Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Andy Rubin: El Jobso’s lost cousin?

Michael Arrington’s got a piece on TC today about Andy Rubin, the fellow who founded Android in 2005 and sold it to Google.  Michael thinks that Andy’s got some El Jobso in him.  We’ll get to that.  First, check this out.  Perfectly done.

“(Jobs has) disrupted the mobile phone, music, film and television industries, and we haven’t even mentioned the Macs yet. But Jobs is also notoriously touchy and difficult to work with. He demands perfection and doesn’t really work well with others. And Jobs is distrustful of the press.  Apple’s PR group is mostly there to not return calls. We forgive him all that, of course. Because he’s changing the world, and forces competitors to do better just to try to keep up. The world, particularly the tech world, is a far more colorful place because of Jobs. There is no one at Apple who has the product vision to push that company forward once he steps down. He’s the Alexander the Great of today’s tech world. And he’s also able to captivate a crowd when he’s on stage.”

Wow.  That’s so good I am tempted to just stop.  But no.  The point of the article, besides the adulation, is that there are a lot of comparisons between the two.

“People who work with (Rubin) have told me of his amazing attention to detail and his unbending demands that a product be perfect before it goes out the door. A lot of that shows in the the Nexus One, Google’s first complete end to end hardware and software system. Rubin has many of the same personality traits as Jobs. He’s a product visionary and fanatic who likes the dictatorial style of product development. He’s not great with people, and doesn’t deal well with the press.”

Rubin was an Apple engineer, cofounded WebTV and Danger (and got fired.) Sounds like Dear Leader’s NeXT-Pixar-Apple odyssey. Even dresses a lot like him, too.