249 Amazing Steve Jobs Quotes That Will Inspire You to Think Big and Act Wise

Steve Jobs Quotes
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Steven Paul Jobs was an American entrepreneur and business magnate. He was the chairman, chief executive officer, and a co-founder of Apple Inc., chairman and majority shareholder of Pixar and a charismatic pioneer of the personal computer era. Steve Jobs was one of the first entrepreneurs to understand that the personal computer would appeal to a broad audience. Steve Jobs had shared many of his ideas and ideologies for the people to get inspired and motivated. Here I’m going to gather a few of those amazing Steve Jobs Quotes that will inspire us to think big and act wisely.

The Amazing Steve Jobs Quotes That Will Inspire You to Think Big and Act Wise:


My favorite things in life don’t cost any money. It’s really clear that the most precious resource we all have is time.


Have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow know what you truly want to become.


       Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.

249 Amazing Steve Jobs Quotes That Will Inspire You to Think Big and Act Wise

STEVE JOBS QUOTE


Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.


Be a yardstick of quality. Some people aren’t used to an environment where excellence is expected.


Sometimes life hits you in the head with a brick. Don’t lose faith.


Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.


I believe life is an intelligent thing: that things aren’t random.


Stat hungry, stay foolish.


It’s not a faith in technology. It’s a faith in people.

249 Amazing Steve Jobs Quotes That Will Inspire You to Think Big and Act Wise
STEVE JOBS QUOTE

Things don’t have to change the world to be important.


Design is a funny word. Some people think design means how it looks. But of course, if you dig deeper, it’s really how it works.


Being the richest man in the cemetery doesn’t matter to me. Going to bed at night saying we’ve done something wonderful, that’s what matters to me.


Older people sit down and ask, “what is it?” but the boy asks, “what can I do with it?”


If you’re gonna make connections which are innovative… you have to not have the same bag of experiences as everyone else does.


WE ARE JUST ENTHUSIASTIC ABOUT WHAT WE DO.


Our goal is to make the best devices in the world, not to be the biggest.


I think money is a wonderful thing because it enables you to do things. It enables you to invest in ideas that don’t have a short-term payback.


We hire people who want to make the best things in the world.


For you to sleep well at night, the aesthetic, the quality, has to be carried all the way through.


Great things in business are never done by one person. They’re done by a team of people.


Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.


Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.

249 Amazing Steve Jobs Quotes That Will Inspire You to Think Big and Act Wise
Steve Jobs Quotes

Stay hungry, Stay foolish.


Things don’t have to change the world to be important.


Let’s go invent tomorrow rather than worrying about what happened yesterday.


You can build your own things that other people can use. And once you learn that, you’ll never be the same again.


I always advise people – Don’t wait! Do something when you are young when you have nothing to lose, and keep that in mind.


The broader one’s understanding of the human experience, the better design we will have.


You have to believe that the dots will somehow connect in your future.

249 Amazing Steve Jobs Quotes That Will Inspire You to Think Big and Act Wise
Steve Jobs Quote

It’s more fun to be a pirate than to join the Navy.


If today were the last of your life, would you do what you were going to do today?


There is no reason not to follow your heart.


Great things in business are never done by one person. They’re done by a team of people.


Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.


Technology is nothing. What’s important is that you have a faith in people, that they’re basically good and smart, and if you give them tools, they’ll do wonderful things with them.


Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything – all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure – these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important.


That’s been one of my mantras – focus and simplicity. Simple can be harder than complex: You have to work hard to get your thinking clean to make it simple. But it’s worth it in the end because once you get there, you can move mountains.


Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.


For the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: ‘If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?’ And whenever the answer has been ‘No’ for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.


I believe life is an intelligent thing: that things aren’t random.


Computers themselves, and software yet to be developed will revolutionize the way we learn.


A lot of people in our industry haven’t had very diverse experiences. So they don’t have enough dots to connect, and they end up with very linear solutions without a broad perspective on the problem. The broader one’s understanding of the human experience, the better design we will have.


Sometimes when you innovate, you make mistakes. It is best to admit them quickly, and get on with improving your other innovations.


An iPod, a phone, an internet mobile communicator… these are NOT three separate devices! And we are calling it iPhone! Today Apple is going to reinvent the phone. And here it is.


Design is a funny word. Some people think design means how it looks. But of course, if you dig deeper, it’s really how it works.


Being the richest man in the cemetery doesn’t matter to me. Going to bed at night saying we’ve done something wonderful, that’s what matters to me.


When you’re young, you look at television and think, there’s a conspiracy. The networks have conspired to dumb us down. But when you get a little older, you realize that’s not true. The networks are in business to give people exactly what they want.


Older people sit down and ask, ‘What is it?’ but the boy asks, ‘What can I do with it?’.


I want to put a ding in the universe.


What is Apple, after all? Apple is about people who think ‘outside the box,’ people who want to use computers to help them change the world, to help them create things that make a difference, and not just to get a job done.


The overall point is that new technology will not necessarily replace old technology, but it will date it. By definition. Eventually, it will replace it. But it’s like people who had black-and-white TVs when color came out. They eventually decided whether or not the new technology was worth the investment.


If you’re gonna make connections which are innovative… you have to not have the same bag of experiences as everyone else does.


The engineering is long gone in most PC companies. In the consumer electronics companies, they don’t understand the software parts of it. And so you really can’t make the products that you can make at Apple anywhere else right now. Apple’s the only company that has everything under one roof.


Everyone here has the sense that right now is one of those moments when we are influencing the future.


When you’re a carpenter making a beautiful chest of drawers, you’re not going to use a piece of plywood on the back, even though it faces the wall and nobody will ever see it. You’ll know it’s there, so you’re going to use a beautiful piece of wood on the back.


Part of what made the Macintosh great was that the people working on it were musicians, poets, and artists, and zoologists, and historians. They also happened to be the best computer scientists in the world. But if it hadn’t been computer science, these people would have been doing amazing things in other fields.


And no, we don’t know where it will lead. We just know there’s something much bigger than any of us here.


We’re just enthusiastic about what we do.


