download pdf Creative Selection: Inside Apple's Design Process During the Golden Age of Steve JobsAuthor Ken Kocienda –

1 It d be tempting to have played up the Steve Jobs angle throughout but the author doesn t do that, he admits that Jobs wouldn t have been able to pick him out in a small crowd.2 There aren t many business related books about the work of an individual contributor , which makes it refreshing, the activity was the day to day work and output.2a This meant he could tell the story of Apple s culture and influences without trying to be the center of the story.3 A large part of the story is about a specific problem to solve the iPhone keyboard and how it was overcome, but the story was able to zoom out as well and talk about design in general.4 There isn t a lot of ego, he talks about who helped him, mistakes along the way etc. Kocienda Reveals The Real Secret Of Steve Jobs S Leadership And Apple S Magic Kim Scott, Bestselling Author Of Radical Candor A Wall Street Journal Bestseller An Insider S Account Of Apple S Creative Process During The Golden Years Of Steve Jobs Hundreds Of Millions Of People Use Apple Products Every Day Several Thousand Work On Apple S Campus In Cupertino, California But Only A Handful Sit At The Drawing Board Creative Selection Recounts The Life Of One Of The Few Who Worked Behind The Scenes, A Highly Respected Software Engineer Who Worked In The Final Years Of The Steve Jobs Era, The Golden Age Of Apple Ken Kocienda Offers An Inside Look At Apple S Creative Process For Fifteen Years, He Was On The Ground Floor Of The Company As A Specialist, Directly Responsible For Experimenting With Novel User Interface Concepts And Writing Powerful, Easy To Use Software For Products Including The IPhone, The IPad And The Safari Web Browser His Stories Explain The Symbiotic Relationship Between Software And Product Development For Those Who Have Never Dreamed Of Programming A Computer, And Reveal What It Was Like To Work On The Cutting Edge Of Technology At One Of The World S Most Admired Companies Kocienda Shares Moments Of Struggle And Success, Crisis And Collaboration, Illuminating Each With Lessons Learned Over His Apple Career He Introduces The Essential Elements Of Innovation, Inspiration, Collaboration, Craft, Diligence, Decisiveness, Taste, And Empathy, And Uses These As A Lens Through Which To Understand Productive Work Culture An Insider S Tale Of Creativity And Innovation At Apple, Creative Selection Shows Readers How A Small Group Of People Developed An Evolutionary Design Model, And How They Used This Methodology To Make Groundbreaking And Intuitive Software Which Countless Millions Use Every Day This is the real deal, written by an insider I was also there during that time This book accurately describes Apple s software engineering during the second Steve Jobs era For hardware engineering, read Adam Lashinsky s Inside Apple The vivid descriptions in the book are better than the analyses I would stress that the principles and practices described by the author were completely unwritten and unnamed, as the author says So if you re trying to be like Apple by reading a book, you re doing it wrong If you want to be like Apple, ditch the business books and startup blogs do you think Steve Jobs read those things , and really focus on the product There s nothing in the book about MVP, Agile, Scrum, A B testing, TDD, etc Apple really didn t work like that The key is what the author calls creative selection demoing dogfooding iterating converging the product , with tight loops of communication with minimal teams, enforced by secrecy.One thing that occurred to me is that the examples given and generally in Apple s history are ones where the product definitions were relatively well formed and concrete up front, leaving plenty of room for technical innovation but little room for exploration and business validation Before getting to that concrete vision, the Apple way isn t applicable. This book does an amazing job describing what a regular day to day stuff an engineer designer needs to do to bring new products into the world The Apple part is bonus anyone who wants to build software for a living should read this, especially anyone who wants to work in new emerging domains. I was excited about diving in this weekend into Creative Selection by Ken Kocienda, a new book providing a detailed look inside the design process at Apple And Creative Selection did not disappoint While much has been written about Steve Jobs and Apple, I found Creative Selection particularly insightful because it provided a vignette into the development of the first iPhone, and in particular, one of it s most critical features the keyboard from the perspective of Ken Kocienda, the software engineer ultimately responsible for developing it Ken goes through the many challenges and subsequent iterations to address those challenges with building the first keyboard to be presented only on a glass display And in doing so, it showcased how Apple s design and development process was different from traditional Silicon Valley companies in subtle yet incredibly important ways.Ken distills the Apple development approach that ultimately made them successful to seven elements inspiration, collaboration, craft, diligence, decisiveness, taste, and empathy And he walks through what each of these elements means to him with detailed stories exemplifying each.But I wanted to share some personal observations I took away from the book on how Apple built products in such a fundamentally different way.Ken