一两万元人民币。

我想我们不能指着省状元的鼻子说,你赚太多钱了吧。

当我们衡量一个人的成功或者一个企业的利润的时候,我们总是喜欢看结果,而不去想取得某个结果的概率有多高。在经济学里有两个概念,ex ante(事前),可以理解为一切成定局之前(充满很多不确定性);ex post(事后)可以理解为揭盅之后(一切都已经成定局)。看任何事情,都要把ex ante (事前预期)的不确定性计算进去,不能只看ex post(事后)结果。

比如上文提到的省状元,你看到的是,他现在可以赚一百万人民币年薪(ex post),但是你没想到的是,全中国拼命努力学习的学生中,能考取清华大学的人数就不多,在这少数人中,能够考取美国名校PHD的就更凤毛麟角。从结果看,他是赚取了很多同龄人想都不敢想的高薪,但是如果把概率算进去,他实际赚的并不多。

在经济学里,成功的概率乘以事后利润(ex post profit) 就应该等于事前预期利润(ex ante profit,把所有事前的不确定性都计算进去后得到的实际利润)。如果我们假设能考上清华大学然后又顺利从斯坦福大学PHD毕业的概率是1%,那么用 1%乘上省状元一百万年薪,他事前预期利润(ex ante profit,计算所有不确定性后的实际利润)只有一万元而已。

再比如说买彩票,天天在你家小区卖西瓜的老张中了彩票头奖,五百万人民币。他买彩票的成本是一元钱,也就是说老张的事后利润 (ex poste profit)非常高。 但是如果考虑到彩票头奖中奖率是千万分之一或更低,老张付出的成本实际上比他事前预期利润(ex ante profit)还要高,(如果考虑计算千万分之一的概率,老王的实际利润只有0.5元,而他付出了1元钱成本)这显然是个亏本的买卖。

说回到苹果公司。乔布斯(Steve Jobs)在30岁的时候被赶出自己的公司,12年后卷土归来,重新开发的一系列产品使得濒临死亡的苹果公司“起死回生”。苹果公司每每发布新产品,都会有人感叹,怎么没人在苹果之前想到并生产出这样的产品呢?我们现在看到的是苹果公司在大把大把的赚钱 (ex post profit),但是谁又想过,一个公司从成立到差点倒闭,再到“起死回生”,站稳阵脚,这样成功的概率极低。且不说每年有多少连成功“影儿”都没见到就撑不下去关门大吉的成百万千万的小公司,就说已经成功了的大公司,又有多少破产倒闭?如果把这些都考虑进去,苹果公司的事前利润(ex ante profit)并不像我们看到的这么高。

如果没有很高的回报,又有哪个公司愿意投入等同于几百万、几千万美元的成本去生产新的产品呢?只有有很高的回报才能有足够多的人愿意去尝试,也正是因为足够多的人去尝试,才能保证如此高的回报。

11.2美元代工费是否公平?

11.2美元的代工费和239美元的纯利润,很多人觉得苹果占了富士康、特别是中国几十万工人的大便宜,这一点都不公平。

但是公平是什么?如果11.2美元不公平,那么多少才公平呢?如果是在你情我愿的情况下,大家都有自由选择的权利,那么就是公平的。富士康觉得苹果公司给的钱不公平,就不会和苹果公司签约代工,可以选择其他的品牌;富士康的工人如果觉得不公平,也可以选择其他的工厂工作,大家你情我愿签约,哪来的不公平呢?

同样的,我们很容易只看ex post(事后)结果来衡量事情是否公平。如果这样,那么一个运动员得到奥运金牌不但可以一举成名,还可以得到巨额的奖金。跑100米就得到百万奖金,你觉得这公平么?如果从ex post(事后)结果看,这肯定是不公平。但是如果从ex ante(事前预期)来看,要考虑到成本和成为奥运金牌得主的概率,那么这没什么不公平的。

一个企业要想赚钱,可以走两条路,一是贿赂官员,获取垄断,买卖土地和稀缺资源。二就是要像苹果公司、英特尔公司等那样不断进行产品创新和管理创新。第一种赚钱的方法一定对国家经济发展不利。靠产品和管理创新的公司为社会创造了财富,解决了大量就业,是真正推动社会经济发展的动力,这样的公司就应该得到高利润。

政府要提供公平竞争的环境

苹果公司赚取高额利润不仅是应该的,也正体现了公平的制度。只有有这样的高回报,才能鼓励公司、企业家去创新,才能培养发挥公司领导者的企业家精神,也这有这样才能促进一国经济的发展。

鼓励并容许企业靠自身努力合理赚取高利润并不代表我们鼓励扩大贫富差距。政府应该对赚取高额利润的公司收税,用税收为所有人提供一个公平竞争的环境,比如投入到教育领域,让每个孩子,无论来自什么样的家庭都有学上,有书读;投入到普及基本医疗建设中,让所有人都能治的起病。

当然作为企业家,也应该有回报社会的责任感。在西方社会,有很多成功的企业家都会自觉自愿的用各种方式回馈社会,比如比尔·盖茨和巴菲特都成立了慈善基金会,捐献了巨额资产到教育和医疗事业中。

(注:作者王泽基现任香港中文大学教授,本文仅代表作者本人观点。)
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2011年09月01日 06:21 AM
乔布斯留给苹果的遗产
英国《金融时报》撰稿人 菲利普•德尔夫斯•布劳顿

苹果(Apple)正从极具魅力的史蒂夫•乔布斯(Steve Jobs)领导的时代,走进更加低调的蒂姆•库克(Tim Cook)领导的更注重组织的时代,它遵循了每一个成功企业在创始人退休时所遵循的管理传统。当乔布斯辞去CEO职位时,人们正确地将注意力投放在他在产品和营销创新方面的辉煌历史上,较少关注他的管理风格——后者不论好坏,都是不可模仿的。尽管乔布斯拥有令人羡慕的审美品位、专注力和谈判技巧,他也很容易让他人蒙羞和难堪。

和许多有影响力的人士一样,人们更容易决定是否愿意对乔布斯投资或者购买他的产品,而不是决定是否愿意为他工作。面对令人目眩的产品需求和获得惊人成功的机会,人们会说“愿意”,面对大声咆哮和辱骂,人们则会说“不”。我今年遇见了一位硅谷的心理医生,他告诉我,他的大部分工作是为苹果员工做心理康复。

为了发现乔布斯留下的管理财富中有哪些有用的经验,把他所缔造的公司去人格化是有帮助的。例如,苹果实际上不是一家公司,而是三个截然不同的组织,为着同一个目标被绑在一起的,并达到完美的契合。

处在顶层的是一家小公司,它是一个决策和创新集体,由具备专业知识的高级管理人员组成,负责苹果的产品设计和公司运作。他们在加利福尼亚州的库比提诺生活和工作,聚集在离乔布斯和库克办公室很近的地方。其中既包括营销和财务负责人,也包括设计小组——设计小组有自己的办公楼和工作室。这个集体的成员全权负责他们职责范围内的所有事情,如果尽不到职责,会被立即辞退。

他们周围的员工等级看上去是平等的,但当他们做出决策并发出指令时,希望获得几乎没有质疑的执行。他们没有兴趣看到公司开遍创新之花。普通员工没有权力,因此也就无法发挥什么影响力。他们只需要完成明确划分的工作,并尽力做到最好。

苹果排斥大型并购,这也解放了其高级管理人员,让他们不必走上这条最为乏味、并且通常会造成灾难的增长道路。

在这个小群体中,奉行“人才密集”原则。少数极具才华的人非常努力地工作,不但能带来卓越的工作成果,还能减少由于办公室政治导致的浪费。自从Netflix创始人里德•赫斯廷斯(Reed Hastings)定义了这一原则后,它在硅谷非常流行。其主要思想是,一个超级员工能够做五个普通员工的工作,还免去了争吵、邮件抄送和人力资源部的干预。乔布斯在招聘时一直严格按照这个原则。

第二家公司包括苹果余下46000名全职员工中的大部分,主要涵盖营销和销售部门。其中刚从大学毕业的新面孔数量惊人,他们在苹果专卖店的“天才吧”(Genius Bars)后面埋头苦干,受过高等教育却庆幸自己有这份工作。

第三家公司由遍布亚洲的外包制造商员工大军组成,比如富士康(Foxconn)这样为苹果组装产品的公司。这在很大程度上是库克的发明。作为供应链专家,他在20世纪90年代末让苹果退出了制造环节,建立了这些外包制造关系。没有存货,也没有工会,这对苹果压低成本至关重要。但这家公司的管理方式与第一、第二家公司所需的管理方式非常不同。
库克称苹果拥有“资产负债表之母”,其上所列现金已达760亿美元,他正是利用这张表对供应商进行控制。库克不去收购工厂、管理存货或者工厂员工,而是垄断现有零部件的市场,比如闪存,并为新部件成本昂贵的独家生产提供资金,这让苹果能够领先对手很久获得这些部件。将大量现金带给利润很薄的制造和组装企业,为苹果赢得了高度的忠诚和严格守约。再加上苹果的需求预测才能,库克能够在不掌握所有权的情况下实现精准控制,这正是供应链管理的梦想。

