Jony Ive remembers Steve Jobs' 'simple focus' on creating the beautiful and great

Posted:
in General Discussion edited October 2015
Adding his voice to recent remembrances of late Apple cofounder Steve Jobs, company CDO Jony Ive told attendees of the Vanity Fair New Establishment Summit that his memory of Jobs has been distilled over the four years since his death.


Apple CDO Jony Ive. | Source: Vanity Fair


Ive, sharing the stage with director J.J. Abrams and producer Brian Grazer at the summit's final panel on Wednesday, explained the intervening years helped mute a cacophony of opinion and criticism -- positive and negative -- that grew from a larger public interest to understand who Jobs was. After Jobs died in 2011, Ive initially hit a "wall of grief" clouded by a jumble of emotions, but that slowly passed.

"In thinking of him then, there was this incredible complexity of all his attributes," Ive said. "What has been very surprising, is that over the four years that have passed, so much of that noise, and so many of his attributes, they've ended up essentially receding. And what's left is...just him."

After four years of processing the loss, what Ive remembers is Jobs' simple, pure worldview, a sentiment shared by many who were close to him.

"Quite honestly, what's remained, I never would have predicted four years ago," he said. "What's remained is almost unremarkable, but what's remained is his very simple focus on trying to make something beautiful and great. And it really was simple. There wasn't a grand plan of winning, or a very complicated agenda. That simplicity seemed almost childlike in its purity. And it's true."

Since his death, Jobs has been the subject of numerous biographies and films, some of which cast the late tech guru in a less than favorable light. Foremost in people's minds at the moment is a dramatic interpretation of Walter Isaacson's official Jobs biography from Oscar winning screenwriter Aaron Sorkin. While not discussed openly onstage, Ive referenced the film and other like it, saying the way Jobs is "frequently and popularly portrayed at the moment" stands in contrast to his memory of the man.

"I don't think I've ever seen anyone so happy, as I saw him -- this very simple kind of joy -- when he would realize, 'This is actually working out. This could be great.' It was just the simplicity of that," Ive said.

Finally, Ive said getting promoted to chief design officer has afforded him opportunities to dabble in other areas of design, specifically Apple's retail stores and Campus 2 headquarters.

"I haven't felt this happy and creative in years," he said.

Ive's appearance followed a panel in which Apple Music executive Jimmy Iovine discussed freemium sales models and the intersection of tech and music.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 29
    flaneurflaneur Posts: 4,510member
    Well said, Mr. Ive. Just in time, too.
  • Reply 2 of 29
    Words to live by. "Focus on making something simple and great."
  • Reply 4 of 29
    gtrgtr Posts: 3,231member
    Talk all you want about Steve's focus, Mr Ive, but you too have created something beautiful in the past...

    [IMG]http://forums.appleinsider.com/content/type/61/id/63819/width/400/height/800[/IMG]
  • Reply 5 of 29
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member
    Another video. Ive says he was doing naughty, under-the-radar type stuff which have all been legitimized in his new role. Aldo says he hasn't felt this happy or creative in years. Kudos to Tim Cook for putting Ive in a role that makes him happy and allows him to focus on what he does best.

    http://www.businessinsider.com/jony-ive-on-new-his-new-job-2015-10
  • Reply 6 of 29
    Well said. Glad a few of those that were closest to Steve are sharing their memories rather than just hearing from those who barely new him.

    Ive has such a specific way of communicating that even when his quotes are written it still feels like I'm watching a video of him introducing a new product. I could almost hear his voice in my head.
  • Reply 7 of 29
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by GTR View Post



    Talk all you want about Steve's focus, Mr Ive, but you too have created something beautiful in the past...






    Hey. The Cure was big in the 80s.

