Absolutely fantastic piece assembled by Steven Levy for Wired:
Twenty-five years ago, the computer revolution’s marquee company
was in decline. Back then, it was just settling into shiny new
headquarters, a campus of six buildings that formed a different
kind of ring. Called Infinite Loop, the name is a reference to a
well-known programming error — code that gets stuck in an endless
repetition — though no one seems to know who applied it. Infinite
Loop was the place where Apple’s leaders and engineers pulled off
a historic turnaround, and it will always be the source of stories
and legends — many of them untold. Until now.
There’s so much quotable stuff in here. Here’s just one, which I’ve heard before but which still made me laugh out out reading it again:
Forstall: Whenever I ate with Steve, he insisted on paying for
me, which I thought was a little odd. Even if we went in together
and he selected something quick like pre-made sushi, and I ordered
a pizza in the wood-burning pizza oven, he would wait for me at
the cash register for 10, 15 minutes. I felt so awkward. Finally,
I told him. “Seriously, I can pay for myself, so please don’t
stand there and wait for me.” He said, “Scott, you don’t
understand. You know how we pay by swiping your badge and then
it’s deducted from your salary? I only get paid a dollar a year!
Every time I swipe we get a free meal!” Here was this
multibillionaire putting one over on the company he founded, a few
dollars at a time.
As my friend John Siracusa quipped in a Slack group, “This is the most Steve Jobs quote ever.” Jobs enjoyed pulling one over on The Man even after he became The Man. That free lunch scam delighted him the way free long distance phone calls did with Woz and their blue boxes.
This whole history is simply terrific. Do not miss it. (That story from Tim Cook about the meeting with Gateway — oh my god.)
★ Monday, 17 September 2018