Wandering in India, Steve Jobs learned intuition

Arun Kumar

Washington, Oct 24 (IANS) Apple co-founder Steve jobs' wandering across India for seven months looking for spiritual enlightenment turned out 'not be a waste of time' as he came back having learned intuition.

'The main thing I've learned is intuition, that the people in India are not just pure rational thinkers, that the great spiritual ones also have an intuition,' he told his biographer Walter Isaacson.

'Likewise, the simplicities of Zen Buddhism, really informed his design sense. That notion that simplicity is the ultimate sophistication,' Isaacson said in an interview with CBS telecast Sunday night.

When he returned from his trek to India in the 1970s, Jobs and Apple co-founder Steve 'Wozniak started building and peddling a primitive computer for hobbyists. With a $1,300 investment, they founded Apple computer in his parents' garage', Isaacson recalled.

Asked how somebody who was a hippie, a college dropout, somebody who drops LSD and marijuana goes off to India and comes back deciding he wants to be a businessman, Isaacson said: 'Jobs has within him sort of this conflict.'

'But he doesn't quite see it as a conflict between being hippie-ish and anti-materialistic but wanting to sell things like Wozniak's board,' he said. 'Wanting to create a business. And I think that's exactly what Silicon Valley was all about in those days.'

'Let's do a startup in our parents' garage and try to create a business,' Issacson said about Jobs' who had taken leave from his job as technician at video games manufacturer Atari to go to India.

Like a well-timed Apple launch, Isaacson's book titled simply - 'Steve Jobs' - hit the stores Monday just two-and-a-half weeks after he died, as the CBS put it.

A former editor of TIME Magazine, Isaacson, who has done books about Benjamin Franklin and Albert Einstein, began the first of more than 40 interviews with him for the book in 2009, with Jobs already gravely ill.

(Arun Kumar can be contacted at arun.kumar@ians.in)