  • Reply 8 of 29
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member
    What I want to know is, how come when Tim and Jony etc. speak out its the Apple spin machine in full force (and therefore whatever they say should be discounted) yet people like Woz and Andy Hertzfeld can say whatever they want unchallenged. Jony worked with Steve for 15 years. A lot longer than Hertzfeld or even Woz for that matter. Steve evolved and matured over time, especially after getting married and having kids. These movies don't reflect that at all. They're not anaccurate portrayal of the man.
  • Reply 9 of 29
    Live out a dream: "Focus on making something simple and great." Back in 2008, Steve Jobs referred to Blu-ray as %u201Ca bag of hurt%u201D due to the complex licensing surrounding the high-definition video format.

    http://www.macworld.com/article/1160977/blu_ray_movie_playback_comes_to_the_mac.html
  • Reply 10 of 29
    rogifan wrote: »
    What I want to know is, how come when Tim and Jony etc. speak out its the Apple spin machine in full force (and therefore whatever they say should be discounted) yet people like Woz and Andy Hertzfeld can say whatever they want unchallenged. Jony worked with Steve for 15 years. A lot longer than Hertzfeld or even Woz for that matter. Steve evolved and matured over time, especially after getting married and having kids. These movies don't reflect that at all. They're not anaccurate portrayal of the man.

    How come when Tim and Jony share their personal views about their friend Steve Jobs on the anniversary of his death, they get slammed as the Apple spin machine in full force as the new Steve Jobs movies are about to hit theaters?
  • Reply 11 of 29
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post



    What I want to know is, how come when Tim and Jony etc. speak out its the Apple spin machine in full force (and therefore whatever they say should be discounted) yet people like Woz and Andy Hertzfeld can say whatever they want unchallenged. Jony worked with Steve for 15 years. A lot longer than Hertzfeld or even Woz for that matter. Steve evolved and matured over time, especially after getting married and having kids. These movies don't reflect that at all. They're not anaccurate portrayal of the man.



    People act like Woz is this super genius that Jobs took advantage of, he's been granted sainthood status by people despite being a guy who would have worked his whole life at HP without Jobs.

     

    The Becoming Steve Jobs book points out the second point, that most bios of Jobs just focus on him in the 1970's and 1980's, and don't recognize that he kept changing past that.

  • Reply 12 of 29
    thepixeldocthepixeldoc Posts: 2,257member
    rogifan wrote: »
    What I want to know is, how come when Tim and Jony etc. speak out its the Apple spin machine in full force (and therefore whatever they say should be discounted) yet people like Woz and Andy Hertzfeld can say whatever they want unchallenged. Jony worked with Steve for 15 years. A lot longer than Hertzfeld or even Woz for that matter. Steve evolved and matured over time, especially after getting married and having kids. These movies don't reflect that at all. They're not anaccurate portrayal of the man.

    Because the truth is NOT ENTERTAINING enough! You must be entertained at all costs, and the high cost of truth does not get headlines or theater goers emotionally involved enough! They may just be silent in awe, recollection and self introspection... and we can NOT have that! You must be "moved by entertainment" to contribute scorn, hatred, and all the vile characteristics of the human character to be counted and to rage-blind contribute to the mass of click-whore media properties.

    (See my other comment/different thread if you care) :no:
  • Reply 13 of 29
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member
    http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/0/64a495c0-6d5b-11e5-aca9-d87542bf8673.html?ftcamp=traffic/partner/feed_headline/us_yahoo/auddev

    [QUOTE]The abrupt change in Sir Jonathan’s duties prompted questions about his long-term future at Apple. But the designer of devices from the iMac to Apple Watch said the change was “good for both” himself and the company.

    “I get to say no to stuff that I hated doing anyway and didn’t do very well if I’m honest,” he said. “I haven’t felt this happy and this creative for years and years.”[/QUOTE]

    Seems like Ive got a similar deal to Bob Mansfield and can pretty much work on whatever he wants at the company now. When Mansfield was still on the executive team his bio said he was responsible for the semiconductor team at Apple. Now the head of that team reports directly to Tim Cook, just like Ive's promoted deputies. Must be fun getting paid millions to work on whatever you want.
  • Reply 14 of 29
    rogifan wrote: »
    What I want to know is, how come when Tim and Jony etc. speak out its the Apple spin machine in full force (and therefore whatever they say should be discounted) yet people like Woz and Andy Hertzfeld can say whatever they want unchallenged. Jony worked with Steve for 15 years. A lot longer than Hertzfeld or even Woz for that matter. Steve evolved and matured over time, especially after getting married and having kids. These movies don't reflect that at all. They're not anaccurate portrayal of the man.