describes the process by which they would prepare product demos for their own team and then for various leaders, use that demo as the primary avenue for feedback, and then continue to iterate to the next demo, followed by rounds of demo feedback, and so on He calls this process creative selection While at the surface this may sound like a typical product review process that many companies have, there was so much that was different about it.First, demos were done early and often, even at the prototype stage These were not just reviews at the end of the process to get final approval, but instead they were done to show early progress, determine viability of the project, and make fundamental design decisions The goal was to produce an initial prototype to demo as quickly as possible and then continually refine the prototype through subsequent feedback sessions These demo sessions with senior leaders happened on a weekly basis, not months apart.And in contrast to so many classic reviews where leaders are largely concerned with ensuring projects are on time, that there are no unaddressed bottlenecks, and that the team is executing on the right strategy, leaders at Apple in fact played the role of arbiters of taste Ken defines taste as developing a refined sense of judgment and finding the balance that produces a pleasing and integrated whole And in these reviews, leaders would often be making calls on the spot on design decisions for the product Ken retells the story of many reviews with Scott Forstall, who was head of iPhone software, and Steve Jobs himself who would make critical decisions to remove UI elements, to pick amongst a few design directions that the team was presenting, and to cancel efforts entirely, all based on the context and feedback they got from the presenting team, their own first hand experience with the demo, and their ultimate sense of taste This feedback was highly respected by the team and didn t feel like classic executive swoop ins because of how deeply involved the senior leaders were on a weekly basis with engaging in depth with the product during these demos.The nature of these meetings also looked so different from traditional exec meeting topics with discussions around market opportunity, competitors, resourcing, etc They were instead fundamentally about the design and user experience And each leader would play with the product themselves just as a user would to really connect with the product experience.Equally important to their process was extreme product dogfooding, which they called living on the product They understood that even after making initial product decisions in these demo reviews, they needed to continue to experience the product on a daily basis to ensure the experience was actually satisfying And in doing so, they would continually come up with feedback from amongst the team who was living on the product, and incorporate that feedback into the product Ken shares how each change he made to the keyboard auto correction capabilities would be rolled out to the small team of iPhone software engineers and how the feedback directly from those individuals shaped his future iterations I do regularly see a disconnect in product quality emerge when the product, design, and engineering teams aren t using their own product on a daily basis.And finally, the teams tasked with owning critical software components were very small empowered teams of individuals Each component would have a DRI a directly responsible individual who was ultimately on the line for producing that component And there was a fundamental belief that small teams did the best work, because they were empowered to do so Ken was the DRI for the iPhone keyboard and worked directly and closely with an associated designer Glaringly absent from these teams were in fact product managers The responsibility instead was divided amongst the engineers, designers, a program manager for project management support, and the senior leader By empowering these very small teams they had the ability and motivation to do their very best work.I would encourage you to check out the book for yourself as it was a fascinating glimpse into the design process of one of the world s most innovative product companies Creative Selection by Ken Kocienda. A true insider account of the development of the greatest consumer product ever made What does it take to create something as revolutionary as the iPhone Ken Kocienda s first hand account offers up some surprises Apple looked down upon the in vogue A B testing believing they would know what consumers wanted better than consumers The company also believed in directly responsible individuals to lead projects which seems top down than most organizations.The author does a nice job of marrying difficult programming concepts such as compilers and porting with interesting discussion involving Immanuel Kant and Vince Lombardi Of course, Steve Jobs features prominently and his eagerness to relentlessly chase perfection is apparent throughout the book I also gained a new found respect for how much work was put into the auto type of the iPhone keyboard.The one negative I thought was that it could be a little too tailored to product development If that is not your interest, you may find this a little slow at times This is not a fast paced account of Steve Jobs but of a detailed analysis of the plethora of steps needed to design something great. Ho amato questo libro, se sei programmatore capisci tantissime cose e ne vale la pena Spedizione perfetto libro come de descrizione