No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don’t want to die to get there. And yet death is the destination we all share. No one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be, because Death is very likely the single best invention of Life. It is Life’s change agent. It clears out the old to make way for the new.


Innovation has nothing to do with how many R & D dollars you have. When Apple came up with the Mac, IBM was spending at least 100 times more on R & D. It’s not about money. It’s about the people you have, how you’re led, and how much you get it.


The desktop computer industry is dead. Innovation has virtually ceased. Microsoft dominates with very little innovation. That’s over. Apple lost. The desktop market has entered the dark ages, and it’s going to be in the dark ages for the next 10 years, or certainly for the rest of this decade.


Our DNA is as a consumer company – for that individual customer who’s voting thumbs up or thumbs down. That’s who we think about. And we think that our job is to take responsibility for the complete user experience. And if it’s not up to par, it’s our fault, plain and simple.


I didn’t see it then, but it turned out that getting fired from Apple was the best thing that could have ever happened to me. The heaviness of being successful was replaced by the lightness of being a beginner again, less sure about everything. It freed me to enter one of the most creative periods of my life.


For you to sleep well at night, the aesthetic, the quality, has to be carried all the way through.


If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on.


I’m an optimist in the sense that I believe humans are noble and honorable, and some of them are really smart. I have a very optimistic view of individuals.


I’m an optimist in the sense that I believe humans are noble and honorable, and some of them are really smart. I have a very optimistic view of individuals.


The manual for WordStar, the most popular word-processing program, is 400 pages thick. To write a novel, you have to read a novel – one that reads like a mystery to most people. They’re not going to learn slash q-z any more than they’re going to learn Morse code. That is what Macintosh is all about.


You can’t just ask customers what they want and then try to give that to them. By the time you get it built, they’ll want something new.


I think we’re having fun. I think our customers really like our products. And we’re always trying to do better.


We hire people who want to make the best things in the world.


In most people’s vocabularies, design means veneer. It’s interior decorating. It’s the fabric of the curtains and the sofa. But to me, nothing could be further from the meaning of design.


It’s not the tools that you have faith in – tools are just tools. They work, or they don’t work. It’s people you have faith in or not. Yeah, sure, I’m still optimistic I mean, I get pessimistic sometimes but not for long.


I think it’s brought the world a lot closer together, and will continue to do that. There are downsides to everything; there are unintended consequences to everything. The most corrosive piece of technology that I’ve ever seen is called television – but then, again, television, at its best, is magnificent.


Microsoft has had two goals in the last 10 years. One was to copy the Mac, and the other was to copy Lotus’ success in the spreadsheet – basically, the applications business. And over the course of the last 10 years, Microsoft accomplished both of those goals. And now they are completely lost.


The design of the Mac wasn’t what it looked like, although that was part of it. Primarily, it was how it worked. To design something really well, you have to get it. You have to really grok what it’s all about. It takes a passionate commitment to really thoroughly understand something, chew it up, not just quickly swallow it.


I was lucky – I found what I loved to do early in life. Woz and I started Apple in my parents’ garage when I was 20. We worked hard, and in 10 years, Apple had grown from just the two of us in a garage into a $2 billion company with over 4000 employees.


I have a great respect for incremental improvement, and I’ve done that sort of thing in my life, but I’ve always been attracted to the more revolutionary changes. I don’t know why. Because they’re harder. They’re much more stressful emotionally. And you usually go through a period where everybody tells you that you’ve completely failed.


My model for business is The Beatles: They were four guys that kept each others’ negative tendencies in check; they balanced each other. And the total was greater than the sum of the parts.


I think right now it’s a battle for the mindshare of developers and for the mindshare of customers, and right now iPhone and Android are winning that battle.


First was the mouse. The second was the click wheel. And now, we’re going to bring multi-touch to the market. And each of these revolutionary interfaces has made possible a revolutionary product – the Mac, the iPod and now the iPhone.


We made the buttons on the screen look so good you’ll want to lick them.


We’ve demonstrated a strong track record of being very disciplined with the use of our cash. We don’t let it burn a hole in our pocket, we don’t allow it to motivate us to do stupid acquisitions. And so I think that we’d like to continue to keep our powder dry because we do feel that there are one or more strategic opportunities in the future.


I think money is a wonderful thing because it enables you to do things. It enables you to invest in ideas that don’t have a short-term payback.


There’s no other company that could make a MacBook Air and the reason is that not only do we control the hardware, but we control the operating system. And it is the intimate interaction between the operating system and the hardware that allows us to do that. There is no intimate interaction between Windows and a Dell notebook.


Pointing is a metaphor we all know. We’ve done a lot of studies and tests on that, and it’s much faster to do all kinds of functions, such as cutting and pasting, with a mouse, so it’s not only easier to use but more efficient.


Apple’s market share is bigger than BMW’s or Mercedes’s or Porsche’s in the automotive market. What’s wrong with being BMW or Mercedes?


What we want to do is make a leapfrog product that is way smarter than any mobile device has ever been, and super-easy to use. This is what iPhone is. OK? So, we’re going to reinvent the phone.


It’s not about charisma and personality, it’s about results and products and those very bedrock things that are why people at Apple and outside of Apple are getting more excited about the company and what Apple stands for and what its potential is to contribute to the industry.


As individuals, people are inherently good. I have a somewhat more pessimistic view of people in groups. And I remain extremely concerned when I see what’s happening in our country, which is in many ways the luckiest place in the world. We don’t seem to be excited about making our country a better place for our kids.


It’s hard to tell with these Internet startups if they’re really interested in building companies or if they’re just interested in the money. I can tell you, though: If they don’t really want to build a company, they won’t luck into it. That’s because it’s so hard that if you don’t have a passion, you’ll give up.


The system is that there is no system. That doesn’t mean we don’t have process. Apple is a very disciplined company, and we have great processes. But that’s not what it’s about. Process makes you more efficient.


We want to reinvent the phone. What’s the killer app? The killer app is making calls! It’s amazing how hard it is to make calls on most phones. We want to let you use contacts like never before – sync your iPhone with your PC or mac.


I’m very excited about having the Internet in my den.