苹果的管理结构能够实现高层的快速决策和基层的纪律严明和高效执行,在这个产品换代越来越快的时代,这两点都至关重要。苹果虽然有着西海岸的酷派气质,长时间以来却更像一支训练有素的军队,顶层的参谋长、基层的普通士兵和雇佣军由一个严格的指挥系统紧密地凝聚在一起。从这一点来看,注重细节的库克是理想的领导者。

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英雄难免憔悴 乔布斯的梦幻人生



编者按:创造苹果奇迹的乔布斯正值盛年却罹患罕见胰脏癌,令人不禁喟叹英雄也难免独憔悴。8月24日,美国硅谷传奇人物史蒂夫•乔布斯(Steve Jobs)致信苹果公司(Apple Inc.)董事会,辞去首席执行官(CEO)职务,24日当天,苹果股价盘后交易重挫7%,突显市场对乔布斯不得不交棒的感伤回应。

苹果集团在他领导下,以 iPod重新定位行动音乐播放器市场,以iPhone震撼手机业,以iTunes动摇音乐零售业,以iPad掀起平板电脑大战,以MBA(MacBook Air)重启超薄笔电新世代,再以OS X改写整个运算事业。

原首席运营官蒂姆•库克就任苹果成为首席执行官。乔布斯被称为IT界的奇迹,自1997年7月再任苹果执行长,他让公司市值从20.8亿美元飙涨至3487亿美元。神奇的苹果产品,令消费者欣喜连连;封闭的苹果系统,令业界着迷,乔布斯欣然改变了一个时代。


新纪元封面故事:苹果帝国反击战

1、九死一生 苹果成正果
2、苹果:一个狂人创造的奇迹
3、苹果的春天

iPad平板电脑甫一推出就造成旋风,成为时尚新宠。在全球经济衰退,各大公司一片哀歌之际,苹果安然逆流而上。

创办“苹果”改变了一个时代,贾伯斯(乔布斯)自恋、狂妄的性格让他在事业最顶峰时被封杀十二年,而对生命的热中与对完美的挑剔,又让他开创出苹果的辉煌。

进入苹果,仿佛进入到另外一个世界,与业界所有同行不同,苹果有着自己的独立王国。这个“与世隔绝”却又强大的帝国,正用自己的标准来影响世界。

十年前,苹果濒临破产,几乎被判了“死刑”。如今,一个“咸鱼翻身”,蒸蒸日上,苹果成功的秘笈何在?不管你喜不喜欢啃苹果,都可以从苹果衰落到中兴的过程中得到启发。

========================================
九死一生 苹果成正果

文 ◎ 华明

四月二十日,苹果公司(Apple)发布最新业绩报告,第二季度获利成长90%。股价也直逼历史高峰。在全球经济衰退背景下,各大公司一片“哀歌”之时,苹果却逆流而上,成绩斐然,令业界震惊。十年前,苹果濒临破产,几乎被判了“死刑”。如今;一个“咸鱼翻身”,蒸蒸日上,苹果成功的秘笈究竟何在?



IT皇冠落谁家?

“我不明白为什么他(史蒂夫.贾伯斯)还要尝试(成为苹果公司首席执行长)?”“他明知赢不了的。”一九九八年,微软(Microsoft)总裁比尔.盖茨困惑的表示。

盖茨为何这样说?当时无论是产品、市场占有率、现金流,还是总体战略,微软都远超过苹果。若有人说,苹果有一天将赶超微软,会显得既荒唐又滑稽。

一九九八年六月,微软股价约二十九美元,市值二千五百亿美元。而苹果股价则为七点二五美元,市值约六十亿美元,这还是一年前,当时微软出面“撑腰”、注资一点五亿美元的情况下,苹果的股价才上涨了三倍。

如今,这两家公司,微软价值二千四百亿美元,股价也微跌至二十七美元,经历十二个春秋,微软再无其他收益。而苹果的股票已涨至二百四十多美元,市值猛增至二千二百亿美元,暴涨三十三倍。在现金储备方面,苹果几乎与微软比肩,接近四百亿美元。

显而易见,苹果获胜了。如今苹果坐拥一系列极富魔力的主打产品,如iMac、iPod、iPhone、iPad。Mac的市场占有率曾达两位数,苹果赚个盘满钵满,成为行业内的“利润大王”。从趋势看,苹果开始发力并渐入佳境,而微软略微下降。

近日,美国科技业知名评论员、《资讯世界》编辑鲍勃克林格里(Bob Cringely)首度曝光了记录着十二年前对比尔.盖茨一次非公开采访内容的磁带照片,并大胆预测:苹果将取代微软,成为数码领域的王者。


一九九七年八月六日,微软比尔.盖茨出面帮苹果“撑腰”,注资一点五亿美元,让苹果的股价上涨了三倍。(AFP)


“苹果”的由来

贾伯斯生长在著名的加州“矽谷”附近,上初中时,认识了比他年长五岁的学校电子俱乐部会长沃兹尼克(Stephen Wozniak)。两人一见如故,捣鼓出世界上第一台个人电脑,称之为“苹果I号”,一九七六年创办了苹果电脑公司。

七七年四月,美国首次电脑展览会在西海岸开幕。“苹果II号”机在展览会上一鸣惊人,几千名用户涌向展台,观看、试用,订单纷纷而来。八零年苹果公司股票公开上市,不到一小时,四百六十万股被抢购一空,当日以每股二十九美元收市。苹果获得巨大成功。贾伯斯也在八五年获得了雷根总统授予的国家级技术勋章。

然而,成功的背后隐藏着危机,由于苹果坚持封闭性,软硬体捆绑销售,生意越做越窄。个人电脑市场很快被IBM公司抢占,更恐怖的是苹果漠视合作伙伴,比尔.盖茨当年其实只是想做苹果的小弟,专心开发Office,最后也不堪忍受,开始发展自己的系统。

苹果总经理和董事们把这一失败归罪于董事长贾伯斯。八五年四月,董事会决议撤销了他的经营大权。贾伯斯几次想夺回权力均未成功,便在当年九月愤而辞去苹果公司董事长。

到一九九六年,苹果公司已濒临绝境。而此时贾伯斯自创的公司(现皮克斯)成功制作的第一部电脑动画片《玩具总动员》名声大振,个人身价已暴涨逾十亿美元。苹果不得已向贾伯斯“招手”。十二月十七日,全球各大电脑报刊头版刊出“苹果收购NeXt,贾伯斯重回苹果”的消息。

苹果起死回生

应该说,一九九七年,对于苹果来说是个转折,创办人史蒂夫.贾伯斯在被驱逐十二年后重返苹果。上任第一件事与“宿敌”微软结盟。这一年,苹果低声下气地接受了微软的注资,将产品削减至最少的四款电脑。

到二零零零年,苹果被广受欢迎的微软PC挤兑得几无立足之地,在个人电脑市场的占有率还在急遽下滑,现金流失极为严重,甚至濒临破产。公司股价一路跌到相当于今天的七美元。

不过,在最黑暗时期,贾伯斯已为苹果从稳定走向高飞奠定了基础。二零零一年,苹果一月推出iTunes音乐软体、三月Mac OSX作业系统、五月第一家苹果零售店,十一月第一部5G容量,可容纳一千首歌曲的iPod问世。苹果产品新颖时尚的设计,受到用户的热烈追捧。

之后,苹果一发不可收拾,贾伯斯实现的财务业绩,完全可用“令人惊叹”来形容。现在,苹果拥有三百四十亿美元现金和可交易证券,超过戴尔的总市值;占据 73%的美国MP3播放器市场;手机无可争议的据创新领先地位;Macintosh占美国市场9%等。贾伯斯还是迪士尼董事及这家蓝筹公司最大股东。苹果已在九个国家开设了二百七十五家零售店。

二零零九年,对众多跨国公司而言,是极其艰难的一年。据统计,这一年,美国《财富》杂志评选的全球五百强企业的销售收入大幅缩水。而苹果公司这年的营业收入超过四百二十九亿美元,同比增长14.4%,净收入高达八十二点三五亿美元,同比增长34.58%。

四月二十日,苹果召开了二零一零年第二季度业绩报告会议,净收入及销售都远远超过分析师预期,获利成长90%,创下除假日季度以外最高销售纪录。贾伯斯还保证今年将推出“几款更惊奇产品”,苹果股价盘后大涨。这份财报还不包括四月三日才推出的iPad。


AFP


苹果公司报告第二季净收入及销售远超过分析师预期,执行长贾伯斯保证将在今年推出“几款更惊奇产品”。(Getty Images)


时尚和创新的代号

打开苹果公司的主页,有一个被咬了一口的苹果,其来历众说纷纭,有说这是四百年前砸在牛顿头顶的苹果,有说是被上帝咬过一口的苹果,因为每个人都有缺陷,意识到有缺陷才能不断进步,更加完美。或许这成为苹果创意非凡的来源?

