Source: The New Yorker, Feb 2015
Jobs and Ive had an intense first meeting. Ive said, “I can’t really remember that happening really ever before, meeting somebody when it’s just like that”—he snapped his fingers. “It was the most bizarre thing, where we were both perhaps a little—a little bit odd. We weren’t used to clicking.”
… Apple launched its “Think Different” campaign, and Ive took it as a reminder of the importance of “not being apologetic, not defining a way of being in response to what Dell just did.”
… a poster, well known in design circles, that begins, “Believe in your fucking self. Stay up all fucking night,” and ends, many admonitions later, “Think about all the fucking possibilities.”
… he linked the studio’s work to nasa’s: like the Apollo program, the creation of Apple products required “invention after invention after invention that you would never be conscious of, but that was necessary to do something that was new.”
as André put it, “There’s a hexagon pattern of negative shapes that are subtracted from the material from one side, and then there’s the same pattern, subtracted from the material from the other side. But it’s offset, so that the intersection between the two subtractions makes interesting shapes.”
Ive manages newness. He helps balance the need to make technological innovations feel approachable, so that they reach a mass market—Choo Choo—with the requirement that they not be ugly and infantile.
“Elegance in objects is everybody’s right, and it shouldn’t cost more than ugliness.”
“At the risk of sounding terribly sentimental, I do think one of the things that just compel us is that we have this sense that, in some way, by caring, we’re actually serving humanity,” he said. “People might think it’s a stupid belief, but it’s a goal—it’s a contribution that we can hope we can make, in some small way, to culture.”
Abrams told me that “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” would reflect those thoughts, but he wouldn’t say how. After the release of the film’s first trailer—which featured a fiery new lightsabre, with a cross guard, and a resemblance to a burning crucifix.
He craved products that didn’t force adjustments of behavior, that gave what Powell Jobs called a “feeling of gratitude that someone else actually thought this through in a way that makes your life easier.” She added, “That’s what Steve was always looking for, and he didn’t find it until he worked with Jony. . . . They were really happy, they relished each other.”
she and Ive share a taste for Josef Frank, the Austrian-Swedish designer of rounded furniture and floral fabrics, who once announced, in a lecture, “No hard corners: humans are soft and shapes should be, too.”
At Jobs’s memorial, which was held on the lawn at Infinite Loop, Ive said, “Steve used to say to me—and he used to say this a lot—‘Hey, Jony, here’s a dopey idea.’ And sometimes they were: really dopey. Sometimes they were truly dreadful. But sometimes they took the air from the room, and they left us both completely silent. Bold, crazy, magnificent ideas. Or quiet, simple ones which, in their subtlety, their detail, they were utterly profound.” Ive said to me, “I couldn’t be more mindful of him. How could I not, given our personal relationship, and given that I’m still designing in the same place, at the same table, where I spent the last fifteen years with him sat next to me?”
Ive’s position was that people were “O.K., or O.K. to a degree,” with carrying a phone that is identical to hundreds of millions of others, but they would not accept this in something that’s worn. The question, then, was “How do we create a huge range of products and still have a clear and singular opinion?”