But innovation comes from people meeting up in the hallways or calling each other at 10:30 at night with a new idea, or because they realized something that shoots holes in how we’ve been thinking about a problem.


Of all the inventions of humans, the computer is going to rank near or at the top as history unfolds and we look back. It is the most awesome tool that we have ever invented. I feel incredibly lucky to be at exactly the right place in Silicon Valley, at exactly the right time, historically, where this invention has taken form.


The reason that Apple is able to create products like the iPad is because we’ve always tried to be at the intersection of technology and the liberal arts.


I met Woz when I was 13, at a friend’s garage. He was about 18. He was, like, the first person I met who knew more electronics than I did at that point. We became good friends, because we shared an interest in computers and we had a sense of humor. We pulled all kinds of pranks together.


I decided to drop out and trust that it would all work out ok.


You can build your own things that other people can use. And once you learn that, you’ll never be the same again.


Once you discover one simple fact, and that is everything around you that you call life, was made up by people that were no smarter than you.


I always advise people – Don’t wait! Do something when you are young, when you have nothing to lose, and keep that in mind.


We had everything to gain. And we figured even if we crash and burn, and lose everything, the experience will have been worth ten times the cost.


That’s been one of my mantras – focus and simplicity.


The broader one’s understanding of the human experience, the better design we will have.


Don’t take it all too seriously. If you want to live your life in a creative way, as an artist, you have to not look back too much. You have to be willing to take whatever you’ve done and whoever you were and throw them away.


People judge you on your performance, so focus on the outcome. Be a yardstick of quality. Some people aren’t used to an environment where excellence is expected.


Now, as you graduate to begin anew, I wish that for you, ‘Stay hungry, stay foolish’.


Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma, which is living with the results of other people’s thinking.


And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.


Being the richest man in the cemetery doesn’t matter to me… Going to bed at night saying we’ve done something wonderful… that’s what matters to me.


Don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice.


I’m convinced that the only thing that kept me going was that I loved what I did. You’ve got to find what you love.


When I was 17, I read a quote that went something like: ‘If you live each day as if it was your last, someday you’ll most certainly be right.’ It made an impression on me, and since then, for the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: ‘If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?’ And whenever the answer has been ‘no’ for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.


Almost everything, all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure, these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important.


Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.


Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life.


And you can change it, you can influence it.


If you want it, you can fly, you just have to trust you a lot.


In the broadest context, the goal is to seek enlightenment – however, you define it.


If you want it, you can fly, you just have to trust you a lot.


The only thing you have in your life is time. If you invest that time in yourself to have great experiences that are going to enrich you, then you can’t possibly lose.


There was a constant flow of intellectual questioning about the truth of life. That was a time when every college student in this country read Be Here Now and Diet for a Small Planet – there were about ten books.


We don’t get a chance to do that many things, and everyone should be really excellent. Because this is our life. Life is brief, and then you die, you know…


So this is what we’ve chosen to do with our life. We could be sitting in a monastery somewhere in Japan. We could be out sailing. Some of the executive team could be playing golf. They could be running other companies. And we’ve all chosen to do this with our lives. So it better be damn good. It better be worth it. And we think it is.


I think the things you most regret in life are things you didn’t do. What you really regret was never asking that girl to dance.


In business, if I knew earlier what I know now, I’d have probably done some things a lot better than I did, but I also would’ve probably done some other things a lot worse. But so what? It’s more important to be engaged in the present.


I think the things you most regret in life are things you didn’t do. What you really regret was never asking that girl to dance.


I think death is the most wonderful invention of life. It purges the system of these old models that are obsolete.


No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don’t want to die to get there.


Death is the destination we all share. No one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be because death is very likely the single best invention of life. It is life’s change agent, it clears out the old to make way for the new.


I’ve always felt that death is the greatest invention of life. I’m sure that life evolved without death at first and found that without death, life didn’t work very well because it didn’t make room for the young.


Even people who want to go to heaven don’t want to die to get there.


Without death, there would be very little progress.


I’ve been rejected, but I was still in love.


If you don’t love it, you’re going to fail.


I was lucky, I found what I loved to do early in life. Woz and I started Apple in my parents’ garage when I was 20.


People say you have to have a lot of passion for what you’re doing and it’s totally true. And the reason is because it’s so hard that if you don’t, any rational person would give up. It’s really hard. And you have to do it over a sustained period of time. So if you don’t love it, if you’re not having fun doing it, you don’t really love it, you’re going to give up.


If you really look at the ones that ended up, you know, being “successful” in the eyes of society and the ones that didn’t, oftentimes, it’s the ones who were successful and loved what they did so they could persevere, you know, when it got really tough. And the ones that didn’t love it quit because they’re sane, right? Who would want to put up with this stuff if you don’t love it?


You get your wind back, remember the finish line, and keep going.


At Apple, people are putting in 18-hour days.


If you’ve got a family and you’re in the early days of a company, I can’t imagine how one could do it. I’m sure it’s been done but it’s rough. It’s pretty much an eighteen hour day job, seven days a week for awhile. Unless you have a lot of passion about this, you’re not going to survive. You’re going to give it up.


You’ve got to have an idea, or a problem or a wrong that you want to right that you’re passionate about, otherwise you’re not going to have the perseverance to stick it through. I think that’s half the battle right there.


I don’t think I’ve ever worked so hard on something, but working on Macintosh was the neatest experience of my life. Almost everyone who worked on it will say that. None of us wanted to release it at the end.


On the MacIntosh: When we finally presented it at the shareholders’ meeting, everyone in the auditorium gave it a five-minute ovation. What was incredible to me was that I could see the Mac team in the first few rows. It was as though none of us could believe we’d actually finished it. Everyone started crying.


As it was clear that the Sixties were over, it was also clear that a lot of the people who had gone through the Sixties ended up not really accomplishing what they set out to accomplish, and because they had thrown their discipline to the wind, they didn’t have much to fall back on.


Pixar has been a marathon, not a sprint. There are times when you run a marathon and you wonder, why am I doing this? But you take a drink of water, and around the next bend, you get your wind back, remember the finish line, and keep going.