十多年来,苹果做了些什么?它的一系列创新产品令人眼花缭乱。有评论家说,让iPod活起来的是音乐,让iPhone活起来的是上网与上万种应用,现在苹果打算拿电子书的应用让iPad活起来。iPad是电脑吗?苹果认为不是。

从二零零一年第一台iPod诞生开始,到零七年第一台iPhone,一直到今年的iPad,苹果似乎一直在告诉世人,自己是“行动装置制造商”,那就是“行动装置不等于电脑”。这里指的不是硬体,不是作业系统,而是以应用为导向,以消费者为核心的思维。

分析家普遍认为,苹果征服了诸多年轻人的心。iPad最大用户群依旧是“苹果迷”,Frost & Sullivan分析师季宸东说,iPad潜在的用户群还可能包括商务人群、时尚白领人群、以及一部分热中“尝鲜”并家境富裕的大学在校学生。

“作为一个骄傲有志的现代人,没有一台令人艳羡的苹果iPad,你会感到Out还是感到羞耻?”有苹果迷网友说。

iPad旋风 好评如潮

今年四月三日,苹果推出的新产品iPad首日上市,苹果纽约和旧金山市旗舰店早九点开门时,熬夜等待的数百“铁杆苹果迷”提着帐篷进店,人群涌动。媒体也蜂拥在苹果店外等待。十天后,iPad售出超过五十万个,苹果因此推迟了iPad在国际上市。

随后,测评者几乎全都对iPad的简单使用体验赞不绝口。

“过去一周左右,我一直在测试一款光滑、轻盈、银色与黑色搭配的平板电脑,它的名字叫‘iPad’。使用了很多小时后,我相信,苹果公司(Apple)的这款新漂亮触屏电脑可望带来一场便携电脑的深刻变革,并将挑战笔记本电脑的霸主地位。它最终甚至有可能让手指驱动、多点触控的用户介面战胜流行了几十年的滑鼠驱动介面。”《华尔街日报》的莫波格(Walt Mossberg)说。

“iPad又快又轻,多点触摸屏非常亮、回应很好,软体易于操作,确实称得上是一个新的电子产品类别。”《纽约时报》的波格(David Pogue)则说。

“苹果基本上算是在iPad上获得了成功。”《今日美国》的贝格(Edward C.Baig)称其为“优胜者”。《电脑杂志》(PC Magazine)的吉地恩(Tim Gideon)则进行了深度测评,称iPad华丽、轻薄、美观。

“我曾预计会有光滑的触感、明亮的荧幕和众人所说的‘沉迷’体验。不过,我可没有料到会这么快就喜欢上了iPad。”《时代周刊》的弗莱(Stephen Fry)没有像其他测评者一样给出详尽的居家测评,不过他对iPad的酷爱却超人一等。

苹果:独立王国?

iPad简约的功能诉求与轻薄短小,便于让人随身携带、操作与阅读浏览,掀起一波阅读文化的数位革命。(AFP)

不过,也有人抱怨,苹果太“独立”。进入苹果,仿佛进入到另外一个世界,与业界所有同行不同,苹果有着自己的王国。它将自己发展成一个从硬体到软体的全面提供商,它是让自己的标准来影响世界,从中获取利润。

这种“与世隔绝”使苹果电脑系统成为世界上最安全的系统,很少骇客会去攻击,或许使用的用户数量也比较少。

苹果最新发布的iPad也是这样,iPad在线上视频播放上居然不支援Flash。意味着用户无法玩到70%以上的网页Flash游戏,或欣赏占线上视频总数75%的Flash网站视频,令苹果迷们跺脚哀叹。

拓墣产业研究所美西研究中心协理尤克熙说:“iPad不支持多工、不支持Flash、没有键盘、也没有内建镜头,用的是iPhone作业系统。”说实在的,iPad本来就不是以个人电脑(PC)为中心所设计的商品。

贾伯斯的名言:“你的时间有限,所以不要为别人而活。不要被教条所限,不要活在别人的观念里。不要让别人的意见左右自己内心的声音。最重要的是,勇敢的去追随自己的心灵和直觉。”也成为苹果的创作精髓。

iPad让艺术家着迷

iPad面世不足一个月,艺术家已发挥无限创意,利用它作为表演和创作工具。更多人把iPad作为听歌、看电子书、打机、上网的工具。

对于设计师、画家和插画家来说,iPad的九点七吋触控荧幕,是个很方便和直接的创作介面,利用Sketchbook Mobile、Brushes和Art Studio等应用程式,用手指或假笔在上面绘画,把iPad变成数码写生簿和流动作品集。美国数码画家乔丹(Angie Jordon),就用iPad来画漫画。钢琴家还可以用苹果iPad平板电脑,用软体来“演奏”一曲。

甚至在影视制作,iPad亦大派用场。一个叫Rehearsal的应用程式,演员可用来阅读剧本,可专挑自己的对白来看,排戏录起自己念对白,导演和摄影师可在数码剧本上策划分镜大纲,化妆师、道具和场务等幕后人员亦可留纪录,以确保连戏,据指《迷》、《靓太唔易做》等电视剧都有采用。

也有年轻人对iPad由爱生“恨”。四月三日,在美国宾州匹兹堡的一家Best Buy商店外,一群青少年拿着球棒砸烂iPad的影片,在影音分享网站YouTube上吸引超过二十八万人点阅。

制作名为“全新iPad被球棒砸烂”影片的十九岁高中生柯卡特(Justin Kockott)告诉《洛杉矶时报》:“我完全不讨厌苹果公司。事实上我爱苹果。”他还买了另两台iPad。他说:“我知道有些人会讨厌这则影片,但我没想到有那么多人不喜欢。很多人留了相当不好的评语(在YouTube评语栏里)。”

苹果之“最”

这十年来,只要是苹果推出新产品,就有人排队、预订,也有人热捧、收藏,分析家说,生意做到这份上,算是达到了某种境界。

最具创新力:《商业周刊》与波士顿谘询顾问集团(BCG)最近共同推出的“全球最具创新力的公司”评选中,苹果公司继续占据冠军位置。

最受尊重公司:在美国《财富》杂志今年三月发布的二零零九年“全球最受尊重的公司”评选结果中,苹果公司连续第三年折桂,并进一步拉开了和第二名的距离。

最有价值公司:四月十七日,苹果被《圣荷西水星报》评为矽谷最有价值的公司,股票价值二千二百四十亿美元,相比去年上涨了7%。

不过,有意思的是,作为一个全球顶尖的科技企业,苹果投入研发的费用却远远低于人们的预期。有关数据显示,苹果二零零九年度的研发费用仅为约十一亿美元,尚不足微软的八分之一,IBM的六分之一,这种规模的投入却能取得如此惊人的效果。

华尔街的分析师们认为,在新的一年里,苹果的销售收入将轻松超过五百亿美元。苹果公司已成为消费者和投资者眼中的香饽饽。

全球经济大萧条开始两年后,苹果公司重新出现在美国加州高科技湾区大公司中排行的第一名。

独特的企业文化

买下皮克斯,让约伯斯的创意与完美主义,促成了脍炙人口的“玩具总动员”与“虫虫危机”的票房纪录。(Getty Images)



在苹果公司,员工们都知道,贾伯斯有个恶名:地狱来的老板,但却吸引了无数菁英跟随着他。

贾伯斯或许不是经理人的最佳典范,他狂妄、自恋,是个标准的完美主义加菁英论者,还认为大部分人都是笨蛋。但这些强烈的个人特质,却也是苹果电脑独一无二的企业哲学。

“我喜欢和史蒂夫.贾伯斯共事吗?我喜欢。”Mac OSX的设计师柯戴尔.瑞兹拉夫说:“这可能是我做过的最棒工作,很刺激很有趣。有时候也很艰难,但他就是有办法激发出人们的潜力。贾伯斯很会操控别人,很会施加压力,但也让他们拿出了很棒的成果。”

为了追求完美,贾伯斯不计成本。他不讳言经常会碰到瓶颈。此时就会停下来。在制作皮克斯(Pixar)动画电影公司的第一部作品《玩具总动员》(Toy Story)期间,团队曾停工五个月,“游手好闲”照领薪水。如果没有勇气停下来思考,就不会有后来一炮打红的动画电影。

第一代苹果电脑的研发团队曾像奴隶一般,每周工作九十小时。为何如此敬业?因为贾伯斯让他们相信,他们设计的电脑将改变整个产业、跨越时代,成为融合科技与文化的艺术家。分析家认为,激发团队的热情,是苹果成功的源头。

在《连线》杂志记者出版的新书《深入贾伯斯》(Inside Steve's Brain)和近几期《财富》杂志的多次报导中,描述贾伯斯“专注”、“完美主义”、“菁英主义”等个人特质。如果从经营与管理的角度重新诠释理解,在行销、产品设计与用人标准上,贾伯斯都有他的独到之处。

看不见的力量 消费成信仰

苹果产品从iPod、iPhone到iPad,集科技、艺术与一身,让苹果迷们爱不释手,消费成瘾,进而变成信仰,心甘情愿投身到苹果半封闭的世界里。即使不是苹果的使用者,在滔滔不绝的苹果迷面前,很难不感染到他们对信仰的热情。在苹果竞争者的眼里,很容易感受到这种芒刺在背的压力。

