Quotations by Jobs, Steve


A lot of companies — I know it sounds crazy — but a lot of companies … hire people to tell them what to do. We hire people to tell us what to do. We figure we’re paying them all this money; their job is to figure out what to do and tell us.

Steve Jobs (1955-2011) American computer inventor, entrepreneur
“Steve Jobs: ‘Computer Science Is A Liberal Art’,” interview with Terry Gross, Fresh Air, NPR (1996)
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There are a number of variants on this quotation. A common one: "It doesn't make sense to hire smart people and then tell them what to do; we hire smart people so they can tell us what to do."
Added on 23-Aug-17 | Last updated 23-Aug-17
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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.

Steve Jobs (1955-2011) American computer inventor, entrepreneur
“Steve Jobs: Iconoclast and salesman” interview by Brian Williams, MSNBC (25 May 2006)
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Added on 13-Dec-12 | Last updated 13-Dec-12
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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.

Steve Jobs (1955-2011) American computer inventor, entrepreneur
“The Entrepreneur of the Decade Award,” Interview, Inc. Magazine (1 Apr 1989)
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Added on 15-Nov-12 | Last updated 15-Nov-12
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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’re 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. While 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.

Steve Jobs (1955-2011) American computer inventor, entrepreneur
“To the Crazy Ones,” TV advertisement (1997)
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Often cited as a quotation from Steve Jobs, this was an Apple advertisement developed by Chiat/Day under the direction of Jobs after his return to the company in 1997, under the campaign "Think Different." The ad and its text was created by Chiat/Day talent like Craig Tanimoto, Rob Siltanen, and Ken Segall. (For more information on the ad's development, see Siltanen's article.)

Jobs did narrate the text at least once, but the original 1997 ad was voiced by Richard Dreyfuss.

Note: nearly all transcripts say, "But the only thing you can't do ..." while the word voiced is "About the only thing you can't do ...."
Added on 27-Aug-20 | Last updated 27-Aug-20
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Sometimes I believe in God, sometimes I don’t. I think it’s 50-50 maybe. But ever since I’ve had cancer, I’ve been thinking about it more. And I find myself believing a bit more. I kind of — maybe it’s ’cause I want to believe in an afterlife. That when you die, it doesn’t just all disappear. The wisdom you’ve accumulated. Somehow it lives on, but sometimes I think it’s just like an on-off switch. Click and you’re gone. And that’s why I don’t like putting on-off switches on Apple devices.

Steve Jobs (1955-2011) American computer inventor, entrepreneur
(Attrbuted)

Quoted by his biographer, Walter Isaacson, in a 60 Minutes interview (Oct 2011)
Added on 20-Dec-12 | Last updated 27-Aug-20
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Real artists ship.

Steve Jobs (1955-2011) American computer inventor, entrepreneur
(Attributed)

An old saying at Apple Computer, attributed to Steve Jobs.
Added on 29-Nov-12 | Last updated 29-Nov-12
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My girlfriend always laughs during sex — no matter what she’s reading.

Steve Jobs (1955-2011) American computer inventor, entrepreneur
(Spurious)

From a comedy routine by Emo Philips (in the album Emo it's "... always giggles ...").
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 23-Jul-12
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The most compelling reason for most people to buy a computer for the home will be to link it to a nationwide communications network. We’re just in the beginning stages of what will be a truly remarkable breakthrough for most people –– as remarkable as the telephone.

Steve Jobs (1955-2011) American computer inventor, entrepreneur
Playboy (1 Feb 1985)

Full text.
Added on 8-Sep-11 | Last updated 8-Sep-11
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You’ve got to start with the customer experience and work back toward the technology — not the other way around.

Steve Jobs (1955-2011) American computer inventor, entrepreneur
Apple Worldwide Developers Conference (May 1997)
Added on 8-Nov-12 | Last updated 8-Nov-12
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Again, you can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something — your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.

Steve Jobs (1955-2011) American computer inventor, entrepreneur
Commencement Address, Stanford University (2005)
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Added on 3-Jan-13 | Last updated 3-Jan-13
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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. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.

Steve Jobs (1955-2011) American computer inventor, entrepreneur
Commencement Address, Stanford University (2005)
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Added on 6-Oct-09 | Last updated 23-Jul-12
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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. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose.

Steve Jobs (1955-2011) American computer inventor, entrepreneur
Commencement Address, Stanford University (2005)
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Added on 29-Aug-11 | Last updated 14-Apr-21
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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. Right now the new is you, but someday not too long from now, you will gradually become the old and be cleared away. Sorry to be so dramatic, but it is quite true.

Steve Jobs (1955-2011) American computer inventor, entrepreneur
Commencement Address, Stanford University (2005)
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Added on 6-Oct-11 | Last updated 27-Aug-20
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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.

Steve Jobs (1955-2011) American computer inventor, entrepreneur
Commencement Address, Stanford University (2005)
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Added on 27-Dec-12 | Last updated 27-Aug-20
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Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. 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. So keep looking. Don’t settle.

Steve Jobs (1955-2011) American computer inventor, entrepreneur
Commencement Address, Stanford University (2005)
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Added on 10-Jan-13 | Last updated 27-Aug-20
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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.

Steve Jobs (1955-2011) American computer inventor, entrepreneur
In BusinessWeek (25 May 1998)
Added on 6-Dec-12 | Last updated 27-Aug-20
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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. That’s a far more depressing thought. Conspiracy is optimistic! You can shoot the bastards! We can have a revolution! But the networks are really in business to give people what they want. It’s the truth.

Steve Jobs (1955-2011) American computer inventor, entrepreneur
Interview, Wired (Feb 1996)
Added on 1-Nov-12 | Last updated 27-Aug-20
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