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Old Apr 11, 2014, 09:25 AM   #1
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Apple's Former Safari Chief Don Melton Reflects on Steve Jobs




Don Melton has a long history with Steve Jobs and Apple, working at NeXT and then moving to Apple where he is known for his work on Safari and WebKit. To commemorate Steve Jobs' birthday earlier this year, Melton recounted his memorable encounters with Jobs in a post he recently published on his blog.

Melton was not a confidant of Jobs, just an employee who had the opportunity to be around the Apple co-founder on occasion. Jobs likely thought of Melton as the "Safari Guy" and knew Melton's real name, which was considered an honor.

Melton recounts the first time he met Steve Jobs at a NeXT presentation in the late 80s that unfortunately was scheduled during everyone's lunch break. Like many encounters with Jobs, Melton remembered Jobs' demeanor, but not a word of what he said.
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Obviously he wanted us to quiet down. You could tell because he paused several times for us to hush ourselves. And out of respect, awe, and probably some fear, we all tried our best to do so. But, dammit, the room was now packed and that many people just swallowing food makes a lot of noise. Sitting so close, I felt especially self-conscious.

Who the hell scheduled him to speak at that time? Knucklehead. It's entirely possible that person was taken out later and shot.

Anyway, I do remember Steve's seriousness and apparent impatience that day. But not a thing he said.
Melton paints Jobs not as a "mercurial ogre or cartoon autocrat," but as a very busy CEO with little time for "yes men," timid employees or those who didn't know what they were doing.
Quote:
Steve expected excellence. Which is why he so often got it.

He knew when something was right, but he didn't always tell you what he wanted when it wasn't. And he was very clear when he didn't like it. Some misinterpreted this behavior as being overly critical, but it was actually time-saving clarity, albeit uncomfortable on occasion.
Melton has several interesting tidbits about his work on Safari, including Jobs' distaste for the stand-alone bookmarks window in the web browser and the decision to add a page load indication into Safari's address bar, a design decision that eventually hurt Safari's reputation because the "in-your-face progress bar made it seem slower to the user."

Beyond his work persona, Melton also shares some stories about the personal side of Jobs, the real man who has children and, at one point, a cranky new puppy. Melton ends his story with his somber memories of Steve in his final years, dealing with a disease that "had ravaged him." Melton's piece is long, but worth a read for his insight into a corporate leader who was intense, but also real.

Article Link: Apple's Former Safari Chief Don Melton Reflects on Steve Jobs
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Old Apr 11, 2014, 09:26 AM   #2
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We all miss him 
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Old Apr 11, 2014, 09:28 AM   #3
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Its an interesting read to be sure.
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Old Apr 11, 2014, 09:30 AM   #4
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The world would be a much better place if we were all a little more Steve Jobs.
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Old Apr 11, 2014, 09:32 AM   #5
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I believe a lot of people mistake Jobs in your face atitude for arrogance, however as Melton points out it was instant feedback, and when you have the company you created falling apart you are going to give as much feedback as quick as possible to regain the credit you deserved in starting that successful company. Sj's business savvy has been inspiration to me, I often look at the way Apple became so successful and apply that to everyday situations. More companies are today too, this is awesome IMHO. I hope more people continue to follow their lead.
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Old Apr 11, 2014, 09:45 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by dumastudetto View Post
The world would be a much better place if we were all a little more Steve Jobs.
He was a visionary tech leader, but come on… Steve Jobs was far from a personal role model.
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Old Apr 11, 2014, 09:50 AM   #7
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The vision has been lost since he has been gone.

The bean counters have taken it over.
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Old Apr 11, 2014, 09:51 AM   #8
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He was a visionary tech leader, but come on… Steve Jobs was far from a personal role model.
Sorry to disagree. As a small business owner who is understand staff and need to get things done fast and perfect SJ is a role model. How else is he suppose to run a hugh corporation? Being nice and baby sit his staffs? At Apple's level you either belong at that level or you don't.
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Old Apr 11, 2014, 09:51 AM   #9
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He was a visionary tech leader, but come on… Steve Jobs was far from a personal role model.
I thought he was a great role model. As did his wife and kids I'm guessing.

If the world had more CEO's that were interested in the product more than how much money they made the world would be a lot better off.
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Old Apr 11, 2014, 09:59 AM   #10
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always love this kind of story.
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Old Apr 11, 2014, 10:04 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Will do good View Post
Sorry to disagree. As a small business owner who is understand staff and need to get things done fast and perfect SJ is a role model. How else is he suppose to run a hugh corporation? Being nice and baby sit his staffs? At Apple's level you either belong at that level or you don't.
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I thought he was a great role model. As did his wife and kids I'm guessing.

If the world had more CEO's that were interested in the product more than how much money they made the world would be a lot better off.
I said "personal role model." This is different from being a business role model, which I acknowledge he is by calling him a visionary—and he definitely was, no question about it. However, the OP mused about everyone being like Steve Jobs, which I think would be pretty terrible as Jobs had many personal issues and was, to be frank, an *******.

I should be fair and state that I do think he had redeeming qualities, especially in his final years when he was humbled by his own mortality. Just the way I see it.
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Old Apr 11, 2014, 10:16 AM   #12
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I miss Steve.