同样是为了巩固市场,软体龙头微软给人的印象向来是“巧取豪夺”,只要出现有潜力的竞争者,不是以既有优势压得后进者没有生存空间,就是以并购手段消灭敌人。

反观苹果则是采取分享策略,当越多业者投效苹果的应用软体商店,其线上服务就更丰富多元,使用者的黏着度也就越高,形成“苹果倚大边”的新效应。成功创造网路世界下新科技发展的四个要素:互动、分享、即时、音视频。而原来那种“垄断、封闭、独占”的模式已经过时。

在西方文明发展史上,“苹果”是个寓意丰富的名词,它既是伊甸园里亚当、夏娃偷食的禁果,也是希腊神话里特洛伊战争的诱因,更是牛顿发现地心引力的关键。而在当代科技生活中,“苹果”代表的则是颠覆的力量,不管你喜不喜欢啃苹果,都可以从苹果衰落到中兴的过程中得到启发。

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苹果:一个狂人创造的奇迹

文 ◎ 孙芸



他曾狂热的探索东方宗教,寻找净化灵魂的秘方,却又在职场上冲锋陷阵、大展身手。他创办“苹果”改变了一个时代,却在最顶峰时被封杀。十二年后卷土重来,开展第二个“贾伯斯”时代,创造了苹果的辉煌。

“当我十七岁时,我读到一则格言,好像是‘把每一天都当成生命中的最后一天,你就会轻松自在。’这对我影响深远,在过去三十三年里,我每天早上都会照镜子,自问:如果今天是此生最后一日,我今天要做些什么?”苹果公司创办人史蒂夫.贾伯斯(Steve Jobs)二零零五年向斯坦福大学毕业生发表的演讲中,罕见地谈及自己的生平。

他是一个美国式英雄,几经起伏,却屹立不倒。他曾狂热的探索东方宗教,寻找净化灵魂的秘方,却又在职场上冲锋陷阵、大展身手。他掀起个人电脑的风潮,创办“苹果”改变了一个时代,但却在最顶峰时被封杀,落入谷底,十二年后,卷土重来,开始了第二个“贾伯斯”时代,重新领军,创造了苹果的辉煌。

被寄养在贫寒人家

史蒂夫.贾伯斯出生于一九五五年,成长于美国加州洛沙图斯市(Los Altos);父亲是政治学学者,母亲是一位言语治疗师,但贾伯斯出生不久就被送给人领养,原因是当时他的父母亲是未婚生子。

他的养父母不是学有专攻的知识分子,物质生活也挺困窘,但对他们所领养的两个小孩相当宠爱与支持,可说是为他们做牛又做马,全力供孩子读书。

但当第一次遇到相同血统的亲妹妹时,贾伯斯心生惆怅;妹妹是个小有成绩的作家,除了相似的容貌,浑身散发着风格独具的艺术家气息。作家?多风雅的头衔!贾伯斯心里于是叨念起来:唉唉,如果自己不被抛弃、如果是成长于学者家庭而非蓝领家庭,那么人生是不是会精采些?

事实证明,贾伯斯的特质原本精采,即使没有经过刻意栽培,潜伏在他血液中的艺术家因子,还是自然而然就萌发了。

追寻东方文化 净化灵魂

青年时期,他开始狂热的探索东方宗教,阅读大量宗教和哲学书籍,也成为彻底的素食主义者,过着极简的生活,肉食他是吞咽不下的。而通过他检验的素食食品也相当有限,他几乎只吃谷类面包和水果,还常常施行“禁食”。旁人看着贾伯斯,都对这个甘愿长期处于“饥饿状态”的“果食者”感到不解。

贾伯斯似乎急于从神秘的东方文化中找到净化灵魂的秘方,却又想要在事业的竞技场上冲锋陷阵、大展身手;这两者──精神欲与物质欲,不时的交错、拉扯。它们不时开战,也都胜利了。

在里德大学旁听一年后,贾伯斯开始闯荡江湖。他先是在俄勒冈一带的“苹果园”打工,继而在矽谷一家年轻的电脑游戏公司任职;显然最初的探索并没获致多少心得。

但贾伯斯用辛苦挣来的钱做了一趟印度朝圣之旅,一饱多年来对东方情调的怀想。浪游了几个月,才重返矽谷。或许是印度之旅激发了惊人的能量,他的创意从此一发不可收拾!

苹果电脑 造就二十三岁富翁

一九七六年,他二十一岁,在矽谷山景城的父母家车库拼装出一部举世瞩目的电脑——苹果电脑,它拥有浑圆光滑的外缘、贴心的功能性设计与令人惊艳的美观。它不再只是某些机关才会设置的庞大机器,而是人人都能使用的家电用品。

这项科技产品果然如“苹果”般吸引人,订单应接不暇,让这个穷小子见识了“财源滚滚”,到二十三岁时,他已握有一百万美元,又一年,财产超过一千万美元。与他合创苹果电脑公司的伙伴史蒂芬.沃兹尼克忙着数钞票。

名利来得如此之快,反而让他有不确定、不自在的感觉。他似乎不知如何运用暴发的财富,仍与女友住在摇摇欲坠的小木屋里,即使后来买下了巨宅,宅内也几乎没放家具,甚至连张床都没有。

他的友人看不过去,好心带他到骨董店家具店选购,却落得败兴而归。贾伯斯是极简主义的信徒,除非是完美至极的物品,否则,他宁愿生活空间是空旷的。他实行得很彻底,以至于多年来都住在巨大的空屋里。

事业顶峰 被苹果赶走

一九八零年,苹果电脑的股票上市,贾伯斯也跃升为总裁;三十岁那年,他拥有了一辆时髦的保时捷,黑亮的色调俐落的线条,一如他对美学的坚持,他像孩子般的四处炫耀。同时,他也成了媒体宠儿;他只要一出现,fans就痴望他、呼喊他:“贾伯斯!贾伯斯!贾伯斯!贾伯斯……”

贾伯斯凭着自身能力迅速成为大富翁,应该无可非议,但不妙的是,他变了,变的越来越猖狂,常常大发脾气口无遮拦,诸如“笨蛋”、“你白痴啊”“给我从头来过”这类用语无端四射。

员工们甚至害怕跟他一起坐电梯,因为很可能还没到达办公楼层,就被下令滚蛋了。贾伯斯对强者不屑,对弱者残酷。他不是故意的,只是很真实展现自己天真的一面,而天真,已化为一把把杀伤力特强的利刃。

贾伯斯二十八岁那年,请来百事可乐总裁史考力帮他整顿出了问题的苹果电脑公司。他这么问史考力:“你要继续卖糖水给小孩子?还是改变世界?”无礼的问话令人替他捏把冷汗,却意外打动了史考力。

史考力加入苹果电脑了,然后,他发现,整个公司的最大问题,其实就是倨傲霸道固执疯狂的贾伯斯!这个IQ一流却EQ不入流的家伙,让公司上上下下吃尽苦头,大家心情不好,当然事情做不好啰。错不了,问题的症结就在贾伯斯。于是,史考力果然不负所托,把问题解决了——裁掉贾伯斯。

一九八五年,三十岁的贾伯斯,就这样被赶了出去。他错愕极了──有没有搞错?被自己一手创办的公司解雇?他刚开发出风靡全球的“麦金塔”电脑,为公司赚进大把金子啊?解雇他,摆明是谋功篡位!可恨的是,那史考力是自己找来的。当时这在美国商业界成为最爆炸性的新闻事件。


贾伯斯在品味上的讲究与百般挑剔,更显露于他对伴侣的追求。劳伦斯.包威尔出脱的气质与美丽风采,让她成为贾伯斯钟爱一生的伴侣。(AFP)

自创公司倒闭 陷入沮丧

但贾伯斯并没有倒下。他决定证明苹果把他踢出去是天大的错误。他要嘲笑他们的不智!于是,贾伯斯再一次开发新型机器,组织新公司NeXT,期待再次引领潮流。NeXT果然受到瞩目,不过是一场失败的瞩目。苹果一天的销售量,比NeXT一年的业绩还要高。

贾伯斯撑到第七年,才终于承认失败;当公司的主管与员工陆续提出辞呈时,他被逼到了边缘,无论是财务、情绪、精神,全盘崩塌。一九九三年二月十月,NeXT宣布关厂并销毁电脑。然后他就陷入忧伤、沮丧、退缩。

三个月后,他在旧金山发表演说,谈到重整公司的计划。但过去吹捧他的媒体纷纷落井下石,没人看好他。就这样,工厂变荒漠,英雄变狗熊,魔鬼贾伯斯的梦碎了。

这一年年底,无可选择的,贾伯斯这个名字从企业菁英榜除名了……

素美人包威尔 不离不弃

若非生命中有贤慧的包威尔相伴,贾伯斯恐怕很难度过事业崩盘的关卡,甚至可能在某次的暴跳如雷中自戕而死。但因为有了包威尔,遗憾不可能发生;包威尔太叫人迷恋不舍了。

其实,包威尔已不知是贾伯斯的第几段感情了;魅力四射如贾伯斯谈恋爱太轻而易举了。贾伯斯的情人没有一个称不上大美人,她们不仅外表出众,也个个聪明绝顶、勇气十足,重要的是还具备艺术家的才华或气质。贾伯斯对每段感情都相当投入。