On the MacIntosh: It was as though we knew that once it was out of our hands, it wouldn’t be ours anymore.


I can tell you this: I’ve been married for 8 years, and that’s had a really good influence on me. I’ve been very lucky, through random happenstance I just happened to sit next to this wonderful woman who became my wife. And it was a big deal. We have 3 kids, and it’s been a big deal. You see the world differently.


Most people don’t get those experiences because they never ask. I’ve never found anybody that didn’t want to help me if I asked them for help.


Most people never pick up the phone and call. Most people never ask. And that’s what separates sometimes the people that do things from the people that just dream about them.


As you may know, I was basically fired from Apple when I was 30 and was invited to come back 12 years later so that was difficult when it happened but maybe the best thing that could ever happen to me. […] you just move on, life goes on and you learn from it.


We’ve done so many hardware products where Jony and I have looked at each other and said, ‘We don’t know how to make it any better than this, we just don’t know how to make it’. But we always do; we realize another way. And then it’s not long after the new thing comes out that we look at the older thing and go, ‘How can we ever have done that?


Life goes on and you learn from it.


Each year has been so robust with problems and successes and learning experiences and human experiences that a year is a lifetime at Apple.


You gotta act. And you’ve gotta be willing to fail, you gotta be ready to crash and burn, with people on the phone, with starting a company, with whatever. If you’re afraid of failing, you won’t get very far.


When you die, it doesn’t just all disappear.


I think different religions are different doors to the same house. Sometimes I think the house exists, and sometimes I don’t. It’s the great mystery.


But I believe life is an intelligent thing, that things aren’t random.


I’m a long-term kind of person.


Fortunately, my training has been in doing things that take a long time. You know? I was at Apple 10 years. I would have preferred to be there the rest of my life. So I’m a long-term kind of person.


I’m a tool builder. That’s how I think of myself. I want to build really good tools that I know in my gut and my heart will be valuable. And then, whatever happens, is… you can’t really predict exactly what will happen, but you can feel the direction that we’re going. And that’s about as close as you can get. Then you just stand back and get out of the way, and these things take on a life of their own.


On starting Apple with Steve Wozniak: We worked hard, and in 10 years Apple had grown from just the two of us in a garage into a 2 billion company with over 4000 employees.


I remember many late nights coming out of the Mac building when I would have the most incredibly powerful feelings about my life.


We used to dream about this stuff. Now we get to build it. It’s pretty great.


The smallest company in the world can look as large as the largest company on the web.


But it’s a disservice to constantly put things in this radical new light – that it’s going to change everything. Things don’t have to change the world to be important.


Everyone here has the sense that right now is one of those moments when we are influencing the future.


No, we don’t know where it will lead. We just know there’s something much bigger than any of us here.


There’s something much bigger than any of us here.


We’re trying to use the swiftness and creativity in a younger-style company, and yet bring to bear the tremendous resources of a company the size of Apple to do large projects that you could never handle at a startup.


The best ideas have to win.


I contribute ideas, sure. Why would I be there if I didn’t?


If you are working on something exciting that you really care about, you don’t have to be pushed. The vision pulls you.


When we create stuff, we do it because we listen to customers, get their inputs and also throw in what we’d like to see, too. We cook up new products. You never really know if people will love them as much as you do.


There’s an old Wayne Gretzky quote that I love. I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been. And we’ve always tried to do that at Apple. Since the very, very beginning.


When I got back here in 1997, I was looking for more room, and I found an archive of old Macs and other stuff. I said, ‘Get it away!’ and I shipped all that shit off to Stanford. If you look backward in this business, you’ll be crushed. You have to look forward.


The best example of all and one of the greatest jobs of marketing that the universe has ever seen, is Nike. Remember, Nike sells a commodity. They sell shoes. And yet, when you think of Nike, you feel something different than a shoe company. In their ads, as you know, they don’t ever talk about the product. They don’t ever tell you about their air soles.


What does Nike do in their advertising? They honor great athletes, and they honor great athletics. That’s who they are, that’s what they are about.


More important than building a product, we are in the process of architecting a company that will hopefully be much more incredible, the total will be much more incredible than the sum of its parts.


My dream is that every person in the world will have their own Apple computer. To do that, we’ve got to be a great marketing company.


I’ll tell you what our goal is: our goal is to make the best personal computers in the world and to make products we are proud to sell and recommend to our family and friends, and, we want to do that at the lowest price we can.


None of the really bright people I knew in college went into politics. They all sensed that, in terms of making a change in the world, politics wasn’t the place to be in the late Sixties and Seventies. All of them are in business now, which is funny, because they were the same people who trekked off to India or who tried in one way or another to find some sort of truth about life.


Our goal is to make the best personal computers in the world.


We have a major opportunity to influence where Apple is going. As every day passes, the work fifty people are doing here is going to send a giant ripple through the universe. I am really impressed with the quality of our ripple. I know I might be a little hard to get on with, but this is the most fun I’ve had in my life. I’m having a blast.


We attract a different kind of person – a person who doesn’t want to wait five or ten years to have someone take a giant risk on him or her. Someone who really wants to get a little over his head and make a little dent in the universe.


What I’m best at doing is finding a group of talented people and making things with them.


The greatest people are self-managing – they don’t need to be managed. Once they know what to do, they’ll go figure out how to do it. What they need is a common vision. And that’s what leadership is: [h]aving a vision; being able to articulate that so the people around you can understand it; and getting a consensus on a common vision.


Somebody once told me, “Manage the top line, and the bottom line will follow.” What’s the top line? It’s things like, why are we doing this in the first place? What’s our strategy? What are customers saying? How responsive are we? Do we have the best products and the best people? Those are the kind of questions you have to focus on.


We’ve got 25,000 people at Apple. About 10,000 of them are in the stores. And my job is to work with sort of the top 100 people, that’s what I do. That doesn’t mean they’re all vice presidents. Some of them are just key individual contributors.


When a good idea comes, you know, part of my job is to move it around, just see what different people think, get people talking about it, argue with people about it, get ideas moving among that group of 100 people, get different people together to explore different aspects of it quietly, and, you know – just explore things.