I know he can be hard to deal with. I mean "really" hard to deal with, but it was expected from a person with so much focus and passion. Almost all great leaders I've dealt with have similar traits as Steve. The micromanaging can be tiresome at times, but when you have so much vision and high expectation, you just to to be in people face sometime. That's because not everyone care about your company as much as you do. So, I understand why he behaved the way he did. All in all, with so many MONEY GRABBING CEO out there, I just miss Steve for his passion. I'm glad that he has great passion in creating great products before grabbing money.

Rest in peace. Steve.
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Old Apr 11, 2014, 10:17 AM   #13
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This says more about Jobs than some biographies and films.
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Old Apr 11, 2014, 10:21 AM   #14
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There should be a "Steve Stories" section. These are some of my favorite!
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Old Apr 11, 2014, 10:36 AM   #15
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Great stuff. These characterizations of Steve and his focus on excellence makes the recent book about Apple (and especially the suggestions that he wanted it to be less successful after he was gone), seem even more completely nuts.
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Old Apr 11, 2014, 10:41 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Will do good View Post
Sorry to disagree. As a small business owner who is understand staff and need to get things done fast and perfect SJ is a role model. How else is he suppose to run a hugh corporation? Being nice and baby sit his staffs? At Apple's level you either belong at that level or you don't.
I've worked in business a long time, too, and I don't see any reason not to treat people with respect and have a professional demeanor at all times. To each their own, I suppose. Glad I don't work for you.
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Old Apr 11, 2014, 10:50 AM   #17
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I always hated the progress bars, especially when they signalized that the page wasn't fully loaded for some reason. But that's the past...the latest one seems quite snappy though
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Old Apr 11, 2014, 10:54 AM   #18
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Jobs was a driven guy because he had personally built the company, it's personal, therefore, the motivation and the drive and the vision. You cannot expect young tech workers to be like him when nobody really owns anything these days. And seriously, there are lot of successful companies out there that are led by nice people who are not as visionary or pushy/hard-driving as Jobs. I really love Apple products, and their design aesthetics, but I don't want to report to a guy like Jobs. I am certain that you can achieve excellence in many other different ways.
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Old Apr 11, 2014, 11:05 AM   #19
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I've worked in business a long time, too, and I don't see any reason not to treat people with respect and have a professional demeanor at all times. To each their own, I suppose. Glad I don't work for you.
How did Steve Jobs not treat people with respect?

He was fired from the company he started and when back at Apple wanted only perfection.
I've never taken that as "he's a bad guy to people".
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Old Apr 11, 2014, 11:18 AM   #20
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The vision has been lost since he has been gone.

The bean counters have taken it over.

I hope you're wrong, Apple have always worked on 5 year plans so Steve's innovations and ideas can still be seen throughout 2016.

It would be nice to see Tim take a much larger part in WWDC etc and forget about his spread sheets for 5 minutes.
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Old Apr 11, 2014, 11:23 AM   #21
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I've worked in business a long time, too, and I don't see any reason not to treat people with respect and have a professional demeanor at all times. To each their own, I suppose. Glad I don't work for you.
You are right. I should have love puppies and rainbows more.
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Old Apr 11, 2014, 11:31 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by Crosscreek View Post
The vision has been lost since he has been gone.

The bean counters have taken it over.
proof? and how do you figure, when it's Jobs' personal pick for successor and right-hand man of almost 15 years?

have you read the executive interviews and profiles lately, where they state quite clearly they are a design-oriented company, and design wins?

----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleWizzard View Post
How did Steve Jobs not treat people with respect?

He was fired from the company he started and when back at Apple wanted only perfection.
I've never taken that as "he's a bad guy to people".
there are lots of first-hand accounts of Jobs not being a nice guy. it's documented fact. doesnt mean he wasnt a kickass biz leader, but dont mistake the two.

spend some time here, written & compiled by the original mac team:

http://www.folklore.org/ProjectView....s=Steve%20Jobs

...it's an amazing website.
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Old Apr 11, 2014, 11:32 AM   #23
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I hope you're wrong, Apple have always worked on 5 year plans so Steve's innovations and ideas can still be seen throughout 2016.

It would be nice to see Tim take a much larger part in WWDC etc and forget about his spread sheets for 5 minutes.
I find at least two mischaracterizations here. First, Apple's major products have long been developed over 4-5 year intervals, so in that respect nothing of substance has really changed at Apple since Steve's passing. And why you think Cook is obsessed with spreadsheets is quite beyond me.

As for him taking a larger role at WWDC, I would ask why this is important or how it would make a positive difference. Personally, I think he should stay away entirely and turn that duty over to someone who is better at the rah-rah.
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Old Apr 11, 2014, 11:35 AM   #24
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We all miss him 
But when he was alive we tended to vilify him, denigrate him, question his sanity, dismiss his genius... until those words came out of his mouth. “One more thing.”
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Old Apr 11, 2014, 11:43 AM   #25
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proof? and how do you figure, when it's Jobs' personal pick for successor and right-hand man of almost 15 years?

have you read the executive interviews and profiles lately, where they state quite clearly they are a design-oriented company, and design wins?[COLOR="#808080"]
Cook has nowhere the focus or vision Jobs had.

You need a concept and vision to design.
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