直到在斯坦福大学的一场演讲会上遇到包威尔──一个像顶尖模特儿的企管硕士、舞蹈家、素食富家女。她美的过火,几乎害他讲不下去。他三十四岁,从来没有那么失常过。

在他眼里,包威尔几近完美,正是他梦寐以求的对象。尤其,她还是个对自然饮食严格把关的素食主义者,她完全不吃肉,十几岁开始就奉行不含添加物的生机饮食。噢,太优秀了,比他自己还优秀。

也难为了包威尔,当他与贾伯斯坠入爱河时,贾伯斯刚好被逐出苹果;她十足展现了母性的光辉,不离不弃不怨不求。攀着这块充满浓情蜜意的浮木,贾伯斯才死去又活来,且学会了谦逊与圆融。贾伯斯三十六岁那年,包威尔怀孕了,带动贾伯斯成为慈父与良夫。

在幸福家庭的支撑下,贾伯斯的事业得到意外的救赎。他为皮克斯(Pixar)公司献出良策,于一九九五年十一月,推出电脑动画长片“玩具总动员”(Toy Story)。

奇迹来了,才一周,投资人就争相购买皮克斯的上市股票。而贾伯斯转瞬间成了亿万富豪。之后,《虫虫危机》也获得成功,拉近了矽谷和好莱坞的距离,并打破了迪士尼六十年来对动画市场的垄断。

掌声又为贾伯斯响起,苹果公司的高层也听到了。

重回苹果 再登事业高峰

而苹果此时已不如当初。一九八五年贾伯斯被驱逐后,苹果的确独占鳌头好几年;但进入九十年代后,由于决策阶层将产品规格推到顶端,使得原本普遍的“麦金塔”电脑变成有钱人家才养得起的宠物了。

没多久,苹果就“高处不胜寒”了,个人电脑市场很快就拱手让给比尔.盖茨。一连串的判断错误,让苹果的命运直线下坠。眼看就要没救了,决策高层清楚发出声音:“贾伯斯,您回来吧!”

于是一九九七年夏天,贾伯斯以“临时执行长”名义回到这个曾让他风光、也曾让他发狂的地方。员工们都慌了,他们深怕自己任何一个闪失,都会被这个暴君怒骂“狗屎”,甚至不敢接近可能会害人失业的电梯。

他们开始怀念没有贾伯斯时悠哉的工作气氛。但说实在的,员工松散的工作态度是需要改革了,一些员工甚至敢爬到主管头上,许多令人头痛的事情,似乎只有仰仗贾伯斯了。

果然,贾伯斯一出手就不同凡响。他迅速实施禁烟、撤换厨子改为提供健康菜肴、禁止带宠物上班……。他依然严格行事,但鲜少口出恶言,显然,他生命中较为粗鄙的部分,已悄悄修正了。

名利双收 不为所动

一九九八年五月,苹果的新产品问世了,当彩色“一体式”(all-in-one)电脑出现在发表会会场时,观众先是愣了一会儿,然后如雷掌声久久不退,几乎要把会场给掀了。贾伯斯的创意,把苹果的股价拉拔了十几倍,把低于二十亿美元的巿值增为两百亿。

苹果少不了他了!但慎重考虑两年半,他才决定接受执行长的头衔。当数千人起立为他鼓掌,扯开嗓子吟诵他的名字时,贾伯斯的笑容里流露出几许腼腆。

二零零三年,一项矽谷高阶主管年薪调查显示,贾伯斯以七千四百七十五万美元名列第一。而去年,《纽约时报》报导,全美薪资最低的执行长是苹果公司的贾伯斯,年薪只有象征性的一美元,但他拥有价值十点三亿美元的苹果公司股票。

财富爆增,荣誉也接踵而来。一九九七年成为《时代周刊》的封面人物;同年被评为最成功的管理者,成为声名显赫的“电脑狂人”。二零零九年被《财富杂志》评选为十年来美国最佳CEO,同年当选《时代周刊》年度风云人物之一。早在一九八五年,贾伯斯就获得了由雷根总统授予的国家级技术勋章。

贾伯斯真的变了,经过几番挫折的洗礼,他变得谦逊,也变回纯真。他喜欢快乐的对人说:“我正与全星球最有天分的人在一起工作!这真是全世界最棒的工作啊!”

“求知若饥,虚心若愚(Stay Hungry, Stay Foolish)”,是贾伯斯二零零五年向斯坦福大学毕业生演说时,最后总结的人生体悟。

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苹果的春天

文 ◎ 九天剑


今年元月iPad旧金山产品发表会现场上,跳脱出银白传统色调的苹果看板彩妆,似乎是贾伯斯对苹果众生许下的一个“五彩缤纷数位人生”的承诺。(Getty Images)

“忽如一夜春风来,千树万树梨花开”。二零一零年的春天,梨花还没开,苹果却丰收了,是那种每个都被咬了一口的苹果——iPad一夜红遍美国,震动世界。

苹果电脑的出现,与其说是资讯技术的一次革新,毋宁说是电脑领域的一场文化变革。贾伯斯给世人的贡献不仅是新型的个人化计算工具,而且是挑战权威、让每个人都充分享受到资讯的“民权”,他的成功与其说是机器的成功,不如说是观念的凯旋。贾伯斯给苹果留下的观念遗产使苹果赢得了最忠实的用户,同时也给公司留下动荡的种子。——MBA智库百科

冷丁如何成为香饽饽

早年一直被大小PC压着,只在业界被一小撮设计精英捧着的青苹果,为何冷丁(冷不防)成了大众香饽饽?这事让我想起了大陆大名鼎鼎的非著名相声演员郭德纲。二者身世惊人的相似。

郭德纲,由天津起家,西漂北京,忍辱十年,常年票房惨澹,惨到最不忍睹时,几百人的场子,台下仅有粉丝一名。郭不弃,咬碎纲牙咽肚里,背过身掩鼻而泣,扭脸儿就插科打诨,招牌笑脸向观众,全然忘了自己个儿。渐由小名初起忽然一炮而红,继而红得发紫,赚得钵满盘盈。

苹果呢?一九七六年五月,创始人贾伯斯找到本地名叫The Byte Shop的电脑商店店主保罗.泰瑞尔,推销APPLE I。保罗听了介绍表示可以试着订购五十部,但要在交货时才支付每台五百美元。也难怪,贾伯斯小伙儿那时才二十出头。为了筹备资金,贾伯斯和他的搭档沃兹尼亚克卖了自己各种值钱的东西筹款,包括大众牌爱车和电脑。贾伯斯去找电子分销商Cramer Electronics订购零件,店铺的信用部经理问贾伯斯如何结帐,他说:“我有Byte Shop订我五十台电脑的订单,货到付款,如果你给我三十天,我就可以把电脑装好,送货给泰瑞尔后再付清帐款。”经理当场致电正在外地开会的泰瑞尔后得到证实,惊讶于贾伯斯的坚韧,终于将货赊给了他。贾伯斯、沃兹尼亚克、韦恩三个苹果创始人与两名朋友借用贾伯斯家人的车房日夜不分地装配,并进行马拉松式的测试,终于在到期前交货给泰瑞尔,赚进了第一桶金。

一晃就是三十多年。这期间,苹果虽优点日益升级,但似乎曲高和寡,不被大众关注,用户数量一直平平。公司高层也几起几落,几遇官司,财政上亏亏盈盈。从八十年代起,更是默默看着人群涌向别家PC。

关键在人性

人性化的设计,令苹果迷爱不释手。(Getty Images)

然而造物主是公平的,付出多少得到多少。现在看来,上面二者相同的不只是身世,成功还在于他们对人性的观察和研究。郭德纲的粉丝有擦鞋的,扛大个的,当保安的,收废品的……也有教授、学者、名记、老编、老板、官宦。为什么?人性使然。对他的艺术,表面评论是大俗小雅,我的个人评价是掐到了人的麻筋儿。在这个上班像打仗、商场如战场、社会鸡飞狗跳,警笛彻夜惊叫的年头,花四五十块,亲自上北京天桥找老郭一乐,疏解心脏压力,值。

苹果也不例外。在一天到晚不得不与办公室那个累得你眼睛晕眩、腱鞘僵硬、繁琐如外星怪物的冷冰冰工业面孔对脸,再看到苹果,你的心会舒服许多——洁白如玉的皮肤,温柔干净的介面,宁静如夜的陪伴,轻易掌控的操作,赏心悦耳的音响,光滑无缝的滑鼠,气死病毒的安全系统……艺术的含金量超过科技的堆砌。难怪有拥趸说,原来不知道,苹果离得远,一旦拥有,才知何为人性。

