My complaints are about outright technical inaccuracies, and getting the man’s work wrong. The design process, the resulting products, the centrality of software — Isaacson simply misses the boat.
You could learn more about Steve Jobs’s work by reading Rob Walker’s 2003 New York Times Magazine piece than by reading Isaacson’s book, but even then we’re left wanting for the stories behind any of Apple’s products after the iPod. Isaacson’s book may well be the defining resource for Jobs’s personal life — his childhood, his youth, his eccentricities, cruelty, temper, and emotional outbursts. But as regards Jobs’s work, Isaacson leaves the reader profoundly and tragically misinformed.
[There’s another aspect of all this success. Using UNIX via Next as the basis for OS X was huge in that there was a sudden switch. For years developers looked down their noses at Macs. Whether with good reason ro not I’ll leave aside for now. But there was an explosion of developers buying MacBook Pros (think the titanium era) with OS X. Once they realized that all the favorite tools and utilities, consoles and compilers were there and easily accessible, they all tossed aside their hard to configure (at that time) Linux running on whatever laptop and got Macs. And while the total number might have been small, I feel that the mindshare thing had a significant impact which continues today. If you’re going to talk about Jobs’ work. That mindshare acquisition, which came with Next was huge. Another little known fact. The web was born on a Next computer. The guy who created the web as we know it did it on Next. Not a direct link, but only one degree of separation.]
Source: Daring Fireball