Steve Jobs' "real genius": Points to ponder, Principal Investigator

I was fascinated by several observations Gladwell made about the genius of Steve Jobs, late Apple honcho.

About him being an Editor, not a writer. About him refining the creations of others (as if a half a hundred hadn't thought of a tablet computer before?). About him throwing a fit because one of his creative staff wanted more direction and less...editorializing.

There is much to ponder in here about the proper role of the PI that you work for, are, hate and/or want to become.

2 responses so far

  • Beaker says:

    During my student years, Big PI would tweak my abstracts, posters and manuscripts, often ruthlessly. "Simplify...simplify, he'd say." I'd argue that over-simplification led to mis-representation of the data, but in retrospect Big PI was usually right.

    Now I find myself tweaking abstracts, posters and manuscripts of people in my lab. "Can you make it simpler?" "What's the take-home?" "What's the story line?" However, I don't think insults and assholeish behavior are required to motivate people to tweak their own creations.

  • Bashir says:

    Sounds a bit like my PI (the tweaking, not the being a jerk). Even that "Tell me what you want. I'll know it when I see it" exchange sounds familiar. I think we did that over a manuscript or two.

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