郭德纲为什么成功?个性;苹果为什么成功?个性。个性就是人性,而人性一定成功,因为它是人的本性。虽然苹果被多数人品尝晚了点(尤其普通华人),但大器晚成。而晚成必定持久,这是与人性观察成正比的。而当今时代,人们从急功近利和繁琐花哨中,逐渐找到了心情的简洁需求。这就是为什么从四百九十九美金到八百二十九美金的iPad甫一上市,立即轰动的道理——众里寻他千百度。

上市第一天,美国本土价格的苹果卖了三十万台,一天啊,不是卖大白菜啊!稍后,苹果宣布,五月底以前全球都供不上货,美国电脑黄牛咧开大嘴笑哈哈——随即把网上价格翻着番的炒将上去。

这些都是信号,人们恍然大悟,尤其钱包不鼓的大多数中国青年,和刚对苹果有点概念的中国中年,敢情苹果才是对我们路子的呀!贵是贵了点,那也得用好的呀,买!于是乎,在世界人民开智之后,近日,苹果市值首破二千一百亿美元,因此有权威断言:苹果超越大哥微软几成定局。而十年前,前者的市场份额只有可怜的 5%。

当白苹果长到树尖上

其实,人性化的背后,包含了更高的科技,更多的劳动。早在一九八四年一月二十四日麦金塔(Apple Macintosh)发布时,就被称为计算机工业发展史上的一个里程碑;麦金塔配有全新的革命性作业系统(图形用户介面),其中有易于理解的“trashcan”和“便条”等。五角大楼随即禁止苹果的麦金塔销往共产主义国家。那时的苏联,尚不知麦金塔为何技术。

一九九九年八月三十一日,贾伯斯在旧金山展示超级电脑Power Macintosh G4。500MHzG4处理器每秒可运行超过十亿次浮点运算,这一点也因此而被美国政府列为禁运武器类技术。

人性化的产品不高超吗?就像我们大陆人二十年前,有几个明白数码相机为何物?直到有一天,说相机都变傻瓜了,你再看看,人满为患的旅游景点,每天都跟开新闻发布会似的,闪光灯哇哇的。这不是相机人性化的结果吗?可以预计,苹果照着现在的路走下去,要不了多久,再也不用花钱做广告,满街人都扛着白苹果——带着上帝牙印的那个。

我可不敢拿上帝随便开玩笑。我是听到一个传说。

传说苹果公司的标志,是一个被上帝咬过一口的苹果。人们认为每个人都被上帝咬过一口,即每个人都有缺陷,但生活正是这样:保有缺陷的才是完美的!因为只有不完美,才能不断进步,更加完美。

这个号称被上帝咬过一口的苹果是苹果电脑的第二个标志,而第一个标志,取自差不多四百年前落在牛顿头顶上的那一个。

四百年前,上帝创造了牛顿,四百年后,苹果没辜负上帝那一口。这样的联想可能还不是很奇特,我们不妨越过表象思考,苹果今天的成功或许是被更神秘的力量推了一把。凡事皆有因缘。

让我们期待长在树尖上的苹果带给我们更精采的故事。
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http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/0 ... 56.html?_r=2&hp

Steven P. Jobs, the visionary co-founder of Apple who helped usher in the era of personal computers and then led a cultural transformation in the way music, movies and mobile communications were experienced in the digital age, died Wednesday. He was 56.

The death was announced by Apple, the company Mr. Jobs and his high school friend Stephen Wozniak started in 1976 in a suburban California garage.

A friend of the family said that Mr. Jobs died of complications from pancreatic cancer, with which he waged a long and public struggle, remaining the face of the company even as he underwent treatment. He continued to introduce new products for a global market in his trademark blue jeans even as he grew gaunt and frail.

He underwent surgery in 2004, received a liver transplant in 2009 and took three medical leaves of absence as Apple’s chief executive before stepping down in August and turning over the helm to Timothy D. Cook, the chief operating officer. When he left, he was still engaged in the company’s affairs, negotiating with another Silicon Valley executive only weeks earlier.
“I have always said that if there ever came a day when I could no longer meet my duties and expectations as Apple’s C.E.O., I would be the first to let you know,” Mr. Jobs said in a letter released by the company. “Unfortunately, that day has come.”

By then, having mastered digital technology and capitalized on his intuitive marketing sense, Mr. Jobs had largely come to define the personal computer industry and an array of digital consumer and entertainment businesses centered on the Internet. He had also become a very rich man, worth an estimated $8.3 billion.

Tributes to Mr. Jobs flowed quickly on Wednesday evening, in formal statements and in the flow of social networks, with President Obama, technology industry leaders and legions of Apple fans weighing in.

“For those of us lucky enough to get to work with Steve, it’s been an insanely great honor,” said Bill Gates, the Microsoft co-founder. “I will miss Steve immensely.”

A Twitter user named Matt Galligan wrote: “R.I.P. Steve Jobs. You touched an ugly world of technology and made it beautiful.”

Eight years after founding Apple, Mr. Jobs led the team that designed the Macintosh computer, a breakthrough in making personal computers easier to use. After a 12-year separation from the company, prompted by a bitter falling-out with his chief executive, John Sculley, he returned in 1997 to oversee the creation of one innovative digital device after another — the iPod, the iPhone and the iPad. These transformed not only product categories like music players and cellphones but also entire industries, like music and mobile communications.

During his years outside Apple, he bought a tiny computer graphics spinoff from the director George Lucas and built a team of computer scientists, artists and animators that became Pixar Animation Studios.

Starting with “Toy Story” in 1995, Pixar produced a string of hit movies, won several Academy Awards for artistic and technological excellence, and made the full-length computer-animated film a mainstream art form enjoyed by children and adults worldwide.

Mr. Jobs was neither a hardware engineer nor a software programmer, nor did he think of himself as a manager. He considered himself a technology leader, choosing the best people possible, encouraging and prodding them, and making the final call on product design.

It was an executive style that had evolved. In his early years at Apple, his meddling in tiny details maddened colleagues, and his criticism could be caustic and even humiliating. But he grew to elicit extraordinary loyalty.

“He was the most passionate leader one could hope for, a motivating force without parallel,” wrote Steven Levy, author of the 1994 book “Insanely Great,” which chronicles the creation of the Mac. “Tom Sawyer could have picked up tricks from Steve Jobs.”
“Toy Story,” for example, took four years to make while Pixar struggled, yet Mr. Jobs never let up on his colleagues. “‘You need a lot more than vision — you need a stubbornness, tenacity, belief and patience to stay the course,” said Edwin Catmull, a computer scientist and a co-founder of Pixar. “In Steve’s case, he pushes right to the edge, to try to make the next big step forward.”

To his understanding of technology he brought an immersion in popular culture. In his 20s, he dated Joan Baez; Ella Fitzgerald sang at his 30th birthday party. His worldview was shaped by the ’60s counterculture in the San Francisco Bay Area, where he had grown up, the adopted son of a Silicon Valley machinist. When he graduated from high school in Cupertino in 1972, he said, ”the very strong scent of the 1960s was still there.”

After dropping out of Reed College, a stronghold of liberal thought in Portland, Ore., in 1972, Mr. Jobs led a countercultural lifestyle himself. He told a reporter that taking LSD was one of the two or three most important things he had done in his life. He said there were things about him that people who had not tried psychedelics — even people who knew him well, including his wife — could never understand.

Decades later he flew around the world in his own corporate jet, but he maintained emotional ties to the period in which he grew up. He often felt like an outsider in the corporate world, he said. When discussing the Silicon Valley’s lasting contributions to humanity, he mentioned in the same breath the invention of the microchip and “The Whole Earth Catalog,” a 1960s counterculture publication.

Apple’s very name reflected his unconventionality. In an era when engineers and hobbyists tended to describe their machines with model numbers, he chose the name of a fruit, supposedly because of his dietary habits at the time.

Coming on the scene just as computing began to move beyond the walls of research laboratories and corporations in the 1970s, Mr. Jobs saw that computing was becoming personal — that it could do more than crunch numbers and solve scientific and business problems — and that it could even be a force for social and economic change. And at a time when hobbyist computers were boxy wooden affairs with metal chassis, he designed the Apple II as a sleek, low-slung plastic package intended for the den or the kitchen. He was offering not just products but a digital lifestyle.

He put much stock in the notion of “taste,” a word he used frequently. It was a sensibility that shone in products that looked like works of art and delighted users. Great products, he said, were a triumph of taste, of “trying to expose yourself to the best things humans have done and then trying to bring those things into what you are doing.”

Regis McKenna, a longtime Silicon Valley marketing executive to whom Mr. Jobs turned in the late 1970s to help shape the Apple brand, said Mr. Jobs’s genius lay in his ability to simplify complex, highly engineered products, “to strip away the excess layers of business, design and innovation until only the simple, elegant reality remained.”

Mr. Jobs’s own research and intuition, not focus groups, were his guide. When asked what market research went into the iPad, Mr. Jobs replied: “None. It’s not the consumers’ job to know what they want.”
Mr. Jobs’s own research and intuition, not focus groups, were his guide. When asked what market research went into the iPad, Mr. Jobs replied: “None. It’s not the consumers’ job to know what they want.”