Companies, as they grow to become multi-billion-dollar entities, somehow lose their vision. They insert lots of layers of middle management between the people running the company and the people doing the work. They no longer have an inherent feel or a passion about the products.


The people who are doing the work are the moving force behind the Macintosh. My job is to create a space for them, to clear out the rest of the organization and keep it at bay.


My job is to pull things together from different parts of the company and clear the ways and get the resources for the key projects. And to take these great people we have and to push them and make them even better, coming up with more aggressive visions of how it could be.


On why he is brutal to most colleagues: I’m brutally honest, because the price of admission to being in the room with me is I get to tell you your full of shit if you’re full of shit, and you get to say to me I’m full of shit, and we have some rip-roaring fights. And that keeps the B players, the bozos, from larding the organization, only the A players survive. And the people who do survive, say, ‘Yeah, he was rough.’ They say things even worse than ‘He cut in line in front of me,’ but they say, ‘This was the greatest ride I’ve ever had, and I would not give it up for anything.’


We hire people who want to make the best things in the world. You’d be surprised how hard people work over around here. They work nights and weekends, sometimes not seeing their families for a while. Sometimes people work through Christmas to make sure the tooling is just right at some factory in some corner of the world so our product comes out the best it can be. People care so much, and it shows.


You can’t know enough in a one-hour interview. So, in the end, it’s ultimately based on your gut. How do I feel about this person? What are they like when they’re challenged? Why are they here? I ask everybody that: ‘Why are you here?’ The answers themselves are not what you’re looking for. It’s the meta-data.


It’s painful when you have some people who are not the best people in the world and you have to get rid of them; but I found my job has sometimes exactly been that – to get rid of some people who didn’t measure up and I’ve always tried to do it in a humane way. But nonetheless it has to be done and it is never fun.


Many times in an interview I will purposely upset someone: I’ll criticize their prior work. I’ll do my homework, find out what they worked on, and say, “God, that really turned out to be a bomb. That really turned out to be a bozo product. Why did you work on that?…”.


But especially at that point in my life it was not the most important thing, the most important thing was the company, the people, the products we were making, what we were going to enable people to do with these products so I didn’t think about it a great deal, and I never sold any stock, just really believe that the company would do very well over the long term.


When I was 25, my net worth was $100 million or so. I decided then that I wasn’t going to let it ruin my life. There’s no way you could ever spend it all, and I don’t view wealth as something that validates my intelligence.


I’m not going to let it ruin my life. Isn’t it kind of funny? You know, my main reaction to this money thing is that it’s humorous, all the attention to it, because it’s hardly the most insightful or valuable thing that’s happened to me in the past ten years.


It was giant! We did about $200,000 when our business was in the garage, in 1976. In 1977, about $7,000,000 in business. I mean, it was phenomenal! And in 1978, we did $17,000,000. In 1979, we did $47,000,000. That’s when we all really sensed that this was just going through the rafters. In 1980, we did $117,000,000. In 1981, we did $335,000,000. In 1982, we did $583,000,000. In 1983, we did $985,000,000, I think. This year, it will be a billion and a half.


None of those people care about the money. I mean, a lot of them made a lot of money, but they don’t really care. Their lifestyles haven’t particularly changed. It was the chance to actually try something, to fail, to succeed, to grow.


You saw the 1984 commercial. Macintosh was basically this relatively small company in Cupertino, California, taking on the goliath, IBM, and saying, “Wait a minute, your way is wrong. This is now the way we want computers to go. This is not the legacy we want to leave. This is not what we want our kids to be learning. This is wrong and we are going to show you the right way to do it and here it is. It’s called Macintosh and it is so much better.


A computer is the most incredible tool we’ve ever seen. It can be a writing tool, a communications center, a super calculator, a planner, a filer and an artistic instrument all in one, just by being given new instructions, or software, to work from. There are no other tools that have the power and versatility of a computer.


Right now, computers make our lives easier. They do work for us in fractions of a second that would take us hours. They increase the quality of life, some of that by simply automating drudgery and some of that by broadening our possibilities. As things progress, they’ll be doing more and more for us.


These technologies can make life easier, can let us touch people we might not otherwise. You may have a child with a birth defect and be able to get in touch with other parents and support groups, get medical information, the latest experimental drugs. These things can profoundly influence life. I’m not downplaying that.


I think it’s brought the world a lot closer together, and will continue to do that. There are downsides to everything; there are unintended consequences to everything. The most corrosive piece of technology that I’ve ever seen is called television – but then, again, television, at its best, is magnificent.


On how will the Web impact our society: We live in an information economy, but I don’t believe we live in an information society. People are thinking less than they used to. It’s primarily because of television. People are reading less and they’re certainly thinking less.


But the next thing is going to be computer as guide or agent. And what that means is that it’s going to do more in terms of anticipating what we want and doing it for us, noticing connections and patterns in what we do, asking us if this is some sort of generic thing we’d like to do regularly, so that we’re going to have, as an example, the concept of triggers.


We’re going to be able to ask our computers to monitor things for us, and when certain conditions happen, are triggered, the computers will take certain actions and inform us after the fact.


The point is that tools are always going to be used for certain things we don’t find personally pleasing. And it’s ultimately the wisdom of people, not the tools themselves, that is going to determine whether or not these things are used in positive, productive ways.


I do feel there is another way we have an effect on society besides our computers.


They haven’t used it. We limit how much technology our kids use at home.


One of the things that made Apple great was that, in the early days, it was built from the heart.


The roots of Apple were to build computers for people, not for corporations. The world doesn’t need another Dell or Compaq.


You know, everybody has a cell phone, but I don’t know one person who likes their cell phone. I want to make a phone that people love.


What if Apple didn’t exist? Think about it. Time wouldn’t get published next week. Some 70% of the newspaper in the U.S. wouldn’t publish tomorrow morning. Some 60% of the kids wouldn’t have computers; 64% of the teachers wouldn’t have computers. More than half the Websites created on Macs wouldn’t exist. So there’s something worth saving here. See?


What are the great brands? Levi’s, Coke, Disney, Nike. Most people would put Apple in that category. You could spend billions of dollars building a brand not as good as Apple. Yet Apple hasn’t been doing anything with this incredible asset.


