If you’re even slightly interested in the life of Steven P. Jobs then the chances are you’re also at least mildly intrigued by the second company he founded, NeXT.
Formed after Jobs was famously ousted from Apple by John Sculley, NeXT went through a few changes between its inception and eventual buyout by a struggling Apple. After initially starting out as a high-end computer hardware company, NeXT later found itself pushing software. Of course all of this was what led to Apple eventually taking NeXT over and using its operating system as the basis for Mac OS X, but we all knew that, didn’t we?
The problem with the NeXT years is that it is still one of the least documented spells of Steve Jobs’ life. While there have been countless books written about the enigma that was Steve Jobs, the vast majority of them center themselves around either the building of Apple, or the saving of it. Very few really spend that much time covering what happened to NeXT while Jobs was there, trying to change the world all over again.
Now we can get a better insight into the inner workings of the startup that Jobs created after his public spat with Apple’s executives, thanks to a selection of videos that have found their way onto YouTube. The videos take a couple of different forms, but are all interesting in their own ways.
One video appears to be from a series called ‘Entrepreneurs’ and follows the creation of NeXT in the early days, even following the company’s eleven employees on two retreats set up by Jobs. Here we get an interesting insight into what made NeXT tick in those first few months, and the pressures the team was under to get a product out the door quickly, and at the right price point.
The other videos, some of which were meant for NeXT employees’ eye only, show Jobs explaining the direction the company is taking, and why. One video appears to show Jobs touting NeXT’s wares, showing off the system and software his team built – including an email system that is not too dissimilar to the one we use in Mac OS X today.
There is around an hour’s worth of video to watch, but it is well worth the time if you have even a passing interest in NeXT, and especially Steve Jobs himself.