The title of this books tell the gist of the story. What Steve Jobs did with his return to Apple was truly and amazingly the greatest second act. Normally people do not get such second chances in life. In case of Jobs, he actually ended up earning that chance and then made billions out of it. There are lots of critics, including in this book, who have accused him of riding on other’s success or being autocratic and unreasonable or sometimes being too lucky but nobody can deny that he was the icon of Apple and the face of so many exciting technologies that have shaped the future of this world. He did it not only with computers but he did it with music players, smart phones and totally unrelated movie industry and that is where his greatness shows.
This book is not full of accolades for Jobs. In fact it is critical of him more often. Sometimes it feels as though the author is having to make an effort to praise him even where he deserved. The authors have traced his story from very beginning and have included the story of his very unsuccessful trip to India when he was trying to find himself. There are details about the birth of Apple and its rise and then details about boardroom fights and games where he eventually lost and had to go out. The author has also included lot of details about Hollywood, Disney and history of animation that was crucial to understand what happened at Pixar. Unfortunately the book was published in 2005 and does not include what happened with launch of iPhone and iPad.
Personally, I did not have very high opinion of Apple products till few years ago. My whole perception changed with launch of iPhone. The whole idea of using fingers instead of touch screen made me sit and look carefully at other apple products and eventually I am now a converted fan. The story of Steve Jobs highlights one aspect very clearly. When you have conviction in your ideas and the grit and determination to convert them to reality, you will face a lot of opposition but you need to keep the faith and eventually success will come.