Re: [NTLK] Jobs, Skully, Apple II, and Newton...

Date: Thu Mar 21 2002 - 14:51:37 EST

>So -- can anyone fill me in on more details on what went on between Jobs,
>Skully, the Apple II line, and the Newton. I mean, my impression has been
>that Skully killed Jobs' pet project and, in return, Jobs eventually killed
>Skully's Newton. Is that just old rumor -- or any truth to it?

It was Steve Jobs who brought John Sculley to Apple from Pepsico in 1983
("Do you
want to spend the rest of your life selling sugared water or do you want
a chance
to change the world?"). It was Sculley who (with the support of the Board of
Directors) demoted Jobs in 1985 when the initial Macintosh proved less
than expected (the company sold only about 25% of what had been anticipated),
and the company was in crisis. Without managerial power, Jobs later left
Apple on
his own accord.

(The Apple II continued to be the company's strongest selling computer
during this
time, accounting for 70% of the companies sales, but was completely
overshadowed by the high hopes for Macintosh.)

>Was the Newton line hurting financially by that time? I mean, did Jobs think
>he was making good financial decisions, do you think? Or was Jobs ego just
>getting back at Skully in a spiteful way?

To quote a passage I picked up from Mac Weekly Journal <>:

"If you want to break out of media-inspired thinking, start by not
assuming Steve
Jobs breaks things in narcissistic 'fits of rage' unless you have
evidence. He's a
person, not a sterotype."

Some people like to hold on to this idea that the Newton platform was
because Steve Jobs saw the opportunity to (putting it politely) thumb his
nose at
John Sculley. Other people are fixated on the conspiracy theory that
investment in Apple was made in return for the company quietly exiting the
Handheld market. I don't believe either.

I can see no reason not to believe that the Newton platform was abandoned for
what Steve Jobs felt were good, rational business reasons, to streamline and
simplify Apple's product line and focus the company on the Macintosh.
(I'm not sure
the Board of Directors were involved in the decision.) I have yet to see any
evidence to the contrary; if nothing else, the company has certainly
from the chaos of the early 1990s.


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