With a bestselling biography by Walter Isaacson on the shelves, the public has learned many shocking details about the life of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs since he succumbed to cancer in October of 2011. In addition to the surprising allegations of refusal to pay child support to the mother of his eldest daughter and the story behind his black turtleneck uniform, here are ten other surprises that have come out since his untimely demise.
- He Initially Opposed Third-Party Apps – Apple board member Art Levinson had to make at least a dozen pleading phone calls in order to convince Steve Jobs to allow the use of third-party apps on their revolutionary devices. Convinced that policing the developers would prove too complex, he staunchly opposed the idea before finally conceding.
- He Has No Record of Philanthropy or Charitable Contributions – Despite the billions he was worth, Steve Jobs has absolutely no history of charitable contributions. Unless donations were made anonymously, he wasn’t known as a philanthropist.
- He Espoused Freedom of Expression, But Heavily Censored Third-Party Apps – While launching an empire directed at “the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers,” Jobs strictly controlled the apps that were allowed to be sold for his iPhone and iPad products. Apps directed at gay issues, political parodies, erotica of any kind and several other things he deemed immoral were verboten.
- He Condoned Chinese Sweatshop Conditions – In a shocking contribution to the terrible working conditions in some foreign countries, Steve Jobs not only allowed Apple products to be assembled by children in China, but also allowed brutal punishments to be meted out for mistakes.
- His Biography Was Written For His Children – The biography penned by Walter Isaacson didn’t come easily; Isaacson declined the first time he was approached with the project. After accepting, Jobs explained that he wanted the book to be written in order for his children to have a chance to get to know him, as he knew he hadn’t been present enough in their lives to foster the relationships.
- He Died Fighting the Android OS – Vowing to “spend his last dying breath if he had to,” to “right the wrong” of what he deemed Google’s stolen idea for the Android operating system, Steve Jobs was obsessed with killing the OS. Going so far as to say, “I will spend every penny of Apple’s $40 million,” he was fixated on the litigation surrounding the Android even in his last days.
- The Purchase of a Washing Machine Was Debated for Two Weeks –Much of Apple’s success can likely be attributed to the perfectionism and obsession with detail that was a trademark of Steve Jobs’s personality. What most of us didn’t know was that those traits extended deeply into his personal life as well. Upon deciding to purchase a new washing machine, the Jobs learned that European models were more efficient and easier on clothing, but had a cycle time that was twice as long as their American counterparts. The trade-off was discussed in depth around the family dinner table for two weeks before they reached a decision.
- He Claimed That Hallucinogenics Were the Key to His Success – In a discussion about what Jobs perceived as a lack of creativity in Microsoft mogul Bill Gates, he explained that acid helped him to prioritize from a spiritual standpoint. Crediting his experimentation with LSD for teaching him that “creating great things” were more important than making money, Jobs implied that Mr. Gates would have benefitted from using the drug himself.
- He Insulted the President – When President Obama requested a meeting, Steve Jobs insisted on a personal invitation. After holding out for five days, he agreed to meet the Commander in Chief, and opened the meeting with the statement, “You’re heading for a one-term presidency.”
- He Attempted To Holistically Treat His Pancreatic Cancer – Due to his hesitance to undergo surgery for the tumor discovered in his pancreas in 2003, Jobs chose holistic treatments including veganism, herbs and acupuncture. When those treatments were unsuccessful, he finally consented to surgical treatment nine months later. During this procedure, it was discovered that the cancer had metastasized.
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