What is Apple, after all? Apple is about people who think ‘outside the box’, people who want to use computers to help them change the world, to help them create things that make a difference, and not just to get a job done.


Apple’s the only company left in this industry that designs the whole widget. Hardware, software, developer relations, marketing.


What we want to do is make a leapfrog product that is way smarter than any mobile device has ever been, and super-easy to use. This is what iPhone is. OK? So, we’re going to reinvent the phone.


I had this idea of being able to get rid of the keyboard, type on a multi-touch glass display, and I asked our folks, “Could we come up with a multi-touch display?


It’s not about charisma and personality, it’s about results and products and those very bedrock things that are why people at Apple and outside of Apple are getting more excited about the company and what Apple stands for and what its potential is to contribute to the industry.


Talking about the iPod Nano: We’re in uncharted territory. We’ve never sold this many of anything before.


It’s very easy to take credit for the thinking. The doing is more concrete. But somebody, it’s very easy to say “Oh, I thought of these three years ago”. But ususually when you dig a little deeper, you find that the people that really did it were also the people that really worked through the hard intellectual problems as well.


Innovation has nothing to do with how many R&D dollars you have. When Apple came up with the Mac, IBM was spending at least 100 times more on R&D. It’s not about money. It’s about the people you have, how you’re led, and how much you get it.


Actually, making an insanely great product has a lot to do with the process of making the product, how you learn things and adopt new ideas and throw out old ideas.


People get stuck as they get older. Our minds are sort of electrochemical computers. Your thoughts construct patterns like scaffolding in your mind. You are really etching chemical patterns. In most cases, people get stuck in those patterns, just like grooves in a record, and they never get out of them. It’s a rare person who etches grooves that are other than a specific way of looking at things, a specific way of questioning things.


You always have to keep pushing to innovate. Dylan could have sung protest songs forever and probably made a lot of money, but he didn’t. He had to move on, and when he did, by going electric in 1965, he alienated a lot of people. His 1966 Europe tour was his greatest.


The Beatles were the same way. They kept evolving, moving, refining their art. That’s what I’ve always tried to do – keep moving. Otherwise, as Dylan says, if you are not busy being born, you’re busy dying.


I don’t think that my role in life is to run big organizations and do incremental improvements.


I have a great respect for incremental improvement, and I’ve done that sort of thing in my life, but I’ve always been attracted to the more revolutionary changes. I don’t know why. Because they’re harder. They’re much more stressful emotionally. And you usually go through a period where everybody tells you that you’ve completely failed.


The people who go to see our movies are trusting us with something very important – their time and their imagination. So in order to respect that trust, we have to keep changing; we have to challenge ourselves and try to surprise our audiences with something new every time.


Innovation comes from people meeting up in the hallways or calling each other at 10:30 at night with a new idea, or because they realized something that shoots holes in how we’ve been thinking about a problem.


It’s ad hoc meetings of six people called by someone who thinks he has figured out the coolest new thing ever and who wants to know what other people think of his idea.


You can’t go out and ask people, you know, what the next big thing is. There’s a great quote by Henry Ford, right? He said, ‘If I’d have asked my customers what they wanted, they would have told me ‘A faster horse’.


If you want something new, you have to stop doing something old. Peter Drucker


Obsession is the wellspring of genius and madness. Michel de Montaigne


Be yourself, everyone else is already taken. Oscar Wilde


Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to reform (or pause and reflect). Mark Twain


I don’t think that most of the really best people that I’ve worked with worked with computers for the sake of working with computers. They worked with computers because they are the medium that is best capable of transmitting some feeling that you have, that you want to share with other people.


What I do see is a small group of people who are artists and care more about their art than they do about almost anything else. It’s more important than finding a girlfriend, it’s more important… than cooking a meal, it’s more important than joining the Marines, it’s more important than whatever.


Look at the way artists work. They’re not typically the most ‘balanced’ people in the world. Now, yes, we have a few workaholics here who are trying to escape other things, of course. But the majority of people out here have made very conscious decisions; they really have.


One of my role models is Bob Dylan. As I grew up, I learned the lyrics to all his songs and watched him never stand still. If you look at the artists, if they get really good, it always occurs to them at some point that they can do this one thing for the rest of their lives, and they can be really successful to the outside world but not really be successful to themselves. That’s the moment that an artist really decides who he or she is. If they keep on risking failure, they’re still artists.


It’s rare that you see an artist in his 30s or 40s able to really contribute something amazing. Of course, there are some people who are innately curious, forever little kids in their awe of life, but they’re rare.


We are very careful about what features we add because we can’t take them away.


You’ve baked a really lovely cake, but then you’ve used dog shit for frosting.


Design is the fundamental soul of a man-made creation that ends up expressing itself in successive outer layers of the product or service.


When you’re a carpenter making a beautiful chest of drawers, you’re not going to use a piece of plywood on the back, even though it faces the wall and nobody will ever see it. You’ll know it’s there, so you’re going to use a beautiful piece of wood on the back.


I love it when you can bring really great design and simple capability to something that doesn’t cost much. It was the original vision for Apple. That’s what we tried to do with the first Mac. That’s what we did with the iPod.


For you to sleep well at night, the aesthetic, the quality, has to be carried all the way through.


It takes a lot of hard work,” Jobs said, “to make something simple, to truly understand the underlying challenges and come up with elegant solutions.


A lot of people in our industry haven’t had very diverse experiences. So they don’t have enough dots to connect, and they end up with very linear solutions without a broad perspective on the problem.


We will make them bright and pure and honest about being high-tech, rather than a heavy industrial look of black, black, black, black, like Sony.


We spent some time in our family talking about what’s the trade-off we want to make. We ended up talking a lot about design, but also about the values of our family. Did we care most about getting our wash done in an hour versus an hour and a half? Or did we care most about our clothes feeling really soft and lasting longer? Did we care about using a quarter of the water?


We spent two weeks talking about this every night at the dinner table. We’d get around to that old washer-dryer discussion. And the talk was about design.


