The past week I received iCon Steve Jobs: The Greatest Second Act in the History of Business, a Steve Job’s biography of his life until 2005.
I’m about to start up a company but, for some reason that I can’t tell yet, it has to wait some time to get ready to see the light. So I’ve decided that I could use these months to learn more about the software business and learn about the companies’ success and failures. So my first choice has been this book.
The reason why I got interested about Seteve Jobs has lot to do with my interest in promoting and build market around free software. Apple has built a community of passionate users of their products, and I think that such success is not a coincidence or pure chance they followed specific stepes to achieve that goal. The marketing machinery around Apple and their products catch my attention and wakes a feeling close to envy, I would like to see the same kind of strategy used to promote free software, although some projects like Mozilla has reach a similar strategy. Jobs has been one of the brains behind that marketing (with its full meaning) strategy, It’s really funny to see his keynotes and the impact that it has into the media, even outside of their user base, they build great shows around their products announcement. On the other hand, I think that we should learn about the failures too, they had lost the mass market once, and such failure wasn’t about chance either.
I’ve just finished the book and I’ve enjoyed it a lot, it talks about the three startups t Jobs has been involved in (Apple, NeXT and Pixar) with lot of attention on his failures, which had let me learn a lot of what kind of things shouldn’t be made while you run a company. I admire how him has turned Apple and Pixar into great successful companies but I disagree lot of the techniques he has used to achieve it, the book unleash a really dark side of him which is worth to know in order to be aware of what a good manager shouldn’t do.
Now that I have finished my book stack, I need to fill it, I’ve just ordered The Cluetrain Manifesto: The End of Bussiones as Usual, a book about how to drive human oriented business using the internet as a main tool to let users and the whole company perform market through fluent conversation and I’ve also ordered Designing Interfaces from O’Reilly to start learning formal user interface designing.
I’m about to go out to prepare the Ubuntu Installation Party that we’ve organized on the Free Software Office at the university. I’ll give a talk about the kind of cool things that users can do with Linux and Ubuntu’s GNOME, I’ll post some photos tonight.