Early Interests

Steven Paul Jobs was born in San Francisco on Feb. 24, 1955, and surrendered for adoption by his biological parents, Joanne Carole Schieble and Abdulfattah Jandali, a graduate student from Syria who became a political science professor. He was adopted by Paul and Clara Jobs.

The elder Mr. Jobs, who worked in finance and real estate before returning to his original trade as a machinist, moved his family down the San Francisco Peninsula to Mountain View and then to Los Altos in the 1960s.

Mr. Jobs developed an early interest in electronics. He was mentored by a neighbor, an electronics hobbyist, who built Heathkit do-it-yourself electronics projects. He was brash from an early age. As an eighth grader, after discovering that a crucial part was missing from a frequency counter he was assembling, he telephoned William Hewlett, the co-founder of Hewlett-Packard. Mr. Hewlett spoke with the boy for 20 minutes, prepared a bag of parts for him to pick up and offered him a job as a summer intern.

Mr. Jobs met Mr. Wozniak while attending Homestead High School in neighboring Cupertino. The two took an introductory electronics class there.
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The spark that ignited their partnership was provided by Mr. Wozniak’s mother. Mr. Wozniak had graduated from high school and enrolled at the University of California, Berkeley, when she sent him an article from the October 1971 issue of Esquire magazine. The article, “Secrets of the Little Blue Box,” by Ron Rosenbaum, detailed an underground hobbyist culture of young men known as phone phreaks who were illicitly exploring the nation’s phone system.

Mr. Wozniak shared the article with Mr. Jobs, and the two set out to track down an elusive figure identified in the article as Captain Crunch. The man had taken the name from his discovery that a whistle that came in boxes of Cap’n Crunch cereal was tuned to a frequency that made it possible to make free long-distance calls simply by blowing the whistle next to a phone handset.

Captain Crunch was John Draper, a former Air Force electronic technician, and finding him took several weeks. Learning that the two young hobbyists were searching for him, Mr. Draper appeared one day in Mr. Wozniak’s Berkeley dormitory room. Mr. Jobs, who was still in high school, had traveled to Berkeley for the meeting. When Mr. Draper arrived, he entered the room saying simply, “It is I!”

Based on information they gleaned from Mr. Draper, Mr. Wozniak and Mr. Jobs later collaborated on building and selling blue boxes, devices that were widely used for making free — and illegal — phone calls. They raised a total of $6,000 from the effort.

After enrolling at Reed College in 1972, Mr. Jobs left after one semester, but remained in Portland for another 18 months auditing classes. In a commencement address given at Stanford in 2005, he said he had decided to leave college because it was consuming all of his parents’ savings.

Leaving school, however, also freed his curiosity to follow his interests. “I didn’t have a dorm room,” he said in his Stanford speech, “so I slept on the floor in friends’ rooms, I returned Coke bottles for the 5-cent deposits to buy food with, and I would walk the seven miles across town every Sunday night to get one good meal a week at the Hare Krishna temple. I loved it. And much of what I stumbled into by following my curiosity and intuition turned out to be priceless later on.”

He returned to Silicon Valley in 1974 and took a job there as a technician at Atari, the video game manufacturer. Still searching for his calling, he left after several months and traveled to India with a college friend, Daniel Kottke, who would later become an early Apple employee. Mr. Jobs returned to Atari that fall. In 1975, he and Mr. Wozniak, then working as an engineer at H.P., began attending meetings of the Homebrew Computer Club, a hobbyist group that met at the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center in Menlo Park, Calif. Personal computing had been pioneered at research laboratories adjacent to Stanford, and it was spreading to the outside world.

“What I remember is how intense he looked,” said Lee Felsenstein, a computer designer who was a Homebrew member. “He was everywhere, and he seemed to be trying to hear everything people had to say.”

Mr. Wozniak designed the original Apple I computer simply to show it off to his friends at the Homebrew. It was Mr. Jobs who had the inspiration that it could be a commercial product.

In early 1976, he and Mr. Wozniak, using their own money, began Apple with an initial investment of $1,300; they later gained the backing of a former Intel executive, A. C. Markkula, who lent them $250,000. Mr. Wozniak would be the technical half and Mr. Jobs the marketing half of the original Apple I Computer. Starting out in the Jobs family garage in Los Altos, they moved the company to a small office in Cupertino shortly thereafter.

In April 1977, Mr. Jobs and Mr. Wozniak introduced Apple II at the West Coast Computer Faire in San Francisco. It created a sensation. Faced with a gaggle of small and large competitors in the emerging computer market, Apple, with its Apple II, had figured out a way to straddle the business and consumer markets by building a computer that could be customized for specific applications.

Sales skyrocketed, from $2 million in 1977 to $600 million in 1981, the year the company went public. By 1983 Apple was in the Fortune 500. No company had ever joined the list so quickly.
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The Apple III, introduced in May 1980, was intended to dominate the desktop computer market. I.B.M. would not introduce its original personal computer until 1981. But the Apple III had a host of technical problems, and Mr. Jobs shifted his focus to a new and ultimately short-lived project, an office workstation computer code-named Lisa.
An Apocalyptic Moment

By then Mr. Jobs had made his much-chronicled 1979 visit to Xerox’s research center in Palo Alto, where he saw the Alto, an experimental personal computer system that foreshadowed modern desktop computing. The Alto, controlled by a mouse pointing device, was one of the first computers to employ a graphical video display, which presented the user with a view of documents and programs, adopting the metaphor of an office desktop.

“It was one of those sort of apocalyptic moments,” Mr. Jobs said of his visit in a 1995 oral history interview for the Smithsonian Institution. “I remember within 10 minutes of seeing the graphical user interface stuff, just knowing that every computer would work this way someday. It was so obvious once you saw it. It didn’t require tremendous intellect. It was so clear.”

In 1981 he joined a small group of Apple engineers pursuing a separate project, a lower-cost system code-named Macintosh. The machine was introduced in January 1984 and trumpeted during the Super Bowl telecast by a 60-second commercial, directed by Ridley Scott, that linked I.B.M., by then the dominant PC maker, with Orwell’s Big Brother.

A year earlier Mr. Jobs had lured Mr. Sculley to Apple to be its chief executive. A former Pepsi-Cola chief executive, Mr. Sculley was impressed by Mr. Jobs’s pitch: “Do you want to spend the rest of your life selling sugared water, or do you want a chance to change the world?”

He went on to help Mr. Jobs introduce a number of new computer models, including an advanced version of the Apple II and later the Lisa and Macintosh desktop computers. Through them Mr. Jobs popularized the graphical user interface, which, based on a mouse pointing device, would become the standard way to control computers.

But when the Lisa failed commercially and early Macintosh sales proved disappointing, the two men became estranged and a power struggle ensued, and Mr. Jobs lost control of the Lisa project. The board ultimately stripped him of his operational role, taking control of the Lisa project away from, and 1,200 Apple employees were laid off. He left Apple in 1985.

“I don’t wear the right kind of pants to run this company,” he told a small gathering of Apple employees before he left, according to a member of the original Macintosh development team. He was barefoot as he spoke, and wearing blue jeans.

That September he announced a new venture, NeXT Inc. The aim was to build a workstation computer for the higher-education market. The next year, the Texas industrialist H. Ross Perot invested $20 million in the effort. But it did not achieve Mr. Jobs’s goals.

Mr. Jobs also established a personal philanthropic foundation after leaving Apple but soon had a change of heart, deciding instead to spend much of his fortune — $10 million — on acquiring Pixar, a struggling graphics supercomputing company owned by the filmmaker George Lucas.

The purchase was a significant gamble; there was little market at the time for computer-animated movies. But that changed in 1995, when the company, with Walt Disney Pictures, released “Toy Story.” That film’s box-office receipts ultimately reached $362 million, and when Pixar went public in a record-breaking offering, Mr. Jobs emerged a billionaire. In 2006, the Walt Disney Company agreed to purchase Pixar for $7.4 billion. The sale made Mr. Jobs Disney’s largest single shareholder, with about 7 percent of the company’s stock.

His personal life also became more public. He had a number of well-publicized romantic relationships, including one with the folk singer Joan Baez, before marrying Laurene Powell. In 1996, a sister, the novelist Mona Simpson, threw a spotlight on her relationship with Mr. Jobs in the novel “A Regular Guy.” The two did not meet until they were adults. The novel centered on a Silicon Valley entrepreneur who bore a close resemblance to Mr. Jobs. It was not an entirely flattering portrait. Mr. Jobs said about a quarter of it was accurate.
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“We’re family,” he said of Ms. Simpson in an interview with The New York Times Magazine. “She’s one of my best friends in the world. I call her and talk to her every couple of days.”

His wife and Ms. Simpson survive him, as do his three children with Ms. Powell, his daughters Eve Jobs and Erin Sienna Jobs and a son, Reed; another daughter, Lisa Brennan-Jobs, from a relationship with Chrisann Brennan; and another sister, Patti Jobs.

