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Monday, October 22, 2012, 04:47 pm PT (07:47 pm ET)

Rare Jobs documentary highlights early days of NeXT

A documentary from the 1980s focusing on the early days of NeXT shows late Apple cofounder Steve Jobs at work behind the scenes at his second computer startup, offering a rare glimpse at how the tech guru handled his charges and what he thought of the future of personal computing.

Jobs Documentary


Attesting to the film's rarity, the well-informed Jim Darlymple said, "I've never seen this video," when he posted the documentary to his website The Loop.

It appears that the 20-minute documentary was made during the building of NeXT, Jobs' first project after being was ousted from Apple in 1985.

The video shows the first steps Jobs took when building NeXT, which he saw as being a producer of high-end college and enterprise workstations. From the company's logo, which was created by legendary designer Paul Rand, to the firm's mission statement, the film documents the earliest days at NeXT.

Perhaps most interesting are the numerous speeches and "brainstorming sessions" Jobs participated in, which illustrated his unique insight into the world of personal computing and how his new company fit in to that industry. One of the most notable ideas is Jobs' emphasis on bringing expensive high technology, usually reserved for big business, down to a level accessible by consumers.



Chronicling a time period up until the first units and software began to ship, the documentary describes the multiple challenges Jobs faced in building NeXT, motivating his employees and creating a polished product.

Jobs thought of himself as the keeper of the vision, a leader who kept the company on track and reminded his colleagues of what was important and what was not. Many believe it was this idea, combined with Jobs' forward-looking vision, that made Apple such a success when he returned to the company in 1997.