Even as Pixar’s hardware and software product lines foundered, Jobs kept protecting the animation group. It had become for him a little island of magical artistry that gave him deep emotional pleasure, and he was willing to nurture it and bet on it. ? ? decree deep spending cuts across the board. When it was over, Lasseter and his animation group were almost too afraid to ask Jobs about authorizing some extra ? money for another short. Finally, they broached the topic and Jobs sat silent, looking skeptical. It would require close to $300,000 more out of his pocket. After a few minutes, he askedRead More →

At one point the members of the Pixar animation team were trying to convince Intel to let them make some of its commercials, and Jobs became impatient. During a meeting, in the midst of berating an Intel marketing director, he picked up the phone ? and called CEO Andy Grove directly. Grove, still playing mentor, tried to teach Jobs a lesson: He supported his Intel manager. “I stuck by my employee,” he recalled. “Steve doesn’t like to be treated like a supplier.” Grove also played mentor when Jobs proposed that Pixar give Intel suggestions on how to improve the capacity of its processors to renderRead More →

Jobs was very possessive about control of the whiteboard during a meeting, so the burly Smith pushed past him and started writing on it. “You can’t do that!” Jobs shouted. “What?” responded Smith, “I can’t write on your whiteboard? Bullshit.” At that point Jobs stormed out. ? Smith eventually resigned to form a new company to make software for digital drawing and image editing. Jobs refused him permission to use some code he had created while at Pixar, which further inflamed their enmity. “Alvy eventually got what he needed,” said Catmull, “but he was very stressed for a year and developed a lung infection.” InRead More →

Luxo Jr. was nominated for an Academy Award, and Jobs flew down to Los Angeles to be there for the ceremony. It didn’t win, but Jobs became committed to making new animated shorts each year, even though there was not much ? of a business rationale for doing so. As times got tough at Pixar, he would sit through brutal budget-cutting meetings showing no mercy. Then Lasseter would ask that the money they had just saved be used for his next film, and Jobs would agree. Tin Toy ? Not all of Jobs’s relationships at Pixar were as good. His worst clash came with Catmull’sRead More →

Jobs and Catmull decided that, in order to show off their hardware and software, Lasseter should produce another short animated film in 1986 for SIGGRAPH, the annual computer graphics conference. At the time, Lasseter was using the Luxo ? lamp on his desk as a model for graphic rendering, and he decided to turn Luxo into a lifelike character. A friend’s young child inspired him to add Luxo Jr., and he showed a few test frames to another animator, who urged him to make sure he ? told a story. Lasseter said he was making only a short, but the animator reminded him that aRead More →

AnimationThe digital animation business at Pixar—the group that made little animated films—was originally just a sideline, its main purpose being to show off the hardware and software of the company. It was run by John ? Lasseter, a man whose childlike face and demeanor masked an artistic perfectionism that rivaled that of Jobs. Born in Hollywood, Lasseter grew up loving Saturday morning cartoon shows. In ninth grade, he wrote a report ? on the history of Disney Studios, and he decided then how he wished to spend his life. When he graduated from high school, Lasseter enrolled in the animation program at the California InstituteRead More →

The chief financial officer at Lucasfilm found Jobs arrogant and prickly, so when it came time to hold a meeting of all the players, he told Catmull, “We have to establish the right pecking order.” The plan was to gather everyone in a room with Jobs, and then the CFO would come in a few minutes late to establish that he was the person running the meeting. “But a funny thing happened,” Catmull recalled. “Steve started the meeting on time without the CFO, and by the time the CFO walked in Steve was already in control of the meeting.” Jobs met only once with GeorgeRead More →

On the software side, Pixar had a rendering program, known as Reyes (Renders everything you ever saw), for making 3-D graphics and images. After Jobs became chairman, the company created a new language and ? interface, named RenderMan, that it hoped would become a standard for 3-D graphics rendering, just as Adobe’s PostScript was for laser printing. As he had with the hardware, Jobs decided that they should try to find a mass market, rather than just a specialized one, for the software they made. ? He was never content to aim only at the corporate or high-end specialized markets. “He would have these greatRead More →

Jobs had always appreciated the virtue of integrating hardware and software, which is what Pixar did with its Image Computer and rendering software. It also produced creative content, such as animated films and graphics. All three elements ? benefited from Jobs’s combination of artistic creativity and technological geekiness. “Silicon Valley folks don’t really respect Hollywood creative types, and the Hollywood folks think that tech folks are people you hire and never have to meet,” Jobs wanted to sell Pixar’s computers to a mass market, so he had the Pixar folks open ? up sales offices—for which he approved the design—in major cities, on the theoryRead More →

At that point he called Jobs to make sure he understood. The board had given final approval of his reorganization plan, which would proceed that week. Gassée would take over control of Jobs’s beloved Macintosh as well as other ? products, and there was no other division for Jobs to run. Sculley was still somewhat conciliatory. He told Jobs that he could stay on with the title of board chairman and be a product visionary with no operational duties. But by this point, ? even the idea of starting a skunkworks such as AppleLabs was no longer on the table. It finally sank in. JobsRead More →