Return to Apple

Eventually, Mr. Jobs refocused NeXT from the education to the business market and dropped the hardware part of the company, deciding to sell just an operating system. Although NeXT never became a significant computer industry player, it had a huge impact: a young programmer, Tim Berners-Lee, used a NeXT machine to develop the first version of the World Wide Web at the Swiss physics research center CERN in 1990.

In 1996, after unsuccessful efforts to develop next-generation operating systems, Apple, with Gilbert Amelio now in command, acquired NeXT for $430 million. The next year, Mr. Jobs returned to Apple as an adviser. He became chief executive again in 2000.

Shortly after returning, Mr. Jobs publicly ended Apple’s long feud with its archrival Microsoft, which agreed to continue developing its Office software for the Macintosh and invested $150 million in Apple.

Once in control of Apple again, Mr. Jobs set out to reshape the consumer electronics industry. He pushed the company into the digital music business, introducing first iTunes and then the iPod MP3 player. The music arm grew rapidly, reaching almost 50 percent of the company’s revenue by June 2008.

In 2005, Mr. Jobs announced that he would end Apple’s business relationship with I.B.M. and Motorola and build Macintosh computers based on Intel microprocessors.

By then his fight with cancer was publicly known. Apple had announced in 2004 that Mr. Jobs had a rare but curable form of pancreatic cancer and that he had undergone successful surgery. Four years later, questions about his health returned when he appeared at a company event looking gaunt. Afterward, he said he had suffered from a “common bug.” Privately, he said his cancer surgery had created digestive problems but insisted they were not life-threatening.

Apple began selling the iPhone in June 2007. Mr. Jobs’s goal was to sell 10 million of the handsets in 2008, equivalent to 1 percent of the global cellphone market. The company sold 11.6 million.

Although smartphones were already commonplace, the iPhone dispensed with a stylus and pioneered a touch-screen interface that quickly set the standard for the mobile computing market. Rolled out with much anticipation and fanfare, iPhone rocketed to popularity; by end of 2010 the company had sold almost 90 million units.

Although Mr. Jobs took just a nominal $1 salary when he returned to Apple, his compensation became the source of a Silicon Valley scandal in 2006 over the backdating of millions of shares of stock options. But after a company investigation and one by the Securities and Exchange Commission, he was found not to have benefited financially from the backdating and no charges were brought.

The episode did little to taint Mr. Jobs’s standing in the business and technology world. As the gravity of his illness became known, and particularly after he announced he was stepping down, he was increasingly hailed for his genius and true achievement: his ability to blend product design and business market innovation by integrating consumer-oriented software, microelectronic components, industrial design and new business strategies in a way that has not been matched.

If he had a motto, it may have come from “The Whole Earth Catalog,” which he said had deeply influenced him as a young man. The book, he said in his commencement address at Stanford in 2005, ends with the admonition “Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.”

“I have always wished that for myself,” he said.
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"The world rarely sees someone who has had the profound impact Steve has had, the effects of which will be felt for many generations to come. For those of us lucky enough to get to work with him, it's been an insanely great honor. I will miss Steve immensely."
— Bill Gates

"From the earliest days of Google, whenever Larry and I sought inspiration for vision and leadership, we needed to look no farther than Cupertino. Steve, your passion for excellence is felt by anyone who has ever touched an Apple product (including the macbook I am writing this on right now). And I have witnessed it in person the few times we have met. On behalf of all of us at Google and more broadly in technology, you will be missed very much. My condolences to family, friends, and colleagues at Apple."
— Sergey Brin

"I am very, very sad to hear the news about Steve. He was a great man with incredible achievements and amazing brilliance. He always seemed to be able to say in very few words what you actually should have been thinking before you thought it. His focus on the user experience above all else has always been an inspiration to me. He was very kind to reach out to me as I became CEO of Google and spend time offering his advice and knowledge even though he was not at all well. My thoughts are with his family and the whole Apple family."
— Larry Page

"Steve, thank you for being a mentor and a friend. Thanks for showing that what you build can change the world. I will miss you."
— Mark Zuckerberg

"He was dubbed a megalomaniac, but Steve Jobs often gambled on young, largely inexperienced talent to take Apple forward; Jony Ive and his team prove that such faith was spot on."
— Sir James Dyson, innovator and entrepreneur

"I got one of the first Macs, and my relationship with computers fundamentally changed. In both of his incarnations at Apple, he was a visionary. He provided tools. His victories were based on imagination and courage."
— Roger Ebert, Pulitzer-prize winning film critic

"No words can adequately express our sadness at Steve's death or our gratitude for the opportunity to work with him. We will honor his memory by dedicating ourselves to continuing the work he loved so much."
— Tim Cook, CEO of Apple

"Tonight our City -- a city that has always had such respect and admiration for creative genius -- joins with people around the planet in remembering a great man and keeping Laurene and the rest of the Jobs family in our thoughts and prayers."
— Michael Bloomberg, Mayor of New York City

"Steve Jobs was an extraordinary visionary, our very dear friend and the guiding light of the Pixar family. He saw the potential of what Pixar could be before the rest of us, and beyond what anyone ever imagined. Steve took a chance on us and believed in our crazy dream of making computer animated films; the one thing he always said was to simply 'make it great.' He is why Pixar turned out the way we did and his strength, integrity and love of life has made us all better people. He will forever be a part of Pixar's DNA. Our hearts go out to his wife Laurene and their children during this incredibly difficult time."
— John Lasseter, Chief Creative Officer, and Ed Catmull, President, Walt Disney and Pixar Animation Studios

"The world has lost a visionary. And there may be no greater tribute to Steve's success than the fact that much of the world learned of his passing on a device he invented. Michelle and I send our thoughts and prayers to Steve's wife Laurene, his family, and all those who loved him."
— President Barack Obama

"Steve Jobs was an iconic entrepreneur and businessman whose impact on technology was felt beyond Silicon Valley. He will be remembered for the innovation he brought to market and the inspiration he brought to the world."
— Meg Whitman, President and CEO, HP

"Steve was my hero growing up. He not only gave me a lot of personal advice and encouragement, he showed all of us how innovation can change lives.I will miss him dearly, as will the world."
— Jerry Yang

"Steve was such an 'original,' with a thoroughly creative, imaginative mind that defined an era. Despite all he accomplished, it feels like he was just getting started. With his passing the world has lost a rare original, Disney has lost a member of our family, and I have lost a great friend."
— Bob Iger, CEO of Disney

"I want to express my deepest condolences at the passing of Steve Jobs, one of the founders of our industry and a true visionary. My heart goes out to his family, everyone at Apple and everyone who has been touched by his work."
— Steve Ballmer

"Heaven got a major upgrade today. God blessed us with you and we are so thankful for your vision and your passion. You really did change the world. We miss you already."
— Chris Calloway, Wired reader

"So much creativity and connection has been (and will continue to be) facilitated by his genius. I am touched and inspired by his life."
— Kai Harris Panym, Wired reader

"He seems to have squeezed every nuance of his life experience into Apple's creations and his life is a testament to the power of the human spirit to create here on this earth. We must all take direction from the lessons of his life, to live fearlessly and to create without constraint."
— Caroline Sexton, Wired reader
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乔布斯成功之道:想你想不到的

  (联合早报网讯)台湾联合新闻网报道,“想你想不到的观念,做你做不出的产品”,应该是乔布斯能够成为科技界风云人物的重要原因之一。他使科技从庞然大物变成能放进口袋,把娱乐从唱盘转为数位。他推出的东西不仅仅是“新产品”,更重要的是能够把人类的生活带入一个“新领域”。

  Apple I,开创了电脑“个人化”的新理念;Apple II,把电脑由少数玩家的禁脔,推广成大众化的产品,也让他在廿五岁时成了亿万富翁。“丽莎”虽让他初尝败绩,但他将绘图界面、视窗与滑鼠纳入个人电脑,不仅为后续的“麦金塔”奠定成功基础,也为个人电脑建立标准规格,至今未被取代。

  接下来的iMac,促成网路全球化的风潮。进入廿一世纪,乔布斯更是连战皆捷,iPod把随身听带入了数位化的时代,iPhone掀起了触控风潮,iPad则让平板电脑得以实现。

  高科技业者的竞争,通常在于“数字”,例如产品处理速度多快,记忆体容量多大;然而技术性“数字”很容易被竞争者超越,因此,产品虽然不断推陈出新,但“生命周期”愈来愈短。

  其次,高科技业固然必须重视技术的创新,但更重要的是必须将新技术与消费者的需求紧密结合。苹果本世纪以来多项新产品频创佳绩,在于能推出让消费者“喜出望外”、带动市场风潮的新产品,其他竞争厂商只能紧跟在后,靠着“提升功能”苦苦追赶。即使“后来居上”,但苹果却早已在另一项新产品的跑道上遥遥领先了。

  乔布斯的成功关键,当然在于不断“创新”。然而“创新”的重点并不在于技术层次,而是在于产品概念,所以乔布斯缔造了苹果的奇蹟,也改变了世界。
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