And yet very little is known about life inside Apple. The company is pathologically secretive—even with its own designers—about how it comes up with its groundbreaking products: iMac, iPod, iPhone, iPad, and the next “insanely great” thing on the horizon. Here, for the first time, the men and women who worked for and alongside Steve Jobs share their remarkable, nearly forty-year-old story. How Apple survived nearly catastrophic failure early on. How Jobs and his team came to understand and execute design like no one else. And how their philosophy ultimately changed the world.
This Fast Company/Byliner Original is unlike any other book about Apple. Author Max Chafkin led a team of “Fast Company” reporters that spent months interviewing more than fifty former Apple execs and insiders, many of whom had never spoken publicly about their work. The result is a compelling and deeply revealing oral history of how design evolved at the most creative enterprise of our time, the company that one entrepreneur says “taught the world taste.”
In these interviews, former colleagues describe Jobs at his most brilliant and bombastic—hurling unsatisfactory products across the lab and insulting employees, yet also singling out and celebrating craftsmanship and original work. Without a doubt, Jobs is the single most important figure in the company’s history. But overlooked in Apple’s carefully cultivated mythology are the other ingenious men and women who’ve left an indelible mark on Apple, some of whom think they deserve much more of the credit. At Apple, the stakes were big, and so were the egos.
“Design Crazy” takes us behind the mystique and reveals Apple to be a deeply misunderstood company. And the greatest business story of the past two decades is far from over. Two years after the death of Steve Jobs, with many of his former colleagues now at startups like Tesla, Evernote, and Nest Labs, some think the end of Apple’s dominance is only a matter of time. The company has risen to the challenge before, but still the question lingers: Can Apple be Apple without Jobs?
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Max Chafkin is a contributing writer with “Fast Company.” His work has also been published in “Inc.”, “Vanity Fair,” “The New York Times Magazine,” and “The Best Business Writing 2012.” He lives in Brooklyn.