    People act like Woz is this super genius that Jobs took advantage of, he's been granted sainthood status by people despite being a guy who would have worked his whole life at HP without Jobs.

    The Becoming Steve Jobs book points out the second point, that most bios of Jobs just focus on him in the 1970's and 1980's, and don't recognize that he kept changing past that.

    Woz, while an apparently nice guy, seems to me like a completely overrated tech loudmouth. For example, this is a guy who, at least, for a while, thought that Android was a better mobile operating system than iOS (perhaps that's one of the reasons a lot of Jobs-haters are endeared to him). For the life of me, I cannot understand why everybody pays him so much attention. The Kato Kaelin of tech, as it were.

    Seriously, what are his great tech achievements in the past 25 years? Anyone?

    (A few edits).
  • Reply 15 of 29
    Steve's genius was taking the complexity, politics and noise of technology and distilling it down to its essence. He could do this because he was able to somehow see and feel the product through the eyes of his average customer, instinctively. So often what Steve thought was perfect, was also what amazed and delighted his customers.

    Except for that puck mouse of the original iMac.
  • Reply 16 of 29
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member
    sog35 wrote: »
    Exactly.  I don't want to be judged by what kind of person I was in my early 20's.  

    Steve was  a very different person from when Woz knew him and when Jony/Tim knew him.

    It hilarious that the media continues to use quotes from Woz that support that the new movie does represent the essence of Jobs. But they fail to mention that Woz got paid $200k to 'consult' on the movie. Sounds more like a paid endorser to me.

    Andy Hertzfeld said a lot of the movie is wrong but it overall accurately captures Steve. Really? Which Steve would that be? The last time Hertzfeld worked with Steve was in the early 80s, right? How close was he to Steve after Steve left Apple?
  • Reply 17 of 29
    auxioauxio Posts: 1,997member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by ThePixelDoc View Post



    Because the truth is NOT ENTERTAINING enough! You must be entertained at all costs, and the high cost of truth does not get headlines or theater goers emotionally involved enough! They may just be silent in awe, recollection and self introspection... and we can NOT have that! You must be "moved by entertainment" to contribute scorn, hatred, and all the vile characteristics of the human character to be counted and to rage-blind contribute to the mass of click-whore media properties.

     

    Reminds me of how I feel whenever I try to find real news on TV these days.  It's typically either entertainment fluff pieces, or "exposés" which are basically designed to make you paranoid of everyone around you.  Rarely is there anything which actually tries to dig deep enough to find the root cause of problems and pose introspective or existential questions for the viewer to consider.  Heaven forbid people grow beyond being blind reactionaries and actually start to engage and try to understand the world and people around them.

  • Reply 18 of 29
    dk49dk49 Posts: 16member
    lolliver wrote: »
    Well said. Glad a few of those that were closest to Steve are sharing their memories rather than just hearing from those who barely new him.

    Ive has such a specific way of communicating that even when his quotes are written it still feels like I'm watching a video of him introducing a new product. I could almost hear his voice in my head.

    Absolutely!
  • Reply 19 of 29
    nolamacguynolamacguy Posts: 4,758member
    another Ive quote on the Steve Jobs movie:

    [QUOTE]When asked about Jobs portrayal in Steve Jobs, Ive noted that he "didn't recognize this person at all." He went on to say that the way someone is portrayed can be "hijacked" by people who aren't close friends or family. [/QUOTE]
  • Reply 20 of 29
    irelandireland Posts: 17,616member

     

    Ive looks visibly more relaxed and healthy than he did before taking on his new role. I'm so glad for him, and for us.

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