Steve Jobs’ Speech at Stanford and American Values



Many life stories and values have been experienced differently by everyone. It is also for Steve Jobs, a CEO of Apple Computer and Pixar Animation Studios who told some of his meaningful and inspiring life stories in a speech at Stanford University for the Commencement Day.

Steve Jobs divided his life stories into three crucial points. The first one is about connecting the dots. He said that he began finding his true passion during a college journey. In that period, he felt that he didn’t find any value at all and then decided to drop out. However, he still took the calligraphy class where he learned about serif and san serif typefaces and typography. It was then led him to his biggest interest and his beginning of success by designing the first Macintosh Computer into Mac. This first work was succeedly included as the first computer in beautiful typography which would have been impossible as if he had not decided to drop out. He therefore convinced that people can only connect the dots from the backward to the future.

Coming in a close second is about love and loss. When he was twenty years old, he and his friend, Woz, started Apple in his parents’ garage and worked hard on it. Suddenly, he was out from Apple after ten years because of conflicting vision to a new hired person of his team, whilst Apple had been the focus of his entire adult life. However, it was not changed anything to his passion because he still loved to what he did and rather decided to start it over. In starting his two new companies, NeXT and Pixar, he also got another new story. He was falling in love with an amazing woman, namely Laurene. He found his love in his other side of losing something. In a same moment of his life, he returned to Apple when his two new companies – NeXT and Pixar were bought by Apple and also had a wonderful family with Laurene. By having these love and loss together, he really encouraged everyone to keep looking and believing whether falling in a work or finding a great relationship because both of these are really matter in completing many parts of a life.

The last is about death. He was diagnosed for pancreas cancer and lived with it all day which made him closer to his death. However, he could find another valuable meaning throughout which made him realizing to not trap in any dogma of life towards other’s thoughts. The only thing he suggested is taking courage to follow the heart and intuition because other’s voices should only consider as a second opinion.

His three meaningful life stories are fully related to several American values. It can be seen from his decision to drop out during his college journey until living in a diagnose of cancer. In the first story, the American values implied his purpose of getting efficiency and practicality by seeking the problem solution through the quickest and least costly means. It is also aimed at getting personal control over the environment and considering the effective way, since he tried to look out for his own self-interest. In addition, the second story contains about American values on achievement, success, activity, work, and material comfort which are oriented to competition in gaining power, prestige, and wealth as a high standard of living. Finally, the last story consists of three American values on moral orientation, equality, and freedom by the tendency to look upon the world to what is right and wrong, believe people status as equals, and remind for no domination of other’s opinions over our own believes.

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