Apple Cafes are expected to let users surf the Net at high speeds, play games, and design Web pages along with the offerings of a full-service cafe. The stores also may sell consumer products with Apple logos.
“The time is right,” said Satjiv Chahil, senior vice president of marketing for Apple, in a telephone interview. “Cybercafes are in. The technology finally is reaching out to ‘the rest of us.’ This will be a place to showcase our products in the real world.”
Burrows says, “Jobs wanted no seam, gap, or paintbrush stroke showing.”
He wanted everything “polished to a supernatural smoothness.”
Wood used inside the building is to come from a specific type of maple tree, and it can only be “heartwood,” which is the wood from the center of the tree.
It will have six-square kilometers of bent glass, which will be bent at a factory in Germany, then shipped to California. The company doing the glass had to develop new machines for making it.
Apple will pre-build bathrooms and cubicle banks then have them driven to the office and installed. This saves time and allows the construction to be more exact.
Jobs didn’t want concrete floors, he wanted “a stone-infused alternative such as terrazzo, buffed to a sheen normally reserved for museums and high-end residences,” says Burrows.
Jobs also wanted the seams where walls met to be 1/32 of an inch across, whereas the standard for construction is 1/8 of inch.
He wanted the ceiling to be polished concrete instead of sound absorbing material. Apple also has a very specific plan for the concrete ceiling. It wants to pour ceiling molds on the ground, then lift it to the ceiling, an approach that is far more expensive.
Tech firms, certainly, appear to be major consumers of ethnographic research. “Technology companies as a whole are in danger of being more disconnected from their customers than other companies,” says Ken Anderson, an ethnographer at Intel. Tech designers succumb to the illusion that their users are all engineers. “Our mind-set is that people are really just like us, and they’re really not,” Anderson says. Ethnography helps teach the techie types to understand those consumers who “aren’t living and breathing the technology” the way an Intel engineer might. (A curious exception to this cautious embrace of ethnographic methods is Apple, whose late co-founder, Steve Jobs, trusted his designers—and especially himself—more than he trusted consumers or researchers. “It isn’t the consumers’ job to know what they want,” he famously said.)
Creativity is just connecting things. When you ask creative people how they did something, they feel a little guilty because they didn’t really do it, they just saw something. It seemed obvious to them after a while.
I used to think that technology could help education. I’ve probably spearheaded giving away more computer equipment to schools than anybody else on the planet. But I’ve had to come to the inevitable conclusion that the problem is not one that technology can hope to solve. What’s wrong with education cannot be fixed with technology. No amount of technology will make a dent. It’s a political problem.
On a trip to Japan in the early 1980s, Jobs asked Sony’s chairman Akio Morita why everyone in the company’s factories wore uniforms. He told Jobs that after the war, no one had any clothes, and companies like Sony had to give their workers something to wear each day. Over the years, the uniforms developed their own signatures styles, especially at companies such as Sony, and it became a way of bonding workers to the company. “I decided that I wanted that type of bonding for Apple,” Jobs recalled.
Sony, with its appreciation for style, had gotten the famous designer Issey Miyake to create its uniform. It was a jacket made of rip-stop nylon with sleeves that could unzip to make it a vest. So Jobs called Issey Miyake and asked him to design a vest for Apple, Jobs recalled, “I came back with some samples and told everyone it would great if we would all wear these vests. Oh man, did I get booed off the stage. Everybody hated the idea.”
In the process, however, he became friends with Miyake and would visit him regularly. He also came to like the idea of having a uniform for himself, both because of its daily convenience (the rationale he claimed) and its ability to convey a signature style. “So I asked Issey to make me some of his black turtlenecks that I liked, and he made me like a hundred of them.” Jobs noticed my surprise when he told this story, so he showed them stacked up in the closet. “That’s what I wear,” he said. “I have enough to last for the rest of my life.”
Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life… Don’t let the noise of other’s 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.