You’re asking, where does aesthetic judgment come from? With many things: high-performance automobiles, for example, the aesthetic comes right from the function, and I suppose electronics is no different.


I’ve also found that the best companies pay attention to aesthetics. They take the extra time to lay out grids and proportion things appropriately, and it seems to pay off for them. I mean, beyond the functional benefits, the aesthetic communicates something about how they think of themselves, their sense of discipline in engineering, how they run their company, stuff like that.


It’s really hard to design products by focus groups. A lot of times, people don’t know what they want until you show it to them.


Designing a product is keeping five thousand things in your brain, these concepts and fitting them all together in kind of continuing to push to fit them together in new and different ways to get what you want.


I have always found Buddhism – Japanese Zen Buddhism in particular – to be aesthetically sublime. The most sublime thing I’ve ever seen are the gardens around Kyoto.


Look at the Mercedes design, the proportion of sharp detail to flowing lines. Over the years, they have made the design softer but the details starker. That’s what we have to do with the Macintosh.


You’ve got to start with the customer experience and work backward to the technology.


What we’re trying to do is remove the barrier of having to learn how to use a computer.


This is what customers pay us for – to sweat all these details so it’s easy and pleasant for them to use our computers. We’re supposed to be really good at this. That doesn’t mean we don’t listen to customers.


It’s hard for them to tell you what they want when they’ve never seen anything remotely like it. Take desktop video editing. I never got one request from someone who wanted to edit movies on his computer. Yet now that people see it, they say, ‘Oh my God, that’s great!’.


What we’re going to do is make the products high-tech, and we’re going to package them cleanly so that you know they’re high-tech. We will fit them in a small package, and then we can make them beautiful and white, just like Braun does with its electronics.


Our DNA is as a consumer company – for that individual customer who’s voting thumbs up or thumbs down. That’s who we think about.


We think that our job is to take responsibility for the complete user experience.


Customer service is the new marketing. Derek Sivers


Customer service shouldn’t just be a department, it should be the entire company. Tony Hsieh


We want to stand at the intersection of computers and humanism.


Besides Dylan, I was interested in Eastern mysticism, which hit the shores at about the same time.


Woz and I very much liked Bob Dylan’s poetry, and we spent a lot of time thinking about a lot of that stuff.


I started to listen to music a whole lot and I started to read more outside of just science and technology, Shakespeare, Plato. I loved ‘King Lear’.


Apple is about something more than that, Apple, at the core, its core value, is that we believe that people with passion can change the world for the better.


Ultimately, it comes down to taste. It comes down to trying to expose yourself to the best things that humans have done and then try to bring those things into what you’re doing.


Picasso had a saying: good artists copy, great artists steal. And we have always been shameless about stealing great ideas, and I think part of what made the Macintosh great was that the people working on it were musicians and poets and artists and zoologists and historians who also happened to be the best computer scientists in the world.


On why he made everybody sign the Mac cases: Because the people that worked on it consider themselves and I certainly consider them artists. These are the people that under different circumstances would be painters and poets but because of that time that we live in this new medium has appeared in which to express oneself to one’s fellow species and that’s a medium of computing.


A lot of people that would have been artists and scientists have gone into this field to express their feeling and so it seemed like the right thing to do.


The key thing that comes true is that they had a variety of experiences which they could draw upon, in order to try to solve a problem or to attack a particular dilemma in a kind of unique way.


Leonardo da Vinci was a great artist and a great scientist.


Michelangelo knew a tremendous amount about how to cut stone at the quarry.


The finest dozen computer scientists I know are all musicians. Some are better than others, but they all consider that an important part of their life. I don’t believe that the best people in any of these fields see themselves as one branch of a forked tree. I just don’t see that. People bring these things together a lot.


Anyway, one of our biggest challenges, and the one I think John Sculley and I should be judged on in five to ten years, is making Apple an incredibly great 10 or 20 billion-dollar company. ‘Will it still have the spirit it does today?’ We’re charting new territory.


If Apple becomes a place where computers are a commodity item, where the romance is done, and where people forget that computers are the most incredible invention that man has ever invented, I’ll feel I have lost Apple. But if I’m a million miles away, and all those people still feel those things… then I will feel that my genes are still there.


You know, Dr. Edwin Land was a troublemaker. He dropped out of Harvard and founded Polaroid.


On Dr. Edwin Land: Not only was he one of the great inventors of our time but, more important, he saw the intersection of art and science and business and built an organization to reflect that.


You need a very product-oriented culture, even in a technology company. Lots of companies have tons of great engineers and smart people. But ultimately, there needs to be some gravitational force that pulls it all together. Otherwise, you can get great pieces of technology all floating around the universe. But it doesn’t add up to much.


We did iTunes because we all love music. We made what we thought was the best jukebox in iTunes. Then we all wanted to carry our whole music libraries around with us. The team worked really hard. And the reason that they worked so hard is because we all wanted one. You know? I mean, the first few hundred customers were us.


Well, I was thrown out of school a few times.


I think all of us need to be on guard against arrogance which knocks at the door whenever you’re successful.


Invest time in yourself to have great experiences that are going to enrich you.


I think if you do something and it turns out pretty good, then you should go do something else wonderful, not dwell on it for too long. Just figure out what’s next.


Reed College at that time offered perhaps the best calligraphy instruction in the country… I decided to take a calligraphy class to learn how to do this. It was beautiful, historical, artistically subtle in a way that science can’t capture, and I found it fascinating. None of this had even a hope of any practical application in my life. But ten years later, when we were designing the first Macintosh computer, it all came back to me.


We wanted to more richly experience why were we were alive, not just make a better life, and so people went in search of things. The great thing that came from that time was to realize that there was definitely more to life than the materialism of the late 50’s and early sixties. We were going in search of something deeper.


Between my sophomore and junior years, I got stoned for the first time; I discovered Shakespeare, Dylan Thomas, and all that classic stuff. I read Moby Dick and went back as a junior taking creative-writing classes.


You could get LSD fresh made from Stanford. You could sleep on the beach at night with your girlfriend. California has a sense of experimentation and a sense of openness – openness to new possibilities.


