Here’s to the crazy ones, the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers,
the round pegs in the square holes.
The ones who see things differently.
They are not fond of rules, and they have no respect for the status quo.
You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them,
about the only thing you can’t do is ignore them.
Because they change things, they push the human race forward
Whilst some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius.
Because the people who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world,
Are the ones who do.
– Apple 1997, Think Different Campaign
On a train heading back home, my head leaned helplessly onto the window as I attempted to disguise my tears. Ringing in my ears was the speech : Here’s to the crazy ones…. I had just finished Job’s biography, and the sense of awe still lingers today, two weeks later. Jobs had a hell of a life, with myriads of ups and downs. He was the biggest dickhead but also the greatest leader. In 30 years he would create Apple, get fired away from the baby he had nurtured, and create 2 more multi-billion companies before return back, and reviving, Apple. At last, struck by all of life’s harshness, he would silently, and gracefully, pass away, leaving his life’s work – Apple – in another revolution, one which he had initiated himself.
I see Steve Jobs as a man of paradoxes. He is a perfectionist and a man of beauty. As he strove for perfection despite all pragmatic concerns he would manage to create, again and again, great products. He assembled beautiful assembly lines before creating a product and aimed for the neatness of his machine’s interior even if none will be able to witness such an achievement. His genius and much of his footfalls lay in his tendency to perfect, which he would realize in his later years, where he started to laud the mantra : Great Artists Ship.
I have come to see the ad (here’s to the crazy ones…) as the embodiment of Job’s vision. Whilst some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do. Doesn’t this sound like a Shakespearian monologue, one from Steve Jobs himself? I believe that what Jobs did, and continued to do until his death, was to create tools and provide instruments which could satisfy and delight people like him, and that was what drove him forward. In the course of doing so, he designed the most beautiful products and lived a most fascinating life, for himself, but also for all the crazy ones out there.