Zoals je inmiddels wel zal weten is Steve Jobs overleden. Woorden kunnen niet uitdrukken hoe hij gemist zal worden, hoeveel hij zal worden herinnerd, en hoe ingrijpend hij de wereld heeft veranderd. Hij is slechts 56 jaar geworden, maar wat een inspirerende man.
Steve Jobs heeft eens gezegd: “I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been”. Een mooie quote.
We kunnen niet allemaal een Steve Jobs zijn maar we kunnen wel van hem leren!
Hieronder zijn inspirerende speech waar je weer van kunt leren. Nu klinkt “I’ll be dead soon” raar, maar je komt weer even met beide benen op de grond.
Ik heb nog de engelse tekst gevonden en deze onder de video gezet voor degene die liever lezen dan kijken.
I am honored to be with you today at your commencement
from one of the finest universities in the world. I never
graduated from college. Truth be told, this is the closest
I’ve ever gotten to a college graduation. Today I want to
tell you three stories from my life. That’s it. No big
deal. Just three stories.
The first story is about connecting the dots.
I dropped out of Reed College after the first 6 months,
but then stayed around as a drop-in for another 18 months
or so before I really quit. So why did I drop out?
It started before I was born. My biological mother was a
young, unwed college graduate student, and she decided to
put me up for adoption. She felt very strongly that I
should be adopted by college graduates, so everything was
all set for me to be adopted at birth by a lawyer and his
wife. Except that when I popped out they decided at the
last minute that they really wanted a girl. So my parents,
who were on a waiting list, got a call in the middle of
the night asking: “We have an unexpected baby boy; do you
want him?” They said: “Of course.” My biological mother
later found out that my mother had never graduated from
college and that my father had never graduated from high
school. She refused to sign the final adoption papers. She
only relented a few months later when my parents promised
that I would someday go to college.
And 17 years later I did go to college. But I naively
chose a college that was almost as expensive as Stanford,
and all of my working-class parents’ savings were being
spent on my college tuition. After six months, I couldn’t
see the value in it. I had no idea what I wanted to do
with my life and no idea how college was going to help me
figure it out. And here I was spending all of the money my
parents had saved their entire life. So I decided to drop
out and trust that it would all work out OK. It was pretty
scary at the time, but looking back it was one of the best
decisions I ever made. The minute I dropped out I could
stop taking the required classes that didn’t interest me,
and begin dropping in on the ones that looked interesting.
It wasn’t all romantic. I didn’t have a dorm room, so I
slept on the floor in friends’ rooms, I returned coke
bottles for the 5¢ deposits to buy food with, and I would
walk the 7 miles across town every Sunday night to get one
good meal a week at the Hare Krishna temple. I loved it.
And much of what I stumbled into by following my curiosity
and intuition turned out to be priceless later on. Let me
give you one example:
Reed College at that time offered perhaps the best
calligraphy instruction in the country. Throughout the
campus every poster, every label on every drawer, was
beautifully hand calligraphed. Because I had dropped out
and didn’t have to take the normal classes, I decided to
take a calligraphy class to learn how to do this. I
learned about serif and san serif typefaces, about varying
the amount of space between different letter combinations,
about what makes great typography great. 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. And
we designed it all into the Mac. It was the first computer
with beautiful typography. If I had never dropped in on
that single course in college, the Mac would have never
had multiple typefaces or proportionally spaced fonts. And
since Windows just copied the Mac, it’s likely that no
personal computer would have them. If I had never dropped
out, I would have never dropped in on this calligraphy
class, and personal computers might not have the wonderful
typography that they do. Of course it was impossible to
connect the dots looking forward when I was in college.
But it was very, very clear looking backwards ten years
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.
My second story is about love and loss.
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. We had just released our finest
creation — the Macintosh — a year earlier, and I had just
turned 30. And then I got fired. How can you get fired
from a company you started? Well, as Apple grew we hired
someone who I thought was very talented to run the company
with me, and for the first year or so things went well.
But then our visions of the future began to diverge and
eventually we had a falling out. When we did, our Board of
Directors sided with him. So at 30 I was out. And very
publicly out. What had been the focus of my entire adult
life was gone, and it was devastating.
I really didn’t know what to do for a few months. I felt
that I had let the previous generation of entrepreneurs
down – that I had dropped the baton as it was being passed
to me. I met with David Packard and Bob Noyce and tried to
apologize for screwing up so badly. I was a very public
failure, and I even thought about running away from the
valley. But something slowly began to dawn on me — I still
loved what I did. The turn of events at Apple had not
changed that one bit. I had been rejected, but I was still
in love. And so I decided to start over.
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.
During the next five years, I started a company named
NeXT, another company named Pixar, and fell in love with
an amazing woman who would become my wife. Pixar went on
to create the worlds first computer animated feature film,
Toy Story, and is now the most successful animation studio
in the world. In a remarkable turn of events, Apple bought
NeXT, I returned to Apple, and the technology we developed
at NeXT is at the heart of Apple’s current renaissance.
And Laurene and I have a wonderful family together.
I’m pretty sure none of this would have happened if I
hadn’t been fired from Apple. It was awful tasting
medicine, but I guess the patient needed it. Sometimes
life hits you in the head with a brick. Don’t lose faith.
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.
And that is as true for your work as it is for your
lovers. 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 until you find it. Don’t settle.
My third story is about death.
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
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. You are
already naked. There is no reason not to follow your
About a year ago I was diagnosed with cancer. I had a scan
at 7:30 in the morning, and it clearly showed a tumor on
my pancreas. I didn’t even know what a pancreas was. The
doctors told me this was almost certainly a type of cancer
that is incurable, and that I should expect to live no
longer than three to six months. My doctor advised me to
go home and get my affairs in order, which is doctor’s
code for prepare to die. It means to try to tell your kids
everything you thought you’d have the next 10 years to
tell them in just a few months. It means to make sure
everything is buttoned up so that it will be as easy as
possible for your family. It means to say your goodbyes.
I lived with that diagnosis all day. Later that evening I
had a biopsy, where they stuck an endoscope down my
throat, through my stomach and into my intestines, put a
needle into my pancreas and got a few cells from the
tumor. I was sedated, but my wife, who was there, told me
that when they viewed the cells under a microscope the
doctors started crying because it turned out to be a very
rare form of pancreatic cancer that is curable with
surgery. I had the surgery and I’m fine now.
This was the closest I’ve been to facing death, and I hope
it’s the closest I get for a few more decades. Having
lived through it, I can now say this to you with a bit
more certainty than when death was a useful but purely
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.
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.
When I was young, there was an amazing publication called
The Whole Earth Catalog, which was one of the bibles of my
generation. It was created by a fellow named Stewart Brand
not far from here in Menlo Park, and he brought it to life
with his poetic touch. This was in the late 1960’s, before
personal computers and desktop publishing, so it was all
made with typewriters, scissors, and polaroid cameras. It
was sort of like Google in paperback form, 35 years before
Google came along: it was idealistic, and overflowing with
neat tools and great notions.
Stewart and his team put out several issues of The Whole
Earth Catalog, and then when it had run its course, they
put out a final issue. It was the mid-1970s, and I was
your age. On the back cover of their final issue was a
photograph of an early morning country road, the kind you
might find yourself hitchhiking on if you were so
adventurous. Beneath it were the words: “Stay Hungry. Stay
Foolish.” It was their farewell message as they signed
off. Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish. And I have always wished
that for myself. And now, as you graduate to begin anew, I
wish that for you.
Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.
Thank you all very much.
Wat een geweldige speech, toch.
Inspiratie met vele mooie, waardevolle adviezen.
“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.”