Steve Jobs: one of my heroes. He has taught me the importance of staying true (and stubborn) on your creative vision, the importance of combining the liberal arts and engineering, and the importance of following your own gut and intuition.
1. Shameless steal great ideas
“Great artists steal.” – Picasso
Our duty is to benefit humanity — present and future humanity. Thus you must steal good the best ideas, but also modify the ideas to make the ideas even better!
Be shameless. Steve Jobs took the Xerox GUI and made it better on the Mac. Steve Jobs stole Japanese Zen aesthetics, and make his products beautiful.
Thus in life, we should never be ashamed to steal good ideas, but it doesn’t hurt to give credit where it is due.
2. It comes down to taste
Aesthetics is all about taste. There’s no right or wrong taste. But you should know what your own taste is.
Dictate what your taste is, and follow it.
This is what Steve did with Apple. He knew what his personal taste and aesthetics were, and he followed his artistic vision. More of us need to do this.
Lesson: Know what your aesthetic style and taste is, and follow it, and never compromise.
3. Expose yourself to the best
Expose yourself to the best things that humans have done … then bring those things into what humans are doing! – Jobs
It’s good to be influenced by the best. Surround yourself with the best, consume the best, and of course you will become one of the best.
4. Nudge the vector of human development
If you look at vector lines, if you make a small adjustment, the future trajectory will change dramatically. Thus, recognize that you as an individual— even if you can judge society in a positive way by a few degrees, the future will be far brighter for all of humanity.
5. Computer as an enabler; bicycle of the mind
There’s a great story Steve Jobs had, in when he learned that a simple bicycle made human movement infinitely more efficient. Bicycles have empowered humans to move long distances with little energy.
Steve called the first Apple computer like a “bicycle for the mind”. Computers and technology is best when it can amplify your innate human abilities.
So the lesson is this:
Let is best effectively use technology to amplify our latent skills and strengths.
6. Distribute yourself directly to your customers
The Internet was a revolution because it provided direct access to our users or customers. But with Facebook and Instagram, we are getting filtered out.
Solution: make your own website-blog, and make your own email newsletter to have more direct communication with your end users.
7. Bring culture into your products
Put your culture and personality into your products. Have soul. This is why I love Tesla, they actually love their products. Elon and Steve are onto something here.
8. Just focus on one thing at a time
Steve Jobs taught me that focusing on one thing at a time is the best way to leverage our skills, talents, and ability to change the world. So don’t get distracted, and don’t let your focus get scattered.
One at a time.
Below are lessons I learned from Steve Jobs (watch the full Steve Jobs lost interview on Netflix):
9. Success is more important than being right
Be stubborn about your vision, but if you’re wrong, have no shame to instantly change your opinion.
10. The work is everything which matters
11. Team of only A players
Take a long time to find the best. Play with the best, to make the best.
12. Collaboration, friction, and polished ideas
Steve has a great idea of a rock grinder: you get lots of ugly rocks to grind together in a barrel, and after a night, out will come beautifully polished rocks.
13. Make great products
Great products are #1. Everything is second.
14. Computer science should be seen as a liberal art
Computer science and programming is a language and a way to think. It shouldn’t be seen as mere engineering; it can also be seen as a liberal art.
15. Learn how to think
I like studying algorithms and artificial intelligence, because in understanding how a computer thinks, it teaches me how to better think as a human.
16. Challenge antiquated concepts
Get rid of antiquated concepts…by asking ‘why’ -> first principles.
17. Fully assembled
Make fully assembled products to simplify the lives for the consumer.
Be a “one stop shop”, or make your products simple— “plug and play”
Life is short. Let’s aim to leverage our strengths to put a dent in the universe — and empower the rest of humanity. To drive the human race forward, and for us to continue to evolve as a species.
Thank you Steve.