Human minds settle into fixed ways of looking at the world and that’s always been true and it’s probably always going to be true.


I’m completely stunned. I’m 19 years old, in a foreign country, up in the Himalayas, and here is this bizarre Indian baba who has just dragged me away from the rest of the crowd, shaving my head atop this mountain peak. I’m still not sure why he did it.


I bought an apartment in New York, but it’s because I love that city. I’m trying to educate myself, being from a small town in California, not having grown up with the sophistication and culture of a large city. I consider it part of my education.


I used to think that technology could help education. I’ve probably spearheaded giving away more computer equipment to schools than anybody else on the planet. But I’ve had to come to the inevitable conclusion that the problem is not one that technology can hope to solve. What’s wrong with education cannot be fixed with technology. No amount of technology will make a dent.


One of the saints in my life is this woman named Imogene Hill, who was a fourth-grade teacher who taught this advanced class. She got hip to my whole situation in about a month and kindled a passion in me for learning things. I learned more that year than I think I learned in any year in school.


I was pretty bored in school, and I turned into a little terror. You should have seen us in third grade. We basically destroyed our teacher. We would let snakes loose in the classroom and explode bombs.


School was pretty hard for me at the beginning.


My mother taught me how to read before I got to school and so when I got there I really just wanted to do two things. I wanted to read books because I loved reading books and I wanted to go outside and chase butterflies. You know, do the things that five-year-olds like to do. I encountered authority of a different kind than I had ever encountered before, and I did not like it. And they really almost got me. They came close to really beating any curiosity out of me.


If you just sit and observe, you will see how restless your mind is. If you try to calm it, it only makes it worse, but over time it does calm, and when it does, there’s room to hear more subtle things – that’s when your intuition starts to blossom and you start to see things more clearly and be in the present more. Your mind just slows down, and you see a tremendous expanse in the moment. You see so much more than you could see before.


I’m actually as proud of many of the things we haven’t done as the things we have done.


Just get rid of the crappy stuff and focus on the good stuff.


Simple can be harder than complex: You have to work hard to get your thinking clean to make it simple. But it’s worth it in the end because once you get there, you can move mountains.


I have a very simple life. I have my family and I have Apple and Pixar. And I don’t do much else.


The way we’re running the company, the product design, the advertising, it all comes down to this: Let’s make it simple. Really simple.


Look at the design of a lot of consumer products – they’re really complicated surfaces. We tried to make something much more holistic and simple.


When you first start off trying to solve a problem, the first solutions you come up with are very complex, and most people stop there. But if you keep going, and live with the problem and peel more layers of the onion off, you can oftentimes arrive at some very elegant and simple solutions. Most people just don’t put in the time or energy to get there.


What I found when I got here was a zillion and one products. It was amazing. And I started to ask people, now why would I recommend a 3400 over a 4400? When should somebody jump up to a 6500, but not a 7300? And after three weeks, I couldn’t figure this out. If I couldn’t figure this out… how could our customers figure this out?


Apple is a $30 billion company, yet we’ve got less than 30 major products. I don’t know if that’s ever been done before. Certainly the great consumer electronics companies of the past had thousands of products. We tend to focus much more. People think focus means saying yes to the thing you’ve got to focus on. But that’s not what it means at all. It means saying no to the hundred other good ideas that there are. You have to pick carefully.


People love chopping wood. In this activity one immediately sees results. Albert Einstein


The art of being wise is the art of knowing what to overlook. William James


Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away. Antoine de Saint-Exupery


Clutter and confusion are failures of design, not attributes of information. Edward Tuft


It is not a daily increase, but a daily decrease. Hack away at the unessential. Bruce Lee


Quality is more important than quantity. One home run is much better than two doubles.


We had a fundamental belief that doing it right the first time was going to be easier than having to go back and fix it. And I cannot say strongly enough that the repercussions of that attitude are staggering. I’ve seen them again and again throughout my business life.


We’re not going to be the first to this party, but we’re going to be the best.


Details matter, it’s worth waiting to get it right.


The Lisa people wanted to do something great. And the Mac people want to do something insanely great. The difference shows.


If they are working in an environment where excellence is expected, then they will do excellent work without anything but self-motivation. I’m talking about an environment in which excellence is noticed and respected and is in the culture. If you have that, you don’t have to tell people to do excellent work. They understand it from their surroundings.


I have to tell you there’s some stuff in our industry that we wouldn’t be proud to ship, that we wouldn’t be proud to recommend to our family and friends. And we can’t do it, we just can’t ship junk.


We think the Mac will sell zillions, but we didn’t build the Mac for anybody else. We built it for ourselves.


We were the group of people who were going to judge whether it was great or not. We weren’t going to go out and do market research. We just wanted to build the best thing we could build.


The only problem with Microsoft is they just have no taste.


They have absolutely no taste. And I don’t mean that in a small way, I mean that in a big way, in the sense that they don’t think of original ideas, and they don’t bring much culture into their products.


The older I get, the more I see how much motivations matter. The Zune was crappy because the people at Microsoft don’t really love music or art the way we do. We won because we personally love music.


I am saddened, not by Microsoft success, I have no problem with their success, they’ve earned their success, for the most part. I have a problem with the fact that they just make really third-rate products.


Their products have no spirit of enlightenment about them, they are very pedestrian. The sad part is that customers don’t have a lot of that spirit either, but the way that we’re going to ratchet up our species is to take the best and to spread it around everybody so that everybody grows up with better things and starts to understand the subtlety of these better things.


I wish him the best, I really do. I just think he and Microsoft are a bit narrow. He’d be a broader guy if he had dropped acid once or gone off to an ashram when he was younger.


Microsoft has had two goals in the last 10 years. One was to copy the Mac, and the other was to copy Lotus’ success in the spreadsheet – basically, the applications business. And over the course of the last 10 years, Microsoft accomplished both of those goals. And now they are completely lost.


With our technology, with objects, literally three people in a garage can blow away what 200 people at Microsoft can do.


Our friends up north spend over five billion dollars on research and development and all they seem to do is copy Google and Apple.


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About the Author: Suraj Karki

Suraj Karki is the founder of Motivational Stuffs.

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